Mike’s Workshop: design

My strongest character design influences are: Bruce Timm, Stephen Chiodo, Tim Burton, Jhonen Vasquez, Tony Wong, Roger Salick + Val Mayerik, Sam Kieth, David Firth, Rhodri McCormack, Ana Albano, Paul Bonner, David Meng, Manel Barrero, Sho Yamamoto, Debbie Volquarts, Anna Belenkly, Aaron Beck, Mechtild Nienaber and Aris Kolokontes.

my latest work

This is a moment in time, these are the best of my early work. I have plans to improve my skills in robot drawing, digital art and drawing fundamentals, so that these kinds of cartoons will be better, but also so I can create more complex and detailed works. My ultimate goal is to create mech illustrations, mech design-as-art pieces, surrealist detailed cartoon-style digital paintings/illustrations and pop culture/cult entertainment influenced, quirky and fun illustrations for t-shirts and postcards. As well as getting better at my personal style of custom cartoons (sketches, scenes, characters) with digital patchwork from pencil sketches.

Details for Ordering a Custom Cartoon

I will draw a unique cartoon or character based on your requirements. I use pencil and photoshop.
I work mostly in pencil and make 2D digital patchwork cartoons with Photoshop and digital painting. But am improving my drawing skills so that I can make larger works. I have a level 6 diploma with honours in illustration and a little tinkering with clay. I have a little experience with Photoshop. My cartoons are complex and unique. I have a good eye for images.
In pencil, it usually takes a few iterations to get interesting. Then, in Photoshop, I piece it together, paint and add colour. My work is not vector art or realism – I deal with the abstract and the surreal. However, I am looking at developing my skills towards mech designs and merch design (with some pixel art as well.) The art I make is digital so there is no shipping, I will send you the files you require in full quality based on the file type/s that you need.

Please provide specifications for exactly what are the 5 most important things you envision in your cartoon.
Also what medium am I drawing for?
Are there any particular styles you like or sources of inspiration?
Do you want to give me some backstory for the character that you want me to create for you?
US$35 includes: 1 unique cartoon character, 1 revision, source file, high res, full colour, full body, commercial use, (delivery time: 5 days.)

Extras:

Additional Revision +US$25 3 more days.
Additional Figure: +$US30 5 more days.
Background/Scene +$US40 6 more days.

I have been designing games as an amateur for 24 years – coding in BBC BASIC on a BBC Micro emulator on the family Acorn Archimedes home computer back in the early 90’s which helped me get top of my high school 98% in the NCEA1 algebra exam. Later years, I tried C# and a bit of C++ but found them over-complicated. I enjoyed python and javascript, but decided to move away from coding to focus on production, writing and mechanics and a bit of art. I also spent some time prototyping card game mods and designing ball games. As well as games, mechs and character design, I’m interested in designing narratives for attractions similar to Meow Wolf (such as for amusement parks and museum exhibits.)

Heavily influenced by the following game icons: Eric Chahi, Playdead, Richard Garfield, Doug TenNapel, Emiko Yamamoto, Keith Zabalaoui, Will Wright, Ed McMillen, Robby Zinchak, John Newcomer, Brian Colin, Fukio Mitsuji, Andy Nealen, Stefan Pokorny, Bennett Foddy and Peter Molyneux.

My first indie video game is a team project called “Peddler”, due in 2020.

The tone of the game comes from cold Winters at an all-boys private post-colonial high school, scrounging together cash for cigarettes and occasionally selling cigarettes to other students and dreaming up ways to start a business.

I like the idea of incorporating 2d platform game style movement and brick-breaking for entry into a shop (with no clues as to how to do this) ie when a player falls onto a destructible brick in front of the shop, that brick cracks. When a player jumps onto a brick it disintegrates. When a player leaves the screen, all bricks return to start phase.

When the player enters the hole beneath the bricks, the screen changes to interior store with normal HUD.

You play a young student; a junior in high school at a boring, prison-like high school in a dreary, dismal town, during a cold Winter. You get caught up in a winner-takes-all competition with other hustlers (friends) in memory of a dead friend, to see who can make the most money.

The player’s goal is to make as much money as possible in a two week time frame. There are numerous in-game events that can get you money but the surest way is through buying and selling items. The player will be able to visit vendors and buy things from them with money and sell to npcs. Each npc will have its own set of likes and dislikes and will pay more for some things than other npcs.

MISSION

I am a guy who cares deeply about thinking things through thoroughly, about innovation in design, sophistication of thought and telling imaginative stories in a unique way. The opposite of mass-manufactured dross. Instead, I weigh artistic integrity against “everything serves the story” and “everything is thought through to its end point – with manic attention to detail.” That doesn’t mean all problems are solved within the story, sometimes there is closure and sometimes, not everything is resolved (like life.)

Getting a freelancer to start work in 2018 on coding for my team’s game (Peddler) for which I will end up doing the bulk of the coding myself in Unity.

The plan is to make some collaborative games/toys/software/comics with my team and with other creatives I’ve met. And some solo game projects. And then to increase my freelancer client portfolio and work with some people whom I like, but not scale into a monolithic corporation – instead to stay small and relevant. “To be passionate makers and fuel that energy into the creation of interesting, intelligent, thorough and deep entertainment and technology. And to build a platform that spreads this creativity through the cult and the underground, to as many different types of consumer crowds and generations, with as little censorship or non-creative control as possible. To be allowed and enabled to be silly and have fun, to be adventurous, take risks, jump off the cliff without taking off the blindfold and spend every waking moment creating something beautiful or ugly, but always effective.”

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