On a gloomy Saturday morning, the east coast’s finest cosplayers gathered on Governor’s Island in New York City to participate in a photo shoot organized by Naiquan (aka @CosplayNay) and Dom Charland.
May 4, a day typically devoted to Star Wars celebrations, was instead spent commemorating Marvel’s biggest heroes and villains, shortly after the theatrical release of Avengers: Endgame. From the Avengers to the Defenders to the X-Men to the Inhumans, more than 10 Marvel factions were represented at the massive meetup.
While cosplayers often find each other at comic conventions across the country, this fan-fueled event brought people together in a unique way, escaping convention halls for greener pastures and a scenic ferryboat ride.
“Sitting on the ferry and watching hero after hero board, watching the looks on the regular passengers’ faces as we boarded; the gravity of what we had organized finally hit me,” Charland says. In addition to helping organize the event, Charland came camera-ready in a full Star-Lord cosplay.
With dozens of cosplayers in full body paint, intricate makeups, and fragile, hand-crafted suits of armor, the dreary skies posed a few challenges, but just like the Avengers, this crowd vowed to do “whatever it takes” to pull off a successful shoot.
“Although the weather took a bit to turn in our favor, everyone’s energy was infectious and seeing this finally come to fruition was almost surreal,” Charland says.
The event — which took eight months to plan — was kept underwraps by Naiquan and his team. The secret nature of the shoot was meant to ensure a variety of characters were appropriately represented, and only the best cosplayers were included.
“I reached out to a lot of people individually, people who take their craft very seriously,” Naiquan says. “I wanted to assemble a solid team.”
The marvelous meetup proved the strength of the cosplay community, as the makers shared glue, hairspray, palettes, and other supplies. They helped each other prep for photos, fine-tuned their costumes, and huddled together under umbrellas in an effort to stay dry.
And after a few hours, the heroes — and villains — got their day in the sun. Photographers gathered groups of cosplayers together, snapping professional-grade photos of the mish-moshed Guardians of the Galaxy, the fierce Wakandans, and the rough-and-tough Defenders. Finally, all 90 heroes assembled for a recreation of the final fight scene in Avengers: Endgame, with @Call_Me_Cap_Brooklynkid leading the charge as Captain America.
“I am very happy. It was a great turnout,” Naiquan says. “I just wanted everyone to have a good time. … And maybe we’ll come together in the future to do more.”
As the weather warmed up, passersby began to stumble on the massive cosplay event with wide eyes and even wider smiles. They looked truly mindblown to see such an impressive display of talent, and some lucky little ones even got to come face-to-face with their favorite heroes.
Instagram is sure to be buzzing over the next few days when the cosplayers and photographers release the fruits of their labors. Keep your eyes peeled on all of the below accounts.
Captain America: @Call_Me_Cap_Brooklynkid
Captain Marvel: @Samanthas_Cosplay
Iron Man: @NyTonyStark
Black Widow: @Mandaglorian
Winter Soldier: @Raf_Bucky Barnes
Agent 13: @Codenamecitadel
Scarlet Witch: @Cosmic_Sea_Turtle
Dr. Strange: @Verdant_vanguard
War Machine: @Rancidprops
Squirrel Girl: @Kambrias_cosplay
Luke Cage: @Fire_Forged_Cosplay
Jessica Jones: @Brokecosplay
Iron Fist: @DannyCarmelo
Misty Knight: @Runitslittlewolf
Dagger: @Rebzdeladisco (Cosplay by @Livicolecosplay)
Ghost Rider: @Shawnshonuff
View this post on Instagram
"Welcome to the freakin' Guardians of the Galaxy. Only he didn't say 'Freakin'" ••••• Star-Lord @DomCharland Gamora @_carmen.sandiego_ Drax @RobVegas29 Rocket @electricemy Yondu @angel_ta2 Mantis @cosplay213 Nebula @Genovere Groot @crashprojectcosplay ••••• 📸 by @graceandshinephoto Edit done under Fair-Use and not-for-profit or promotion ••••• #guardiansofthegalaxy #gotg #marvel #mcu #starlord #drax #gamora #whereisgamora #groot #iamgroot #cosplay #cosplaysidebyside #peterquill #nebula #mantis #cosplayphotography #governerisland #jamesgunn #instagram #picoftheday
Guardians of the Galaxy
View this post on Instagram
Team goal achievement accomplished! Not only did we get the Fantastic Four together we even found our fifth member She hulk! Johnny Storm: @crimson_spider15 Reed Richards: @kofitnessnycosplay Invisible Woman: @livicolecosplay She hulk: @shinylikethesun Thing: @iceman309 #marvel #marvellegends #marveluniverse #marvelcomics #fantastic #fantasticfour #mrfantastic #reedrichards #cosplay #cosplays #cosplayer #cosplayers #cosplaying #cosplayersofinstagram #cosplaylife #cosplayphotography #kofitnessny #nerd #kofitnessnycosplay #marvelcosplay #marveledit #gamer #fitnessmodel #cosplayfitness #cosplaywip #johnnystorm #humantorch #invisiblewoman #shehulk
Jean Grey: @SirynCosplay
Emma Frost: @Frostmooncosplay
Kitty Pryde: @Simplyarabella
PS4 Spider-Man: @SubwaySpidey
Punk Spider-Man: @TheTriStateSpidey
Miles Morales: @Spidey_Verse
Gwen Stacy: Danielafavaloro
Scarlet Spider: @Eddie_graysn_
Michael Lee: @Jollyrogerimagery
Arturo Daichi: @Arturodaichi