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The Tongva Times

The Tongva Times

The Tongva Times

Cosplayers gather at Animé Los Angeles

Bren Belmonte
COSTUME CROWD Cosplayers pose for a group photo at Animé Los Angeles.

By Bren Belmonte | Staff Writer

   Lively. Positive. Vibrant. 

   The fourth and final day of Animé Los Angeles was held on Jan. 8 at the Long Beach Convention Center. This cosplayer-oriented convention brought a bountiful amount of talented and gorgeous costumes. Various expansive hallways and courtyards optimized any congoers’ experience, accompanied by the easygoing foot traffic of people proceeding to their destinations. 

   Entering the convention center through grand doors revealed a naturally lit, long hallway connecting to several smaller rooms and areas. Congoers sitting on small couches or standing to the side created better foot traffic for others to get to their destinations. The chatter of many kinds was heard, as a Kokomi was speaking enthusiastically with a Zhongli cosplayer from “Genshin Impact” about their game collections. 

  Various flashing and clicking sounds came from the convention photographers that were stopping several cosplay groups. People’s eyes lit up as they passed by their favorite character cosplays accompanied by occasional screams of positivity. The huge hall on the first floor was the liveliest place at the convention and the loud noises left a comfortable feeling for the attendees.

  Lumi, a 16 year old competitor in the cosplay masquerade the day before, wandered the main hall eagerly waiting for their friend to meet with them. 

  “It was really cool seeing all the impressive cosplays, I was fangirling very hard the entire weekend,” Lumi stated.

  Leaving through the enormous doors to the front exit was the third garden. A cosplay meetup from the anime “Black Butler” was held here. The smell of fragrant chocolate from nearby dessert shops left the group of cosplayers persuaded to try it. 

  The “Black Butler” cosplayer gathering was a dozen cosplayers complimenting each other, passing out sweets, and handing ribbons to put on one another’s convention badges. Music speakers blasted the animes theme songs from a nearby area as head bops and smiles illuminated the garden. A photographer for the event strode through the garden of chatty cosplayers, taking photos and requesting poses for certain characters to do. 

  A content Grell Sutcliff cosplayer socialized with the other people who were the same character as themself.

  “[I admire Grell’s] style and energy. She resonates with me so much so I’m glad I could cosplay her to my liking,” they said as they flipped their long red-haired wig.

  Laughter was in the air as the photographer was taking posed pictures. A small and peaceful community brought about a positive experience from the attendees of the gathering.

  Down the several gravel stairs to leave the convention center’s grounds revealed a vibrant green-grassed park. Another meetup was scheduled for cosplayers from the horror game “Identity V.” A more crowded setting left the attendees in smaller groups. Nonetheless, the cheerful atmosphere lingered. 

  There was a light sea breeze while the group pictures were taken, bringing a small chill because of the nearby beach from the park setting. More clicks of cameras from people who passed by were heard, driving more attention toward the huge group.

  “It feels very awesome around these cosplayers because we all know “Identity V” and we are all amazing by coming together as a community during this event,” passionately exclaimed Skad, an 18-year-old who cosplayed the “Identity V” character Emil.

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About the Contributor
Bren Belmonte, Staff Writer
Bren Belmonte is a Photographer and Staff Writer with three years of experience on our newspaper team. Outside of journalism, Bren enjoys cosplaying, photographing friends, reading manga, watching anime, and listening to music. Bren chose the journalism class in sophomore year after encouragement from family members in the industry. Since then, they've recognized it as a future passion and career interest.
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