It’s October which means you can expect to see people in costume increasing throughout the month, but what about people in cosplay? You might be seeing more of this, too. Cosplay, if you don’t already know, is different from dressing up in costume in that a person also personifies the character, taking on traits and characteristics. Best of all, it doesn’t just happen around Halloween.
If we’re talking about mental health, what does cosplay have to do with that? Maybe nothing or maybe a lot. There isn’t much research out there on the world of cosplay and its intersection with mental health. There are some solid inferences that can be made to cosplay, however, based on what we already know is beneficial to mental health.
Cosplay is a highly social activity. Whether it be interacting in pictures with other cosplayers of the same character universe, commenting on one another’s costuming skills, or working with friends to develop your look, it’s bound to increase social interaction. Social interaction decreases isolation which can be common to some mental illnesses. The benefits don’t end there.
You may also find cosplay gets the brain working. It takes mental efforts to be creative, enact your vision, emulate character traits, style your hair or a wig, and so on. All of this engages the mind in a positive way and when the mind is positive it can counteract any negative it drums up.
Another positive aspect of cosplay is how it can always present something to anticipate. You may anticipate the next convention, the next project, the group photo, the next crafting party…there’s so much to look forward to. With conventions happening all over year round and Halloween every year, you can keep busy and focus on the next new outcome.
If this happens all year round, why am I talking about it now? As always, I want to share what the Shore has to offer to the world of cosplay and there are some events fast approaching! Let’s take a look at what’s coming up:
Downtown Salisbury’s 3rd Friday: Salisbury’s (free) 3rd Friday celebration, located in its revitalized downtown region, themes the October inception around comic-con. This year, the theme is Super Heroes. On October 18th, between 5 P.M. and 6 P.M., those in costume are being called to sign up for a contest. It’s a great opportunity to test out cosplay or get a chance to see it in action.
Halloween ComicFest 2019: Located in Bethany Beach, DE, and hosted by Comics and Gaming Bethany Beach, this event welcomes costumes and is a celebration of comics. The event runs 10 A.M. to 6 P.M. on October 26th in the downtown area. Another great local opportunity to try your hand at the soothing art of cosplay.
Ocean City Comic Con: The first comic con in Ocean City, MD is returning this year on December 14th from 10 A.M. to 5 P.M and is the local event to attend if you’re interested in cosplay. There will be many convention attendees in costume, so you’ll fit right in. You can also get a chance to attend panels that may help you better understand cosplay and gain tips on how to work on some aspects of costumes. Did I mention being in costume gets you one dollar off admission?
Don’t just wait for Halloween to dress up, join in on cosplay for a fun social experience. Make it a hobby and have something to look forward to and keep your mind active on the positive. The opportunities are locally on our Eastern Shore and readily available to you!
City of Salisbury, “3rd Friday – Salisbury MD.” http://www.3rdfridaysby.com/Home.aspx.
Comics and Gaming Bethany Beach. “Halloween ComicFest 2019 | Bethany Beach.” Facebook Event, https://www.facebook.com/events/comics-and-gaming-bethany-beach-101-garfield-pkwy/halloween-comic-fest/2401639230163170/.
PLB Comics. “Ocean City Comic Con: OCMD.” Ocean City Comic Con | OCMD, http://www.oceancitycomiccon.com .