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Interview of Rowan Rayne (USA)

Here comes the interview of the beautiful Rowan Rayne from Detroit in the USA !

1. For how long have you been in cosplay ?

I have been cosplaying for 4 years now, but before cosplay I made costumes for Halloween for about 7 years. That is really what got me into cosplay.

2. Cosplay is a time consuming hobby. how long does it take to craft your costumes ?

Yes it is ! Very time consuming. I usually make 3 costumes a year, and all three normally take me about 6 months to complete. I usually take a break in the summer but when the days start getting colder I usually being working on my costumes inside.

3. Any other hobby or passion besides cosplaying ?

I am a weightlifter so I spend a lot of time in the gym, usually several hours a day. I never really enjoyed working out for most of my life until I got into weightlifting. It's a great hobby, and I feel great since I have started.

4. What materials are you using for cosplay crafting, worbla ? Foam ? Can you talk about that a little bit ?

So I have always been mainly a sewer when it comes to cosplay. Last year I made my very first cosplay that didn't require sewing, Deathstroke. I made the armor out of foam. I love working with foam. I usually will go on Amazon or Ebay and search for yoga mats, I have found them to actually work really well for foam armor, especially as I personally, as a woman, prefer my armor to be less bulky looking than say an Iron Man suit. It cuts really well with a heat knife and I have found sticking it in the oven is the easiest way to heat it up. If you are working on a very small piece, a heat gun works well, but for large body pieces, the only thing that has worked for me to get the entire area hot enough to mold has been sticking it in my oven. I would suggest wearing a mask while you do it, it smells awful and I am sure the fumes are bad for you. I have tried using worbla in the past and I unfortunately could not figure out how to work with it, and it was just too expensive to keep trying and testing.

5. Do you have any FAVORITE cosplayer ?

That is so tough, there are so many good cosplayers. One of my absolute favorites, though is Dominique Skye. Not only are her costumes incredible, she is gorgeous, she make's her daughter matching costumes and she is a firecracker on social media. I follow all of her posts and she is always spot on with what she says and never fails to get a giggle out of me.

6. Did you hurt yourself while making a cosplay or in a convention ?

I have never SERIOUSLY injured myself making a cosplay but I have stepped on a LOT of needles over the year. I have also burned myself many times with either the heat gun or hot glue gun. I have made the mistake of rushing things and trying to hot glue pieces of my cosplays while I am wearing them and have burned my neck, arms, chest several times. I still have a couple hot glue scars haha.

7. Do you sell your old cosplays, or just keep it in a huge closet ?

I keep a HUGE closet ! I am actually moving next year and the most important thing to me is finding a home with a large spare room just for cosplay, both for creating them and storing them. I keep all of the ones I have made, but usually only wear them once or twice.

8. Who teached you to craft your cosplays ? Your family ? By reading books or watching youtube tutorials ?

That is an interesting question. I really never had any assistance. I think it was mostly a process of trial and error with me. I saw something I liked and then I tried a thousand times until I figured out a way to make it work. I will look at youtube videos sometimes for hints or tricks to working with certain materials.

9. Which conventions are you going to this year ?

So in May I went to our biggest local con here in Metro Detroit which is Motor City Comic Con. I am going to another local convention in November, Youmacon. In 2017 I am hoping to make it to Chicago for C2E2 this year. I am currently saving to purchase a house so I am trying to stay as close to home as I can.

10. What is your limit budget for a cosplay ?

I say that I am trying to save for a home so admitting my budget is really embarrassing. I probably spend close to $1000.00 a year on cosplay related supplies, but that usually covers 3 costumes, so I guess it's about $300 per costume.

11. Any future super secret cosplay project in mind ?

I am usually not super secretive about my costumes, I like posting progress updates on my blog and photos. I currently am working on She-Hulk and Lady Death for next year. The Lady Death cape is being a huge thorn in my side. Fingers crossed I can get it worked out. I will say I have been considering doing a gender bent Iron Fist as well. Nothing in the works for that but I may give it a shot.

12. What are you doing in "real" life for a living ?

I have been an executive legal assistant in a law firm for over 7 years now. I essentially work for the CEO of the firm as his assistant.

13. You best experience from a convention ? And your worst ?

I think some of my favorite memories have been meeting some of my actor idols at conventions. I met James Marsters who plays Spike on Buffy and Manu Bennett who plays Deathstroke on Arrow and both experiences were super amazing. The celebs I have come into contact with have just been so nice. I also just really enjoy hanging out with my friends at the con. My best friend and I usually cosplay together as coinciding characters and it is the most fun time of the year. As for worst ? I haven't had that many bad experiences with cosplay, thankfully. I guess my worst was once at a convention where I was cosplaying Black Canary and a guy came up and fought with me over who I was cosplaying and told me I wasn't Canary, I was Black Cat. He was super super rude, and hell, I made the costume, I studied the character, haha, I know the difference. He was super rude and condescending. That was probably the worst con experience.

14. Any advice for cosplay wannabees or beginners ?

Sure ! I think the most important thing is to remember this is a hobby and it is meant to have fun. Try not to get too caught up in making sure everything is perfect and second guessing all your choices and just do what you love and have fun with it ! I know a lot of people get super nervous cosplaying certain characters and they worry about if they can pull off the character. Guess what ? You can ! Any character you want. Cosplay is an amazing hobby that is so much fun ! You get to be whoever you want and never let anyone tell you otherwise. You won't regret taking the plunge.

15. Do you have limits ? Some cosplays you will never make ? 

This is something I actually haven't given too much thought to, so I am glad you asked. I like to think that I know my way around limits. There are definitely things I am not great with, such as prop construction, but I either try to do it myself as best I can, or I commission things. I will say, after wearing Deathstroke all day at a convention, I probably wouldn't do a full armored costume ever again, because I was actually sick at the end of the day because I was so overheated. I try not to think in limitations when it comes to stuff that is too hard, like I said, I would rather think up a way around it and a way to make my cosplay work, one way or another.

Her facebook page : https://www.facebook.com/RowanRayne/

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