While walking the showroom floor at New York Comic Con we came across a lot of great and elaborate cosplay.
But we stopped in our tracks when we saw a custom "Mass Effect" cosplay made by Beck Noel featuring the video game's title character of Captain Jack Shepard in both male and female form.
The 30-year-old artist and illustrator has been creating her own custom costumes for nearly two years.
This year was her fourth year attending New York Comic Con.
Noel estimates she spent a total of $1300 to bring the Mass Effect characters to life.
"Dhare's [left] costume cost $700-$800 to make and mine around $500," says Noel. "I used EVA foam (aka anti-fatigue mat flooring) and Worbla (a thermoplastic) for mine and Dhare's costume is constructed entirely from Worbla. There are also carbon fiber decals on Dhare's Shepard and LED's lights in both costumes."
That figure isn't unusual.
We came across a lot of cosplayers who spend hundreds of dollars on their costumes for comic conventions.
In addition to the "Mass Effect" cosplay, Noel also dressed up as a custom Red Riding Hood Saturday and Sunday.
When she's not putting together costumes she works for a kickboxing and mixed martial arts gym, Punch, in New York City.
"Not only am I portraying superheroes and badasses, I'm learning to fight like them too!"
For Noel, the time — and money — she invests in making cosplay will lead to a job one day.
"I literally spend every waking moment that I'm not at Punch working on my costumes. They are my passion," says Noel. "I'm aiming at working in special FX and props in the movie industry. And to me, the payoff will be worth it."
Next year, Becka tells us she and Dhare are planning to attend an estimated six conventions around the country.
You can check out more of her work here.
See Also:The 7 Best Cosplay Costumes From New York Comic Con [PHOTOS]Here's How Geeks Find Love At New York Comic ConThe 25 Coolest Things We Saw At New York Comic Con [PHOTOS]
SEE ALSO: We Followed A Cosplayer Into The World Of Anime, Tight Vinyl Costumes And Nerd Culture