Cosplay Couture

Cosplay Couture a project by Courtney Coulson and Luke Milton, it is an attempt to bring together the world of fashion photography and cosplay together. Instead of accuracy, it places emphasis on couture construction techniques, elaborate hair and make-up, basically everything you would expect to find on a runway or in a fashion magazine. In many ways, it's an attempt to make these costumes look better than the original, but most importantly, these are respectful tributes to the characters and all choices in presentation must make sense for them.
These aren't the kinds of costumes that will neccessarily work at a convention, it's more about how they work within the context of a photoshoot, the environment in which they are photographed is just as important in achieving Cosplay Couture.
Cosplay Couture interpretation of Henry Sturges from Abraham Lincoln:Vampire Hunter
Costume (pants, cravat and wig) and styling by Courtney Coulson
Photography by Luke Milton
Location Karrakatta cemetary
Our belated Halloween themed shoot!
I absolutely adore this movie and the book, I also love Dominic Cooper, so Henry is easily my favourite character. He’s got such a cool, anachronistic design that I often dress like him in my daily life. So it was only natural to turn this into Cosplay Couture as I had most of these pieces in my wardrobe already. To me Henry is all about the hair and the sunglasses, so I spent most of my time getting those right. At first I attempted to make the glasses, failed miserabley and only then did I find some similar glasses on ebay when I realised Johnny Depp in Dark Shadows had ones almost identical.
The wig was one I bought ages ago from Five Wits and it’s seriously awesome. It was originally a bit longer and a light brown, I was able to dye it and cut it without destroying it, which can happen with cheaper wigs. Styling it was a lot of fun although a bit challenging because Sturges has such a specific haircut.The make-up is all reds, burgundys and greys which I think somehow still look beautiful while giving one an unnatural look.
While Henry isn’t seen in vampire mode too often, I have long wanted to dress up as a vampire, so I couldn’t resist baring those fangs! They are actually fake nails, I can’t believe how cheap, easy and comfortable they were, based on this tutorial right here:
In terms of personality and physicality, like Henry’s outward appearance, he’s a bit of a rockstar, he’s badass, he’s a little too serious but he can also be a bit cocky.
-Courtney Coulson
For me this was really about finding the right colours and textures in our various locations and then mixing in some sepia tones to capture the mood of the film. This was another really good example of finding little pieces of interest in a vast environment and using them to our advantage, attempting to make things feel more other worldly than our actual surrounds. I also wanted to achieve a real contrast between the fully costumed, formal Sturges and the wilder Sturges with the axe in the woods.
- Luke Milton
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