Oversexualization of Cosplay?
I posted a comment on Nerd Caliber's article "Sex Sell: How Cosplay Could Die (yea, you'll have to click to read it, since I won't copy-pasta their material) an after stumbling upon it again after about a year, I feel it still portrays my views regarding the sexualized aspects of this hobby.
So here goes:
I’ve seen this article making the rounds and it’s weighted on my mind. A bit. It’s naïve to conclude that the over-sexualization of cosplayers will eventually lead to the medium’s demise, like it’s pointed out in the article itself, most of the designs for female characters in games and anime catered to the tastes of young adolescent boys. If anything, seeing these designs realized is what has increased the popularity of cosplay, and it will only continue to do so. It looks like sex will be an effective catalyst for interest for a LOOOONG time.
I fall mostly within the scope of exhibitionist cosplayers, yes I do find the processing of making the costume enjoyable, but I am also well aware of the kind of photos I take and the emotions they inspire in some people. Do I find it dehumanizing when someone praises my purposely framed assets? No, because I’m impersonating the image of a character that is not real, despite how “deep” the character may seem, despite the issues they might have or how much I might identify or feel a connection to them, they’re fiction, and my purpose is only to present a fan’s reflection of that image.
To people that cross the line, I directly tell them to refrain from acting in that manner in the future and that is effective enough. Recommendations of ignoring or expecting such comments might give a sense of acceptance toward such feedback; these days most sites give you the tools to regulate such comments, or block users that start harassing. If you don’t tell people what you find acceptable or not, they’re not going to learn since they didn’t have the decency to be aware of it in the first place.
People that don’t actively participate in the hobby might not be able to grasp the amount of work that is involved in pulling off some outfits, and as such, can’t really appreciate it; you can’t get mad over that. You can’t tell people to stop liking your hobby or participating in it because they don’t fit your idea of what it’s supposed to be about (“out with all the newbs that buy their costumes!”), it’s like getting mad that obscure band you liked got popular.
Each person will like cosplay for their own reasons, and each person will appreciate it differently. It’s within your very own power to choose the kind of people you associate with or that you want to appeal to when you create your cosplay image.A guy called Saleth gave my comment "Fatality" win. :p
What is your take on the article, or my comment?