Cosplay Ideas

Cosplayer Spotlight – Jamion McNeil

This is one of my best Doctor cosplayers I’ve had the pleasure of interviewing. You must “meet” them too!

WHAT IS YOUR NAME?

Jamion McNeil
Twitter and Instagram @primegundam

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE BEVERAGE?

Cream soda, but that’s a sometimes drink for me. I only get it when I’ve had a rough week or am in a “treat yo’self!” mood. If I am feeling especially fancy I make it a red cream soda. Just a sip takes me back to be a kid sitting in front of the television watching cartoons or staying up late and watching midnight movies I had no business watching.

TELL ME A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF.

All around nerd and full-time brooding scholar writer born and raised in Memphis, TN, and often described as a diabolical fusion of Cybertronian and Universal Century technology. I regularly podcast with the crew on 3BlackGeeks, and from time to time a write a few things that I should really stop locking away and actually publish. I work in education and help people help themselves do better. I am passionate man and I feel passionate about the interest and hobbies I enjoy. In my free time either I’m watching movies and TV, reading books or comics, and playing video games or ranting about the movies and TV, books or comics, and video games.

WHEN DID YOU START COSPLAYING?

I put together a slapdash costume for an office Halloween party in 2014 and thought I can do this better. After thinking about it for some time, I officially started in 2015 with the Fourth Doctor after finding the iconic scarf in a specialty shop and attending my first ever con, Anime Blues Con. When I first started watching Doctor Who I was really drawn to the Fourth Doctor’s dress style and said if I ever chose to cosplay he’d be what I would cosplay as because I thought he was so clean and too fresh. Well, when the opportunity presented itself, I went for it. I got a lot of compliments that day and winning a cosplay contest at a panel really sparked me to want to do it more often. So did I and I have not really looked back since.

WHY DO YOU COSPLAY?

Mostly to feel good and I get a kick out of seeing people’s reactions when they recognize or see the outfit I am wearing. It also ironically helps me with my social anxiety. I hate to be crowded places, so it helps keep me calm by committing to the character and just being in the moment. It’s also helping me meet and make a lot of cool friends at cons and online that I probably otherwise would never have any interaction with and that is fantastic.

WHO ARE YOUR COSPLAY IDOLS?

After I started really researching how to improve, Dominusoftime on Instagram really inspired me into doing more Doctor Who cosplay and his YouTube channel gave me a lot of helpful information. I’m trying to get on that guy’s level; I got nothing but respect for him and his dedication to the craft.

WHAT TYPES OF COSPLAY DO YOU DO?

Right now, just television and it’s only Doctor Who. I feel the most confident rocking the Doctor’s wardrobe, but I definitively want to build confidence and try other characters and franchises eventually. I’ve wanted to New 25 Action Comics Superman or a character from JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure and each day I’m getting closer to taking the jump into trying.

WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE COSPLAYS?

I absolutely love my Twelfth Doctor red velvet coat variant because it’s my all-time favorite look for the Doctor. I even grew my hair out to try and get as close to that lovely crazy Capaldi hair as I could. I adore it and try to wear it the most even though when I wear people do not think I am cosplay without the Sonic Screwdriver, and I just came to a con straight from work. Close second would be Seventh Doctor Season 26 because that came together from happy accidents and finding and piecing all the pieces together at the right time. Plus I get the most reaction when I wear it and that warms me to the core.

WHAT IS SOMETHING YOU WANT TO COSPLAY BUT PROBABLY NEVER WILL?

Optimus Primal from Beast Wars Transformers. I have been trying to figure out the logistics for years, but nothing I plan ever materializes. In hindsight though, I probably shoulder never say never…

DO YOU MAKE, BUY, OR SPECIAL ORDER YOUR COSPLAYS?

It’s a combination of buying some pieces and making others. AbbyShot, Elope, thrift shops, and Amazon were my best friends when I was starting, but I think it’s a nice mix of bought and made things. For example, the waistcoat of my Fourth Doctor is a t-shirt I got from a thrift shop that I converted into a vest because the pattern matched as close as I could find at last minute. My first Seventh Doctor handkerchief I got a piece of fabric and cut it into the shape of and pinned it in my jacket pocket. For my Fifth Doctor I took the pants from the officially licensed Halloween costume and added fabric and altered it to fit me.

WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT COSPLAY?

The freedom and expression. For a couple of hours I get to be another person and inhibit a character that I like. And the sense of community, mostly everyone is here for a good time and support each other. I love walking con floors and nodding to other Doctor cosplayers and just saying, “Doctor.”

WHAT IS THE MOST DIFFICULT THING FOR YOU ABOUT COSPLAY?

For me the process of getting into some outfits. The components to some of the outfits sometimes takes more than just me to buckle, strap, wrap, and secure things in and it can be a chore. Additionally, because of my height and size I often have a hard time finding things in my size or that fit me right.

Who is your favorite character to cosplay?

The Doctor from Doctor Who. My plan is to cosplay every main continuity incarnation, and so far I am 6 out of 14 with no plans of stopping!

Where do you get your inspiration for your cosplays?

This may sound boring, but it’s generally the thought of “I think I’d look cool in that.” It does not go any deeper than me wanting to wear an outfit that I think looks neat. I mean this is all this all started after all to quote a certain celery wearing Time Lord.

WHAT ARE YOUR “FANDOMS”?

Tokusatsu, Gundam, Doctor Who, Transformers, Digimon, Pokemon, Comics, and countless others things. When I get interested in something I really get into it.

WHAT IS SOMETHING YOU WISH BEGINNING COSPLAYERS KNEW?

Do you and be you. Initially, I did not want to start because I did not look like the character or I was not 100% screen accurate and when I finally started I got a couple of comments like “that’s not really cosplay” that almost put me out of it, but I stuck to my guns because I was copslaying because it made me feel good and it was not about what other people saw or thought. Just have fun because at the end of the day that’s what this really is all about.

WHAT TIPS OR TRICKS DO YOU HAVE FOR OTHER COSPLAYERS?

Stay hydrated and try to have seasonal/weather appropriate variants if your character allows. Let me tell you something, wearing cashmere/wool blend frock coat in summer Memphis heat isn’t as fun or easy as I make it look.

WHAT COSPLAYS ARE YOU WORKING ON?

Currently piecing together Third Doctor and I’m drafting up plans for what version of the Eighth Doctor I want to do. I can’t wait to see how it all comes together!

WHAT COSPLAYS DO YOU WANT TO DO IF MONEY AND TIME WERE NO OBJECT?

I would love to do a transformable robot cosplay like the Zeta Gundam or Optimus Prime. I wouldn’t mind doing a Tenth Planet Cyberman if I could actually get the materials the actual show costume was made with which shouldn’t be pretty hard. I’m not really good with DIY or building things unless it’s Gunpla, but I guess the only way I’ll ever get good is if I push myself and try.

WHERE CAN PEOPLE FIND YOUR COSPLAYS?

I post a lot of my cosplay on Twitter and Instagram @primegundam and I’m thinking about starting a Facebook page but I don’t know if I have enough material to do that yet.

What is your favorite type of grilled cheese sandwich?

HAHA TRICK QUESTION: I love them all.

Please remember I do not own any of these pictures and the opinions in this survey belong to the interviewee.

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