Monthly Archives: October 2013

Game Design Lectures In Ädelfors

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Photos borrowed from Ädelfors’ awesome blog.

Two weeks ago I visited Ädelfors’ school of game design! The school serves to prepare students for higher education like University. Ädelfors is special in the way that all the students attending this 1-2 year long education got some kind of neuropsychiatric diagnosis, like ADHD or Autism. The students were happy to have me there, and I hosted two lectures themed “9 Things I Wish I Had Known When I Went To Game Dev School” (title much shorter in Swedish!) and another one about all the different roles a game designer can have during a game project or at a game company.

I visited the same school earlier this year and gave two lectures about game data collection and community management, which was also very nice. I’m so happy they wanted me to come back, I love sharing my XP and what I’ve learned so far from this creative industry. I’m by no means a pro after 3,5 years of creating games at professional studios, but I do feel like I can help others who are still in school, about to start following their dreams. 

The students showed me their school projects and drawings, and just like last time I was very impressed and inspired by what they had created. There were a lot of interesting ideas and deep themes, not the usual “you are a bro that shoots other bros in the face with big guns”.

Sick

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crazy

 

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Home with yet another case of flu. Seems like this shit will never end. I HATE being at home resting and doing nothing. After four months of staying at home while I was looking for a job I have had more than enough of it yes please…

Faces

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messy

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Lately I haven’t really had the time to draw and paint like I used to. I need to prioritize work and other stuff first. I guess that’s just how it is sometimes, and frankly I’m so happy to be hard at work producing games again I feel it’s totally OK if I need to put my LTD-project on slow burn until things get sorted out.

I got some great feedback last week. A commentator on CA pointed out I almost never use foreshortening when drawing, which makes my images look really flat and 2D. Revelation! I’m gonna try and make a lot of foreshortening studies during next croquis lesson! Awesome!

I Now Work At Tarsier Studios!

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I’ve now been working at Tarsier Studios for a little more than a month! The studio is located in central Malmö, and I absolutely love walking to the office from my apartment. It’s lovely to start the morning with a refreshing walk trough Malmö’s hipster blocks and the autumn colored trees. Only takes me about 5 minutes!

The studio is a middle sized company with something like 30 employees and a big, fancy office decorated with toys, bean bags, plants and so much fun details scatted all across. The place feels very creative. Even the bathrooms are filled with Space Invaders art and cut out characters from Little Big Planet! Tarsier is perhaps best known for their work on Little Big Planet PS Vita. This explains why the office is so full of LBP stuff.

I have started to feel at home, everyone’s very nice to me. I even got the opportunity to work with two alumni Junebuddies; Ola and Viktor! We get served breakfast each morning at the office, and every Friday we have this Super Awesome Friday Breakfast™ where we even get Nutella to put on our sandwiches. I’m super excited about this job, and if I wasn’t so NDA:ed I would tell you all about what I do all day long. I can’t really tell you any details or Sony would sue my ass into court, haha! The level of security is beyond anything I’ve experienced before. We even got like this special hard plastic container that’s nailed to the wall, strapped with locks and tilted in a way you can’t see what’s inside it. This is where we throw all secret documents. Every now and then a security company empties this container of secrets and burns the papers from it (or put them in acid to dissolve?). The security and NDA is over 9000!

So I’m basically hired as an associate producer, working with some highly skilled people. I do a lot of game design and project management right now, but hopefully I’ll do some metrics in the future. It feels good to work less with SQL and more with people and game design systems right now. I learned plenty about the technical side of game data at Paradox, which was very useful and needed, but now I’m concentrating on different stuff. I guess I’m pretty able to adopt and learn new skills when needed. Sometimes I fear that’s also one of my weaknesses, that I don’t specialize enough, but kinda jump all over the space of game development.

Anyways, gotta go, time to plan a lecture for next week. I’m invited (this year again!!) to give two lectures on a game development school here in Sweden. Really looking forward to it, gonna be so much fun!

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Last two photos from Tarsier’s awesome blog!

Popular Posts!

Hey guys n’ girls!

I collected all my most popular posts from this blog, under the tab “Popular Posts”, in the upper right corner, over the header. These are posts that have been shared a lot on both Facebook and Twitter, but also posts that touch on more serious topics, such as self-esteem, what it’s like to be a woman in the game business, why I run my paint & draw project etc.

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Promo image for Mass Effect 3. A nice example of a fully dressed bad-ass female fighter! I like!

Here’s a pick of posts that have sparked a lot of interesting discussions: “Women In The Gaming Space“, “Who Get’s To Sleep With Who” & “About Self-Esteem“. Enjoy and leave a comment or ping me on Twitter if you got any interesting feedback!

Graveyard For Villains Part II

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Pulled myself together after I got home from work today and gave this some more love. I think I’m on to something! Trying to establish the values and determine how to move the viewers eyes around the image. Also, shaping the cave like the mouth of a shark hopefully adds to the feeling of impending doom if those poor divers are gonna enter and try to grab the treasure…

Great after-work today at Tarsier. Got a bit drunk. That’s nice. Getting drunk always challenges my usual perception of reality, and that’s more than welcome!

LTD 59: Graveyard For Villains (WIP)

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Giving myself a new challenge. Wanted to participate in the “environment of the week” over at CA. The theme is simply “graveyard for villains”. I spent yesterday brainstorming about the theme. I don’t wanna do some image showing a graveyard or like a pirate’s treasure stash or something other that’s a bit too obvious. I want to think of something smart, and something that’s fun to paint. Something where I can have lots of refs and at the same time learn how to paint something I haven’t pictured before. So I went with this Indiana Jones themed image. It’s about the ancient treasure hidden under water, hidden in a pit filled with sharks, just waiting to rip any intruders to pieces. Stealing old artifacts makes you a villain you know…

I intended to write something about my new job at Tarsier today. I even went around the office snapping some photos of all the cool and funny stuff we have everywhere. But when I got home I was too tired to do anything other than start painting on this illustration, and tomorrow my friend from China is arriving to stay with me for a while. I guess I’ll be writing that post about my new job some other time. Have quite low energy levels at the moment.

Final Image: The Hag Countess!

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casen_wip_chow_336There! It’s done! Learned plenty from this brief. My hag countess is sitting on a dark throne, on her pile of dead skulls, waiting for someone to pick apart with her claws. I wanted to give her the look and feel of a bony old bird, ready to poke your eyes out. Not expecting to win the event over at CA, but it’s always fun and challenging to motivate yourself to actually take something from brief, to idea, to sketch to a final post processed image! Tome to sleep!