The superficial appeal of cosplay is the quality of the still image. How good a costume looks, or how much like a character the particular cosplayer seems to appear.
The real craft, though, comes behind the scenes. Anybody can put some lycra on a model and call it cosplay, but the true artists make their own costumes. And making good costumes is hard work.
This video shows Crystal Graziano, something of a superstar in the field, going through the creation process for a Metal Gear costume with Steve Wang, a Hollywood effects man.
If you remember the news that Crystal is being sponsored for the year by Firefall, and wondered what that would mean, well, the quality of this gear on show should give you an idea of where much of the money is going.