CosTalk with Amanda Dawn – AKA Jedi Manda


The Ministers of Good Taste like to reach out and conduct interviews with fellow cosplayers around the world to see what’s going on.  If you would like to be part of CosTalk, or know someone who would – please contact us at

This week we are fortunate enough to be able to interview fellow cosplayer Amanda Dawn!


MoGT:  Let’s jump right in, That Dragon head looked incredible and heavy!  We have to know the preparation, and the story behind Daenerys Targaryen the top Cosplay at SDCC.

AD:  Aw!  Well thank you for calling it a top cosplay at SDCC, that means a lot.  Everyone brought their A game to SDCC.  The story behind Drogon and I is an interesting one.  I’m a huge fan of GoT, and my favorite episode is when she takes Astapor.  I loved her strength and also that outfit, but I found myself staring at Drogon as well.  I kept thinking in my head, if I’m going to cosplay Dany, I have to include Drogon.  So I researched and came across one of my favorite cosplayers, Tabitha Lyons, and found that she and her company she works for, Artyfakes, created a shoulder dragon puppet out of foam.  I consistently watched all their videos to try to piece together the steps for Drogon and I figured it out!  Then made Drogon!  The dress was super simple and I put together in like a day.  I knew that if I nailed Drogon, I could really make a splash in the cosplay world.

MoGT: Where did your Nerdness come from and what kind of story is behind it?  Childhood?  Formative years?

AD:  Definitely childhood, I’m a pretty passionate person about my fandoms and loves.  When I start to like something, I tend to dive straight in and do all the things!  I grew up on a steady stream of Disney and Star Wars.

MoGT:  What are the shows/comics/books/ movies that inspire you to dress up?  Role models?  Actors/Actresses you aspire to look like?

AD:  The genres I typically keep with are TV, film, and animation.  I love Game of Thrones and every animated series on Cartoon Network and Adult Swim, plus online animation through Cartoon Hangover.  I’m consistently inspired through Costume Design and sewing, because that is actually my career that I’m in.  I don’t really aspire to look like anyone, I like me for me.

MoGT:  When you aren’t Cosplaying how fashion conscious areGreek you?  Do you have any fashion tips?  How would you describe your clothing/style?

AD: I love fashion, it’s hard to keep up with.  I ain’t a youngin no more!  Haha, I describe my fashion style as “Geek Boho”.  It’s like if Stevie Nicks and Sheldon from The Big Bang Theory had a baby, that baby might be me.

MoGT: What are your biggest pet peeves while Cosplaying?

AD:  Well, one of my biggest peeves is when a cosplayer will come up to me and say things like “Your cosplay is so much better than mine”, or “My Megara will never be that good”.  I’m like, you just have to keep practicing!  If you want your cosplay to be the best, just keep practicing!  And the rude sexist comments I hear from men are stupid and annoying too.

MoGT:  Tell us your best stories about a person or group of people you’ve met while at an event (SD Comic Con preferred)?

AD:  Umm, probably meeting all of those Game of Thrones cosplayers in one photoshoot!  Everyone was so cool; we all were cracking jokes, looking at everyone’s cosplays.  Being able to crack some jokes with GoT puns that EVERYONE will understand is just great.  Also, filming that interview and commercial with Syfy was pretty cool also.

MoGT:  What was your very first cosplay: character/event/story?

AD:  My very first official cosplay at a con was Kitana from Mortal Kombat 3. I wore it to Derby City Comic Con, my hometown con, with three of my friends that were Mileena, Jade, and Sindel.  We had so much fun!  I made all the costumes except Sindel’s.  We all looked fantastic and people loved how accurate our cosplays were.

MOGT:  Can you share how your costume(s) came about? Any good shopping tips?

AD:  COUPON EVERYTHING!  I don’t live in fashion district and I only have Joann’s, Hancock Fabrics, Michaels, and Hobby Lobby.  So my choices are limited as far as fancy fabrics.  I used to be a tailor and studied costume design in college, which is where my skills came from.  So I picked up a lot of tips and tricks within the sewing world there.  Now I work as a costumer for the Louisville Ballet and still learning new things.

MoGT:  Do you have any good dating stories about breaking the news that you cosplay?  Or how does your significant other feel about your nerdness?

AD:  Single as a bird.  Most guys that I date think its pretty cool, some thought it was stupid.  Those guys didn’t last long.

MoGT: We dig the Mara Jade Skywalker Cosplay, could you tell us about that outfit and your Star Wars fandom?


AD:  Well, like I said, I’m a huge Star Wars fan.  I’m not really a “genderbender” so to say.  Most of my cosplays are pretty true to form.  I was given a “reallllllly nice” lightsaber as a gift from a friend, and I was tired of seeing it sitting on my shelf collecting dust.  So I knew I wanted to cosplay someone from the Star Wars universe but didn’t know many chicks that wielded a lightsaber.  I did my research and I once remember reading some EU [Expanded Universe] books years ago and reading about Mara Jade.  I have red hair plus she wields a lightsaber.  BOOM!  Perfect, so I sketched her out and made it happen.  She is my only cosplay I do that I don’t wear a wig.  It’s glorious.  It was an honor to cosplay someone from the SW universe.  As a lifelong fan, it was pretty exciting to pose for pictures with a lightsaber finally.

MoGT: We can totally relate!!!!!

MoGT: What are some upcoming events or projects you are a part of/or looking forward to?

AD: Dragon CON!!!  I’m taking about 8 costumes, most of those are group cosplays, so I’m pumped to meet everyone.

MoGT:  Tells us about what you want your followers to know about you: what are your passions in life?  Any advice for our readers and your followers?

AD:  Well, you are seeing my passions in life.  It’s costuming.  I alsoChristmas paint, sculpt, and just recently discovered that cooking is enjoyable.  I also dance ballet and play tennis.  Advice…hmm.  Don’t give up on your dream.  I know that is cliché, but it’s so true.  Things happen for a reason.  I wouldn’t be in the position I am now if I didn’t have 1,000 doors shut in my face.

MoGT:  If your nerd dream came true: what are you starring in, and who are you starring with?  Actor/actresses/writer/directors?

AD:  Haha!  My nerd dreams are coming true!  I’m meeting the people.  I guess my ultimate nerd dream is to work on a set for a historical costume film starring Patrick Stewart.

We usually recommend giving a follow in this space.

You will follow this Jedi! (Waves Hand)

On Facebook

On Twitter: @JediManda

On Instagram

On YouTube

~ E.S. Norton ~



Categories: CosTalk, SDCC 2014

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: