Cosplay in lockdown
In lockdown, we have all been looking for alternative ways to entertain ourselves: maybe it’s a new sport, taking up knitting or crocheting, or other crafts. In early lockdown I first got into cosplaying. My first cosplay was Jack, a character from an anime called Beastars and since then, cosplaying has become a huge hobby for me.
Cosplay, a portmanteau of “costume play” is a performance art in which cosplayers dress up and roleplay as characters from tv shows, books, films, video games, and especially Japanese manga and anime. Cosplaying is a very broad term, but it generally applies to anyone dressing up and roleplaying in venues other than on the stage.
The term “cosplay” was first coined in 1984, and since the 1990s, it has become a significant aspect of pop culture in Japan, as well as other parts of east Asia and the western world.
A lot of cosplayers use social media, such as tiktok, to share their art, or going to cosplay conventions where they can turn up to an event in cosplay and meet other cosplayers with similar interests.
Japanese anime and manga plays an important role in cosplay: if you
go to a convention you are certain to see characters from popular anime such as My Hero Academia, Danganropa, and Haikyu.
Cosplay is a very skilled artform and while I have improved since last year, I have a lot to learn. I can’t wait to go to a convention after lockdown!