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Animazement 2016 | Client Spotlight | NC Cosplay Photographer

(NEXT CON: Otakon. Booking opens June 10th at 5pm EST.
THEN: Dragoncon. Booking opens July 20th.) 

Animazement, Animazement, Animazement… my, you hold a dear place in my nerdy heart. Ten years ago–yes, an entire decade–I attended it as my first con back when it was in the Sheraton. AZ has always been on my birthday weekend, so in 2006 my mom made special plans and got us a nice room nearby, helped me make my first cosplay (Thief Rikku from Final Fantasy X-2, of course), and got me as many roast beef sandwiches that my heart desired that weekend. I can’t believe that was back in 2006… WOW. I had a blast, even though I unknowingly crashed an FF7 shoot in my excitement to be with other cosplayers. (No, like, I literally crashed the hell out of it because I didn’t understand how series shoots work for multiple games–I thought I had missed the FFX/X-2 roll call for the shoot and so I ran in and joined a bunch of Clouds and Tifas. They were merciful on my little teen self, bless.)

So, naturally, AZ has always held a dear place in my heart. Admittedly, being here always makes me miss cosplaying. One day I hope to get back into it. But, I digress! Below you will see a few teasers of my sold-out weekend shooting at Animazement in Raleigh, NC. Stay tuned for more, and follow me on instagram - chezphotocosplay - for frequent updates of my shots from booked cons.

Up first we have Youtuber/Gamer/Streamer Slothymama on Friday as Galadriel from LoTR! Honestly she had the role TOTALLY down, absolutely epitomizing the strong-willed grace of this character. Also, she was super rad to hang out with. And, to top it all off, she surprised me with a delicious little chocolate cake at the end of our shoot because she knew my birthday was Saturday! How freakin sweet was that?! It was delicious–a lucky guess with the dark chocolate. 

Next we have Patricia (patches_smile on IG) and her friend who booked together, splitting the shoot as a Sakizo design and an original illustration based off of a Demon king. They were fun and easy to work with; I always love working with people who split the shoots with friends, even if they aren’t cosplaying ‘together’ technically. The energy is always high. Also, y’all know how much I love me some Sakizo. Patricia told me that she hammered out that gorgeous, elegant costume in less than a month–she made it after she knew I could photograph it, which is super flattering. :’)

Following this we have Molly aka AoKoumori. She won my free giveaway! I worked with her last year and she’s always a BLAST to be around. Like, I live for her goofy facial expressions. Also she has the prettiest dang smile. She hand-dyed the fabric herself in this May cosplay from Guilty Gear, too. Molly is also getting married soon, and Animazement is her bachelorette party! What a fun idea for the newlywed nerd! Lol. Love you Molly. 

Here is pyrefly on Instagram as Genos from One Punch Man. He was such a darling to work with, and it was impossible to get a bad shot of him. He is just so good in front of the camera! And very patient, too, as we had a few run-ins with location issues. I really loved working with him and hope to again soon.

Now we have a client that was referred to me by the lovely amazing Josie aka Guhzoontight who I photographed at PAX East. Here’s Kristi, aka The Geeky Gamer Girl who, if you were also at PAX East, most definitely saw because her cosplay is rad as heck. I’m so glad Josie referred her to me because Kristi was a blast to work with. Also, I remember seeing her costume from PAX and wishing SO BAD that I could’ve photographed her. So, when she booked me for AZ, I was SO EXCITED! Honestly I freaking LOVE this cosplay design of Nova from Starcraft. The colors are my favorite, and those adorable roller derby wheels remind me of a tasty candy that I just can’t place. She was so easy to work with and I can’t wait to show you more from this shoot!

Here is the beautiful Jenna Lynn Cosplay wearing the Stygian Zinogre armor set from Monster Hunter. When I saw she decided to book her MH costume, I was really excited, because I had so much fun photographing Guhzoontight’s. This was a great cosplay, although I have to hand it to her for being a trooper in it due to the heat. Stay tuned for full-body images.

While leaving a photoshoot I ran into this My Fair Lady cosplayer, sharpestitches on Instagram. I usually don’t take hall shots/shots on the move in between bookings, but I saw this and couldn’t resist snapping a quick portrait. I love her big hat!

I loved this shoot of the absolutely stunning Katherine aka Katinka Cosplay as Luka from Vocaloid. She was great to meet and her costume was gorgeous. I’m so glad she booked it with me because this is right up my alley. She is so elegant! And she has some big cosplay plans coming up so you’ll definitely want to give her page a follow.

And here we have Regena of House of Mint & Mint to Be Makeup as Princess Serenity. I have known Regena since I was like, 16 or so–she cosplayed Fran from FFXII in 2009 with me when I crossplayed as  Vaan. Fond memories! Regena is a talented MUA as well as a veteran cosplayer. She’s definitely a go-to for con bookings if you need your makeup done by a true professional. Remember, makeup is part of cosplay too…don’t skimp on it! Look into booking her for your next con. 

Lastly, I ran into Smash Cosplay and Useless Materia Cosplay in their Disney princess costumes based off of Hannah Alexander’s artwork. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get ahold of their full group, but I had to snap a few photos of these ladies. 

As a conclusion:

Animazement, despite being a sold-out con for my shoot bookings in the blistering heat of Memorial Day Weekend in NC, was surprisingly enough my most relaxing con. Probably because it wasn’t in the bitter cold like Katsu and Anime Boston, or in the challenging locations of the seaport like PAX East. I couldn’t believe that I actually had the energy to party and go out Saturday night on my birthday, but I did. Boxcar Barcade in Raleigh was an awesome place to celebrate. 

I really really liked shooting AZ this year. My clients were kind and easy to work with and I’m very happy with the locations around Animazement and the food options in the area too. Overall I give Animazement a 5/5 this year for shooting. Hopefully I’ll be able to make it next year, but who knows where I’ll be! For now, though, I am based in eastern NC and do on-location photoshoots for cosplay in the area. Feel free to contact me.

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