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Fandoms are not a new phenomenon and have existed for the longest time. In 1932, The Hobbit/LOTR took the world by storm and spun its own franchise, built on the followership of an ardent fanbase. Marvel Comics and their imaginary universe underwent a similar experience in 1939. However, the shift of these fandoms from the realms of the ‘nerds and geeks’ into mainstream popularity in recent decades, has brought about a cultural revolution in this space. This explosion in the popularity of pop culture has given rise to the curious case of ‘Cosplay’.

Cosplay is an abbreviation of ‘Costume Play’ and is the act of imitating characters from these franchises as realistically as possible for aesthetic purposes. Aided by digitization, social media, and highly publicized events such as the Comic-Con, Cosplaying has become a highly visible activity and has emerged as art, almost.

Cosplayers today expend a great amount of time and resources to create ultra-realistic cosplays of our favorite fantasy characters. In fact, the act of cosplaying has become monetarily lucrative for those who are most skilled at it. Today, we take a look at some of the most famous cosplayers in the game, who create unbelievable fantasy content for our viewing pleasure!

Heroes of Cosplay - Wikipedia

D-Piddy (@_dpiddy) – A leading cosplay artist

D-Piddy is the sole male Cosplay creator on the list, but he is far from a diversity hire! Commanding a huge following of 95k on Instagram, he is the leader in his category in the cosplay game. He is also unique in that he has kept his real identity concealed from his fans.

While most cosplay artists choose to reveal their identities as they become insta-famous and try to monetize their identity and brand, D-Piddy has chosen to instead focus purely on the artistic aspects of cosplay. He is also affectionately known as the “Internet Deadpool”, a moniker bestowed unto him for his awesome Deadpool cosplays. Apart from cosplaying, he is also involved in other digital media production and active on social platforms such as TikTok, YouTube, and Twitch!

Marie-Claude Bourbounnais (@marieclaudebourbounnais)

Marie-Claude is a French-Canadian cosplayer with 135k Instagram followers. She has a background in fashion design and has perfectly incorporated it in her cosplays. Not only does she like to experiment with the characters’ appearances and give her own spin on them occasionally, but she also does designs and sews all of her costumes herself.

Speaking of sewing, she is a master at this craft. Marie-Claude is widely recognized as the best at actually creating her costumes. All of them are highly detailed and come with realistic designs. She is active beyond just making and sporting costumes within the cosplay sphere and has been featured as a model in both the PlayStation Magazine and the ‘Cosplay for a Cause’ Calendar (which was a fundraiser for the Japanese Tsunami Relief Effort). Her merchandise can be purchased from her official website (www.mcbourbonnais.com)

Linda Le ((@vampybitme)

Linda Le started her cosplay journey much earlier than most, just at the age of 12! Le has continued to go from strength to strength in the cosplay game and is one of the most prominent names in the community. She is Vietnamese-American and has an Instagram following of 389k.

An Oklahoma native, Le moved to California and pursued a business degree from San Jose State University before switching tracks and receiving her beauty training. This she did from Paul Mitchell in the States and from the acclaimed Tony and Guy in London. Her cosplays include many anime figures, but she is most known for playing The X-Men’s Psylocke. The cosplay community loves her for her affable personality and has also released her own cosplay and geek chic clothing line!

Danielle Denicola (@danielledenicola)

Danielle is one of the most popular cosplayers and has a massive Instagram following of ~ 650k! She is one of the bolder cosplayers and people often recall her risqué representation of popular characters. Her cosplays are varied and diverse, and she does not restrict herself to merely portraying characters from a specific niche.

Apart from cosplaying, Danielle is also passionate about gaming. Many of her cosplays are drawn from characters in popular games, and she is a Discord+Twitch Partner. Apart from cosplaying, she also has a fun YouTube channel. There she describes parts from her life and also explores the creative process behind making some of the best cosplays in the world.

Myrtle Sarossa (@myrtlegail)

Another cosplayer who entered cosplay early in her life, Myrtle boasts 1M followers on Instagram. Myrtle hails from the Philippines and gained fame by winning several cosplay contests in her country aged just 14! When she won the famous ‘Pinoy Big Brother: Teen Edition 4’ competition. It propelled her to international visibility as a cosplayer.

She is one of the only cosplayers who have graduated from merely making and flaunting costumes. They do it to help others along in their cosplay journeys as well! She did this by becoming a judge in the ‘iCosplay’ competition, the first of its kind in the Philippines. Apart from cosplay, she is also a television presenter. She works as the television jockey for Hero Tv (Owned by CBS). Additionally, she is the courtside reporter for the NCAA championships in the Philippines!

AlodaGosiengfiao (@aloda)

Fans in the cosplay community often perceive the cosplayers behind the lens of the characters that they portray. In this process, they may risk forgetting the unique individuality of each person behind the costume and may superimpose the character’s personality to the individual imitating it.

Do this at your own risk with Aloda. She is a standout because of her varied interests related to, and even beyond, cosplay. Aloda has a whopping 1.6M followers on her main Instagram channel! This is in addition to her followership on her beauty and makeup (@alodabeauty) and art (@aloda.art) pages! All her creations in both her makeup line and her art are available for commercial retail and purchase.

She covers all aspects of entertainment, and not just cosplay. If this wasn’t evident from her beauty and art pages, her game streams on FB Streaming and tech entertainment channel (@tieroneentertainment) should be no doubts in your minds.

Yaya Han (@yayahan)

Though, Yaya Han has an Instagram following of 600k but edges out other cosplayers with greater followership on account of her impact and contribution to shaping cosplay culture. Yaya is a veteran in this cosplay world, starting out in 1999 and went on to judge cosplay competitions around the world.

In fact, her prominence in cosplay is so legendary that it earned her mainstream television opportunities in the form of appearances on ‘King of the Nerds’ and a feature in “Heroes of Cosplay”. Han has even written a book on cosplay culture and its evolution into a global phenomenon since she started out (a transformation she witnessed firsthand).

Jessica Nigri (@jessicanigri)

Jessica Nigri is the undisputed #1 on any cosplayer list worth it’s salt. She commands an imperious 4.1M followers on Instagram and is indisputably the biggest name in the business. While she is American, Jessica spent her childhood in New Zealand and her cosplays include anime, video games, and comic characters. She was also a spokesperson for Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag and has a YouTube channel where she shares tutorials on how to create and carry cosplay outfits.

There’s only so much that we can write about cosplay artists when the real beauty of their craft is visual. While we thank you for stopping by to read our article, now is the time to check these amazing cosplay artists out!

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