Andy: What was your first Convention? What is a lasting memory of your first convention?
Kudrel: My first big and memorable convention was Anime North 2005 in Toronto, ON. I caught wind of it from a tiny local convention, but it was at AN that the real magic happened and my obsession began. The most memorable part was the just the overwhelming feelings it gave me from being surrounded by people I could really connect with and feeling like I belonged. I literally felt like I’d figured out the meaning of the universe!
A: What was the spark that inspired you to first start cosplaying?
K: I have always been artistic, originally through drawing, painting and writing. I have also always enjoyed playing dress up and being in character. I played a lot of roleplay games in high school (and still haven’t stopped). After attending my first few conventions and getting involved in LARPs I learned that I could do both of these things, and that many other people did as well. What sold it for me was the merge of using my artistic talent in a new, endlessly creative way, along with being able to play a part and have the interactions with others through the characters.
A: Your Daenerys is spot on, what made you choose to cosplay as her? What makes GOT such a popular series in your opinion? What makes your cosplay the best Daenerys?
K: Daenerys is an amazing character, and reminds me of my childhood. I was completely obsessed with dragons and wanted to be the beautiful princess ruler of a magical world! The series has some of the most intense plot twists I have ever experienced. Nothing is held back and it leaves a strong impact on the fans, which I think is one of the reasons it is so successful. I personally love it for the clever politics and of course, the drop-dead sexy costumes.
As for my Daenerys costume, I’m not sure it’s the best one out there, but I certainly think I get extra points for having a dragon! Many, many hours of work went into the costume, and the dragon, and it’s some of the most tedious work I’ve done, so to know that people love it and would consider it one of the best is extra rewarding.
A: You also do an amazing Emma Frost, what do you find in Frost that you also find in yourself? What makes Frost a better telepath then Jean? Who played Frost better Tahyna Tozzi from Xmen Origins: Wolverine or January Jones from Xmen: First Class?
K: If there is anything I can relate to with Emma, it is her passion for teaching the younger generation of mutants. It’s the same sort of thing I want to do for younger cosplayers; give them my knowledge and to be able to provide inspiration and be a role model for them.
As for who plays a better Emma, I’ll go with January Jones. She just had a much better look for the part, and she portrayed it well!
A: In an article you wrote for CosplayGen, you took us through the steps of creating a BLAME! cosplay, what inspired you to write this article? What do you hope the take away from the article was for the reader?
K: CosplayGen actually to came to me and asked if I was interested in a collaboration after seeing a BLAME! cosplay feature I had posted on my deviantArt journal. Obviously they appreciated the style as much as I did, so I couldn’t say no! I would hope that anyone who has read the article will have a new found appreciation for cosplays of lesser known characters and the creative process that such a huge part of bringing characters to life. Hopefully the article can also offer some new incentive in their own creation making.
A: You are/were a guest a ConBravo! Tell me how it feels to be officially recognized as good enough to be a guest at a Convention? If you could create a dream panel with any cosplayer, who would you pick and what would be the topic?
K: It’s one of the best feelings in the world to know that I’m recognized to such a degree that I can be in certain places because other people want me there. I am always so honored and thankful and feel like I never show my gratitude enough! To be able to have that sort of following gives me the opportunities to be a better role model, to help the cosplay community and have my input taken seriously. It can also be overwhelming at times since it puts me in a position where I’m living up to a reputation. To meet certain expectations can put a lot of pressure on you!
A dream panel I would like to do, but that I know will never happen, is to have a foam armor building battle with Shoko Cosplay.
A: You have been cosplaying for some time now, what has been your proudest moment as a cosplayer?
K: This is a hard one to answer! Every new costume I make and every time I get myself on and off a masquerade stage is a proud moment for me, and as I learn more and get better at what I do, I just feel so much better about it. I guess if I had to choose, winning my first Best in Show at Fan Expo 2010 as my WoW troll was totally awesome!
A: What Conventions will you be at in 2014?
K: 2013 was a little scarce for me, so I’m hoping to make up for it in 2014. I will be doing a guest appearance at Con-G once again. Other Canadian events will include Anime North, Conbravo!, G-Anime, Otakuthon, and my first ever Costume-Con! Hope to make it to some US cons as well which will likely include Katsucon, Colossalcon and Dragon*Con.