Cosplay Contest: Walk On

What is a Walk-On?

Walk-ons involve you or your group going on stage for about 30-seconds as your name, nickname, or group name and character(s)/series are announced by the emcees. You will do a few poses for the camera and then walk off-stage. It is a low-stress way to have some time in the limelight and get some great pictures.

There are two ways to enter the Walk-on portion of the Saturday Cosplay.


You will not be judged for craftsmanship but are not eligable for any awards. You are just particpating for fun.

Judged for Craftsmanship

Craftsmanship Judging involves having your costume looked at up-close by our panel of cosplay judges. This competition is best for those who want to improve their costume making skills or want to compete against others for awards and prizes. Please read on below the sign-up button link below to find out more information about craftsmanship judging and how it works!

For those doing Performance & Craftsmanship: You will sign up on the Performance judging form!

To qualify for craftsmanship judging:

Attendees Only

You must have a badge. If you are signing up online, you must have a badge on you when you check in with us at-con. You do not need to buy admission in advance to sign up for the cosplay, or at least reserve your spot. That’s okay! Craftsmanship judging and awards is reserved strictly for Triad Anime Con attendees. Convention staff, guests, or special groups assisting the convention are not eligable for craftsmanship judging or awards.

Your costume must be handmade.

In order to have your costume judged for craftsmanship and to compete for craftsmanship awards, your costume must be *mostly* handmade. There is a 30% leeway that allows for found parts, or modified existing items that you did not make entirely.

Found Parts:

Any costume item that was pre-made, such as a pair of boots or a shirt. As a guideline: when competing for craftsmanship, it is best to alter any found parts rather than using it as-is. For example, sewing trim onto a dress shirt or painting a pair of boots.

Purchased Costumes:

Purchased costumes will disqualify you for costume craftsmanship awards. For example, purchasing your costume from Amazon, Wish, or an online cosplay store. You are more than welcome to participate in the masquerade in the Exhibition division however.

We will allow cosplayers with purchased costumes to compete if they wish to be judged on another aspect of craftsmanship, such as prop work or wig design. You may still qualify for an honorable mention or judge’s award based on that criteria. However, our major awards by skill division are typically reserved for costumes that were 70% or more handmade.

Small pieces such as jewelry or accessories that are character-specific that are ready-made are okay to be worn for judging.

Wigs are okay, as most wigs typically are not pre-styled when purchased.

Commissioned Pieces:

As a general rule, using commissioned pieces is frowned upon and can disqualify you for craftsmanship awards. We will accept small commissioned pieces to be entered with your costume, so long as they are not the centerpiece of your costume. Otherwise, it should be an item that can be set aside or omitted from judging. A commissioned wig, small accessory, or prop is acceptable. However a large headpiece, armor or garment would not be.


Please provide reference material to your judging session. We suggest and recommend reference material printed on paper in case it is left or lost. Failure to provide a reference will result in a 0 for “Accuracy” (see below for Judging Criteria)

Good references include:

  • A turnaround (at least a front and back view) of your character’s costume.
  • Screenshots of different views of your character.
  • A folder or binder (or stapled printouts) including the above reference photos and any photos you have of the construction process. If you are submitting a video for online pre-judging, you can include some progress photos in your video.

Artbooks, figures, and other physical references of your character are fine to bring. However, we are not responsible for reference material that is lost or damaged. Any items left behind during judging will be left at Lost and Found / Con-Ops at the end of day or after the Masquerade if not retrieved.

Due to Covid-19, we recommend against using your phone or device strictly for references unless absolutely nessecary. Printing your reference on paper will help us during deliberation and it is strongly recommended.

Skill Divisions:

These are in general, guidelines. You are welcome to enter up into a higher division. However, you cannot enter into a lower division. For example, if you have won an award previously as “Best Journeyman” it is generally considered rude and distasteful to enter into the Novice category. If you have any questions, you can contact us!

Youth Division:

The cosplayer(s) / performer(s)  are aged 13 or younger.

All youth entries will receive recognition.
Groups with mixed ages may choose to remain as youth or choose another division that best suits the group’s overall experience.

Novice Division:

To qualify for Novice Division:

  • No major craftsmanship or performance awards.
  • No more than 3 minor craftsmanship or performance awards (ex: Judge’s choice, Honorable Mention)
  • No more than 3 years cosplaying or performing.

Journeyman Division:

To qualify for Journeyman Division:

  • You have one at least one award for the Journeyman or Intermediate division before.
  • At least 1 but no more than 5 major craftsmanship or performance in the Novice or Journeyman division (or similar categories).
  • No more than 5 minor craftsmanship or performance awards (ex: Judge’s choice, Honorable Mention)
  • There is no time/experience requirement for entering in the Journeyman division. Although it is typical to move into Journeyman after about two years of serious competition.

Master Division:

To qualify for Master Division:

  • You have won any best in show or Best Master or Advanced level award.
  • No more than 5 major craftsmanship or performance awards in the Journeyman division (or similar middle-experience category).
  • No more than 10 minor craftsmanship or performance awards (ex: Judge’s choice, Honorable Mention)
  • There is no time/experience requirement for entering in the Master division. Although it is typical to move into the Master Division after about three to five years of serious competition.

Judging Criteria / Awards

We judge costumes on the following criteria:

  • Construction (10 points) – How neat and clean is your costume construction? What do the seams look like? Were any corners cut or shortcuts taken?
  • Attention to Detail (10 points) – How much effort was put into the minor details of the costume? Was focus put on the accessories, props, wig styling or other components of the costume that weren’t sewn?
  • Accuracy (10 points) – How close is your costume to the source material (within reason/reality)?
  • Creativity (10 points) – How creative were you when finding solutions to your costume? Maybe you learned a new craft specifically to make it?
  • Overall Presentation (10 points) – How do all the parts of your costume come together to create an overall polished look?

In total you can earn up to 50 points for craftsmanship. We will use this point total to determine who will win the top awards in each division. The number of awards is determined by the overall number of entrants who are competing and the number of entrants competing in each division.

Suggestions and Guidelines

  • Original Characters (OC) are hard to judge for accuracy. We will not turn away these types of costumes for craftsmanship judging. However, be aware that if you want to enter a completely original costume, you may recieve a low score or a zero for accuracy (20% of your score). We recommend most people entering an OC / fan character to sign up under exhibition.

    Exceptions are often made for original designs based on historic origin, mythology, literature, or any other costume that is not based on an existing character. Examples might include a samurai or geisha based on paintings.

  • We do not judge the phsyical appearance of the cosplayer for accuracy. Cosplay is for everyone.
  • During craftsmanship judging, we are focused on judging your costume. Please leave in-character acting and improv for the hallways and/or stage. Please come to your judging appointment in-costume but as yourself to answer questions so we can give you the best score possible.
  • Be positive and talk-up your costume. Try not focus or linger on the negative parts of your costume.
  • Write everything you’d like to tell the judges on a notecard and bring it to your judging session! Sometimes when under pressure, our minds can go blank.