People all over the world are mixing the fantasy life of characters into their everyday real-world life. Roleplaying with costumes is a way of life for some people; it is also well-known as a performance art called cosplay. The donning of costumes, along with accessories, to mimic a character or concept (often inspired by Japanese fiction, including anime, video games and comic books) combined with physically playing out the role of the character, is becoming more and more popular, not just in Japan, but around the whole world. These are not actors on a stage; they are real people playing out fantasy roles in real life.
Forrest J. Ackerman and Myrtle R. Douglas inspired worldwide costuming in 1939 as well. Ackerman wore his futuristic costume, designed by Douglas, to the 1st World Science Fiction Convention that took place in Caravan Hall in New York. It still stands to theory that, although dressing up as characters may have been inspired by Ackerman and Douglas, the actual coined phrase Cosplay still did not become real until Nov Takahashi coined it.
During video game and comic book trade shows, you may see a gathering of cosplayers, adorned with their anime-appeal costumes. Don’t be surprised if you see these bold characters walking on the streets during the day or at the nightclub at night; this trend has really taken off and seems to be growing more popular as time goes on. Cosplayers look forward to the two largest events in the world for cosplayers; the Comiket, held semi-annually in Japan and the San Diego Comic-Con, which can be found in California.
Today, Japanese cosplayers congregate outside during the weekends to masquerade, pose for pictures, and compare each other’s elaborate costumes. If you are interested in visiting one of the most famous cosplay scenes in the world, head over to Tokyo, Japan’s Harajuku district. In addition, there are several current magazines that focus on the vogue and rogue cosplay scene, including: Anicoz from the U.S., Cosplaymix, by Mexico, and Dengeki and Cosmode, two of Japan’s cosplay magazines.