Kiana's cosplay is Tomoyo from Cardcaptor Sakura... steam-punk version. The camcorder is part of the costume, as her character is always carrying it around, like this. In addition to cosplaying, Kiana loves making art.
Last summer when I stopped by in Seattle, WA, I got to see the (apparently) famous gum wall. There was a solid group of people hanging around to see it, and even a friendly person who shared some gum with those of us who hadn't prepared to contribute to this saliva-covered work of art. It looked kind of cool but... eeew.
I love costumes, as evidenced by this post from last Halloween. So when I discovered that there is a whole community of dedicated costume-wearers I decided that I needed to get to know them better... photographically.
Everyone, meet cosplay. The linked article describes it better than I ever could, but essentially cosplayers dress up as characters from anime, manga, video games, or other cartoons and go to conventions in character. And these aren't lame costumes. People style their own wigs, sew, build, accessorize, and apply make-up to create the best representations they can of characters they choose to portray. It's a true labor of love.
The thing I really like about all of this is that the people I've seen who do this are taking fantasy and turning into a little bit of reality. They get to do part-time what actors do constantly, and that's where the fun comes in for me. Cosplay is pure fun and fantasy just a step outside of normal life, usually just donned for a day or weekend before heading back to school, work, and the rest of that stuff we all do. Because of that close relationship, I've chosen to photograph people in their cosplay (costume), but in a setting from their everyday life. Work, home, school, the store...
Here are the first two.
Jess, an avid writer of fanfiction...
and Aly, a Computer Science major who currently works in a lab as a programmer.
I'm really excited to expand on this project. Though I am not a member of the cosplay community myself, this is something I can really sink my teeth into.
For a while now, I've been wanting to try doing star trails. Star trails involve doing long exposures during the night while the earth rotates and makes long, bright streaks. It also requires being in the middle of nowhere and camping out with your camera while it does it's multi-hour thing.
I wasn't too keen on trying it by myself and getting murdered in my sleep, but when I found out that someone I knew was also interested in giving it a whirl and the new moon was coming up, we decided to go give it a whirl together.
You'd think that in the desert, there wouldn't be much problem with the weather. Alas, there was a storm coming through. The weather report only predicted rain from about 7-8 pm, and since things often clear up fast here in Utah we were still hopeful for clear skies by midnight.
When we got in the car, however, there had not yet been any rain. The cloud cover was thick, and as we drove toward our destination it only got worse and began to rain lightly. Pretty soon we saw brilliant flashes of lightning.
This was no one-hour storm.
We were already out in the middle of nowhere, so now what? Try to wait it out? The chances of it easing up were slim. How about photograph the lightning? Sure!
So here are a couple of pictures from an impromptu lightning shoot. They're nothing spectacular - we hadn't chosen the location ahead of time or made any preparations for this particular shoot. It was more an experiment than anything.