Welcome back to the Cosplayer Spotlight! In this edition we talk with Ruby Rinekso, a man age cannot define, from New York City!
COMIC ATTACK: How did you discover cosplay, and what made you want to get into it on a serious level?
RUBY RINEKSO: I’ve been into cosplaying before I even knew what the word meant. (When did that even become a term, anyways?)… Regardless, Halloween was always my favorite holiday, and unfortunately it only came once a year, and for some reason or another, it was deemed socially unacceptable to run around in costumes on a daily/regular basis…other than Oct. 31st. Later, when I started going to conventions regularly around 2003, I saw that there were other tortured souls similar to me that would attend these events in various costumes. That gave me the excuse I needed.
CA: Who was the first character you cosplayed as? Whom have you portrayed since?
RR: Again, the “cosplaying” term is still undefined completely for me. Are we counting Halloween or [only] convention outings? For Halloween: I couldn’t tell you. I’ve been in costume every year since I was a child. But for a convention, I would have to say “Han Solo”, but I hate to consider that [my first] because contrary to popular belief, I don’t look like Harrison Ford. So I wouldn’t call it HAN Solo… more like CHAN Solo. Whom have I portrayed since? That’s a looooong list! But it includes Black Manta, Black Adam, Two versions of Batman (a movie style rubber suited version and a 1966 Adam West version), Green Lantern, and my latest favorite, Gleek from The Wonder Twins!
CA: Have you ever met any of the creators whose characters you were portraying in person? What was their reaction?
RR: Oh sure, [and] it’s always a positive reaction. They get a kick out of it, for sure. They don’t have to wear these heavy uncomfortable suits. WE DO! [laughs]
CA: Which costume are you most proud of?
RR: I’m most proud of my Black Manta. That would have to be my “Go-To” costume.
CA: Can you tease us a little about whom you plan to portray in the coming year?
RR: There’s plenty in the “to-do” cue, but always look out for me to do some odd-ball characters. If there’s any pride I can take from this, it is that I like to do costumes people don’t usually do, or even think of, but still remember. I don’t look like Superman, so, you won’t see me in a Superman costume.
CA: Which Comic Cons do you usually attend? Which do you plan to hit up in 2011?
RR: Dragon Con (in Atlanta) is my number 1 convention to go to. That’s a MUST every year. Other than that, I usually attend the New York Comic Con in NYC and various Wizard conventions on the East Coast. San Diego is obviously a huge con, but it’s a bit difficult to attend every year, since it’s on the West Coast, and I’m in New York City.
CA: In your experience, how do you feel cosplay is received by comic book fans?
RR: I would have to say the fans love it, based on all the photos that are always taken.
CA: Have you ever had any awkward encounters with any fanboys or fangirls while in costume? Do tell!
RR: Yes, Black Manta had to choke a bitch one day. Some fanboy thought it was funny to bang on Manta’s helmet. Black Manta dealt with him. [laughs]
CA: What are some of your most memorable moments while cosplaying?
RR: See the answer for the previous question. [laughs]
CA: Do you make all of your costumes? If so, how long do they take you to complete, and what’s the financial investment involved? If not, how much do they cost you, and where do you obtain them?
RR: My costumes come from all different sources/origins. Most of my costumes take a few months to build before they make an appearance. At the very least, I never wear a completely store bought costume without modifying it. There are costumes built from scratch, and there costumes built from various kits and parts. I have costumes that have cost me as little as $50, to costumes that have well over 4 figure$ invested in them.
CA: How did you get into comics? What was the first comic book you ever read? How about owned?
RR: I don’t remember NOT liking comics. I’ve loved them all my life, even as a small child. I’m pretty sure my first comic ever read/owned was a BATMAN comic. It was one of the “Read Along” Comics that came with an audio record. I was around 4 years old. I loved those. Does that count?
CA: What comics are you currently reading? What are some of your all time favorites?
RR: I hate to sound boring, but my main weekly books are the classic DC characters: Superman, Batman, Green Lantern, Flash etc. Any of those DC mainstream characters.
CA: What do you do in real life?
RR: I’m a graphic designer and musician.
CA: I noticed that you’re part of a KISS tribute group. Can you expand on that a bit for us?
RR: For about 15 years, I’ve played “Ace Frehley” in KISSNATION: NYC’s Tribute to KISS. We’ve performed at venues nationally (and overseas) in full KISS regalia, performing music from KISS’s 35+ year history. Its been a blast to perform live to thousands of people over the years. You can learn more about us at KISSNATON.com…btw… does THAT count as Cosplay?
CA: Given the dedication involved, I’d say so, yes! Besides comics and cosplay, what are some of your other interests and hobbies?
RR: Aside from playing music, I also enjoy shooting/editing short films, which I call RUBISODES. These films started as little humorous clips that usually are shot during conventions, or other costumed outings. I also make them out of vacation footage as well. People dig them because I always lightheartedly poke fun at them (or even myself), via my editing. I’ve been asked many times by people as to when [it will be] their turn to be featured in a Rubisode. Click here for a sample Rubisode. My Rubisode page can be found here. I also enjoy watching movies, [attending] social outings with friends, and I’m also a MAGICIAN.
CA: How is your passion for cosplay received by your family, friends, and coworkers?
RR: Everyone thinks I’m crazy. Story of my life.
CA: Thanks for talking with us Ruby! Do you have a fan page or website?
Be sure to check out past editions of the Cosplayer Spotlight, featuring some amazing costume galleries!
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