Twenty years ago a small, fan-run convention started up in Toronto. From those humble beginnings back in 1997 where a mere 800 guests took in the con, Anime North has grown into a massive convention.
Last year the annual celebration, which celebrates anime and beyond, hit an estimated 30,000 attendees. While the final numbers aren’t in for 2016, attendance has grown every year so those numbers are sure to surpass last year.
I’ve been going to the convention for several years. My very first year was way back in 2002 when the convention was at the Regal Constellation Hotel. It was my first time going to the convention and went with a few friends. We stayed in the hotel and I still remember staying up late going to the different rooms at the hotel where various anime films and series were being presented.
It was my first and only time spending the whole weekend at the convention.
Since then I’ve been a Saturday only visitor, making the trek early on Saturday morning and returning home with the setting sun in the evening. Anime North has become an annual trip, one which I look forward to 364 days a year.
As with years past my main focus on the event is the cosplay. I don’t participate in the costume play; I’m not that talented or bold. However one of the things that I love to do is take photos of the wonderful cosplayers and share them with the world. The talent of many of these fabric artists is out of this world. There is a skill in the artistry of assembling these costumes that is only rivaled by the fandom and passion they have for the craft.
While the weather had looked to be unsettled in the forecasts leading up to the event, mother Nature held back and Saturday had perfect weather for the event. It was sunny and hot, which lent itself to great conditions for photography. I’ve assembled a selection of the photos I took this year at Anime North below.