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    27 Cosplayers Share What Cosplay Means To Them

    "The most important thing I’ve learned? Fuck the haters – you do you!"

    We recently asked members of the BuzzFeed Community to show us their favourite cosplay. Here are some of their responses.

    1. "My husband and I dressed as geriatric Han and Leia in honour of our 27th anniversary and the release of The Force Awakens!"

    – Submitted by cristiemarshallk

    2. "Black Cat exudes confidence and fierceness, which is something I don’t personally possess on a day-to-day basis."

    "I’ve always been a big fan of costuming but only really got into the whole cosplay scene over the last couple of years. Black Cat (Spider-Man) was the first big project I’ve even taken on that went beyond modifying something from a Halloween store. I was so proud of my results that I booked a photo shoot with a local photographer (Philippe Photography) and I’ve been pumping out new creations for Halloween, conventions, and any-given-Saturday ever since."

    – Submitted by jenmpower

    3. "I dressed up as Sharknado and won the costume contest one year on Halloween."

    "That was the easiest $600 I ever made."

    – Submitted by danr42f479fef

    4. "Cosplay is not about accuracy for me. It’s about feeling a connection to a character and wanting to be outside myself."

    "As Tiny Tina, my drifty left eye adds to the character. I can be a little bit nutty and no one can tell it’s me unless they really pay attention. It’s all about attitude and perception of yourself. You can be anyone or anything, all you have to do is give it a try!"

    – Submitted by rchu

    5. "I cosplay as Daenerys Targaryen and it truly gives me butterflies in my stomach each time I put on one of my costumes."

    Marisa Chacon

    Marisa Chacon

    "When I was wearing this cosplay at Bubonicon 2015, George R.R. Martin called me 'Khaleesi' as he signed my dragon egg. Whenever I'm in cosplay my confidence boosts and I feel like I can take on anything or anyone. I tend not to care what other people think if they see me driving, walking, or eating after an event, because I’m the rightful ruler of Westeros and their opinion doesn’t matter. I love cosplaying as her and I will continue to do so. Cosplayers unite – turn us away and we will burn you first."

    – Submitted by Marisa Chacon via email

    6. "Cosplay is about the community of people getting together to have fun without a fear of judgment."

    – Submitted by cameronb49f68d015

    7. "When information about Korra first came out, my friends joked that they modelled her after me."

    "I cosplayed as Korra from The Legend of Korra. She was the last big cosplay I ever did because I felt I could never do better. Perfect props, perfect acting, perfect stunts (I was into parkour and tricking), perfect outfit – I went out on top."

    – Submitted by jessicac4353fbdab

    8. "I’m definitely most proud of my General Grievous cosplay from Star Wars!"

    "He stands at 7’2” tall and I look through a dark black fabric to see as my face goes to his ribs, since he’s almost two feet taller than I am. I made him from scratch using PVC, EVA foam, paper maché, cardboard, and a lot of sleepless nights."

    – Submitted by ambermattox888

    9. "Cosplay is a chance for me to feel the joy of being a child and show my love for my favourite series and characters."

    "It also forces me to get creative in order to create the right look on a deadline. Since I haven’t learned how to use a sewing machine yet, Goodwill finds and fabric glue are my best friends. My Pokémon Go trainer was put together in about a week and a half so I could wear it to Metrocon. I loved posing with Pokémon cosplayers as if I was catching them (and a person with a Pokéstop prop!)"

    – Submitted by samantharener

    10. "Raven from Teen Titans is the first cosplay I really felt like I nailed. "

    "She’s always a favourite with kids, and that makes me smile"

    – Submitted by spaceace

    11. "I find so much relief in being able to be someone else for a few hours and the challenge in bringing characters to life is so much fun."

    "Cosplay is basically my whole life. I’m always changing myself and my brother into characters every chance I get. The Joker is my go-to and favourite but I love all my DC villains, especially the ones that involve face painting!"

    – Submitted by BrissieBuzzer

    12. "I'm a female version of Ganondorf from The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess."

    "I've been cosplaying for a year and I’m really proud of my second cosplay I ever did. It’s also my first armour. I really love to dress up as another character. I recommend everyone try cosplay – it has a great community and it is a lot of fun!"

    – Submitted by princessxzelda

    13. "I love getting absorbed in the character and becoming someone else for a day."

    "I have always been a huge fan of dressing up for Halloween. In college I began going to themed parties and my costumes became more and more elaborate. My work now has a costume contest every year and I love transforming and going all out. My favourite was Maleficent from a couple of years ago. I did the makeup myself and people I’ve known for years didn’t recognize me."

    – Submitted by amandat4018805aa

    14. "I’ve learned a lot in this community, both as an artist and as a human being. And the most important thing I’ve learned? Fuck the haters – you do you!"

