International Cosplay Day is celebrated every August 26th , where many communities of people gather dressed as their favorite characters from manga, anime, or video games . It causes a real turmoil in Japan, the country of origin of Cosplay in the 70s, but it is a practice that has spread rapidly all over the world.
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WHAT IS COSPLAY ?
The term “cosplay” is a combination of the words “costume” and “play,” indicating the act of wearing a costume to embody a character and perform as them.
Cosplayers often create their costumes themselves, paying great attention to detail in order to accurately represent the character they are portraying. This can involve a range of skills, such as sewing, prop-making, and makeup application. Creating a cosplay costume can be a time-consuming and expensive process, as cosplayers strive to recreate every aspect of the character’s appearance.
In addition to wearing the costume, cosplayers often act in character, mimicking their mannerisms, speech, and behavior. This can involve rehearsing and practicing beforehand, as well as improvising during a performance.
Specialized stores catering to cosplay offer a wide range of costumes, wigs, props, and other accessories for cosplayers to purchase. These stores are often found in areas with a large cosplay community and offer high-quality, detailed costumes that are difficult to find elsewhere. Cosplay has become a popular hobby and art form, with events and conventions dedicated to cosplay taking place around the world.
Get a look on this article to discover 10 most popular cosplay influencers to follow right now!
WHY DO PEOPLE DRESS THAT WAY?
Cosplayers are passionate about their hobby and enjoy it as much as people who engage in any other activity. Many people find it enjoyable to see the attention to detail and realism with which cosplayers dress up as their favorite characters. It can be even better if you are familiar with the character being portrayed.
However, it can be difficult to fully understand the appeal of cosplay if you are not familiar with the worlds of comics (particularly of Japanese origin) and video games. Cosplayers acknowledge that they are perceived as “freakish” by some people, but they take pride in their hobby and do not see it as an insult.
For many cosplayers, being surrounded by like-minded individuals is a liberating experience that allows them to mentally break free from their fears and inhibitions. The act of transforming into a character is a form of self-expression that allows cosplayers to feel comfortable and confident in their own skin, even if they may feel insecure or out of place in other social situations. Overall, cosplay is a unique and rewarding hobby that allows people to express their creativity and passion in a fun and fulfilling way.
When the American cosplayer Jennifer Alice decided to promote International Cosplay Day on August 27, 2010, she wanted events dedicated to this discipline to be held all over the world. Her dream was for all the cosplayers in the world to come together to claim a hobby that goes beyond dressing up.
Apart from this specific day, it is frequent throughout the year that the community gathers in large events that are held periodically in cities such as San Francisco, Paris or Tokyo.
Over time, the cosplay ecosystem has gradually become professionalized to the point that there are people who make a living out of it. Authentic costume designers who go around the world collecting awards and recognitions.
MOST IMPORTANT EVENT: WORLD COSPLAY SUMMIT
If you have to opt for the most emblematic annual event, this could be the World Cosplay Summit in the city of Nagoya, Japan. There, lovers of Japanese pop culture, such as anime, manga and video games, meet every year as a form of international and cultural exchange. Cosplayers from all over the world meet every year in the city of Nagoya and Aichi Prefecture to deepen the exchange. One of the characteristics of this system is that it receives the support of local administrations, governments and diplomatic missions abroad.
This year WORLD COSPLAY SUMMIT 2023 will take place from 4th (Friday) to 6th (Sunday) of August.You can read more about this unique and exciting event on their official website.
The festival has three principles that could summarize the essence and personality of everyone who is dedicated to the world of cosplay:
1. AN EVER-EVOLVING FESTIVAL OF POP CULTURE.
The World Cosplay Summit is a pop culture festival focused on a global contest that brings together cosplayers who love Japanese manga, anime or video games, and that will evolve with the changes of the times.
2. A BRIDGE TO WORLD PEACE.
The pop culture that is addressed at the World Cosplay Summit is a means of communication for all humanity and is an important tool for the formation of personality. The World Cosplay Summit has the mission of providing a space for communication, whether physical or online, to all people who love pop culture, and the purpose of becoming a bridge to world peace by fostering friendship that can cross any border. and barriers of race, culture, language or customs.
3. RESPECT FOR CREATORS AND CONTRIBUTION TO CULTURAL DEVELOPMENT
Cosplay is a manifestation of respect and admiration for an original work, as well as the essential human feeling of identification with that work. All the people who participate in the World Cosplay Summit profess deep respect for all creators, and want to protect this place of expression together with them, thus contributing to cultural development.
ANYONE CAN BE A COSPLAYER
The good thing about cosplay is that it is an activity open to people of any gender, age, or physical shape. Anyone can be a cosplayer, although only those who are deep within this world can understand the terminology and codes that are used.
For example, it can be said that there are subgenres within cosplay :
- Anime cosplay
- Video game cosplay
- Comic book cosplay
- Movie and TV show cosplay
- Disney cosplay
- Historical cosplay
- Crossplay (cosplaying as a character of a different gender)
- Mashup cosplay (combining elements from multiple characters or universes)
- Casual cosplay (everyday wearable interpretations of characters)
- Original character cosplay (creating your own character and cosplay design)