Her work is idyllic at times. At other times, it's risqué and racy. And then it can be downright gory. Say hello to Saki Hanamura.
Hanamura is one of Japan's most well known cosplayers and has appeared in photo discs with a variety of different cosplayers. Her work is equally as varied.
"I like mysterious and sexy characters," Hanamura, who's been cosplaying since she was a kid, recently told Kotaku. Her favorite is Kainé (above) from role-playing game Neir. Her cosplay caused such a ripple online in Japan that the game's director gave her blades like Kainé carries.
As a child, her parents were always traveling abroad and throughout Japan on business, and since she's had yet to start grade school, she went with them. It was perhaps this upbringing that made her a bit of a loner growing up.
"When I wasn't in school, the only thing I did was play video games," Hanamura said. "It was like games were my only friend, and since then, I've been attached to them. It's not simply that I like them. "
The young cosplayer was deliberate, taking her time with her responses. She came across as thoughtful and serious as she pointed out, "Otaku (geek) culture is comprised of various cultures—cosplay is merely one of them." Otaku subculture, said Hanamura, is an explosion of prohibited things within very tight confines.
That's why cosplay can exactly reflect the viewer's values. What you say about a certain cosplay might reveal more about what you than the cosplay itself.
"The difference between 'normal cosplay' and 'erotic cosplay" changes from person to person and from cosplayer to cosplayer," said Hanamura. And it's up to each viewer to judge what is beautiful and what is bloody, what erotic and what is simply normal.