Showing posts with label interview. Show all posts
Showing posts with label interview. Show all posts

Friday, August 11, 2017

Diva Chats with the Organisers of the local Memorial for Linkin Park's Chester Bennington

On 20th July 2017, Red Dot Diva received the news of Linkin Park frontman Chester Bennington's passing, while she was at work. It was terrible news, but since she had to put on her game face at the office, she was unable to outwardly grieve for the loss of this talented musician who had touched her soul with his beautiful voice and music.

"Hybrid Theory" and "Meteora" were released during a time of self-reflection and monumental changes during Red Dot Diva's life, and Linkin Park's angsty anthems which featured an alternate wave of Chester Bennington's trademark raging screams and soothing vocals helped her made sense of things.

She finally got to watch Linkin Park live in concert at the Padang back in 2004. It was one of the most perfect concerts by the band, and she will never forget the experience. She was also a few hundred metres away from Chester himself, when a few of the band members attended the MTV Asia Music Awards held at the Singapore Indoor Stadium around the same time.

Admittedly, Red Dot Diva was a little numbed by the loss of Chester as life's day to day practicalities had to be dealt with. It was only the next evening that she was in an emotional space strong enough to deal with her grief. So, she holed herself in her study and played through Linkin Park's songs and videos for an hour or so, listening to Chester's voice and messages while saying goodbye to this amazing, talented individual.

A candle virgil for Chester Bennington

On 30th July 2017, local fans got their chance to say their own goodbyes to Chester Bennington, at a specially planned memorial called "Remembering Chester". It threatened to rain at first but the skies cleared up in time for people to converge at the event, which was held under the Benjamin Sheares Bridge. Red Dot Diva was unable to attend because she was not feeling well. She followed the event online, watching the Facebook live videos, and pics of emotional fans singing songs and lighting candles. More than 60 people attended the event throughout the evening, and many stayed through till the end. The fans shared their tears, laughter, and personal stories about what Chester and Linkin Park's music meant to them. It was a means of catharsis for so many who needed someone to share their grief with.

The "Remembering Chester" Memorial was organised by a cohort of dedicated fans, with many others who chipped in neared the date. Red Dot Diva managed to speak to the main organisers - Vanessa, Kyra, Cain, Aisyah and Jaslyn:

Friday, August 4, 2017

STGCC 2017: Diva's Interview with Hunky Professional Cosplayer, Leon Chiro

When professional cosplayer Leon Chiro was announced as a guest of STGCC 2017, a collective wave of squeals and happy sighs rippled through the local geek and cosplay communities.

Who can blame them? After all, the Italian cosplayer does realistic performances of gaming and pop-culture characters, is absolutely shredded (Yum!), interacts constantly with his fans, and has a cheeky sense of humour to boot!

Leon Chiro's detailed and convincing cosplays have caught the eyes of many AAA gaming companies, and they have hired him as official cosplayers for their promotional activities and events. These companies include Ubisoft ("Assassin's Creed" / "Watch Dogs"), Square Enix ("Gladiolus - Final Fantasy XV" - a huge fan favourite!), Capcom (honorary mention for his Dante) and many more.

For the "Assassin's Creed" movie, Leon go to put on the mantel of Aguilar de Nerha and worked with 20th Century Fox on the film's promotional campaign, stunt work and official European launch events.



What attracted Red Dot Diva to Leon's cosplays were his confident, very true-to-life takes on characters, like Gaston from Disney's "Beauty and the Beast" and his playful spins to existing personas, for instance, Baywatch Gladio. He even does a spot-on Leon version of Saltbae!

Leon Chiro is so popular in the gaming and cosplaying community that he gets invited to attend several conventions around the world - about 3 to 4 shows a month! In many of these events, he is asked to judge cosplay competitions as well, and at STGCC, Leon will be one of the judges for the Championship of Cosplay 2017!

