I had another wonderful opportunity to work with my friend Beth of Early Bird Photo (formerly BWPW Photography) in January. I told her I wanted to do a shoot featuring my Black Canary cosplay (based on the art of Ed Benes), which is not one I wear all that often. Beth found some awesome locations (very industrial looking but still colorful). One was a car mechanic shop that was being renovated and the other one was, I think, a former gas station or convenience store. Both had interesting colors or patterns painted on their walls, which created a lot of visual interest.
I can’t wait to work with Beth again. If you are ever in the Durham, NC area, I highly recommend booking a session with her.
I need to do a proper post recapping how I put this costume together, because I actually bothered to take pictures of some of the process. I was lucky and was able to snag one of the Batwoman dresses from Hot Topic before they sold out, but then I went on an odyssey searching for proper socks and how to make a con-safe bat. It turns out that if you look for black and red socks, nearly all of them are black with red stripes, not red with black stripes. Until you specifically search for soccer and rugby socks made in the UK. Go figure. I was fortunate to find a foam bat that I could draw on with Sharpie markers. Some cons let you take in wooden props, but some do not, so I wanted something that was even less likely to fail a weapons check. I also assembled the hat (sewing the ears and attaching a logo patch) and made the mask (using techniques I learned at Costume College last year).
When a fountain interrupts your photo shoot…
On to photos of my cosplay from Friday at MAGFest. I debuted a new Judy Hopps costume, which turned out nicely. Plus, I got to meet up with my friend Marcus, Dragon the Keyblade Maker, who was cosplaying as Nick Wilde. Mike took some great photos of the two of us. It was cool to have a cosplay team up.
Here are photos of some of the many, many cosplayers we saw at MAGFest. I was really impressed by the great variety of fandoms represented. Characters from movies, comics, video games, cartoons…. Compared to the other gaming convention we go to (PAX East), the cosplay community at MAGFest appears to be larger and much more active. This may be because of the size of the greater DC market and the high number of cons that take place here.
We rented two prime lenses to try out that weekend, both Nikon f1.8’s, but one was a 20 mm and the other was a 24 mm. We liked them both, but in the end decided to purchase the 20 mm. It should be a nice addition to the line up.
The Purple Man and Psylocke
Snorlax (Black Meadow Studio)
The Smash Bros Photo Shoot
I don’t really know what this is, but points for effort!
Fix-It Felix (Fix-It Jim Cosplay)
Rom as Vyse from Skies of Arcadia
Katie as Crash Bandicoot
Dragon the Keyblade Maker as an original character Jedi
Original character faun
Original character ram
David as Duke Thomas
Here are some of the photos that Mike took at the November DC Cosplay Photo Shoots meetup at the National Portrait Gallery. He and I collaborated on the editing, and I am quite happy with how they turned out.
I’ll start with the photos we did of me. I wore my Victorian Catwoman costume. We made particularly good use of the Luce Foundation Center for American Art, which is a beautiful space to work in.
Here is JMS Cosplay as Jacob Frye of Assassin’s Creed Syndicate. I love the pops of color in his costume.
Marco as a most excellent Loki. Mike took these in the atrium area of the museum, which afforded great light.
Ruth of Sew What: Costumes and Cosplays as a perfect Belle. I love how it looks as if she is wandering through the Beast’s grand castle in some of these.
Mike broke out some color editing for these two, to highlight the vibrant color’s of Ruth’s dress and of her rose.
At one point a young girl wandered into the photoshoot and plopped down on the floor to talk to Belle.
Given timing that day, Mike was only able to take a couple photos of Life of Cosplay in her very cool Carmen Sandiego costume. Below is the best photo we got, with two color edit versions. I really like both.
Purple Nerd Creations makes a badass Tonks.
And the final photo, a candid with Nerenight-Maritime Cosplay as Eliza Hamilton. I love the trim she did on her gown.
There is a really cool Meetup/Facebook group called DC Cosplay Photo Shoots, which meets periodically (usually at least once a month, sometimes more) at DC-area locations to bring together cosplayers and photographers. I have been following the group for quite a while, but with work being busy I had not been able to attend an event. Mike and I finally made it to the November meetup, which took place at the National Portrait Gallery. I went as a cosplayer, and Mike went as a photographer. It was great to meet a lot of locals who were interested in costuming, photography, and pop culture. The museum was a wonderful backdrop for photos, with a lot of varied options to suit different people’s costumes.
Later Mike and I collaborated on editing the photos he took, which was a lot of fun. We each used some techniques we don’t normally do. And I have gotten back a bunch of beautiful pictures from the other photographers I worked with. I’ll start by posting photos from during the group gathering portion of the meetup, and follow up later with the photos Mike and I worked on and with the photos that others took.
You can see there were a lot of cosplayers!
After the group photo, we did our version of the Mannequin Challenge, which Mike took some photos of. The guy in the Yankees cap you can see walking through is the videographer, Ernie of The Fan’s P.O.V.
I posed with Life of Cosplay, who makes an excellent Carmen Sandiego. She had a large faux jewel, and we pretended that we were after the same score.
And here is the resulting video!
This photo, courtesy of Rudy Conrad, shows all the photographers taking the group picture. You can see Mike among the crowd.
Beth of BWPW Photography has sent me the results of our photoshoot with her earlier this year. The pictures are amazing!
Check these out! This is just a sample of what she did.
Thank you Beth!
Yesterday Mike and I did a photo shoot with Beth of BWPW Photography. Beth is awesome. She did a great job scouting multiple locations beforehand and researching poses that appear in the original source comics. Not to mention the photos she took. It will be a little while before she finishes post processing on them, but I could already tell from the previews yesterday that the shots are beautiful. If you are ever in the Raleigh-Durham, NC area, I highly recommend booking a session with Beth.
These are some snaps from my phone, showing Beth and her helper Darrin at work.