New year, new endeavors! I started two things:
I hope you had a happy new year and a holiday season where you got to actually relax.
I took time off between December 24 - January 4 and completely broke out of my routine (where I usually try to be productive every day in some sort of way); I pretty much just napped, ate, and played video games. Although I didn't take that many days off, I think I took a proper break so this month I spent a pretty good chunk of time thinking about what my next drawing project would look like (it will be significantly bigger than my previous projects I think). I'm not sure when I'll get around to actually starting this, since I am gearing up for an Early Access Release of "Derelict Void" for mid-March, but ideas are brewing. Hopefully I can keep my momentum.
I hope you are safe, wherever you are. I realized I couldn't write that much of a detailed recap or 2020 here (because TMI), but I did take the time to actually journal about it - not for an audience, but just for me to put my feelings down somewhere so that I don't feel obliged to carry it around all the time. This year I am finally starting to understand the meaning of writing (and drawing too; I started doing some doodling occasionally) for myself, and no one else.
Wishing a happy and healthy new year to you and yours,
I have not been writing so much in my journal recently because I have been working on game development (!). I'm part of Stirling Games - a team of 8, spread out across the world (Canada, Germany, Israel, Spain, and the United States), and we're making the most out of 2020 and the working-from-home-because-of-a-pandemic situation by pushing towards a release early next year. The title is Derelict Void, and it may pique your interest if you like the following concepts together: rogue-like (or "rogue lite") + colony simulator + spaaaaaace
Earlier this year my involvement with Stirling Games was tangential, making placeholder 2D assets for a playable demo of Derelict Void. Then I got brought into the team more officially to help out with designing the graphic user interface (GUI) of the game. I have not designed GUIs for games before but I figured I might have the pieces to make it work: I love making diagrams of everything, I used to do research on visual perception, I am familiar with talking to team members from various domains. So I decided to roll with it.
My GUI design process so far has looked like this: First, I gather requirements from the game designers. Then I start drawing pen-on-paper wireframe sketches...
Once I have enough evidence that the concept is roughly captured, I move onto slightly higher-fidelity interaction design sketches.
Once the interaction ideas are more or less finalized (of course there's always iteration, so I'm aiming for something like 80% certainty that we're in the ballpark of where we want to be), I move onto making mockups that involve fancier colors and typefaces...
Then I communicate my ideas of how things should work to the engineer, the engineer communicates the sprite requirements to me, I make the sprites, and then the engineer makes the sprites come to life!
Hopefully you will get to see the full extent of my work in a few months! In case you feel so inclined to follow the progress of Stirling Games and the development of Derelict Void... there are couple things you can do right now:
May 2020 update! Although some restrictions have been slightly lifted where I live, life continues to be very different compared to pre-COVID-19 years.
At work, preparing for September 2020 (and January 2021) at university is an order of magnitude more laborious compared to previous years. Outside of work, my choir rehearsals and concerts were cancelled until further notice, and in the language school I volunteer for we are examining different scenarios regarding how to re-open the school. I also got married towards the end of last year, and was planning on having a reception this July, but we're postponing that too.
I've been actively thinking and journaling about emotions. It is easy for negative emotions to creep up during these trying times, but not all negative emotions are useful. So I'm investigating ways to dodge them... more on this in my next post.
Before I close out, I must mention this: While I worry about back-to-school season and weddings and stuff, I do not have to worry about how to interact with the police so that I do not get murdered on the spot. It is absurd and unfair that I can go about my normal life - eat breakfast, get groceries, go on walks, play video games - while George Floyd, and so many others, cannot. Black lives matter, and I have not done enough to be an ally so I decided to work towards it. I am educating myself and putting my money where my mouth is. I started by visiting here: https://blacklivesmatters.carrd.co
Well, I did it! I started this project in December 2019 and I didn't expect to finish it until February but I managed to finish before the start date of my next project :)
I decided to draw all 34 themes from CliftonStrengths because I only really knew what my top 5 were at the time, and I wanted to learn more about all of them. I wanted to use the 34 themes as a tool that helps me think more positively about not only myself but also about other people. One thing I learned from this exercise: "weaknesses" can be re-framed as strengths in the wrong context.
Now that I have a better idea of what the 34 themes are individually, I am considering creating diagrams that show how I see the different strengths interacting with each other.
I was gone for a while but I wasn't away from my keyboard - for the past month or so, I was working hard to get my pixel art muscles back again! Here's a sneaky peak of what I am working on:
Yes, that is a bunny with a buckler and a sword. And yes, that is a bunny with a tower shield. With a bunny on it.
Some non-bunny updates can be found in the portfolio.
I'm Candice and I doodle with the intensity of the doomguy.