the insider: amanda conner
“superheroes need flaws to make them likeable”
From sketching Power Girl and Wonder Woman to Painkiller Jane and Pro, Amanda Conner is at the top of her game. And even though she's killing at every kid's dream job, the comic book artist still has some tricks up her sleeve. On the heels of the release of her latest project "Before Watchmen: Silk Spectre," she found the time to talk to us about making bulletproof bracelets and why every superhero needs a couple flaws.
Was being a comic book artist your dream growing up?
I had several dreams. One of them was being a lion tamer. After Star Wars, I wanted to be an action movie star. I wanted to be a race car driver too. But drawing was my strong suit - and I've always loved comics.
Who was your favorite comic book character as a kid?
It's sort of changed throughout the years. ‘Til I was eleven or twelve, it would have to be Wonder Woman. I even grabbed some silver poster board and fashioned bulletproof bracelets. Then I discovered Red Sonja. When I was in college my favorite character was Electra.
Silk Spectre #1 seems awesome. What initially drew you to the project?
Well, she's such a great character. I think what I love about her is that she's so real. And she's a different kind of ‘super.' I'm trying to remember what it was like being sixteen years old, and remembering so much… particularly how my mother and I drove each other so nuts. Plus, I love the original Watchmen. It's such a great book… Every time you read it you find something new about it that you didn't discover before.
What's the hardest part about developing a new character?
Every time I take on a new character it's always something new and different. I always try and develop in my head a rock solid personality for them. Also, I try and imagine a voice for them and work around that. As far as Silk Spectre goes, I'm trying to call on experiences I had with my mom at 16. And I also brought a lot of myself to Wonder Woman for the Ame-Comi series, but in a different way I do put a lot of myself in each character I work on, because otherwise it wouldn't be fun. And even with the ultra-powerful superheroes, I try to bring some flaws and some humanity because that makes them more likable.
Do you enjoy creating the costumes for the characters?
Oh yeah! A lot of time I think, ‘What would I want to wear?'