Cosplayers don’t generally experience full portrait photography at Cons. We decided to change that at Tacticon 2016 and set up a full studio style photo-booth in a corner. We were traveling light so we had to get inventive with the lights. We brought only a single 9′ roll of gray paper and changed the colors of the lights to achieve the desired look instead. Bonus: changing a flash gel is much easier and faster than changing the background paper.
We recently started doing onsite fine art prints for the people we’re shooting. We bring a printer and print the photos right there. Like the professional portrait setup, this is a change from the normal photography usually done in a hall without any consideration for light or background. The cos-players seemed to appreciate the change. It felt great to give these professional costumes the pictures they deserved with the instant gratification of onsite printing.
Many of the cos-players belong to a group called the 501st and the Mandalorian Mercs Costume Club. Both of these groups are non-profits that volunteer in their communities and donate to charities across the country. Their costumes are approved by LucasFilms and painstakingly accurate. One 501st members told us that his speeder bike storm trooper costume wasn’t initially approved because he was missing a single red button on his backpack. These costumes were gorgeous to see.
This setup is so convenient for events. Just change the gel and you’ve got a new backdrop.
Tie Fighter Pilot
AT-AT Operator with R2D2
Mandalorian Bounty Hunter
We also got to shoot some cosplayers that were invited to the convention. Check out the incredible detail of this Mass Effect makeup and headpiece. The dedication and hours put into getting every detail just right sets these cosplayers high above the rest.
We don’t know who she is, but we know we wouldn’t want to fight her.
Professor Charles Xavier