Hey guys, welcome to this week’s edition of “Epic Gamer Artists.” Tim here, sitting down with Dot from the Epic Gamers Community, who makes the awesome stuffed Tickers! They are quite the fan favorite, as well as the folks at Epic. Now let’s dive in on how she goes into creating them!
Tim: Tell us a little bit about yourself, and what you do.
Dot: I live in a small town in Connecticut and I work for Microsoft doing inventory, as well as some freelance Production Assistant work for a TV/film/documentary production company. I went to school for live audio engineering for theater, but my main interest is in foley/voice over recording. Eventually, I hope to get into that field.
In my spare time (of which I don’t have much,) I’m pretty much a giant nerd – I’m a member of the 501st Legion, a Star Wars costuming group and I have my own Stormtrooper armor. I’m not as big a Star Wars fan anymore, so I’m looking to branch out in costuming – I really want to get a set of Gears COG armor going, as well as a set of Halo armor.
Other than that, I try to spend as much of my limited free time relaxing as possible, but that never happens! Usually I’m sketching patterns for new projects, drawing for my own enjoyment, reading or watching really bad horror/sci-fi movies.
T: Are you a gamer? Pretty sure you’ve played some Gears of War!
D: I’ve been a gamer pretty much as far back as I can remember! My grandparents had an Atari for us, so I spent a LOT of time playing Mouse Trap. When I was like 5, my cousins used to troll me by making me play E.T.- The Extraterrestrial, saying that ET needed my help. I spent hours sitting in the TV room while my cousins ran around outside playing and doing fun things and I was trying to float ET out of holes.
I’ve pretty much only been a console gamer – Atari, NES, Genesis, N64, PS1, PS2, Xbox, Xbox 360, PS3. I really dig handhelds, but I can’t get into them as much, unless it’s Pokémon, really. I also have a Sega Game Gear, but after I lost the AC Adapter, my parents refused to mortgage the house to buy batteries for it.
I LOVE Gears! I actually got into Gears pretty late – I only had my 360 for a few months before Gears 2 came out, and picked up Gears 1 maybe a month or two before Gears 2, but after playing some co-op with a co-worker who eventually became one of my best friends (because we played so much Gears together,) I was totally hooked.
T: In terms of what kind of medium you use, what would you say it would be? I’ve noticed you enjoy working with sewing things up!
D: For making the plushies, I pretty much only use jersey knit material. When I first started, I just went to Wal-Mart and picked up a bunch of 4XL t-shirts and used them for ticker material, and for the most part, still do, because it’s less expensive and it’s easier to find the colors I need. I originally started making plushies out of t-shirts only because that’s what I had laying around the house, but I’ve been looking into trying flannel and fleece for future projects.
T: Your Tickers are quite the fan favorite. What gave you the inspiration to make these stuffed buddies? I think you’ve captured Flak’s and raczilla’s heart with their cuteness.
D: Thanks! It basically all stems from Twitter. Cliff Bleszinski tweeted about pet ticker costumes. Looking back, he probably wasn’t 100% serious, but I got bored and made a ticker costume for my rabbit, Blossom, mostly because my cat would have nothing to do with that. From “Tickerbun,” I met Stacey/iFlak and she was really cool, so as a “thank you” for all the support for my silly bunny costume, I made a Tickerbun plush for her and sent it down to Epic.
After I made plush Tickerbun, she forwarded a request from someone else at Epic requesting real tickers, so I was just like “I got this” and” that’s how I got into making the plush tickers.
T: I think I remembered you making a Lambent Wretch… I thought that was pretty awesome. Tell us a little bit about him.
D: Yep! I made a plush Lambent Wretch for Zilla when I met him at PAX East. I actually had made a regular Wretch for iFlak out of the leftover material from the ticker request and sent that down. When I found I was going to be meeting raczilla at PAX East, I was already making a ticker for someone else and didn’t really want to go down that route, I was nowhere near satisfied with any of the other ideas I was throwing around, and I didn’t want to send him a standard Wretch because I’d already done that, so I tweaked the original Wretch patterns to make it Lambent. It’s basically a palette swap, so I like to think of them as Smoke and Noob Saibot.
T: Have you drawn anything related to Gears?
D: Actually no, it never really occurred to me. I do draw, but usually it’s just animals or dinosaurs or cartoony, cutesy things. The closest thing I’ve ever done that was remotely close to fan art would probably be the holiday card I sent some of the folks at Epic this past Christmas, and that was primarily just “Photoshopping” pre-existing pictures into a holiday scene.
T: Before we end this, what do you want to say to your fellow Epic Gamers in the community?
D: Everyone in the Epic Gamers community is fantastic! The passion you guys have for all things Epic and for gaming in general is insanely awesome! I’m proud to be among the ranks of the Epic Gamers!
We have chosen Dot to be our Epic Gamer of the Month! Dot will receive an Epic Edition signed by Cliff Bleszinski and an Epic swag bag. Thank you Dot for being an Epic Gamer!