Before he steps foot on our sunny island, Red Dot Diva got hold (mmm mmm) of Leon to ask him some nosy questions:

Sunday, July 23, 2017

SRT's "Forbidden City: Portrait of An Empress" 2017: Diva's Interview with Dick Lee and Cheryl Tan


Step into the world of Cixi, the last Empress Dowager of China, at the re-staging of the musical "Forbidden City: Portrait of an Empress". The Singapore Repertory Theatre production, starring local performer Kit Chan as the grown up Cixi, on 8 August 2017 at the Esplanade.

Set in China over a century ago, the lavishly stunning musical production will also include Broadway and West End star Earl Carpenter ("Les Misรฉrables"), local actor Benjamin Chow ("RENT", "The LKY Musical"), Cheryl Tan ("Romeo & Juliet", "Beauty World") as the young concubine Yehenara, and Broadway actress Stephanie Leigh (Mary Poppins).

Cultural Medallion recipient Dick Lee provides the music for "Forbidden City: Portrait of an Empress", and Red Dot Diva managed to get hold of the veteran performer/ songwriter for a snappy Q&A. She also got to interview singer-actress Cheryl Tan.

Friday, June 30, 2017

SRT's "Forbidden City: Portrait of An Empress" 2017: Diva's Interview with Costume Designer Yang DeRong


A musical extravaganza about the life of Empress Dowager Cixi, "Forbidden City: Portrait of an Empress" will return to the stage for the 4th time at the Esplanade beginning 8 August 2017.

The SRT production, developed by Stephen Clark, Dick Lee and Steve Dexter, was first staged in 2002 as part of the Esplanade's opening. Since then, the play has another two sold out shows in 2003 and 2006. The star of the show, Kit Chan, will return in the main role of Cixi for the 2017 production.

With an epic spanning over decades, "Forbidden City" is a large set with several period costumes hailing from the last dynasty in China. This is a huge undertaking for any costume designer, and that's where talented local designer Yang DeRong comes in to the picture.

Veteran fashion designer Yang DeRong spent several years abroad working with names like Jean-Charles de Castelbajac and fashion group Esprit. He is now back home and has been involved in many high profile international and government projects, including being SG50 NDP Art Director and Costume Designer.

Yang loves the theatre, and his craft has been seen in productions like Theatreworks "The Elephant Man" (1987), SRT's "The Dresser", NUS Cultural Centre's "Man of Letters" and "Beauty World" (2016) by Singapore Street Festival.

He was also designer for SRT's previous run of "Forbidden City" in 2003, and will return to work on this year's production.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

May the 4th 2017: Meet Lightsaber Wielding Mint Kang from Fightsaber Singapore

Fighting like a girl can be awesome, especially if you are wielding a lightsaber!

Mint Kang can count that as one of her skills as she performs choreographed Star Wars-themed lightsaber fight scenes on stage and at events about twice a year as part of the Fightsaber team.

Fightsaber is a not for profit Star Wars lightsaber performance and costuming organisation founded by Grand Master Sas-Ejiid aka Azmi Danuri, a passionate and long time Star Wars fan who also loves sword fighting. Mint Kang joined the group since 2012.

Red Dot Diva is curious about what it's like to spar with both Jedi and Sith, so she asked Mint Kang many nosy questions!

Red Dot Diva: Is your name really Mint?
Ming Kang (MK): Yes, my name actually is Mint. :p  I started using an English name a long time ago because when I first started working, overseas clients couldn't pronounce my Chinese name. It stuck (occasionally I do regret it).

Mint looking Sithfully Fierce! (Photo by Xiang Hao - Facebook - 500px)

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Meet Benjamin Chee, Writer/ Artist of Comic Book Charsiew Space!

As someone growing up in Red Dot Island, where most people are food-crazy, reading Benjamin Chee's self-published comic book "Charsiew Space" was like nomming on comfort food. To be more exact, it was like savouring yummy local dishes while nonchalantly trotting about on a wild space adventure.

In a sector of a certain galaxy, pork including the traditional roasted version called charsiew, has been banned. Sow, a shrewd elderly Ah Mm (i.e. "old lady") teams up with a space smuggler and his robot to bring the delicacy back on the menu, but not without re-pork-ussions from the citizens of Pig Planet.

