This is my interview with Roger Senpai. Read more of my blogs at Ashley's Cosplay Cache Blog or check out my https://wordpress.com/ashleyscosplaycache site for the full experience on all of the blogs.
Hey Roger. Thank you for taking the time to let us get to know you through this interview. I’m looking forward to getting to know more about you.
What is the farthest you have travelled to go to a con?
The furthest I’ve ever traveled for a convention was to Seattle, Washington for Sakura-Con, and according to Google, that’s over 4000 km! To be fair though, I flew over to the West Coast to visit my relatives in Vancouver, British Columbia and that’s about a 3 hour drive away from Seattle.
For me, I try to go to big conventions outside of my hometown in places that are also worth visiting. I attended Anime Central in the Midwest because I love the city of Chicago. I’ve attended Holiday Matsuri because I wanted to visit Florida and Disney World! And for Sakura-Con, I was able to see my relatives and visit Vancouver and Seattle at the same time. It’s definitely not cheap compared to a local convention, but being able to do more than just attend a con makes the trip worth it.
I certainly would love to attend some conventions in Europe and definitely ones in Asia. I heard the ones in Asia are even larger than the North American ones, although there’s no nightlife like the ones in North America.
Have you met anyone who cosplays for a living or do you?
Personally? The only one I know who potentially earns a full-time living with cosplay is Vickybunnyangel. She’s an amazing cosplayer who I personally know and got to meet. As a professional cosplayer from Toronto, I think she represents our community so well!
I can’t say I’ve been able to meet too many professional cosplayers in-person. For my website, I’m planning to do some more interviews with professional cosplayers and getting to know them and their story, so stay tuned for that!
As for myself, I do not cosplay for a living. But as you can tell from my website and the cosplay events I’ve hosted, I feel like I contribute to the cosplay community and it’s truly fulfilling when someone enjoys the events I host, or finds one of my articles helpful to them.
Where were you born and raised and what is your heritage?
I was born and raised in Toronto, Canada. My parents came from Vietnam as immigrants and worked very hard to earn a living in Canada and eventually raised me and my older siblings.
Since Toronto is the biggest city in Canada and being relatively close to Montreal, I’ve had the opportunity to attend many cosplay conventions in both cities!
Much like the cosplay community, I was born in a city that’s tolerant and diverse, so jumping into the community was very easy for me.
Click the following link to read Rogers' Blog.
It’s always amazing to me when people have the inner drive to leave their home country and everything they know for a better life for their future generations.
I have always wondered if it is cold in Canada year round? You guys are so far north and I live in Mississippi so just curious.
Oh yes it is freaking cold in the winter! Apparently Toronto is one of the “warmer” cities in Canada, and yet temperatures can drop down to as low as -30C (I believe that’s -22 in Fahrenheit). We might be much further north from Mississippi but it’s not too far to be honest; a plane ride from Toronto to Orlando is only a few hours. Yet the climate is completely different, which I find crazy!
On the other hand, it can get pretty hot in Toronto as well in the summer. Temperatures can get regularly into the 30’s (40’s with the humidex). I generally don’t like the weather in Toronto; too cold in the winter, too hot in the summer. The good news is that many of our conventions here are indoors, so we got some nice heating or air conditioning.
I don’t think I could handle those super cold winters. I already don’t even wear a jacket unless it is below 20 degrees. LOL
The pic of you at the top of the mountain in South Korea is breathtaking. How high up were you and were you there with friends, family or for a con?
I’m glad you liked my photo from Busan, South Korea! I actually wasn’t up on a big mountain, but a hill. Me and this other person walked up a huge hill to get to that spot. Even though it wasn’t a full mountain hike, it was pretty tiring to get up there. But the views were totally worth it. I recommend anyone to visit Busan, it’s a beautiful city.
Me visiting South Korea was part of a long trip I planned a long time ago. I visited Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and then to the U.S. But funny enough, I actually did attend a con at the end of my trip – Anime Weekend Atlanta. I don’t recommend fitting a cosplay convention on a long travel journey. I’ve done it twice already so I can’t help it. But it is pretty annoying to carry a cosplay and wig with you around; it takes a lot of luggage space, I can tell you that.
When did you start cosplaying, what inspired you, and what was your first cosplay?
I started cosplaying back in 2010. My first cosplay was Sora from Kingdom Hearts. Haha it was so bad, but as cosplayers, we always cringe when we look at our first cosplay and I’m certainly no different.
After attending conventions for a couple of years dressed in normal clothes, I wanted to experience what it’s like to be an actual cosplayer. So for Fan Expo (Toronto’s largest convention), I cosplayed the Keyblade master. And even though it wasn’t the greatest cosplay I’m proud of, so many people loved it anyways. People asked for my photos, had a bunch of KH fans I got to meet and overall it’s just super fun to cosplay!
And I haven’t looked back since. Nothing can replicate the feeling of when someone asks for your cosplay photo. Cosplay and attending cons is incredibly fun.
What is the most money you have spent on a costume, the con, the travel, food, all for one event and break it down, please.
Oh man where I do start!
I always tell my readers that cosplaying and attending conventions can be incredibly expensive if you’re not careful. It doesn’t have to be, but if you’re not watching your budget, then costs can quickly add up.
Fortunately for me, I always save up my money for large conventions so I never actually go into debt or anything like that. Nevertheless, some cons are more expensive than others.
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