Perfection -  - You
What makes a good cosplay photo?

This is the question that both great and mediocre thinkers alike have been attempting to define for what seems an eternity - to create a central cosplay dogma which will last through the ages as the centerpiece of critical thinking and a strict guide for artistic expression, without the unnecessary need for personal interpretation. This question has plagued us since long before the days of 20 megapixel cameras and even as early as Photoshop 7. I would even go so far as to state that it may have been around since as early as 2007, or the latter half of 2006. Well, whenever it was that the price point of DSLR’s finally became somewhat reasonable, and size really began to matter.

To me, a great cosplay photo is one which contains all of the elements of cosplay, scene, and perception of the creative collaboration between photographer and cosplayer, two artists whose ideas can blend into a final mix of art.

Sometimes the photo will even contain cosplayers, posing.

But overall, I have found the secret Golden Rule of cosplay photography, one which I have incorporated in every single photo since its discovery, and one which I will finally share with you now. You see, the most important element is the sky.

It was a stroke of pure luck one autumn afternoon, when I was going about my usual business and cropping my latest cosplay photo collection into squares for my evening perusal. I found one photo, wherein right around the 12 degree vertical mark lived a stark horizon, which began fading the other 88% upward into a deep, blue background. A light blue fading into a darker blue in such a subtle gradient, that it could only be supernatural, or perhaps created through the will of pure omnipotence.

In this sky I saw hopes and dreams redefined and painted in blue, and thus my future as a photographer.

In the following days, I found myself tracing lines around horizons with my mouse cursor. I would constantly use the channel mixer to create deeper blues but lighter greens and reds. Cropping images in such a way that they were virtually unrecognizable as what most would consider a cosplay photo. But they were recognizable to me. I had truly created art, and I created it for myself, to satisfy my own artistic desires. Nod if you understand.

I suddenly feel the need to wax poetic.

Oh sky of mine
That which filled mine eyes with your azure, gradient blending
Wherefore goeth the cosplayer?
Must I care? The sky is there

But try as I might, after looking through my photos, I always felt around 88% sublime, yet 12% empty and unfulfilled. Something was pushing its way into my core belief, into my subconscious, and shading my photographer reality to the point where I could not concentrate without interrupting myself with the thought that there just might be something . . . more to this.

It haunted me for what felt like weeks until one day, I was shooting the latest Hetalia cosplay gathering (because I feel that there surely isn’t enough of it yet and it really, really needs to be showcased as much as possible), and I tripped on a stone, launching myself face-first onto the grass at the EXACT moment I pressed the shutter button.

My arms flailed as I fell, and I scraped an elbow in an attempt to keep the camera from hitting the ground as I screamed in horror "But it's the most important requirement for good photos!!!", but to my luck, the camera came out ok. And that’s important, because no one wants to be asked what kind of camera they’re holding by another photographer, and then have to do a pre-answer split-second maneuver to cover up the scratch marks so as not to seem like you're not using something at least slightly new and late-model. Otherwise you’d have to follow that up by consciously remembering not to chimp your photos and then by pulling out the L-series lenses. Street cred, you know? Tiring, in its necessity.

But going through the images later, I found that I had pressed the camera button at an angle I previously thought humanly impossible . . . and the result was this photo that I am finally sharing with you now. I finally did it.

I have achieved cosplay photo perfection. I have finally captured . . . 100% sky. And this, I share with you today.

Fuck I really gotta showcase this TODAY, hey Jia or Ginny can you push back the cropped boot showcase picture to next week, maybe behind the bi-monthly “Kyle’s Good Friends/People Who Suck Up To Him” showcase slot? Thanks! Let’s plan another trip. :D

Comments: 81

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Forest Boy posted on 04-07-2010 at 08:33 PM:

Beautiful sky, just perfect!...But I love a green forest rather than a blue sky.

Tsukune posted on 04-07-2010 at 05:56 PM:

I greatly enjoyed reading over your thoughts and opinions pertaining to what makes a cosplay photo, in response to this I've uploaded my own take on this matter. Similarly I've also chosen a photograph of the sky. One that I took some time ago.

cutekawaii posted on 04-07-2010 at 05:51 PM:

This is the best thing I have ever read.

SilverHelix posted on 04-07-2010 at 01:27 AM:

Awesome picture. It's really beautiful, great work ^_^

Svairz posted on 04-06-2010 at 05:37 PM:

When did you become such a poet? ;P
Great story and PERFECT photo

etaru posted on 04-06-2010 at 03:39 PM:

Totly shooped!!1one

Hopie posted on 04-05-2010 at 10:16 PM:

LAWL! (but you should watch the F word, cuz there are kids on here lol!)

HK-Aya posted on 04-05-2010 at 04:59 PM:

epic cosplay photo here =D

Miyabi- posted on 04-05-2010 at 10:10 AM:

How is this not a cosplay photo guys? That cirrus cloud is CLEARLY cosplaying a nimbus one!

LilituDracula posted on 04-05-2010 at 08:58 AM:


Little_Marin posted on 04-04-2010 at 05:45 PM:

I think it's very lovely, perhaps even spiritual or symbolic. You are correct, the sky can make make or break a photograph. Any artist who has done photography knows this fact. It is indeed hard to get the perfect light and perfect conditions. It may an April Fools joke, but it does make sense.

Ashe posted on 04-04-2010 at 04:00 PM:


sephygoth posted on 04-04-2010 at 12:13 PM:

too deep for me, ppl have been filming the sky for ages. It's cosplayers that is new. ppl gotta get their heads out of that which you captured above and realize nature does exist.

Hikaru-Jan posted on 04-04-2010 at 05:20 AM:


CandyVaru posted on 04-03-2010 at 04:09 PM:

Lame troll is lame.

Kapalaka posted on 04-03-2010 at 01:50 PM:


Mamo&Theta posted on 04-03-2010 at 11:46 AM:

Honest Mistake (⌒▽⌒)

RadRage posted on 04-03-2010 at 09:14 AM:

I see a duck.

DieForHonor posted on 04-03-2010 at 01:11 AM:

i could really get lost in this photo...its wonderful its like another world

CreativeGuy posted on 04-02-2010 at 08:33 PM:

Best Cowboy Bebop "End of Series" Spike Spiegel photo ever!!! "I'm freeeeeeeeeeeeeee"

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