Japan’s top cosplayer Enako makes an impressive living from her work, but not all jobs are created equal. While her professional cosplay photoshoots are featured on a bunch of different magazine covers and interiors, Enako recently broke down her payments to reveal she makes no money at all from these shoots.
You can see a sample of this no-pay work above, with Enako as VTuber Marine on the cover of Weekly Young Jump, as well as her controversial portrayal of Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid‘s Tohru on the cover of Monthly Action below.
According to Enako, 70 percent of her annual income—which stands at around 50 million yen (US$453,660) at the time of this writing—comes from corporate sponsorships, event hosting, and commercials. Her own photo books make up the other 30 percent from both online and in-person sales. On an average year when Comiket is running normally, pre-COVID, she could make up to 10 million yen (US$80,737) per day selling these books at events.
The magazine covers and interiors, however, are purely for exposure. Enako sees them as mutually beneficial for both parties, serving as promotion for her own work. It’s great that she can generate such an amazing annual income, but hopefully the precedent set by this lack of payment for magazine work doesn’t trickle down and negatively impact smaller cosplayers.
Source: Daily via Crunchyroll