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28 Days of Black Cosplay 2017 – Week One

28 Days of Black Cosplay is a celebration of not just cosplay, but of positive images. This is an effort started by Chaka Cumberbatch as well as many others of us to bring a positive light to cosplaying and raising self esteem. 28 Days of Black Cosplay is meant to give the world a look at the work we do and the inspiration we give to those seeking guidance. There are many people out there who are afraid to cosplay certain characters because too many times they have been told that they can’t simply based on the color of their skin. The aim of this is to squash that notion and let those who want to believe that they can be  a character, do so without discrimination. It’s to show positive images and to let people know that they can cosplay whoever they want and not feel constrained because of their skin color.

This month, we will be featuring several cosplayers weekly, as they tell us why #28daysofcosplay is important to them.

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Name:  Dominique W.
From: Newark, NJ
Cosplay: Freddy Krueger
Photo by Carlos A Smith Photography

#28daysofblackcosplay is important to me, because when I see black cosplayers I become inspired to express individuality. It shows our youth in the black community that you can be what you want to be and have fun, For someone like me, I like to break racial and gender barriers.

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Name:  Ashley M.
From:  Arlington VA
Cosplay: The Joker

I’m a white girl from a white suburban neighborhood who went to predominately white schools. I knew a few POCs but, really, most people in my life looked like me. Through cosplay, I’ve met a number of incredible and talented non-white people and, while we were brought together by a shared nerdy interest, their effect on my life has gone beyond cosplay. They’ve broadened my worldview and challenged my thoughts and convictions for the better. #28DaysofBlackCosplay encourages and celebrates diversity among nerds, which is an important part of expanding our national social dialogue to include everyone.
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Name:  Mike & Raina M.
From: MD and VA
Cosplay: Mike(Injustce John Stewart) Raina (Star Sapphire Fatality)

#28DaysofBlackCosplay is so important because it gives a platform for cosplayers of color to be seen, and for their art to be expressed. Also it gives inspiration to those who might feel like cosplay isn’t for them because they are of color. It proves that statement false.
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Name:  Justin Rodriguez
From: Maryland
Cosplay: (Miles Morales) Spider-Man

#28DaysofBlackCosplay to me means that we cosplayers of color get some type of recognition on who we can cosplay, no matter what skin color we are. Not only that, to me #28DaysofBlackCosplay allows those who are of color who to set an example of stepping out of that zone of seclusion were a certain person whether it be male or female can play a character based on gender or ethnicity. #28DaysofBlackCosplay is a positive cosplay community tag that sends a message to those out there that there is a change happening in the real community in and out of cosplay and it is making a change for a bigger, brighter, and better community for all to enjoy and to create something new for the world, to accept change and to be recognized for something great!

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Name: Wendell S  (Scorpking Costuming)
From: Maryland
Cosplays: Daddy Thanos, Cinderella, Deathstroke

What is it about taking the time to recognize Black cosplayers during the month of February?  The answer is simple…. Representation!  Representation is why I chose this picture of myself with my two kids…  in most media you don’t see a high percentage of people of color represented even though we make up the majority of the world.  In cosplay, that percentage becomes even smaller…

Taking the time to show that “We do this…” may inspire the next George Lucas or Steven Spielberg.  It may help the person who wants to do… wants to be… get over their fears of being alone in a field they hold the deepest desire for.

Take the time to celebrate those who have joined in on this cause… and help build awareness and confidence for those who may be looking from the sidelines to become who they don’t yet realize they CAN be…

Scorpking out…

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Name:  Myron Abernathy (Smoove Cosplaya)
From:  Atlanta, GA
Cosplay:  Bishop (X-Men)

I love #28DaysOfBlackCosplay because it tells both the black community and others that WE OUT HERE!!!  Black geeks need to know that they’re not alone; that it’s ok to let your geek show and that you’re not any less black for it.  Others need to know that we have a place in this community as well, and we will not be made to feel less than because we’re black.
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Name: ShockolateEnergy Cosplay
From: Detroit, MI
Cosplay:  Biker Sailor Pluto from Sailor Moon
Photographer Credit: Red Lazarus Photography

#28daysofblackcosplay is highly important. It inspires our younger generation that they can be whomever they want to be in their own way. It’s also to show the whole world that this awesome movement, being black and liking manga, anime, comic books and syfy and everything is perfectly fine …. and we are here for generations to come.

If you want to see more incredible cosplay, just use the hashtag #28daysofblackcosplay on any social media platform (Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr) to see some of the great work that cosplayers are doing.

About Harry C. (1096 Articles)
Founder of The Next Issue Podcast and Pop Culture Uncovered, Harry has been reading comics since he could reach a news stand. He is also a cosplayer with his current favorite role as being Bishop, of the X-men. He is a fan of Marvel, Image and DC and is really passionate about making sure that kids get the opportunity to read. This leads him to getting out to places with comics that others no longer need and putting them into the hands of kids who will treasure them. His favorite comic characters are Batman, Spider-man, and Tony Chiu.

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