In the recent past, a friend of mine and awesome cosplayer, Alyscat Cosplay, set up a group an event to do a shoot of "The Hobbit". But this would be with a twist. It was a gender swap. So basically the female versions of the male characters, dwarves, elves and wizard's O MY! Well, at least the majority were however, there was one female character that was played by a guy.
The majority of serious cosplayers work really hard on their costumes, and in many cases make them by hand sewing them together, etc. NO doubt time effort and money goes in to them. Hold up, maybe people might ask what is cosplay and why do it?
Simply put, cosplay is the practice of dressing up as a character from a movie, book, or video game, especially one from the Japanese genres of manga and anime. Many folks know that comic con's have become much more popular these days. I think cosplay started there. Ifanboy website goes more in depth and helps better understand. From my personal experience. There are those that love the creative process of creating their own versions of the characters and some who enjoy the performance art piece of it. Or sometimes both. I think its a unique experience for each. If it were me, I think of halloween people love to dress up and be their favorite characters, or something they relate to.
With that said, then once the cosplayers complete this, they love to be able to capture good images of it and share on social media sites. So a person who has leadership skills will typically set up a shoot where a group can gather with photographers. I say "photographers" loosely, because sometimes it can just be a person with a "camera" with not much photography background. However, the skill level can range from PWC (person with camera I call it) to a newbie just getting practice all the way to a professional who just plain enjoys shooting or adding to their portfolio.
Why do I do these shoots, some might ask? For me, it has been a great way to practice my photography. I think it certainly has helped me grow as a professional photographer, always challenging myself to think more creatively, well and lots of practice. I like the idea of actually doing "creative portrait" work. Where you work with the scene around you and the person, creating more of a work of art than a typical portrait. It can be seen as a plus or minus but working with people who have NO experience being behind a camera can certainly sharpen your own "posing" skills. This is one of the "many" reasons I do. I have been fortunate enough to only have great experiences, make some lovely new connections and perhaps a few friends out of it all. I do consider myself fortunate enough to be invited to work with all these creative fun spirits.
I headed out on a Saturday morning happy that the weather was mild for a November. I swore I wouldnt shoot in the cold anymore. I drove to a park that was about 25 minutes from my home to meet everyone. I planned on meeting the cosplayers at a location that did not have parking so I had my husband come and drop me off while he hiked back to meet me. Oh the things he does for me. I had hurt my ankle recently and couldnt hike very far. I got there at perfect timing because they began to arrive shortly after I started scouting the area to set up. The shoot went smoothly and the weather cooperated. At the end of the my time shooting, the group passed around a thank you card to the photographers and a thank you gift card to Alycat for working so hard on arranging the entire day and event. She did an awesome job. It was really sweet. I can say it was one of my best cosplay shoots thus far. Thank you all you awesome cosplayers! ;)
Here are a few images from our Hobbit shoot. Leave a comment and let me know what ya think.