Getting The Best Out Of Your Cosplay Photoshoot. Hello everyone, I hope you are well. In today’s post, I will be sharing a guest post from Emeka Ikechi, CEO of Vanity Studios. Emeka will be offering advice on how to get the best out of your cosplay photoshoot. Whether you cosplay for fun or gig work, a photoshoot can be the perfect way to capture the moment and share it with friends and fans. After all, you’ve put time, money and effort into making your costume look amazing ─ so why not show it off?!
Getting The Best Out Of Your Cosplay Photoshoot
The great thing about cosplay is the feeling of being someone else: usually, but not exclusively, your favourite superhero or game character. Once a niche interest, cosplay is now a global phenomenon. Fuelled by the ever-increasing number of superhero movies and game franchises, the global cosplay costumes market has grown to be worth over $4.6Bn as of 2020 (1).
Exhibitions like Comic-Con also provide a playground where other fans admire these costumes. Comic-Con and other exhibitions can also provide an income for those who get really into cosplay, with many serious cosplayers charging fees for photos or appearances.
Whether you cosplay for fun or gig work, a photoshoot can be the perfect way to capture the moment and share it with friends and fans. After all, you’ve put time, money and effort into making your costume look amazing, so why not show it off?
But how do you ensure that your photoshoot looks as good as your costume?
Here are a few top tips…
Be Clear About Your Aims
Taking photos for fun is different from taking them for a work portfolio. Maybe you want to get together with some friends and capture a few fun memories. This can be pretty relaxed, silly and involve getting people into humorous poses.
Putting together a portfolio for your website or other gig work requires a bit more thought and preparation. You need to show your costume from all angles and in the best lighting to demonstrate its quality and accuracy. You might also need to consider some iconic poses, such as the “hero’s landing” or Spiderman’s upside-down hang.
Ensure You Have All The Finishing Touches
What is Captain America with his shield, Thor without Mjölnir, Wonder Woman without the Lasso of Truth or Cloud Strife without his Buster Sword?
Getting everything right for a photo shoot means having both the costume and accessories look perfect. While small issues can always be covered up with some editing, it’s hard to add authentic-looking accessories.
If you are looking for paid work from your cosplay, it’s even more important that you have all the accessories and that your costume looks as authentic as possible. It’s the authenticity and quality of the costumes and accessories that will either make or break your cosplay career.
Give Your Make-up A Touch-up
As well as authentic costumes and accessories, make-up is often essential to look the part. Dr Strange wouldn’t look the same without his iconic beard. Thanos needs that chin. You’ll need a lot of blue face paint to look like Halo’s Cortana.
A good studio will be able to help touch up your make-up, so it looks just right, capturing the essence of the character without becoming too much. Of course, you might need to think about lighting as well: blue face paint would look wrong under a red light, for example.
Work With A Professional Who Understands Cosplay
Speaking of studios, working with a professional photographer who really understands cosplay and the characters you are portraying can definitely help. Professionals know how to capture the right angles and poses and develop ideas to enhance the photoshoot.
Instead of having Lara Croft simply standing in front of the camera, you could try jumping through the air shooting some bats, for example. Or what about having your Superman fly over the Metropolis skyline rather than simply sitting on a chair?
These effects take a bit of thought and some extras to make look right ─ just the kind of thing that a professional can prepare!
Backgrounds Create A Scene
While the attention should be squarely on you and your amazing cosplay, the background you choose can really help enhance your photos by turning a shot into a scene. Add some action with some aliens attacking New York (when are they not?) or set the scene with a background from Mario World.
As with props and poses, backgrounds need some preparation to look right. They will need to be big and detailed enough to work for the photo but not so busy and colourful that they detract from your costume. It is what you want to show off, after all.
Let The Inner Character Shine Through
What is it you like about your chosen character? Perhaps they’re bold and daring, like Black Widow or Batman, or quieter and more mysterious like The Watcher. To look like your character, you need to be like your character. Let the character shine through by embodying what makes them unique. It makes for a much more fun photoshoot as well.
Take A Variety Of Shots
It doesn’t matter how skilled or experienced the photographer is. It is always hard to know exactly what will and won’t work in a photo. What seems like a great idea on paper can look cheesy or clichéd in reality. But that’s okay ─ the idea is to play around and have fun.
The easiest way to ensure you get the best from your photo shoot is to take lots of varied pictures in different poses and styles, with different backgrounds and accessories, giving you plenty of options.
If you are looking for gig work, a variety of photos can also stimulate your client’s imaginations, giving them lots of ideas for potential photos or scenes for you to act out.
Whatever you decide to do for your photoshoot, make sure you have fun and use a photographer who can capture some high-quality shots. The last thing you want is to go to all that effort only to have the photos poorly lit, shot from the wrong angle, or end up with low-quality images that you can’t print out. Otherwise, play around, have fun, and try things out ─ there are no wrong answers!
I hope you enjoyed that.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Emeka Ikechi is Director of Vanity Studios, a contemporary studio for photoshoots in the centre of Shoreditch in London. Since 2009 Vanity Studios has been providing clients with high-quality professional photos and an excellent photoshoot experience. The team of photographers and make-up artists ensure each client receives bespoke photography that meets their requirements.