PROFILE

Some guy who works as a concept artist for games and animation industry in Canada.

Visual Designer
shroomarts@gmail.com






No one enjoys reading but I enjoy writing...

How it all starts
Not sure how it all started but I always enjoyed drawing and designing computer or board game related stuff since I was small. I recall drawing game covers and levels for various C64, Sega and Nintendo games, designing imaginary consoles using empty cardboard boxes and game controllers (they used to be called gamepads) on pieces of torn cardboard flaps so it was kind of obvious from those days that more or less I was a nut case.


What I do nowadays
It took some time for me to figure I had two options, either I was to be locked in an asylum and or I was to follow my passion and do this stuff for a living. I wasnt a fan of asylums and needles so I picked the second. Its been quite some time now but sometimes I regret not picking the asylum over the studio but they are similar in some ways. 


This Blog
This place is my playground where I escape my daily studio job and draw whatever I want. Studio work has a lot of rules and styles to follow, a certain quality you have to keep up. But here there is no good or bad, no need to make things visually appealing, pleasing or correct. Its just me being free and having fun.

I post some of my collaboration with indie developers here. I also draw lineups of characters or other retro game related stuff from my childhood.

This blog has been around since quite some time now (2012) so its full of old trash that I'm lazy to purge.  Every once in a while I try to abandon this blog but somehow it manages to pull me back and I find myself updating it. There is something appealing in the ugliness :) Now and then I go through heaps of junk, adding, removing or changing old pages.

I also have tons of abandoned game projects that never progressed to be worth posting.


Tools I Use
Sometimes people ask what tools I use to create something they see in this blog. I dont think it really matters what people use as long as it gets the job done. All programs bring the same results, some easier some harder so I guess the golden rule would be to use whatever you are comfortable with.


I personally prefer to use;
Photoshop - for anything that requires me to draw or edit images.
After Effects - for animating and compositing stuff (motion graphics, UI's, creating special fx or anything else that is animation related.)
Flash / Animate - outdated but good for animating pixel art scenes.
Maya - for quickly modelling and blocking 3D stuff if required. I dont use it for my personal projects since 3D takes more time and I dont have that much time nowadays.


Pixel art If done correctly it turns out to be an art form where you have to make use of limited space, colour and pixels to produce something that looks decent. It's one of my go-to tools in personal and professional projects. THIS PAGE has some pixel experiments


Mo-Graph
Making a proper mo-graph sequence takes a long time and no sane person would want to spend that much time unless its work related. However I enjoy making simple FUI screens. Its like you have a few seconds to tell a story while trying to keep it stylish and consistent under certain design language rules. THIS PAGE has some motion graphics I've done on my free time.


ASCII art
Not really a fan of Ascii games as I always found the visuals hard to understand and there is always the fact that most tile sets end up looking similar. What I enjoy about ASCII art is the fact that it's even more limiting than pixel art. Such limits are always more fun to play with. THIS PAGE has some of my ascii art experiments


Retro Gaming I grew up with C64s, arcade machines, 8-16 bit sega and Dos games. I still love to play games from 80s / 90s and early pc stuff from the beginning of 2000s. They seem to have something special that is hard to find in today's games. I do enjoy the games they make nowadays but somehow it doesn't give the fun feel of the stuff they made around early 90s. I also like doing fan art and re-design documents for retro games. Its kind of fun to re-imagine and mix them with today's ideas and trends.

Most the time I find myself using past material as reference for today's solutions, as gaming seems to repeat in circles. Learning stuff they did in the past helps you prepare for the future :)


Projects
I guess anything similar to the stuff in the games section would be fine. But I'm always open for new stuff. I enjoy concepting ideas, character design and UI stuff the most. I find imagining stuff to be much more fun than actually fleshing it out or maybe I'm just a lazy ass, jumping from this to that as I get bored.

In an ideal project I would like to do the initial designs and maybe someone else can finalize the product by fleshing out my concepts. But reality doesn't work that way so I am usually asked to do the designs, animations, user interfaces, icons and any other type of visuals for the final product.

Also every roguelike or dungeon game I work on makes me say "this will be the last" but it never is... Guess I enjoy those games more than the others :)


Helping other people
I like reaching out to people and offering help with their stuff. It gives an excuse to think about a game topic / theme I haven't thought before. Feels bit like puzzle solving on my end. If you think you have something you need help with, feel free to contact.

Making a game is much harder and time consuming than it seems. Many get overexcited and attempt at projects much bigger than they can swallow. I would have to see the project and have a quick chat before deciding if I could help or not.

So much to do but so little time...