Featured Trooper: Katie Dueckman

What is your background / what do you do for a living? What are your hobbies?
I’ve been a video game tester for 7 years, but this September, I’m looking to make my hobby into a career attending the Costuming Diploma course at Capilano University.

Costumes have been my passion since I was a kid, often asking my mom in June to start helping me with my Halloween costume. My friends and family know that I’m pretty much unavailable for at least few weeks before a convention.

Outside of that, I like board games, Doctor Who, comic books, drawing and coffee/tea.

When did you see Star Wars for the first time and where?
I’m not actually sure when the first time was. I remember watching A New Hope a million times with my friends who lived two houses down when we were about 6 or 7. I have more memories of playing Star Wars – who got to be Han Solo, and what adventure we’d go on next.

What is your favorite Star Wars movie?
That is a seriously tough question. I think A New Hope. I love them all (yes, even the prequels), the whole Galaxy that they created is a huge part of my life.

What is your favorite costume and/or prop (any franchise)?
HA! Ask a cosplayer what their favourite costume is. Probably Indiana Jones’ standard outfit. I love how lived in it looks, like someone would really own and wear it, but like they HAVE worn it for years. And that hat. You know who it is just by seeing that hat.

What costumes (SW related or otherwise) have you made before?
I have over 20 costumes that I’ve assembled recently, and more before that that I haven’t counted. They range from store bought items to completely made at home stuff. I’ll list a couple…
Nami (anime character, One Piece), Sanji (anime character, One Piece), Queen Chrysalis (cartoon character, My Little Pony), Morticia Addams (tv character, Addams Family), Daphne (cartoon character, Scooby Doo), Spider-Gwen (comic book character, Spider-Gwen), Ms Frizzle (cartoon character, Magic School Bus), C-3PO (movie character, Star Wars).

What inspires you creatively, spiritually or emotionally?
I have a really bad habit of seeing an outfit, character, photo, etc, that just hits the right notes with me, and then trying to make it. I love a challenge, figuring out how to use this to make that, or if I just change this here, it would make a perfect this.

How did you first find out about the 501st Legion?
I was dressed up as Black Cat from Spiderman on Halloween at work, and this guy dressed as a Stormtrooper comes walking down the hall past me. I said something dorky like “Whoa, cool!” and he responded in actual Stormtrooper Voice (TM). That Stormtrooper was actually a Sandtrooper, and as it turns out, was our own Garrison CO, Terry Chui! I asked him about the costume later, and he encouraged me to join.

What drives you to stay trooping in the 501st Legion?
I hope I’m allowed to list more than one thing.
– Seeing kids and adults alike light up when they see our TKs come around the corner.
– Hanging out with equally dorky people who love Star Wars as much, though probably more, than I do.
– Encouraging my friends to join and give back to the community.
– Being “Trooper Mom”.

If you were to get a job at LucasFilm, what would it be?
I would love to get in their costuming department. Creating a relatable, realistic Galaxy that people are excited to see and experience would be stellar.