Cosplaying is a whole lot of fun, seriously!!! Whether you do it at a convention or somewhere else (because you don't have to go to an anime convention to cosplay), you're going to have a blast!
But if you're going to cosplay at a con for the first time, there are few things you should make sure to remember so that you can have a great time without worries!
Here's my tips for cosplaying at your first convention :)
1. Bring EMERGENCY Repair Supplies
I'm not saying your cosplay is going to fall apart, but it's probably going to fall apart. It can be really frustrating if you're at a con and the cosplay you've worked hard on just isn't fitting how it's supposed to, or your prop breaks.
Keep the following in your con bag or in your hotel room or car:
- Duct tape!
- Bobby pins!
- Safety pins!
Here's a great tutorial from Geek with Curves on how to make your own kit like pictured above ^^
That way, you can repair things! I remember at one con the Homura shield that I made broke (the strap popped off) so I had a hard time posing with it, but I didn't have anything with me to fix it and felt so frustrated by it all day. Don't make the same mistake as me!
2. Don't skip eating.
It's ok to be busy at a con and to not eat what you normally would or at the same intervals, but that doesn't mean you can skip eating all together. That's how you weaken your body and end up with con plague for a month afterwards.
When you're cosplaying, you're going to be very focused on pictures and what you're wearing, so it can be especially easy to forget this important rule that goes for all congoers, cosplaying or not!
Make sure to schedule meal times :)
3. Don't forget water!
Again, this goes for all con goers, but as a cosplayer who's new to cosplaying you're going to be excited about running around and getting pics and getting your picture taken and that's okay. But that just means you might wear yourself out faster than you're used to!
Make sure to stay hydrated so you can have fun all weekend!
4. Don't be afraid to say "no, thanks" to pictures.
When you're cosplaying, people might start asking you for photos every few feet while you're trying to get somewhere.
It's okay to politely say no thank you to a photo when someone tries to stop you!
If you're trying to get a panel, a meal, the bathroom, whatever, it doesn't matter. You don't have to explain yourself. Even as a cosplayer, you're a person, first, so saying "no thank you" and excusing yourself for any reason is ok!
5. Join Group Photoshoots!
When cosplaying a more popular anime, many people will plane group photo shoots in advance! You can usually find the time and place of these shoots ahead of time on the convention forums.
Go to them!!!
I used to avoid group photoshoots because I didn't like being with other people doing the same character as me (I know, super lame!!) but I realized that it's a great time to connect with other cosplayers who love the characters you love! Please, a huge crowd will usually gather so it can be really fun taking a lot of different group photos ^-^
6. Plan a Private Photoshoot Ahead of Time...
If you really want to get nice pictures of your cosplay, the best way to guarantee that will happen is to book a private photoshoot with a cosplay photographer! Some photographers charge for this (and then they're legally bound to give you photos) and some don't. You just have to look around.
Or, you can ask one of your friends who likes taking pictures ahead of time to block out a time for you! It doesn't have to be super professional -- just a friend with a camera! Either way, you'll want to make sure you get some photos.
That being said....
7. ...or don't!
This picture was clearly taken just on the convention floor by a random photographer that probably came across these cosplayers. (photo via)
Cosplaying isn't just about the photographs. Sure, they're a great reminder of the fun you had cosplaying and all that, but it's about the overall experience and art!
My favorite con photographer makes it a point to not schedule private appointments and instead just sets up a spot where people can come and go as they please.
If you go to a con, you will find someone to take your picture. As them for their email so you can get the pics later, and you're good to go. Don't stress over photoshoots when its your first cospalying convention--you'll get them somehow!
So, any other cosplayers out there have tips?
I'm still an amateur trying to give cosplay protips (see my collection, lol), so I'd love to hear what other cosplayers recommend to newbies :)