Touching Up

blogI have been redrawing old artwork to help everything to feel more consistent. I was nervous to revisit these, since typically I always like the original the better. However, the drawings have been surprisingly similar and I am overall pleased with the results. I will be replacing these in the book and might make some new art for pages that are empty.

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The Return of Bad Words

This quarter I’m going to be working on Bad Words again. After my last time working on this project, I ended up with a 56 page, saddle-stitched book. While I’m happy with the progress that I’ve made, I feel like there is still a lot of work to accomplish before it’s ready.

I’m going to be focusing on the layout and design of the book, instead of content generation. Right now, Bad Words feels inconsistent and thrown together. I’d like to clean up the layout so everything feels intentional. I’d like to remove aspects that feel out of place and recreate older assets to make it more cohesive.

I will need to audit the current book and decide what to keep and what to remove. Bad Words is currently laid out in a 8″ x 8″ format however I need to reformat everything to fit within Blurb.com’s sizes which is 7″ x 7″. Having smaller pages will force me to break things up more. I will have to be more strategic, but I believe it will help the book feel more finished.

My goal is to print a hardcover book, using blurb, by the portfolio show.

Influence Tokens

influence tokens

This week we designed the influence tokens. We ordered black poker chips with a simplified design printed in gold foil. The center is the Conspire Logo and Latin for “I Influence the World.”

Seattle After Party

20170219_133248Alex and I played Conspire with the Seattle After Party podcast. Seattle After Party is part of Comedy Sportz Seattle and is hosted by Daryl Ducharme.

I’m not a big fan of being recorded, be it video or audio. I much prefer hiding in my cave and scribbling away but as half of a two-man team, I often times have a responsibility to make an appearance. The game was fun, however, being the reserved artist among an improv team was a bit intimidating.

Our game was about the rise and fall of 70’s disco and can be found on the Seattle After Party podcast here.

Layout

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We have been dropping the text into a working document to get the feel for the layout. There are a few different type of narration throughout the game manual.

The primary text explains the inner workings of the game in detail, but there are a few call-outs as well.

border_compassMeta text is denoted by a lighter font and indentation starting with a compass. It is used to speak directly to the reader, breaking the 4th wall.

 

border_rulerExample text is denoted by an indented paragraph starting with the rulers and describes an in-game scenario which illustrates how the rule being describe would be applied.

 

We have discussed these fonts possibly changing again before the manual is finalized.

Role + Scene Sheet

First we focused on redesigning the role and scene sheets. These are used by players throughout the game and are shuffled multiple times so we focused on usability and allowing for plenty of writing room.

Previously, the sheets had been quickly thrown together for play-testing so we had an idea of how people generally wrote on and used these sheets. Some issues we saw, were people unsure of where to write and ending up with a messy, unorganized sheet. So, this time around I focused on creating larger areas for people to write and trying to design it in a way that is intuitive.

We wanted to get this done before OrcaCon so we could get some people’s hands on it and observe how the changes worked and any other problems that arose. Role Sheets

While many of the issues with the role sheet were resolved with this newer version, it seemed that people had trouble with each goal being represented by an icon. Alex and I wrestled with whether or not to also include text to describe each goal. We both liked that the icons were vague and open to interpretation — after all, the game is about conspiracies. The goals are specific to each role; the first goal is their primary drive, the second is a goal which conflicts with another role or faction and the third is a goal that supports another role or faction. I think we will end up including one word for new players and as a reminder.

 

The updated scene sheet worked out well.  With the older version, players would write down roles and factions across the entire page and then run out of lines for more roles. I solved this by making the page landscape and adding two headers saying “ROLE/FACTION” so people would realize it is intended for two columns.scene sheet

Production Schedule

We are hoping to have the final product shipped in less than a year of funding on KickStarter. With a little more experience under our belt, we are confident that this schedule is paced well and will give us plenty of time to complete each step. The project will outlast this quarter however there is plenty of work to be done. I’m hoping that using Conspire as my Special Topics project will help me stay ahead of schedule and maybe complete it early. Our schedule is as follows:

January
Functional art complete
Layout draft
February
Supplements
April
Filler art
May
Layout complete
June
Book Sample
Reward Design
July/August
Ship

We have created a running list of art assets that need to be created. We have broken them down into three categories: Functional, Supplemental, and Filler Art. Functional Art pertains to anything that helps the readers and players navigate the game. This includes icons, page and chapter markers. Supplemental Art will relate to the text and examples given in the book and Filler art will be used to decorate the pages in between.

Conspire

conspire_cover_RND1I’ve decided to instead focus on my freelance work creating Conspire — a hidden-role, story-telling game. I have been working with Cherry Picked Games for over a year now. Cherry Picked Games is an indie tabletop game company, captained by Alex Jerabek. Him and I first worked together on Drink! where I was tasked with the illustration of 150 individual cards. The game is currently available on Amazon, the CPG website and many stores across Seattle.

Last year I spent some time redesigning the website and giving the brand a slight update. We focused on strengthening our online presence before launching the Conspire KickStarter.  It consisted of creating graphics, filming and editing 3 videos, and managing social media throughout the duration of the Kickstarter.backer_tier-11

It was a lot of work and it funded minutes before the end. It was very stressful but our next step was to create a schedule and start making progress.

Winter Quarter

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This quarter I want to learn more animation. I had a lot of fun animating my Climate Change video last quarter and it has encouraged me to do more.

Over winter break, my brother told me about a story he wrote. It’s about a boy and a girl who are separated by a canyon. The boy has a tree house and a bike, and the girl has a balloon and a swing. Over the course of time, they make efforts to bridge the gap and be together, although some problems arise.

The story stuck out to me because it has a lot of meaning to my brother. It also has no dialogue and he wants to convey emotions through the changing color of the sky. I thought it was a really cool idea and could be made into an awesome animated story.

I plan to use AfterEffects and Illustrator to achieve a silhouette style animation. I will start with a moodboard and  start storyboarding this week.

Other Bad Words

I received a few poems from other people which is exciting. I am happy with what I’ve gotten so far however I am realizing more and more that it’s hard to ask favors from busy people. I think my projected date of completion may have been a bit ambitious but I am still trying to get as much completed by then as possible.

GOD DAMN IT
The clouds opened up and god said…

What the fuck?
What have you done?
I left for a second
I was barely gone!
Jesus Christ.
That’s my son!
I forgive you for sins,
not for being dumb.

You dumped all this oil
Into the sea
burned down forests
and chopped down the trees
Oh my God!
Oh wait that’s me..
You guys are so stupid
how could this be?

“God, Damn it!” you say?
Well that I can do.
Everything’s fucked up,
So I’ll just start anew.
“Holy shit!”
That’s my poo.
This time, skip the humans
That oughtta do!

Submitted Poems

WHISKEY
by Jason Breish
Daisies are white,
Whiskey is brown.
I will love you
‘til I’m put in the ground.

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STOOPING IN THE SOUND
by Adam Haney
Scraping together funds
Paper squares on eager tongues
Cancer sticks we’re stooping strong
What’r cares
Midget clowns with gasoline
Running at us
We’re getting out of here
Wavy streets and sirens blare
We’re almost there
Fresh scent of smoke in the air
Freedom once again prevails
Fireworks are loud as Hell
Toking and it’s all allowed
Stooping in the Sounds delight
We’re all fucked up but life’s alright

FUCK AND DIE
by Adam Haney
Laugh and cry
Fuck and die
Give your love
And take your time
Find yourself
And lose your mind
We’re all humans
Let’s be kind
Be a creature
Then create
No time like making time
The rhymes can wait
Goodbye