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Exclusive Interview: Maki Rolle

PHOTOGRAPHY: Patrick Sun
Maki Rolle, Welcome to United Fanboyz.com. Please tell the people what you do and where your from?

I am a cosplayer, blogger and burlesque performer from Washington, DC. 

You've been busy, what cons have you attended so far this year?

MAGFest, Katsucon, Zenkaikon, AwesomeCon, Otakon

Do you make your own costumes?

Yes I do.  All props (usually the larger scale ones) are made mostly by my boyfriend with little help from me.  It's sort of a two person team effort at times. 

Costume play is ridiculously popular now. How do you feel about the community?

I feel that it can be competitive at times, especially due to the rise in popularity but if you don't play into that aspect of it you can have a great time.
PHOTOGRAPHY: The Big Tog MMXIII
What do you say to criticism about being a black woman in cosplay and who you choose to dress-up as?
If I catch it, then I will definitely say something about it.  I think it is my right to cosplay whomever I want. People are definitely allowed to disagree with who I cosplay, but don't be a racist jerk about it.

Would you consider making costume play a living?
It would be nice, but I have other aspirations beyond cosplay.  I think it's better as a hobby for me.
PHOTOGRAPHY: G. Edwards
Do you have any encouraging words for black people in cosplay or people in general that maybe uncomfortable by what people say about them? (weight, race and of course the trollers)
I try my best to speak out against cosplay discrimination whenever I can.  I think there are some who don't like that I am so vocal about it, but I think it is a bigger issue than people think.  Is it getting better? Absolutely, but I think anyone should be able to cosplay whomever they want without criticism.  

Would you like to acknowledge anyone?
I'd really like to thank my boyfriend Shawn for being my partner in crime, really.  Prior to meeting me he wasn't into the cosplay scene at all so it was extremely amazing of him to embrace what I do and get involved in such a huge way. Now he helps make my props, helps to manage my cosplay page, encourages me to get off my butt and work on things when I don't want to, and a lot more.  

What other cons will you be attending this year? 
My fall con schedule is Baltimore Comic-Con, Anime USA, New York Comic-Con, J1Con and of course #UFB Comic-Con!

What are your contacts?

Thank you so much for speaking with us Maki! We'll be seeing you at Baltimore Comic-Con as well as our very first United Fanboyz Comic-Con. Can't wait.
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