The business crowd and tourists start to thin out on the long walk from the subway to New York Comic Con, making way for a growing parade of the most colorful people you'll ever meet. They're covered in spandex, glitter, and makeup. They've donned cotton candy-colored wigs, wings, and horns, and tower over you in platformed superhero boots.
Every year, the spectacle gets larger, with more than 130,000 people expected to attend this year's event. But, the growing hype around the hottest movies, shows, and celebrity appearances doesn't take away from the true spirit of the con.
We talked to a few women who reflect this ethos: the cosplayers. They live out the weekend as their favorite heroes (or villains), absorbing the character's strength and bonding with a family of thousands who are inspired by the same stories. Some of them spent months working on their costumes. Some are dressing up for the very first time. But, all of them are confident and bold — and they don't give a damn what you think about their outfit.