Gatherings are the height of excitement at an anime conferences. This is what you have been working for all those long months in creating your cosplay. The gathering is where one can participate in a group photo shoot based on their animes’ series. The gatherings are coordinated on line through blogs associated to the conference website but it is kept separate.
They occur organically as the main blogger will take the lead to set up a time and place as to where they will occur. The conference will support the gatherings by posting the schedules by anime series at the conference information booth.
Sometimes the agenda of the characters order will be given ahead of time. At the designated time and date you will go to the location given for your gathering. The gathering leader will then let everyone, hopefully based on the agenda, when that character is to come to the front of the gathering to get their pictures taken. For example if the gathering is for Naruto and they call for Naruto as a character you may end up seeing possibly 20 of the same character posing for pictures.
The photographer is you. These are amateurs taking the pictures. Beware that you can end up on YouTube, Facebook or Tumblr to name a few of the sites that popularize these events. I can’t tell you how much fun this is as everyone is either trying to outdo the other or working together in a group shot. Also, pairs will be called and other types of organized combination of characters. They tend to last between 1 to 2 hours depending on the size of the gathering and the popularity.
Apart from the amateur photo gathering, there is a profession photo shoot that one can get involved with. I believe there is a cost associated. This again is done apart from the conference and can only be identified through the blogs as to where, when and how much. I have seen these and they are terrifically dramatic. I hope to try and participate in these photo shoots in the coming years.
Vocaloid Gathering at PMX 2012