The Gotham City Circus is a project that came together after working on a live photoshoot with cosplayer and friend Enasni (Instagram:@enasniv). Enasni dressed in a circus Harley Quinn outfit and I built a circus set. We should call the set the legendary set as it soon inspired several other cosplayers wanting to join in on the action. Early on I agreed to shoot just about anything in the circus theme but I kept getting this idea to focus it more. I knew about a Strong Man Superman (Instagram: @dnbarillas) I shot at WonderCon and how perfect his cosplay would be on the Circus set so I reached out to him and scheduled the shoot. Meantime my Facebook and Instagram kept blowing up with people asking to shoot it was at this point that I decided it all must stay in the DC Comics realm and although Superman is not from Gotham I still felt it should be called Gotham City Circus. My second photoshoot was with the always beautiful, talented, and amazing super mom Jannelle (Instagram: @donquijote_rn) as Lion Taming Catwoman. Once we came up with her act we put the call out for cosplayers to come to me with their own circus acts. What was amazing is that when all was said and done we ended up with 18 total and different circus acts.
I want to thank all the amazing people who assisted me on this project. Normally I shoot my work on my own and don’t need much outside assistance but for this project I had several. We used a fog machine to add some character and texture to the images which means it needs to be moved, sprayed, and controlled. So here is the list of the amazing assistants who helped me with this project.
First I want to thank my true 1st Assistant my wife Tracy Rulison (Instagram: @ms_rulison) without her helping me with schedules and covering me with our children this project doesn’t happen. This project was more than 18 evenings in the garage shooting different acts it was also me juggling trying to find time to shoot, go to work, and still be there for my kids and their needs. It was also a lot of time spent editing images and working my way through each set (with still more to go.)
Second I want to thank Jerry Jimenez (Instagram: @jajimenez30) he flew out from Colorado. Now Jerry and I grew up together and have been best friends for a long time. In high school we were friends but not best friends then we both lived our lives and when we needed someone to lean on we have booth been there for each other. Now I say this because I want people to understand what the true meaning of friendship is. Friendship is not someone who goes out and gets drinks with you when you are buying it’s the person who is there for you when your life falls apart. Jerry came out to have a good time for his birthday and we pulled off two shoots while he was here. First was the Wonder Woman shoot with Tahnee Harrison which you can find here the second one was the Catwoman shoot for the Gotham City Circus. Thanks for all your help Jerry and for being my best friend.
Next I want to thank two other photographers who came over to assist on the Gotham City Circus when Tracy wasn’t available. The first is Cosplay Photographer and awesome guy Mitch Rush (Instagram: @primofox). Mitch came over and assisted with lighting and fog machine support. We also discussed a lot of the lighting and set building techniques. The second photographer who came over to assist is Jim Drennen (Instagram: @gsojim). Jim is a photographer of life and all things Disney. If you want to see some great shots of the Magic Kingdom you should go follow him. Now Jim and I have been friends for awhile and discuss all things lighting. Jim recently purchased his first Profoto head to start taking more pictures with off camera lighting. Jim also helped with lighting and fog handling so big thanks to both of these guys.
Now for a big shoutout for some of the hidden people who helped out on this project. Big thanks to Jessica Mills (Instagram: @jmillsmakeupandhair) and her helpful hand on makeup and hair styling. I don’t think when she agreed to help Kit Quinn with hair she would be styling a beard but hey life is an adventure.
Now the cosplayers I will list them out with character name so that’s it’s easier for you to figure out who is who.
Gotham City Circus Cast Members
Harley Quinn – Cosplayer @enasniv
Catwoman – Cosplayer @donquijote_rn
The Penguin – Cosplayer @porcelaintokyo
Wonder Woman – Cosplayer @misskitquinn
The Riddler – Cosplayer @rockyrants_cosplay
Superman – Cosplayer @dnbarillas
Zatanna – Cosplayer @theraestew
Black Canary – Cosplayer @rachellitfin
Batgirl – Cosplayer @onlyalicat
Robin – Cosplayer @chrisvillain
Poison Ivy – Cosplayer @pixiequinncosplay
Joker – Cosplayer @sparrowsflight
Dee Dee Twins – Cosplayer @cosplaytwiins
Supergirl – Cosplayer @maidofmight
Hawkgirl – Cosplayer @elizabethrage
Batman – Cosplayer @some_dancer
Powergirl – Cosplayer @taranicoleazarian
Now the questions comes what are we going to do with all of these images. We would like to do a show a show where we pick 1 image from each of the sets and print them on canvas. Canvas prints are expensive especially when I want them to be 40×60 ($300) in size or possibly two images at 20×30 ($65 each) to complete the Gotham City Circus we will most likely have to source some crowd funding. If you have any ideas or know of a gallery that might be willing to help us show the Gotham City Circus please reach out to me at email@example.com.