So, of course one of the main ways to show appreciation for cosplay or a particular cosplayer/costume is to just take a picture of the darned thing. However, there’s, like, a bazillion other things involved than simply point, click, shoot.
As the person taking the picture…
There’s countless guides as far as how to take good photos from a photographer’s standpoint, like here, here, & here, but then there’s also a level of general common courtesy when taking photos at cons, which are also covered in the same articles listed. My only real addition to this is to make sure to post the pictures somewhere, & tell the cosplayer where you post said pictures.
I’m willing to wager most cosplayers want a picture of their cosplay for their own personal collection of all their costumes, so it would be a good idea to have either a business card (whether via Vistaprint or hand-made) with a link to where you’ll post these pictures, or at least have a flickr account or something where you’ll post these pictures & have the link memorized so you can give it to someone at a moment’s notice.
As the cosplayer being photoed…
Well, there’s a lot to say, the whole cosplay =/= consent & all that jazz. So, what do I have to add? Not much, but whatevs, just that as a cosplayer don’t hesitate to ask photographers for copies of the photos. Like above, you’re probably dying to have a picture of that cosplay that took you forever to do, so definitely don’t be afraid to ask where they plan to post it if they don’t offer that info. up right off the bat & ask for the link or for them to e-mail you a copy once the photo is taken.
There you have it, a nice simple, short freakin’ article. I’ll make sure to make up for it next article >.>
I also forgot to mention that, as a cosplayer, definitely try networking photographers through the forums/Facebook page/whatever of the con you’re going to to net great photoshoots of just you or your group. Also, more often than not the photographers are totally willing to give you awesome professional quality pictures for free vs. paying for the con supported photographer, or gives you a chance to have pictures taken of your costume if the con isn’t using any particular photogorapher.
Of course, some discretion and due diligence need to be used when combing the forums looking for photographers; i.e., look at their web site, look at other pictures they’ve taken, see if they have testimonials from other photo subjects, etc., so as to not wind up acciedentally finding some sceevy pervert who just wants to get some panty shots or uses an infrared camera lens (i.e., they can see through your clothes) without your knowledge of doing so. Otherwise, using the forums or other social networking sites (cosplay.com, etc.) are great methods for, not only getting great professional quality pictures (or pictures at all), but also building up some awesome friendships with others that enjoy the craft.
However, getting back to more or less researching these people’s previous photography sessions, you also definitely want to at least find previous photoshoot results to check out the quality &, essentially, the legitimacy of the photographer in question to avoid having your pictures being taken by people who barely know how to operate a camera & wind up with crummy photos.
On the flip side, using the con forums, Facebook page, social networking sites, etc. is a great way for photographers to meet up with cosplayers & take awesome photos. This makes it easier to plan out more personal photoshoots & attain some great shots without having to worry about chasing cosplayers down as they gun it for some event or another when at the con. Additionally, this also makes it easier to build up your photography portfolio, since you don’t have to worry about trying to wing it at the con like stated before, & will make it easier to advertise your photography skills since all the legwork you do pre-con will help in getting your name out there.
Of course, along with taking these pics, as a photographer & how it (should) be with anybody taking pictures at a con, you need to have somewhere online (Flikr, Tumblr, Facebook page, WordPress blog, Blogger, etc.) where ppl. can have access to these photos. Whether you charge for it or not is on you & whether or not you plan to use something like this to gain some extra income or to make this a full-time endeavor, but you’re still going to need an online presence & with that presence your actual pictures. By doing this, I can definitely say as a cosplayer that it would entice me to use your services over somebody who doesn’t post their pictures online or who takes forever to do so, which brings up another issue. After you’re done with the con, you’ve made it home, you unpacked all your stuff, & you settled in, try to upload your photos relatively soon(ish). From the cosplayer’s perspective, nothing like having an awesome photoshoot only for the photographer to take months, if not, years (slight exaggeration) to upload the pictures; it’s very frustrating to say the least, so do your best to get the pics up ASAP.