Red Dot Diva thought "Charsiew Space" was such a lively and hilarious comic that she recently sent a copy of it to Paul Levitz (formerly the president and publisher of DC Comics) as a small birthday gift . He thought Benjamin's art was "charming".



A photo posted by Red Dot Diva (@reddotdiva) on


She also wants to share the love for this delightful piece of work to the comic book geeks out there, and enticed Benjamin (via a portion of fragrant charsiew) to answer a few nosy questions:

Sunday, September 25, 2016

HBO Asia's "Westworld" Premieres 3 October 2016 - Man vs Machine in the Wild, Wild West


When best-selling author Michael Crichton passed away in 2008, Red Dot Diva was utterly devastated. She was a big fan of his writing and have devoured several of his geeky scifi, medical, techno-thriller-based books - "Jurassic Park", "Timeline" and "Prey" being her favourites - with relish. Many of Michael Crichton's stories were set in a not too distant future and hence, they were like a chilling warning of possible outcomes due to medical or technological advances. It was a little like Black Mirror before there was Black Mirror.



So, when HBO announced that they will be adapting Michael Crichton's "Westworld" movie to a TV series, Red Dot Diva whooped with joy. The 10-episode series, produced by J.J. Abrams, Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy, has attracted a cast of fine and award-winning actors including Anthony Hopkins, Ed Harris (mmmmmmmm... another of Red Dot Diva's favourites), Jeffrey Wright, James Marsden, Rodrigo Santoro, Clifton Collins, Jr., Evan Rachel Wood, Thandie Newton, Tessa Thompson and Sidse Babett Knudse.

Friday, September 9, 2016

STGCC 2016: Toy Designer Jon-Paul Kaiser Has A Soft Spot For Tormund Giantsbane


Local fans of acclaimed toy designer Jon-Paul Kaiser (or JPK for short) have been ardently hoping that he will drop by Red Dot Island. Well, this week, as a guest of STGCC 2016, JPK is finally in the same plane of existence and time zone.

Red Dot Diva met the man himself at the Media Preview on Thursday, 8 September, where he showcased an impressive live drawing of a Skullhead blank. JPK towered like a giant compared to everyone else, but don't let his stature intimidate you. In fact, Red Dot Diva thought he was like a BFG - all smiles, and brimming with enthusiasm about meeting his fans at the convention really soon.

Fellow Glam Bloggers Alliance pal Ed from Toys-etc interacted with JPK at length about his craft and other chatty things prior to his arrival on Red Dot Island. Read all about it here!



Interview with STGCC guest Jon-Paul Kaiser:'Beyond the Black and White'

The UK-based designer, painter and artist got into the game early as a little person transforming Fisher Price trucks into battle tanks and drawing robots. As a big person, Jon-Paul Kaiser graduated from a model-making course and landed a design job, hopped around a little before an eventful X-box night. Porlzilla recommended Vinylpulse and El Panda (by Muttpop). The idea of making his own toys on such a limited scale was something he never thought possible, and he dived right in, making original resin-cast art toys with Porlzilla, and then onto production figures for Toy2R and Kidrobot.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

STGCC 2016: Booth Highlight - Diva Speaks to Indian Artist Vivek Goel, Founder of Holy Cow Entertainment


Red Dot Diva finds it exciting when foreign comic book publishers decide to exhibit their wares in Red Dot Island. When she found out that Vivek Goel , one of the first time exhibitors at STGCC 2016, was linked to an Indian publishing company called Holy Cow Entertainment, and she began look up for their books on the Internet.

Oh, and what a treasure trove that was!!

Most of the residents of Red Dot Island are not totally unfamiliar with the vivid colour, smells and stories of the Indian people, as they have been part of our history and racial landscape for centuries. However, what the locals see or hear relating to the Indian culture is only the tip of the iceberg.

So, to see how Vivek Goel, the founder of Holy Cow Entertainment, take core Indian-centric tales and reach out to modern readers in this digital age, is a wondrous and beautiful to behold. The sample pages of their books on the publishing house's social media are filled with dynamic story panels and staggeringly beautiful art, not unlike those who might see on the structures of the Hindu temples dotting Red Dot Island.

