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About.com/Manga’s List for 2010

I was pleasantly surprised today to find out I made About.com/Manga’s list for 2010. Really surprised in fact. I never though my book would be mention on a manga site ! Big thanks to Deb for selecting my book !

As the product of over five months of cross-country travel, many hours and hundreds of photographs, Cosplay in America is a lovely art book that captures the spirit of fun, camaraderie and creativity of the North American cosplay community. Ejen Chuang’s photographs do what similar photo books weren’t able to do: show cosplayers as real people who like to dress up as fictitious characters, and treat them with respect for their passion for the anime, games and manga that inspired their costumes.

I’ve received so many thumbs up from folks who tell me that it is refreshing to see regular folks cosplay. I’ve met hundreds if not thousands of people on my tour, an amazing opportunity to meet and hear opinions from different parts of the country. One girl at Fanime in San Jose, CA, remark that most male photographer’s “are interested in one specific type … and not particularly interested in certain other types. It is refreshing to see someone who clearly understands what cosplay is about.”

I know what she means. Mainstream media as well as photographers in general usually showcase cosplay as “hot chicks in costume”. I tried to get away from that with this book. To me it is more about the cosplayer and their love of the character they are portraying. Yes, there are some awesome cosplay in the book, but you also get America. You get people of different race, sex, age, body shape, whatnot all united under cosplay. In any case, in upcoming weeks and months, I’ll go back and pull the curtain aside to show you the “behind the scenes” of making this book. In some instances, I’ll show you what I originally thought of and what finally happen. So please check my main site Cosplay in America. (though more than likely, I’ll probably repost it here)

(Originally posted December 4, 2010)