written by Robin C. Farrell
My first convention was Baltimore Comic Con in September of 2013. I knew about cosplay and I marveled (no pun intended) at the skill and detail some folks put into their work. I have always been very at home in Geek Culture, but privately and had never seen that world up close. It always seemed somehow out of reach; as a textbook introvert, I couldn’t see how I would be able to participate, but in my experience (both in costume and civvies) there is room for everyone.
Some debate still remains in the cosplay community, but it’s my belief that Geek and Con culture as a whole is an outward manifestation of fandom and creativity, no matter the form or skill level. Halloween was always my favorite holiday growing up. Tremendous creative opportunity can be found in dressing up for Halloween (or any costume-centered event) if you’re looking for it, but once Trick-Or-Treating fell out of fashion, there was a surprisingly large void that cosplay would one day, not only fill but expand. Cosplay is more than dressing up, it’s the meeting of worlds; the intersection of multiple fandoms, spectatorship and active creativity.