Red Dot Diva had a highly enlightening interview with Vivek Goel, to find out more about his journey in the comic books medium, his company and their publications.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

STGCC 2016: Artist Stephanie Hans Ponders About Travel and Art


Freelance artist Stephanie Hans has been working with Marvel for quite some time, most notably in titles like "1602 Witch Hunger Angela" and "Angela: Queen of Hel". Her artwork is stunning, and Red Dot Diva found herself instantly captivated by Stephanie's penchant for strong, contrasting colours that stand out against her fluid painting style. In particular, Red Dot Diva loves how Stephanie is able to portray the women characters being defiantly strong and beautiful.

For the last few months, Stephanie has been on a personal road trip and getting on the convention circuit whilst she is at it. She has since visited Japan, China and South Korea, posting travel photos on her Instagram as she experienced new sights and things. In fact, Stephanie is already in Red Dot Island. She arrived earlier this week, with the local zoo as one of her first touristy stops. She will then make her appearance as a guest at STGCC 2016 this weekend.

Despite Stephanie's busy schedule, Agent W managed to get hold of her for a quick pre-convention Q&A.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

STGCC 2016: Booth Highlight - Meet Newcomers Allena & Samuel Lee


While scrolling through this year's STGCC exhibitors list, Red Dot Diva noticed several newcomers who will be setting up their own booths.

One of them has a simple booth name called Allena and Samuel Lee. This straightforward branding may not have caught your attention right away but the two young and talented illustrators are motivated and eager to showcase their art to the world.

Red Dot Diva delighted to introduce Melissa (aka Allena) and Samuel to art fans out there:

Saturday, September 3, 2016

STGCC 2016: Tom Taylor Reveals How He Plans His Regular Day As A Writer


Dramatist. Screenwriter. Songwriter. Comic Book writer. Best-selling author.

WOW.

Wait. There's more.

Professional Juggler. Fire-eater!

The awards and achievements of rising star Tom Taylor is simply astounding. Comic book fans will be familiar with Tom's works in the DC Comics series "Injustice: Gods Amongst Us", as well as a list of Star Wars comics published by Dark Horse, before the property was handed over to Marvel in 2015.

Tom has also co-created his own graphic novel by Aussie publishing house Gestalt, together with illustrator James Brouwer, called "The Deep: Here Be Dragons". The book, about the Netktons, a family of sea explorers, won Australia's Aurealis Award for Best illustrated book/graphic novel in 2012. "The Deep" is now a Netflix CG animation series, and was recently aired in the USA beginning June 2016. 

Other than books, he is also known for his various plays. The short "The Example" is probably the most well-known, and has been performed at homeground Australia, the UK, and even in Red Dot Island's The Esplanade in 2009! "The Example" is about the collision of opinions, prejudices, superstition and feelings of distrust when two people meet at a train station where a bag has been abandoned on the platform. The story has also been adapted into a Gestalt Publishing graphic novel, with Tom roping in the help of artist Colin Wilson.

There certainly must be a multi-coloured cloud of fun, clever and thought-provoking ideas floating in Tom Taylor's brain. So, Red Dot Diva and Glam Bloggers Alliance pal Agent W neural probed Tom's brain to see what makes it tick:

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

STGCC 2016: Artist & Creator Emma Rios Reveals Her Own Memorable Fan Encounters

Every year without fail, STGCC organizer Reed Exhibitions would send out a survey to attendees and guests asking them for their views about different aspects of the year's show. And in every single survey form, Red Dot Diva would request that Reed should invite more female creators as guests.

Red Dot Diva's wish has finally come true as there will be at least four women comic book creators on the guest list in the upcoming STGCC 2016. (Yes, there have been female guests before, but for several years, the male comic book guests far out number the women ones!)

Spanish graphic book artist and creator Emma Rios will be heading to Red Dot Island together with other stellar female artists - Brooke Allen, Stephanie Hans and Hwei Lim. Each of these artists have made their mark in the comic book sphere with their enriching and noteworthy creations.

