JASON S. YADAO / JYADAO@STARBULLETIN.COM
"Naruto" proved to be a popular series for cosplayers at last year's Kawaii Kon.
A Look Back: Kawaii Kon 2006
2006 was definitely a year of growth for Hawaii's own anime convention, Kawaii Kon. More guests of national (and international) prominence. Higher attendance, prompting a move to the Hawaii Convention Center this year. More people cosplaying as characters from the series "Naruto."
Ahh, yes, the cosplayers. Last year was certainly a good one for them; while there wasn't anything on an individual level that floored me like the Domo-kun costume from Kawaii Kon's first year, the overall quality of costumes seemed to be rising. (Although young Joanna Lee, cosplaying as the penguin-suited Chiyo-chan from "Azumanga Daioh," certainly was a highlight.) A selection of my pictures from last year is posted here; I'm sorry I didn't get a chance to ask which costumes belonged to which series, but I think you can agree with me that the craftsmanship on these costumes is impeccable.
This year ought to prove interesting; the expanded space that the convention center provides ought to allow for more breathing room for impromptu photo shoots. Opportunities to see cosplayers in action in the formal Kawaii Kon program are also increasing, with the traditional contest on Saturday supplemented this year by a skit showcase on Sunday. And who knows ... with the convention center and the place where many convention-goers will be staying, the Ala Moana Hotel, about a block away from each other, you may even spot a few cosplayers walking up and down Atkinson Drive this weekend.
See you at the convention.