The age of anime

Published On: September 8, 2017 10:53 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

Cosplay, a contraction of the words costume play, is a hobby in which participants called cosplayers wear costumes and fashion accessories to represent a specific character.

In the recent times, because of the anime-influenced generation, cosplay has become a culture of sorts that has amassed a huge fan base throughout the world and Nepal has been no exception. The craze for great storylines, special characters and OSTs of anime have given birth to the only existing official anime fan club in Nepal: Otaku Club Nepal.  

The club established with a vision of uniting all anime lovers under one roof also holds various cosplay events. The colorful view of youngster dressed in different costumes representing different characters is not something one would want to miss. This year, to keep the spirit of cosplayers alive, Zerostar in association with Otaku Club Nepal is organizing an anime event on September, 9, Saturday at Heritage Garden in Sanepa, Lalitpur. The main goal of the event is to highlight the anime culture along with Marvel and DC in Nepal. The Week caught up with some cosplayers to know more about their cosplay experiences so far.

Wataru Shrestha
organizer, OTAKU Jatra Fall

Four years ago, my love for anime gave birth to the very first anime store in Nepal. I am half Japanese and this can be considered as one of the major reasons to get influenced by it. Unlike other cartoons, anime has different level of characterizations that personally connects with viewers. While watching anime is fun, being a part of it by representing the characters that you admire the most at cosplay events takes anime to another level.

For me, making the costumes and props such as armors and weapons for different characters is the best part of the preparation. Though cosplay is just a hobby now, I would like to take it up professionally in the future. At every cosplay event, we explore and learn more about an anime lover’s enthusiasm for their character of choice, and that’s a whole new experience in itself. 

Manita Shrestha
member, Otaku Club Nepal

The most fascinating thing about the world of anime is the Japanese animation. There is no doubt that the quality of animation is getting better by the day with good and fresh storylines. I became a cosplayer after watching the perfect characters in a series last year. Now, it has become my one and only hobby. For my costumes, I buy the fabrics and give it for painting and designing. This is always the hardest part because the fabrics we search for are rarely found in Nepal. But I don’t really care about the troubles I have to go through to get a costume made or the expense either because the passion for anime is more important to me. After every cosplay event, I want to see other cosplayers again at more events. For the upcoming event, I will be cosplaying the character Kofuku from Noragami.

Rohit Shrestha
Founder, Otaku Club Nepal

Anime, for me, is an art that captures emotions and feeling in the form of animation. The moral it provide fascinates me. Anime is not just purely for entertainment purpose only. Instead, the human feel and complex plots make it better than other cartoons.

On the other hand, cosplay events are organized not only with the intent to promote anime fan base but it is also a way of building self-confidence in cosplayers. Above than that, the attention and admiration you get from fellow anime lovers encourage you more to be a part of these events. The most challenging factor for our makeover is finding the right wig. I usually have mine brought in from abroad. I need at least Rs 15000 to ready myself for a cosplay event. But I’m obsessed with anime and will do anything and everything it takes to be a part of the culture. 

Ravesh Malla

I always find myself trying to relate the incidents of my life with the characters and storylines of anime. I usually try to do justice to the character while cosplaying. For me, the nature of the character does not affect my presentation. Whether the character is negative or positive, I just do it if I like it.

Being an extrovert, making new friends during these events and getting to know more about their experiences is my favorite part. At every event, we welcome new cosplayers to our ever-growing family. Besides that, cosplay events also help us discover new sides of our own personalities. I actually see myself participating in cosplay events for as long as they are held. For the upcoming cosplay event, I plan to be a classic werewolf. 

Jachun Bomjon
founder, Otaku Club Nepal

I sometimes watch the same anime over and over again. It was because of this craze that my friends and I started the Otaku Club Nepal. Now, it has been four years since I first started cosplaying. Whenever I am in my cosplay attire, I feel like a completely different person and I love that feeling.

Though it started out as a hobby, it has now become an essential part of me. I believe that the upcoming event will be a good one since it is the first comic con in Nepal. I believe being internationally recognized will have a good impact on our club and its members as well. This event is a way to show people that we are serious about this and that our passion for cosplay isn’t childish or just a waste of time. 

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