In Emma Rios' case, she has built a solid fan base through the years drawing for comic, ranging from Boom! Studio's "Hexed" series to Marvel's "Dr Strange" with writer Mark Waid. She then worked with high profile writer Kelly Sue Deconnick on "Osborn" and the collaboration continued again with twisted Western-horror folklore "Pretty Deadly", published by Image Comics. Her fluid and wildly imaginative art style lends a kind of unearthly quality to the images, making them seem as if they are about to pop up from a fuzzy dreamscape or bloody nightmare.

Beyond just providing artwork for books, Emma Rios has also written original stories and designing new worlds, for example in the dystopian tale called "I.D". She has also been working closely with best friend Hwei Lin for fantasy series "Mirror", which was also published by Image Comics. The two ladies will join forces as guests of STGCC 2016, and will be launching the convention-exclusive "Mirror: The Mountain" book during the show.

In the short Q&A below, Red Dot Diva got to know a bit more about Emma Rios and her creative preferences.

Monday, August 29, 2016

STGCC 2016: Something Fishy Is Going On with Mame Moyashi

There's nothing that most Red Dot Islanders like more than scrumptious seafood. Hence, there's no stoppin' art lovers and collectors in getting their hands on the fishy and crabby concoctions created by Japanese toy designer Mame Moyashi.

Mame Moyashi is a designer toy chowder consisting of the twisted brain sauces of three artists - Producer Clinton Kenny, Designer Chino Lam and Sculptor Seanjob. The trio will be exhibiting for the first time at STGCC 2016, and Red Dot Diva's Glam Bloggers Alliance geek bro, Ed from Toys-etc, managed to bait them for a quick Q&A.

--------------------------------

STGCC 2016: Spotlight on Mame Moyashi

toysetc: Mame Moyashi is a trio. How did you come up with the name and what does it mean?
MM: The full name should be Mame Moyashi Shacho. In Japanese, Mame Moyashi means Little Beans and for anyone who watches enough anime, Shacho is the respectful term for Chairman. It might seem like it came from the idea of how small we are as a company but we produce toys that are big in the wow factor, but no, it's just for fun

Thursday, August 25, 2016

AsiaPop Comic Con Manila 2016: An Interview with Comic Book Artist Mike Zeck


AsiaPop Comic Con Manila (APCC Manila) kicks off later today with its second edition. The 3-day convention will see fans in Manila mingling with celebrities, comic book guests, cosplayers, and have fun participating in other activities, like panels, meet and greets and autograph sessions.

This year's celebrity guest roll includes Nicholas Hoult of the "X-Men" franchise, "Warm Bodies" and "Mad Max: Fury Road" fame, young breakout star Millie Bobby Brown known for her memorable role as Eleven in Netflix's "Stranger Things", Claire Holt of "The Vampire Diaries" and Joe Dempsie who is most familiar to fans as Gendry in the international hit series, "Game of Thrones".

However, as the convention is still called a "Comic Con", a few comic book artists have also been invited as guests. One of them is reknown illustrator Mike Zeck, whose various definitive artwork have impressed fans' visual psyche through the many years of his career. One notable image is the shift of Spider-Man's red and blue costume to the black version in the 1984 Marvel limited comic book series, "Marvel Super-Heroes Secret Wars".

Mike Zeck has also worked on covers for several DC Comic books like "Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight" and in recent times, for the "Deathstroke the Terminator" series.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

STGCC 2016: Jacob Chabot Chats About Tsum Tsums and Hello Kitty!

Looking for a graphic novel or book that is funny, adventurous and suitable for all ages?

Do a search for the name Jacob Chabot, and a list of lively titles like "Plants vs Zombies", "Hello Kitty", "Spongebob Comics", "X-Babies" and his creator-owned New York Times best-selling book "The Might Skullboy: Garden Warfare" will crop up.

Jacob Chabot, who has been announced as an STGCC guest, is also the writer for Marvel's new "Tsum Tsum" mini series. A limited edition variant of the #1 issue will be available as an exclusive at this year's STGCC.

Before Jacob heads to the convention on 10 & 11 September 2016, Red Dot Diva had a chance to bounce a few quirky questions off the prolific cartoonist:

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

STGCC 2016: "LumberJanes" Creator Brooke Allen Is Intrigued by Carrot Cake!

