VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Christina Rhodes is a seamstress at heart...
But Viva Valentina -- who her fans may know her as -- has been raised by wolves as well as multiple superheroes.
This is all through "cosplay," short for costume play. She drafts, creates and becomes different characters from comic books and anime at numerous conventions.
"You become part of the convention when you put on a costume, you’re not just an attendee," Rhodes said.
So in Virginia Beach, who will she transform into?
"This year I plan on finally debuting one of my favorite characters: Ocean Master. The Ocean Master is the little brother of Aquaman."
First comes breaking down the costume. She analyzes how to take 2D images and make them 3D. Careful consideration is made to fabrics, fits, and patterns. When it comes to Ocean Master: "he’s got these really cool, slick leggings. So I found this, it’s one of my favorite types of spandex."
A costume based on Hayao Miyazaki's "Princess Mononoke" film is one of her more recent and also one of her favorites. It was in partnership for a charity that prints 3D prosthetic for animals.
For anyone who may be interested in cosplay, there is one warning you should know ahead of time:
"It’s addicting, and it’s just a lot of fun!" she said.