    "I wore Holtzmann (Ghostbusters) to SDCC this year, and was amazed at the number of positive reactions I got from people regarding the costume AND the movie. I was thrilled to see how excited kids got when they spotted me! While there’s definitely some bad eggs out there, the cosplay community has always been such a positive place for me for many years. Everyone is generally very kind and supportive to each other; it’s a wonderful break from reality."

    – Submitted by heyitshawkguy

    15. "This is my Brienne of Tarth costume I made two years ago. It's still one of my favourites."

    "Cosplay gives me a chance to be someone else just for a day, someone that people recognise and love, and I get to show my skills to others who appreciate them."

    – Submitted by RebekKostec

    16. "I love cosplaying rarer characters because I’m almost one of a kind, and people who recognise your character get really excited. It’s an amazing feeling."

    "This is me as Captain Amelia from Treasure Planet! I love to take on the role of the confident and in-charge characters and she is definitely one of them. I love cosplay because of the connections you make with other people who share the same interests, and the happiness it brings me (especially when I see someone dressed as my favourite characters) and others around me."

    – Submitted by Penguinlvr2

    17. "I wanted to be an androgynous version of Cruella de Vil. I think she’s fabulous."

    – Submitted by nico1984

    18. "Cosplay to me is an important part of any fandom. It allows us to live in the shoes of characters we either admire or just fangirl over."

    "This is me as the medieval-fem Joker and my friend as male Harley. Cosplay is important. You can take all your passion for a character and mould it into pretty much anything you want!"

    – Submitted by maryanner40133a15e

    19. "Cosplaying gives me the confidence to be who I am, regardless of if I am in costume or not.

    "I started to cosplay a few months ago, and my favorite one so far is Wonder Woman! I love how powerful and strong I feel when I dress up like her."

    – Submitted by sophiem43e525366

    20. "Effie Trinket! I didn’t want to spend the money on pre-made butterflies, so I made my own (over 350 of them!) using orange children’s craft foam, white paint, and black Sharpies."

    21. "My all-time favourite cosplay is my Borderlands 2 Tiny Tina cosplay. I loved making this costume so much that I’ve made her twice!"

    Facebook: LMcosplays / Facebook: DavidDTJAAAAMNgo

    "To me cosplay means becoming another character even if it's just for a day. It means joining a community of people who are passionate about different fandoms and are celebrating their passion by becoming their favourite characters."

    – Submitted by Mangoloo

    22. "I REALLY love the things I love. My fandoms are as close to me as any intangible thing can be."

    "I love cosplay, because it lets me take something out of the realm of fantasy and bring it into reality. My husband loves most of my fandoms and he thinks my cosplay and crafting are cute…even when I make him dress up silly in public! (Note all the badges on his sash were had made with felt, marker, glue, paint, and many late hours. The result – one word: EPIC)."

    – Submitted by amyd4793b5c3c

    23. "Norma from Orange is the New Black! You can’t see it in the picture but I had the beige prison uniform too. I made that toast."

    – Submitted by serenav

    24. "Half of the fun of cosplaying is coming up with a great idea."

    "Jem is my name, no one else is the same! Jem is my name! When Netflix brought back Jem, the amazing '80s cartoon I loved watching as a kid, I knew instantly that it would be unique and so fun to do! This is the cosplay I’m the most proud of because I put it all together myself, even glittering the shoes and doing my own makeup (I’m terrible at makeup). I don’t consider myself the most artistic person, but cosplaying brings out a creative side of me that I don’t acknowledge enough!"

    – Submitted by perrip2

    25. "This is us dressed as Robbie Hart and Julia Sullivan from The Wedding Singer and it was possibly our most successful cosplay yet."

    "My friend and I have been going to conventions together for the last several years and it’s always our aim to pick a movie couple that skirts the line of obscurity just enough so that we will still be recognized but likely avoid duplicates. Finding that shade of sport coat was no easy feat, neither was the wig (thank you, China!). Shout out to waitress at the restaurant where we had dinner who risked losing her job to take a photo with us."

    – Submitted by Joseph Lezza

    26. "It took seven people in total to create. I'm the chair’s right seat." / Via

    "The very talented Molly Glover created a cosplay of the Iron Throne for Comic Con NYC 2013. We would transform in and out of the chair. Jerome Flynn even took a seat on us ( he sat on me )!"

    – Submitted by Flatrabbitstudio

    27. "The family that cosplays together stays together!"

    "I’ve been cosplaying since I was a teenager and was delighted when my son wanted to start dressing up too. This Doctor Who cosplay (River Song, the 11th Doctor, the 10th Doctor) was photographed at Austin Wizard World, with a Weeping Angel we met on the convention floor."

    – Submitted by Allisonj10

    Submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.

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