Have you been counting down to Red Dot Island's geekiest event of the year?

Red Dot Diva has been keeping track of the countdown. And it's now 31 days to STGCC! The pop-culture event is held at Halls E and F, Basement 2 of MBS' Sands Convention Centre on 10 & 11 September.

A list of interesting and well-known guests ranging from comic book creators, concept artists and illustrators, toy designers and cosplayers have already been announced, and among them is Brooke Allen, one of the creators of award-winning graphic novel series "Lumberjanes", published by BOOM! Studios.

Red Dot Diva loves her lively quirky art style. Peek into Brooke's tumblr and you'll spot drawings of monsters, funny animation gifs, a peek into her various works in progress, and many tributes to her pet dog, Linus. Brooke not only draws, she also crafts unique resin figurines and collectibles!
 
To get more local fans acquainted with Brooke and her work, Red Dot Diva got her to answer a few nosy questions:

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Visual Effects Artists from Lucasfilm Singapore Spill Some "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" Secrets

As part of the May the Fourth celebration earlier this month, Lucasfilm's Industrial Light & Magic (ILM) - whose regional headquarters is at the Sandcrawler in Red Dot Island - hosted a special hour-long panel at the Sports Hub Library about the Oscar-nominated visual effects (VFX) featured in "The Force Awakens".

Red Dot Diva has attended a few Lucasfilm ILM panels about their VFX work in other movies before, but never for Star Wars, due to the fact that "The Force Awakens" is the first Star Wars movie released after 10 years. Being an avid Star Wars fan, she could not pass up the chance on learning more about the magic that happened behind the scenes.

(Warning: If you think that knowing more about VFX work spoils your enjoyment of the movie, then *loud signal blares*... DO NOT PROCEED. Feel free to click here and read another article about what other fun things happened during the May the Fourth Celebration instead.)

The panel, moderated by Dominic Zou from 501st Legion SG, started off easily enough with an introduction of the four homegrown artists involved with the movie: Associate Production Manager - Pei'an Lau, Lead for Rotoscoping and Paint - JeanLe Koh, Lead for Texturing and Look Development - Elvin Siew and Animator - Zaini Jalani.

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Singapore Fans Sing Happy Birthday to Game of Thrones' Actor Isaac Hemsptead-Wright at ION Orchard!


Judging by the love showered upon "Game of Thrones" actor Isaac Hemsptead-Wright during his appearance at ION Orchard yesterday (2 April), it seems the local fans have sorely missed seeing Bran Stark in the drama's previous season.

The audience has practically seen the young actor grow up on screen as Bran. However, the young noble had been missing for the entire Season 5.

At that point, Bran's story had mostly caught up with what had happened in George R.R. Martin's books. The other reason: Bran was undergoing some Westeros-Harry Potter-style training with the mysterious shifu Three-Eyed Raven.

In the new season, there will be more Bran Stark (YAYY!!) and even better still, more handsome badass Bran Stark (W00t, W00t!).



When Red Dot Diva arrived at the venue 45 minutes before Isaac Hemsptead-Wright's scheduled 3PM appearance, hundreds of fans were already waiting patiently at the surrounding area. About 50 Starhub contest winners were also within the holding area, as they will get a chance to meet him in person later on.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Singtel x Netflix Meet & Greet: Diva Shook Hands with "Daredevil" Charlie Cox!


Comic book superheroes seem to be putting Red Dot Island as part of their travel plans this year!

This week, Charlie Cox, star of Netflix's highly lauded Marvel superhero TV Series "Daredevil", dropped by for a few days to meet the media, including a "top secret event" with Harpers Bazaar Singapore. Then, on 28 March early evening, a selected group consisting of 50 pairs of Singnet's subscribers got the chance to meet at Charlie at Comcentre's Singtel Shop!

Thanks to the awesome guys from Here Be Geeks and Singtel's representative, Red Dot Diva had a surprise opportunity to attend the session. How can one say NO to a chance to meet Charlie Cox?!

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