Hey friends! We’re back and finally kicking again after KatsuCon 2014, one of the biggest cosplay conventions on the east coast! First big convention of the year! What a trip this was: I wasn’t sure we were going to make it for a little bit there! We fought the weather in, through, and out of this con! As a lifelong Floridian, I will never ever underestimate a snowstorm again! JetBlue was amazing though and canceled and rescheduled our flight ahead of time so we made it way ahead of schedule with plenty of time to spare! Hit the jump for the details on our weekend!
As I mentioned earlier, JetBlue canceled our flight ahead of schedule to the tune of a little more than 36 hours ahead of schedule, late Tuesday night. Scrambling to find flights we were left with leaving on Saturday morning or Wednesday afternoon. So Wednesday afternoon we decided to head out, a little more than 12 hours after our initial cancellation leaving us scrambling to get much work and errands done that we thought we would have more time to finish. When we arrived at the airport we were nervous to see that the flight AFTER us was cancelled. Luckily for us, we made it out of Orlando to arrive in DC right as the snow started to fall. Our friends Cindy and Eric were kind enough to pick us up and house us on short notice that Wednesday night, and I honestly don’t know what we would have done without them!
Cindy and Eric saving us from the snow! Thanks, you two! <3
On Thursday we took an Uber to National Harbor! If you don’t know what Uber is, it’s a personal taxi / private car service! You use an app to alert a driver to your location and they come by and pick you up in a matter of minutes! I’m not sponsored, I’m just impressed! Check them out!
Of course when one goes to KatsuCon, one takes photos with the famous (infamous) gazebo. Although we didn’t plan on using it too often because it’s such a hotspot for photographers and cosplayers alike, we figured we may as well get in while we could.
KatsuCon is one of my favorite conventions to go to for cosplayers and costumes. The level of craftsmanship and creativity is hardly surpassed here on the east coast. The only other convention I have been to that rivals KatsuCon in terms of cosplays is Dragon*Con, but that’s a whole different beast. Where D*Con is definitely more of a party / social con, KatsuCon is more of a cosplayers convention. What do I mean by “cosplayers’ convention”? I mean that this venue is beautiful and classy. The Gaylord National Harbor is a fantastic location for photos. Cosplayers show off their best pieces, and photographers get their best shots. It’s not nearly as crowded as Dragon either, meaning cosplayers can show off their big show pieces as well, with all sorts of wings, armor, weapons, etc.
We did plan a good amount of shoots during the weekend, meaning our walkaround gallery is going to be a bit sparse. We got what we could in between and during the lulls of our shoots. Above is a brilliant Sheik by Raion Cosplay and Akali by Chinasaur Cosplay. The Gaylord provides such a wide variety of locations to shoot in, from the little “town” in the atrium with brick walls and boardwalks, to the lush gardens, to the clean and brilliant gazebo level.
It’s legitimately hard to find a costume that can’t be shot at this convention. When the weather was less blustery, even shooting outside was enjoyable, albeit cold. Fushicho Cosplay and Tsubasahime both looked amazing in their dresses, and that Haruko cosplayer just caught my eye while we were out shooting another cosplayer out by the beach (yes, there’s a beach, too)!
When in doubt, there are always walls to shoot on. I caught a group of Kyoukai no Kanata (Beyond the Boundary) cosplayers in a hallway by registration. Elysia and I had just watched the series a couple weeks prior, and I was excited to see cosplayers at this convention. Natural light is in abundance. Despite KatsuCon / Gaylord’s very vague rules against “professional” photography, improvisation with natural light was definitely the mode of operation for the weekend.
When the daylight left, though, it was a different story. Off camera flash has become very much part of my repertoire and to have it restricted for the weekend was kind of like juggling with one hand. We had to work with the existing artificial light when we couldn’t set up like in the photo of Ceri’s wonderful cosplay of Tifa from Final Fantasy VII on the left. We did try to hide away and use our flash as usual though. Annie’s and Rachel’s photos were taken in corners and not oft used rooms of the convention center.
Needless to say, we had a great time at this convention. It was great seeing all the friends I don’t normally get to see here in Florida (a.k.a. everyone north of the Florida/Georgia line) and meeting and working with all the new friends as well. Our gallery follows this blog, but don’t forget there are many more photos by the what seemed like hundreds of photographers in the KatsuCon Facebook group, along with the many amazing cosplay music videos on YouTube done by a talented group of cosplay videographers as well.
We’re still working on the many photoshoots that we did, but our walkaround gallery is done and available below! Like us on Facebook and follows us on Instagram and Twitter to get updates on what we’re working on!
Did you go to KatsuCon? Did you have a hard time getting there? Did you have fun? Will you go back? Leave us a message in the comments!
Thanks for stopping by! Hopefully see you again at KatsuCon 2015!