In my experience as a cosplayer, I have heard a lot of diehard cosplayers talk about their love of comic book store cosplays. Although comic conventions can be really fun, they are often overcrowded. Even though there are many comic heroes running about the convention centers, there is hardly any variety of comics to be found. I think that in itself is an interesting concept, that comic conventions feature all this great entertainment, artists and wonderful cosplayers but it lacks in the very thing that brings these people together and that lights the fire behind the characters portrayed. Sometimes, I think cosplayers don’t realize the amount of fun that comic book store conventions can be. There is a plethora of benefits that are associated with comic book store conventions:
-Meeting new people within your own community, since a majority of comic book store customers aren’t cosplayers. This can help build your credibility as a cosplayer since most popular cosplayers started to gain their fame through community efforts.
-Engaging or even inspiring aspiring cosplayers.
-Expanding your cosplay business.
-Attracting new/more customers to a comic book store. Costumes gain a lot of attention when placed amongst everyday people, especially if you attend mini conventions at comic book stores in malls and shopping plazas. Most comic book stores are privately owned and funded by the people that try really hard to make your experience a good one. It is sad to say but some of the only privately sanctioned family businesses in America are comic book stores. Most other stores are commercially based and if you wanted to find the closest group of family owned small business stores; you’d have to travel to Europe for that.
-Comic book stores host all kinds of events, including benefits. It is a chance to get acquainted with other members of the stores outreach and other programs it offers like Friday Night Magic or D & D matches.
Heroes Haven; a local comic book store in Tampa, FL.
Cosplayers attending a mini-con at a comic book store.
While I’m sure there are plenty of more benefits to cosplaying or attending mini-conventions in Comic Book Stores, I believe this is enough to convince the non-believers. A convention doesn’t always have to be crowded, and often less-crowded places lead to much better exchanges of information. There are many ways to have fun cosplaying and it doesn’t always have to be a few times a year. You can be that character you feel passionately about whenever you want. I know that’s powerful, wouldn’t you agree?