This "not wearing your costume until on stage" thing really baffles me. I've been a cosplayer for 4 years and been to most of the masq's. Here's the thing about only wearing a really complex costume in the actual masq (at an anime convention). At a LOT of people in the audience will leave right after the skits. So, for a cosplayer with a really complex, nice cosplay to only wear their costume before and during the competition at an anime convetion doesn't really allow everyone to see their costume. I think this is, based off of what I've read in the thread, because skits have traditional been held over the actual costume competition. People don't always feel like waiting around for the "fashion show" as it were.
Personally, I'm making/wearing a rather complicated cosplay this year at Otakon. Makeup, fake nails, wingspan, limited mobility, the works and I'm wearing it all day Saturday. Sounds crazy right? Well, traditionally that's just been the way it's been. The only way to get pictures and to show off, really, is in the halls of the convention center. Because of this costume in particular I probably won't be roaming the con much, so that's neither here no there with people seeing it. The BCC (Otakon) is such a huge place that you're very likely to not see certain cosplays if you don't go looking for them.
And being a bit off topic, I love this thread, it really gives me so much joy. I've been cosplaying for 4 years now and I've really felt there's been something missing from cosplay for a long time. I've never been to a Scifi/F convention and I'm really envious of the costumers there. I've always put 100% into my cosplays and been a stickler for accuracy and well made props/ parts. I would LOVE to seriously compete when I have the money and get out of school at a convention where there are others who feel the same. It's very disheartening sometimes to be at an anime convention with costumers who just don't care. I've seen so many poorly made costumes that I often run to Scifi/F cons as this magical dreamland where everyone who makes a costume ACTUALLY CARES and tries and does a bang up job.
As has been stated, I really do believe it is a maturity gap between the two that stops competition from actually becoming anything more than happy fun at anime conventions. All of the drama, the complaining, the whining really is a product of the ages of the kids that attend them. It's the nature of the beast, as you could say. You can't really have a "mature" and "serious" anime convention without pulling out the kids that are the backbone. Wait about 5-10 years or so when those of us who are actually serious grow up and get real jobs and real money. XDD Cosplayers that are really serious will start blowing it on well made costumes.
PS. It's nice to hear that Scifi/F costumers are so open to Cosplayers. I would LOVE to joing a guild/association one day and expand my skills and knowledge. It makes me so happy that I don't have to drop this "silly hobby" as my parents said when I was 15. I would love to find a place to let it grow.
Next Con: Otakon
Crane!Yuuko [xxxHolic] / Butterfly!Yuuko [xxxHolic] / San [Princess Mononoke]