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OSU students play big roles in Cosplay Club

Kathy Cubert / Lantern Photographer

In room 048 of Scott Laboratory, a group of students is finding a way to become their favorite characters from anime and manga thanks to OSU’s Cosplay Club.

Cosplay is the practice of dressing up as a character from Japanese animation or of Japanese origin. Cosplayers, those who practice cosplay, are abundant at anime conventions, where they can show off their costumes and pose for pictures as their characters.

Katrina Webber, a fourth-year in Japanese and English, founded the club as a way to provide a support system for potential cosplayers. The club is a place for students to come together and learn about the art and process of cosplay.

“[I made the club as a place] to get together, and sometimes for support, because it can be the night before the con and your seam rips, and it’s really frustrating,” Webber said.

Cosplay can be a very lonely hobby because hours are spent working on a detailed costume for the convention. But for the club members, the OSU Cosplay Club provides a little “moral support,” Webber said.

The club hopes, through presentations, to elaborate the different topics in cosplay such as makeup, wigs and posing.

In the first meeting, Webber gave a “Cosplay 101” presentation to highlight all the different aspects involved with cosplay.

The process of making a costume can be overwhelming, but Webber stresses that cosplay is just about having fun.

The club runs other activities such as a group outing to the anime convention, Ohayocon, in January at the Columbus Convention Center. Here, the hours of labor and stitching finally pay off in a showcase of cosplay from around the nation and around the globe.

Some members, such as Becki Yoakam, a third-year in art, win special awards at these conventions. Yoakam won second place in the masquerade contest for her costume at Anime Expo, the largest anime convention in the nation. Yoakam has created more than 36 costumes and never ceases to exercise new and creative poses for pictures.

Cosplay involves hours of stitching, sewing and posing, but members do not need to know these skills prior to joining the club. Members are not required to create an original costume but can come for the sheer enjoyment of watching others or learning more about the trade.

Members embark on different paths in cosplay, such as prop making or makeup. Lauren Bills displayed her gory makeup at the club’s meeting from 6 to 8 p.m. Monday in Scott Laboratory, Room 048.

Students are required to pay quarterly dues of $5 so the club can purchase materials for hands-on presentations. Members are invited to attend club outings, as well, so they can display their work and practice their posing.

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