LA Cosplay Con 2015
So I should make something very clear. I have been a photographer for a while. I have been a cosplay photographer for a very short time. The first time I took pictures of Cosplayers was WonderCon 2014. I shot the entire show with no additional light using a Nikon P7800. This is a step above a Coolpix but not by much. I could have shot it with a Nikon D300 off camera strobes and a nice f/2.8 or prime lens. I didn’t know I was going to enjoy taking pictures of people who generally like getting their pictures taken. See I have been a sports photographer for several years. I have shot some of the most amazing athletes you can think of and none of them really want to sit down and do a portrait session. Their goal is to get in and out as fast as possible. This means you have to see the shot in your head before the talent arrives and you have to be ready to go as soon as they do. Cosplay photography has reminded me why I like to take pictures and generally brought out my more creative side.
LA Cosplay Con was on another level for me. I shot WonderCon this year and I did it for the first time with a SLR. I got some good shots but I had no idea of where we could go and didn’t know who I could or could not ask to step away from the crowd and get shots. I have to thank Kit Quinn for kind of giving me a kick in the ass to get good pictures. LA Cosplay was a smaller event with a smaller venue yet in the one day event I shot over 150 different cosplayers yeah you read that right. This means I nearly got everyone there which sucks because I do know a few I missed and DANG IT I wanted to get everyone. LOL I shot a lot of people on the floor which means I needed a way to get them out from the crowd and make them look good. Remembering that a lot of the cosplayers have reflective surfaces I was going to have to minimize the glare. This means I need to get the light source soft and above their heads. So I brought my trusty assistant aka my wife and we put a FJ WestCott Rapid Octobox on a monopod to act as a boom. I used a SB-910 Nikon strobe and triggered it with what is called Nikon’s CLS (Creative Light System.) This worked great on a lot of shots but it did make a lot of them look the same. I got some of my favorite cosplayers who I met at WonderCon to step outside and do some work which really helped breakup the continuos same style. When the day was finished I had a lot of files.
Yes when the day was complete I shot over 643 images this is actually with some of them transferred the real total was 672. The storage number is correct 18.4 GB of content. After I got them all downloaded then came the moment of truth it was time to begin the intense process of editing down what is known in the PJ business as the ‘take’. Could I have edited the shots down further certainly but I wasn’t doing this for a magazine or for anyone else but me so I can afford to be more open and accept more images.
My insane view of Lightroom CC. After I finished the editing I had to start putting them up on my IG account. I love Instagram it’s like it was made specifically for photographers. I like the ability to share pictures and follow people it just makes me smile when I see someone I took a photo of doing something plain and normal. I feel like I know your secret identities. Below is the final results enjoy.