The IndieCosplay Competition: 2nd Runner-up Mia Abigan’s Cosplaying Journey

Written by: Alliah Rayne Mingcay | 9 months ago

Photo by Mia Abigan

Cosplaying has been one of the ways anime lovers have shown their love and admiration for a certain character. They dress up and style themselves similarly  to the character they want to impersonate, and they act like them, too. On January 26, 2023, IndieCo hosted an event named The IndieCosplay Competition. Participants had to send a photo of themselves or with their partner with a theme corresponding to love. There will be three winners in the event: the 2nd runner-up, the 1st runner-up, and the grand winner. 

Two weeks later, the event came to an end. IndieCo announced the winners on March 7,  2023, with the winners being Mia Abigan, Mannix Richard Del Rosario, and Marko and Gen Stojkovic. Both with a sweet and nurturing personality, Mia Abigan cosplayed Tohru Honda in Fruit Baskets and won as a 2nd runner-up.

Mia Abigan started cosplaying in grade school. At first, she would just try to find an outfit that is similar to her preferred character, not until she tried cosplaying seriously in her 20s, which was the last year of December. Paskomiket was her first cosplay event, where she dressed up as KFC Noelle. A character from a famous game called Genshin Impact.

Photo by Mihoyo

Since then, she started cosplaying, and while she was scrolling through her Facebook feed, she bumped into her friend’s shared post about the IndieCosplay Competition event. Nervous as she was, she still went for it despite knowing she still had a long way to go. She chose to cosplay Tohru Honda from Fruit Baskets, as this was the character she felt very connected with. As Mia said, 

“I was touched and inspired by Tohru’s kindness throughout the show that I wanted to bring that same feeling with me to the anime convention.”

With the sincere emotions she had, she was able to reach the 2nd runner-up. Mia’s dedication to her character, Tohru, paid off. Even though, as stated by Mia, her cosplaying journey is still in progress.

“... From styling wigs to nailing down the character’s makeup, practicing my poses and mannerisms, the list goes on. Yet with these challenges, the cosplaying community has been very welcoming and helpful towards beginners.”

Mia’s journey seemed to be a rollercoaster ride, She felt anxious as she wasn’t confident enough to pull it off. She was jittery due to the theme. She felt she was at a disadvantage because she didn’t have a significant other. She realized love can be in any other form. In her case, she wanted to convey the feeling of love by creating a story inspired by the show. Thus, with her eyes closed on the very day of submission, she submitted the form. 

Mia didn’t expect to win a second runner-up place. On the day of the announcement, she learned that she should never let an opportunity pass her by. 

“Just keep going, and you’ll never know just how far you’ll go,” she said. 

As per Mia, cosplaying has become very accessible and a lot more accepting. Whether cosplaying just as a hobby or as a die-hard fan, if people want to try cosplaying, they can do so by just renting an outfit from other cosplayers. They can join Facebook groups, ask other cosplayers, etc. They can do a budget cosplay so that they won’t break their bank. Of course, when renting an outfit, you should take special care of it.

In the end, Mia’s confidence was boosted after winning the event. Mia loves cosplaying because she feels fascinated by makeup and wants to know more about her style. By cosplaying, she was able to tap into her inner child and make some amazing friends along the way. Last but not least, cosplaying was a way to put herself out of her comfort zone.