Rosemary Ward, who helped organize Retro Con, is a multi-talented muse for those retro-enthusiasts who can’t get enough of the toys and shows from mostly the ‘80s like “Transformers,” “G.I. Joe,” “My Little Pony,” “Thundercats” and “Jem.”
Interview by G.L. Giles
Besides interviewing many of the voice actors from the classic cartoons that many of us grew up watching on Saturday mornings, she also engages in cosplay as various characters–such as the Baroness. A veteran of many conventions, where she oftentimes helped with costume contests, booking celebrity guests and promotions, before starting her own, Ward and her boyfriend decided to organize their own this year. It’s fittingly called Retro Con!
How did Retro Con come about? When and where is it being held this year?
For years now I’ve been helping other conventions, with costume contests, promotions and getting guests. So, taking my boyfriend Tony’s advice, we decided to start our own show/convention. It will take place Sunday November 11, 2012, at The Greater Philadelphia Expo Center (100 Station Avenue Oaks, PA 19456) from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Who are the Guests of Honor and other celebrities attending?
Special Guests include Larry Kenney: The original voice of Lion-O from the eighties “Thundercats” cartoon!
Peter Newman: The voice of Tygra, Wilykat and many others from the “Thundercats” cartoon.
Gerianne Raphael: Another Thundercat favorite, Gerianne was the voice of Pumyra & Chilla.
James Rolfe: The Angry Video Game Nerd, well known for his online video game reviews!
Mark Bellomo: Has published critical literary articles, and has authored a number of bestselling books on action figures and pop culture, including: “Identification & Price Guide,” “ Warman’s Field Guide to Transformers,” “The Ultimate Guide to G.I. Joe: 1982-1994” [1st & 2nd editions], and the recently-released “Totally Tubular ‘80s Toys!”
Frenzyrumbles Customs: Frenzyrumble’s well known in the Transformers community for his custom figures & will be also setting up to share that with fans at Retro Con!
I have really enjoyed seeing your cosplay outfits over the years, and I know that a lot of time and effort goes into constructing them? Have you made all your own outfits? If not, then who makes them for you?
It’s a mixture of both. Some have been homemade, with the help of my boyfriend and local friends. Others have been a bit too complicated, so I paid someone to do the work. But I have enjoyed them all
Are you into larping (live action role-playing), too?
A few times, I’ve gotten into character during cosplay and I’ve been in a few parades while being in character.
You did the wonderful illustrations for the children’s picture book “The Clever Cat That Could.” Are you interested in illustrating more children’s picture books in the future?
I’d love to get back into drawing. But it may be awhile. Working and keeping up with conventions has set me back, but once I’ve caught up, I’d like to work into drawing again and perhaps help with a book. But slowly working my way up to it of course. Maybe by the fall of the year if possible.
Besides finding convention information, ‘80s toy collecting information and costuming, you’ve also had some great interviews and reviews at your site. Are you still at the same site? Also, please tell Target Audience Magazine readers some of the celebrities you’ve had the pleasure of interviewing.
When I write these blogs and reviews, it mainly centers on the things I remember from my childhood and teenage years. But I’ve also been known to spotlight the things from the ‘60s and ‘90s, and a huge part of that also includes the talents that made it happen!
Which conventions do you regularly attend?
There’s a large list of conventions, so I’ll just name a few favorites.
Botcon [Transformers convention], Joe Con [G.I. Joe convention], New York Comic Con, Wizard World Philly, Baltimore Comic Con, Dragon Con, Monster Mania & Otakon [an anime convention].
How did your modeling career come about?
Modeling…I just fell into that. I had a few friends that liked the way I look and asked to take pictures, and that’s pretty much how it’s always been.
Where can TAM readers go to connect with you?
The best way to contact me & find me would be through those two sites listed above and through Facebook where you can subscribe to my Page, or check out my public page. Also, check out my Retro Con Page.