SNAPCON

SnapCon was a photographic, performance and video portraiture event that took place at Shine Portrait Studio April 7- April 9, 2017. In portrait sessions with Rutgers University-Newark students, regionally- based cosplayers expressed their characters, who they are behind the “mask” and why cosplaying is such an important part of their lives. Working within the tradition of endurance performance-based art, the event was non-stop for 48 hours. Unlike instant photo booth pictures, each person or group had a two- hour dedicated time-slot.

 

Students in the photography class were given an assignment to determine a group-based project in collaboration with their instructor, artist and Associate Professor Nick Kline. After exploring many possible themes, students felt the cosplay scene to be most urgent, given the 2017 US presidential election outcome. At that time, the class had discussions about belonging, and expressed feelings of vulnerability. This project was about being seen, and was an act of resilience and solidarity.

 

The project partnered with Ronald Moore and Jose Robles (of Fortress of Solitude, a Newark, NJ-based comic book store) who informed students about the importance of graphic novels, comics and cosplay in shaping one’s identity, self-representation, and in teaching literary and abstract thinking. They also advocated for the project and promoted SnapCon to local cosplayers. Special thanks to Lincoln Farquharson, Editor-In-Chief of Far Corners Studio, who facilitated this introduction to Ronald and Jose and guided the students to look deeper, beyond the mask.

Students worked in four teams:  Shine · It’s · About · Time

SHINE

Photographers: Frank Barcelos, Jennifer Edhomeriegue, Richelle Ligsay, Axell Sanchez  

April 7, 2017 10 a.m. - 10 p.m.

Eligahjuan Troy Chestnut

  Cosplayed for: 5 - 10 years

  “I always pretended I was a couple of my favorite characters from my favorite TV shows and video games ever since I was young.”     

    Performed over 5 cosplays

1

Mikah Diaz    

  Cosplayed for 5 - 10 years

  “Through my friend, we started when we were about 8 years old. I’m pretty sure it was the desire to be like my favorite characters”

   Performed over 5 cosplays

Robert Morell

  Cosplayed for 5 - 10 years

  “I love to be a public servant. I was a 4 H Club Leader volunteer. I had a comic book club that met once a week at on of the Newark Library. I am       an instructional aide for autistic students. I love cosplay and make an appearance in costume”

   Performed 4 cosplays

Group (Christina Scheel, Samantha, Savitt, Toni and Zerbo)

  Toni Savitt

  Cosplayed for

  “I was 9 and I watched Sailor Moon. I wanted to be a sailor scout.”

  Samantha Scheel

  Cosplayed for

  “I started before I even know what cosplaying was. I was very young and my mother put me into a Hummel dress up competition. I want to say I         was about 5.”

IT’S

Yvonne Crooks, Derrick Harris, Brian Ray, Viktor Zhytovoz

April 7 - 8, 2017 10 p.m. - 10 a.m.

Kristina Ashbridge

  Cosplayed for 5 - 10 years

  “I love the freedom it makes for one to become another person, even for a little about of time.”

   Performed over 5 cosplays

Faelynn Black

  Cosplayed for 1 - 5 years

  “I’ve always dreamed of doing it for fun then one day I made a friend who actually did and went to my first con with her. Hooked ever since.”

   Performed over 5 cosplays

Marc Richmond

  Cosplayed for 1 - 5 years

  “By going to conventions and hanging with other cosplayers.”

   Performed 4 cosplays

SekouToure Ruff        

  Cosplayed for over 10 years

  “I was always an imaginative person so it came naturally to me in the late 70s. As the years went on, I progressed even stronger since at that time        you were considered ‘crazy’.”

    Performed over 75 cosplays

Andera    

ABOUT

 Cansuela Lawrence, Patrick Liu, Kristjan Jedd Marquez, Arshi Shukla

April 8, 2017 10 a.m. - 10 p.m.

Jennifer Franqui

  Cosplayed for 1 - 5 years

  “When I first met my boyfriend we started talking about stuff that we liked and I found that we both loved cosplaying, ever since that I always             cosplay for fun.”

   Performed over 5 cosplays

Harold Gibson

  Cosplayed for 1 - 5 years

   “I’ve been going to comic conventions for a while… And I look at all the other cosplayers… And I just said damn it I want to do that because               they look like they’re having so much fun. So I decided to do a very cheap but I thought powerful cosplay, and did Nick Fury at the East Coast           Comic-Con in Secaucus New Jersey in 2015. It was a pretty good success I had a lot of people ask for pictures and I just took off from there.”

     Performed over 5 cosplays

Christopher Watson    

  Cosplayed for 1 - 5 years

  “When I was 20 I went to my first con (New York Comic Con) with my friend who went for a few years. And I want to be in the mix of it all because        this would be the real thing (other than watching cons and people cosplay on youtube) so I got my naruto headband (it was a 16th birthday              gift....and I still got it today lol) and did my own version of a hood ninja and after that I wanted to step my game up looking at others with                  amazing cosplays.”

    Performed over 5 cosplays

Justin Wingate

  Cosplayed for 1 - 5 years

  “Ever since watching heroes of cosplay on syfy couple of years back and was actually impressed. At the same time getting advice from Ivy                    doomkitty, Alex Tyte, Lady Lomax (lady.graves), vivid vivka, even FantasyNinja on cosplay and such, since then I had fun doing it.”

    Performed 4 cosplays

TIME

Thomas Davis, Zamer Khan, Ruihong Lin

April 8 - 9, 2017 10 p.m. - 10 a.m.

Lionel Boggs-Harte

  Cosplayed for 1 - 5 years

  “My girlfriend.”

   Performed 1 cosplay

Allison Mendez

  Cosplayed for over 10 years

  “I first started cosplaying after I went to my first convention for my 8th birthday. I remember seeing all my favorite characters come to life and I           know I wanted to be a part of it.”

   Performed 18 cosplays

Peace Moore

  Cosplayed for 5 - 10 years

  “I been Cosplaying for over 9 years I just didn’t know the name for it . My Girlfriend Tha Gata Negrra told me what Cosplaying was. About 10             different types of Cosplaying or more considering I've Performing for over 20 years.

   Performed 10 cosplays

X’iandra Moore

  Cosplayed for 5 - 10 years

  “I loved cosplaying for a long while, because I love acting and dressing up since I was a kid. But how I got into my first cosplay was Jeff the killer       and I dressed up as him for a Halloween ball! And it was great, I got to scare mean people, have fun with my friend, and just felt the night.”

   Performed over 5 cosplays

3

Johnathan Powell

  Cosplayed for 5 - 10 years

  “I always had a love for Comics, Movies, Drawing & Art wanting to take my love of expression & all things geeky & nerdy to the next level I            started cosplaying.”

   Performed over 5 cosplays