This is not a valid career choice
... but you'll make some great friends! All the panelists said that, despite getting some freebies from time to time, they have to pay their way to pursue cosplay.
You might find it easier to get to know other cosplayers and attract photographers and vendors if you have a business card to hand out (see make-a-deck.com for custom two-sided designs). You can also create a Facebook fan page to keep your cosplay self separate from your real-life self. Most importantly, you can keep track of all the cosplayers you meet that you'd like to stay in touch with.
"We get to do Halloween any time we go to a con," said the Joker. SOLD!
Do you do cosplay? What is your advice for getting into it?!