Featured Cosplayer: Krista RogueApril 4, 2013
Krista Rogue Benjamin, alias Toronto Rogue Cosplay is a
Southern Northern Belle that has some fantastic cosplaying skills. If you have been to a convention in the Toronto area, chances are you’ve seen her in costume. Don’t let the name fool you, she cosplays more than just Rogue from X-Men! We caught up with her to talk cosplaying, the Toronto X-Men, and her inspirations.
When did you start cosplaying and what was the first character you ever portrayed?
The first cosplay I ever built was when I was sixteen and it was an attempt at the Jim Lee Rogue suit from the classic cartoon.
What Inspires you as a cosplayer, when creating a new costume or choosing a new character?
I can pull inspiration from a lot of places. It usually comes from a book or show I am currently involved with but there are also a lot of moments where the Cajun and I will be out and I can’t help but find things. The other day I found a glittery yellow top hat for 2$ and couldn’t help myself… “But if I want to do a Columbia cosplay…” The Cajun shakes his head, but I guess the best inspirations are the ones that are not only easy, but also characters I personally identify with. If I don’t like the character, I don’t think I could actually cosplay as them.
What and where was your first convention?
I was a late bloomer as far as the convention world is concerned. I believe my very first was in 2009 and it was a Wizard World Comicon in Toronto.
Do you cosplay as other characters besides Rogue?
Yes! I’ve done a few other characters including Sailor Jupiter, Fox from Gargoyles, Pikachu, Zatanna and others… but Rogue will always be my baby.
Do you make all your own costumes?
Some, not all. I do try whenever possible to create my own work, but sometimes deadlines and cost can lead to me commissioning pieces or even full costumes. Of my two token Rogue looks the Jim Lee suit I made myself, the Legacy Rogue was commissioned from Castle Corsetry.
Can you tell me a bit about Toronto Rogue Cosplay and what made you choose her as a main character?
I didn’t choose Rogue so much as she chose me. Some people have a hard time believing this but Rogue is actually my middle name. Beyond the cosplay world it is not only my name to friends and colleagues but also within the Deaf Community as well. Toronto has been to me what New York City is to some, the city of dreams, a place to run away and start a new life – and I did! So the idea of Toronto Rogue Cosplay just sort of happened out of inspirations in my own life that are paralleled with Rogue’s experiences in the comics.
What is your favorite cosplay?
That’s a tough question… of my own? Probably the body paint shoot I did with Roxy Lee GG and Beth McLeod, it was four hours of paint for half hour or so of shooting – but the work was just incredible. Outside of my own work I think Nicole Marie Jean is just the bees knees. She’s sexy vivacious and fun, but never afraid to be silly or pull a raptor face, and I admire that.
Who is your all time favorite comic character?
Can you tell me a bit about the Toronto X-Men and what their mission or goal is?
The X-Men of Toronto is an organization I founded with some like-minded mutants. We aim to promote cosplay, help charities, promote Toronto based events and be positive role models for children and the cosplay community at large. Our past events include a Cosplay Skate at Nathan Philips Square as well as a charity raffle at Canadian Toycon where all proceeds were donated to Sketch. Next on our docket on April 20th we have a Cosplay Picnic and Food Drive in High Park and everything we collect will be donated to The Stop. Our events are open to all any people can look us up on Facebook.
Do you consider yourself a ‘Geek’? What does the word ‘Geek’ mean to you?
I’ve always been confused by the word geek. I hear it used as an insult, I hear it used as a synonym for obsessive, I hear it as a term of pride. I think the actually definition of the word was lost long ago. I just consider myself a passionate person, where, when I fall in love with something y’all are gonna know about it!
If you could give any advice to someone interested in cosplay what would it be?
Everyone starts somewhere, don’t let jerks bring you down. I can’t tell you how often I hear sad stories about girls (or boys!) attempting a cosplay only to have some Con Troll tell them they are too fat, or didn’t get it accurate or blah blah blah – ignore these people. It took me 5 years and four suits until I finally got Rogue to a place where I was happy with it. Cosplay is about playing, and don’t be afraid to play with a character and make it your own.
If you’d like to see more of Krista’s work, check out her Facebook, website or Tumblr!