Andy: What was the first convention that you attended? Who or what made you want to go to that Convention?
GK: The first convention I attended was a tiny Toronto mini-con in 2004, but it was literally just a dealers room with a handful of local comic artists. Some of my friends told me about it and got me to go with them. All I wanted to do was buy a bunch of comics and silly t-shirts, I was a kid in a candy store!
Andy: What was your first cosplay? Did you make it or buy it? Why did you choose to cosplay as that character?
GK: The first cosplay(s) I made were Saria from Ocarina of Time and Poison Ivy. I made Saria completely by myself. I assembled found items for the Poison Ivy costume. The characters were representative of my biggest fandoms at the time: Zelda and Batman.
Andy: Is there a certain media you usually pick from? (i.e. mostly from anime or comic books or movies?) Why do you chose that media to get your inspiration from?
GK: The genre I pull from the most is Comics, I’ve been a avid comic book reader for a long time. Growing up I had a comic book store within walking distance. This made picking up a single issue with my allowance very convenient. Comic heroes and villains have always inspired me; they always represent the best, the worst and the most surreal aspects of culture.
Andy: The huntress in most of her comics book appearances will cross the killing line that Batman won’t, Do you empathize with her on that front? Do you see any part of her character in you? What drew you to her character?
GK: Helena Bertinelli has always been to hardcore for the batfam! She usually calm, cool and collected but can have wicked temper. I feel in love with Huntress in Birds of Prey, out of all the team members I connected with Helena the best. She is a very alluring and strong character, if anything I’d love to be more like her.
Andy: Another DC girl with a dark side you made was Raven? What did you see in her character that inspired you to cosplay as her? Why?
GK: The Teen Titans has always been one of my favorite series. Since I started reading comics when I was young, I could relate really well to the team. I have an emotional connection with all the original Titan Ladies. They’re personalities mesh together, representing a little bit of everything. Raven is very controlled, she understand that you have to act in the best interests of the community, otherwise she would destroy everything. She’s serious, professional and sarcastic as hell.
Andy: In the photograph by Mike Kowlak of your Raven cosplay, you decide to go without the head gem and also without the white make-up, why did you consider that the best option? Do you feel as if your missing something by making that choice?
GK: I choose the Comic version of Raven over Teen Titans Go. In the comic she usually has a head gem which is representative of the third eye. The third eye provides perception beyond ordinary sight, fitting with her powers and overall mystical persona. The white make-up is pretty specific to Teen Titans Go, since I did the comic version I never considered making myself paler.
Andy: What kind of materials did you use to make your Raven cosplay?
GK: The dress is made from a two way stretch silk knit jersey. The ‘arm warmers’ are made from a combination to dark blue suede and silk knit jersey. I added details of suede strapping, gold buckets and gold studs for more visual interest (inspired by the Ame-Comi statue). My cape is made from a matte satin in a matching dark blue.
My belt is custom made and resin cast by me. I used Castin Craft and circular molders to cast the discs and sculpted, molded and cast my raven piece. The belt is painted using Krylon gold metallic spray paint. All the cast belt pieces are mounded on a dark blue pleather belt.
Andy: Your a pretty big Halo fan, what is it about the game that pulled you? Do you love to beat the boys at their own game?
GK: I wouldn’t say I’m a super big Halo fan, I’m the first to admit that I suck at Halo. In group games I always joke that my friends are down a player! I defiantly enjoy playing Halo and always have fun playing it online with friends. I’ve always viewed shooter games are a great multi-player or party game.
I’m much better at Diablo, L4D and Mass Effect! I grew up as Player Two with my brother and participated in LAN parties with him and his friends. I’m not a super competitive person but that doesn’t mean I don’t love to win. I’m usually the first to do a gloating little dance if I have the most kills at the end of the game.
I was really excited about going to MegaCon this year! A lot of my friends from Dragon Con attend Mega as well. Since I live in Canada I don’t get to see them very often, that made attending MegaCon a no brainer. Conventions and Friends are the perfect combo.
I’ve wanted to get a photo with Gail as Huntress for a while; she’s constantly been one of my favorite writers. The way Gail portrays strong females and friendship is phenomenal. Some of my favorite parts of BOP are when the girls are just hanging out with each other. Gail is also outspoken, funny and dedicated to her fans, what more can you ask for!
I love comics because they are hyper real and a reflection of current culture. The way women in comics are portrayed is a reflection of the writers/artist views. I’ll be the first to admit that I love my super sexy comic women, they’re idealised symbols. If I had to change the portrayal of Women I’d start somewhere simple: more female writers/artists.
Andy: What is your best advice for beginning cosplayers?
GK: IF YOU’RE NOT HAVING FUN YOUR DOING IT WRONG!
Cosplay is all about having fun. Your first costume probably won’t be perfect but everyone has to start somewhere. I’ve been cosplaying since 2005 and I’m still learning new things. I walk up to people at conventions to ask how they made something or what fabric they used. Meet new people, be part of the community and have fun!
Andy: What Conventions will you be at in 2013?
GK: Anime North
Niagara Falls Comic Con
San Diego Comic Con
In Closing here are some shots of Gillykins at MegaCon 2013: