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Jen Tate's Breathtaking Underwater Tomb Raider Shoot, Plus Her Feature Interview Revisited!

[ By Sara Croft - July 2nd 2024 ]

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It's always so invigorating to me when I see how much love, passion and dedication goes into my fellow cosplayers' photos. Jen Tate's latest shoot is no exception. She totally outdid herself by taking photos in a water tank, resulting in some outstandingly gorgeous pics and authenticity to her Lara that added excitement and dynamicity.

Not to mention, personally it gives me a renewed sense of commitment and purpose for our community and the website itself, I just want to chronicle all these works of art.
So today I bring you her underwater tomb raider cosplay shoot!


Asking Jen aka Gwyneth About herself and when she first cosplayed:
"I'm Gwyneth aka Jen Tate Cosplay, I've been a gamer since the 80s so I remember the buzz around the first Tomb Raider game. I didn't have a PlayStation at the time but I did get to play it at a friends house and instantly fell in love with her and the game".

" I worked for a company called Gamestation in the UK around the release of Tomb Raider Anniversary and we were encouraged to dress up in store. I put together something basic but still felt amazing. I then saw the awesome Lara cosplayers online and they really inspired me to get into cosplay."

About her underwater shoot:
"I'm a pretty good swimmer but I still found this very difficult. It's such a small space you get to work in, you can't see a thing once you're under and it's quite hard to communicate with the photographer. You do have to do certain breathing techniques to sink so that was pretty hard as well (I didn't sink well so had to use diving weights, plus the candelabra was super heavy so that helped me stay down) The staff at Tank Space were great at directing me and I hope to do it again soon. Hopefully I can do better next time now that I have a better feel for it. "


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About her most memorable cosplay experience

"This would have to be when I dressed up as Black Widow for a big Avengers group cosplay at London Comic Con, I think group cosplays with friends are so much more fun. We felt like celebrities for a day haha."

About her biggest challenge cosplaying in public
"I used to have really bad social anxiety so in the beginning I found going out in public in cosplay really difficult. Doing it has actually helped in my real life social situations."

Her favourite Tomb Raider outfit:
"It has to be the classic. I really hope they bring it back in the next game."

Favourite TR game / and boss fight / puzzle:
"I always struggle with this, I love both 1 and 3. My favourite boss battle is Sophia at the end of the London section in TR3. My favorite puzzle is the St Francis Folly level, I remember being blown away by the scale of it when I first played it."

Favourite TR character that's not Lara?

More Jen:

How she felt about the new origins story
"I've enjoyed them, my favourite of the 3 was SOTTR which I know not everyone liked. I understand they had to keep the franchise fresh to keep up with the gaming world but I really hope they go back to the classic Lara for the next adventure. I'm 40 in a couple of months and would love to see an older Lara still kicking ass."

Her thoughts on all the movies
"I thought the first Angelina one was great, no one else could have played that role. I do think it could have been better and the second one wasn't as good but I do love them. Sadly I just didn't vibe with the latest movie, it just didn't feel like Lara to me."

What is the one item you would add to the croft outfit?
"I think she's already pretty well kitted out haha."
Who takes your photos?
"Luckily my husband is a photographer so he does most of them."
Her advice for first time cosplayers
"Cosplay someone you really want to, so many people try to jump on trends. Im guilty of doing this and I honestly have more fun in my obscure characters that I personally love even if only one other person knows who I am. Even if you feel you don't look anything like the character it's not about that it's about embodying the character."

Final Remarks /  social media links
"I'm glad you liked my underwater shoot, my next Lara cosplay adventure will be making every costume from the original 1-5 games. My cosplay page is jen_tate_cosplay and my YouTube is retro_jen


Thank you Jen for your kindness in taking the time to answer my questions about the shoot and for the interview again, also inspiring and helping me keep faith in my conviction that the Tomb Raider Cosplay community is beyond special!