Halloween has just passed, and we all love our costumes. Ever wish you had a reason to dress up other times of the year?
Well, if you are not interested in joining a Renaissance guild or the Civil War re-enactment world you have probably leaned toward cosplay.
Cosplay is the portrayal of a character from pop culture (comics, anime, or movies) by dressing up and embodying that character.
The last three years I have organized the cosplay contests at ZappCon, a comic book and gaming convention in Fresno, California. I am by no means an expert, but this would be my advice to those new to cosplay:
1. Character Portrayal
Act the part. Does your character have tag lines? Do they have a distinct walk or mannerisms? You can usually perform a skit once on stage, but let the organizers know before hand.
2. A Picture for Reference
Unfortunately, judges might be limited in their scope of taste and that can work against you. If you are at all unsure if your cosplay will be recognized, bring a picture to show your costume’s accuracy so then the judges will have something to work with and give you a fair shot.
Posing might seem like a no brainer, but practice in the mirror or have a fellow cosplayer help you out. You might know to cross your wrists as Wonder Woman, but if you do it too high, no one will be able see your face and it will ruin your pictures. Some poses will feel awkward to you, but will look great to everyone else. Pick 3 to 5 poses that match your cosplay character.
Be confident, or fake it well. Take your time on the stage. It might feel like an eternity, but you’ve done all the hard work, make sure everyone gets to appreciate it. (Besides someone will cue you if you have been up there too long.)
5. Have Fun!
Soak it all in, and geek out with your fellow cosplayers and costume makers in the community. Take some time to ask questions and complement each other for your creativity and craftsmanship. Make some friends so that you can help one another out on future cosplays!
Cosplay Contest Winners from Zappcon 2016! CLICK HERE to check out this newer Comic Con in Fresno, California!
Please take into account the job placed before the judges involved. It is a very difficult task to decide who is the most deserving of recognition because there are only so many awards. Judges generally understand the blood, sweat, and tears that so often accompany costume making.
Keep in mind as well that some conventions do the bulk of the judging before the actual contest either online through pictures, (check to see if you can enter online beforehand!) or the judges preview costumes at the convention beforehand.