A-Z Characters – The End

September 23rd, 2014

ABC Characters

A little over two years ago I started sketching on my iPad and thought, “hey, this seems like fun, if only I had some project that would make me keep at it.” A similar project I finished before went through all 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet, so I decided to take the same route, but change the language – and the complexity. Instead of illustrating drawn-out, grammatically-acrobatic sentences, I focused on two characters per letter, the goals being: having fun, trying different styles with the iPad (using a Wacom stylus and the excellent app Procreate), and of course covering as many fandoms as possible.

In the beginning I chose characters pretty much randomly: I just listed all the names that came to mind, picked two that seemed fun to draw or would work well together, and threw them on the canvas. But after I posted B, and someone pointed out that so far there’s a vampire slayer in every illustration, I thought it would be really cool if there was some link going through all the letters. Nothing too obvious, like a small easter egg that only I would be aware of, until the big reveal at the end.

I quickly gave up on finding a vampire slayer for every letter in the alphabet, but since the link so far had been between two characters, I decided to roll with it: a thematic link between every two characters from consecutive letters (A and B, B and C, without using the same character for two different links). Sometimes the connection is very general, like “comic book characters”, and sometimes quite specific. For some characters it came almost naturally, and for others I had to force connections on quite a narrow list of options. I’m proud to say that except for the few impossible letters at the end of the alphabet, I always picked characters solely for the letter I was working on, without planning future links. Handicap, yo!

Here’s the entire series. You’re welcome to go over the letters and try to figure out the links before scrolling down to the table that lists all of them. And you can see all the illustrations in this nifty page my husband wrote for me.

A B C D
E F G H
I J K L
M N O P
Q R S T
U V W X
Y Z

Below is the list of links I had in mind. Did you get all of them? Found others that fit even better? What’s your favourite letter in the series? Tell me everything in the comments.

Cheers!
Aviv

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Between the letters The characters The link
A-B Abraham Lincoln/Buffy Vampire slayers
B-C Batman/Cyclops Comic book characters
C-D Chikorita/Dolf Children’s cartoons characters
D-E Death/Edward Pale, dark and scary but ultimately adorable
E-F Elrond/Frodo Lord of the Rings characters
F-G Falcore/Gizmo Fluffy, friendly monsters
G-H Ganesh/Horus Beastly Gods
H-I Hawkeye/Ironman Avengers teammates
I-J Inigo/Cpt. Jack Sparrow Dread pirates
J-K Jayne/Kaylee Serenity crew members
K-L Khalisee/Lockheed Dragons!
L-M Lara Croft/Mario Loved video game characters
M-N Marie Antoinette/Napoleon Famous French folk
N-O Nessie/Ogopogo Lake monsters
O-P Obi-Wan/Plato Wise masters
P-Q Pocahontas/Quetzlcoatl Pre-Columbian America figures
Q-R Qetesh/Rush Stargate characters
R-S Rumplestiltskin/Snow White Once Upon a Time fables
S-T Snape/Trinity Just pale, dark and scary
T-U Te’alc/Uhura Token black characters
U-V Ursula/Voldemort Evil magic users
V-W V/William Wallace Idealistic freedom fighters
W-X Wolverine/Xavier X-men
X-Y Xena/Ygritte Awesome warrior ladies
Y-Z Yoda/Zoidberg Look weird, talk funny
Z-A Zelda/April Drawn to guys in green
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Z for Zelda and Zoidberg

August 25th, 2014

That’s all, folks! 26 letters down, only 784 days since I started this project. So let’s call it a monthly project and consider me doing pretty well on deadlines!

I’ll upload a nice final post shortly, with all the letters and an easter egg I’ve been keeping a secret all along.

Z for Zelda and Zoidberg

Previous letters

X & Y

August 2nd, 2014

Whoops, missed uploading a letter, so here are both X and Y, featuring a nice selection of geek culture from all over the place. Special guest appearance: Jon Snow unconscious on a horse!

X for Xena and Xavier

Y for Yoda and Ygritte

Drawings from here and there

June 23rd, 2014

It’s so easy to toss every finished piece on my Facebook Page and forget to properly upload any of them to my blog. The plus side is that every now and then you get a nice big apologetic post full of forgotten stuff.

Two commissions (more or less). The first is for a bidder in an Earth Defense Force 72-hours charity marathon held in Israel, who wanted a combination of Winnie the Pooh’s Eeyore and Marvin from the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy for his profile picture. The second is a birthday present requested by Leigh Lahav for her husband. She got several of her artist friends to draw him as a character in his favourite TV shows, and picked Firefly for me.

EDF Marathon: Eeyore meets Marvin

Captain Orenolds and Leighnara

Character design and sketch pages inspired by The Dresden Files, an awesome urban-fantasy detective book series by Jim Butcher.

The Dresden Files - Dresden & Murphy character designs

The Dresden Files - character designs

And three pieces for the Sketch Dailies Twitter group, which comes up with a daily topic and has pretty much the entire artistic internet draw their interpretation of it. The topics here are Goldilocks; Rapunzel and Tarzan; Captain America, Lady of the Lack and Unicorn. There aren’t really any rules preventing topic mash-ups, which is good, because otherwise I’d be missing on a whole lot of good ones.

Sketch Dailies: Goldilocks Sketch Dailies: Tarzan & Rapunzel Sketch Dailies: Captain America, Lady of the Lake & Unicorn

 

Aviv

W for Wolverine and William Wallace

June 10th, 2014

Well well well. Starting to near the end of this seemingly eternal project, where the English language dumped all of its least necessary letters. But I have some ideas for them already, and hopefully I can pick up the pace towards the finale.

W for Wolverine and William Wallace

Previous letters

Fishes and Chuckles (recent work for Chucklefish Games)

April 28th, 2014

A few months ago I joined Chucklefish studio, who created Starbound (among other things), and recently opened a London office to gather all of its members in one place.

I joined as part of a team working on a new game, about which not much is known at the moment, except that it’s going to involve pirates (yay!). Here are some preliminary sketches I did for the recruitment notice:

Chucklefish pirates game sketch
Chucklefish pirates game sketch

And here’s a whole album full of concept art created by Adam Riches, Zach Montoya and myself as part of the very early brainstorming process.

Other than working on the pirates game (working title [I hope]), I also drew some stuff for Starbound; not for the game itself – pixel-art is not my area of expertise – but around it.

Starbound is a “sandbox” game, meaning it’s totally open for exploration and interaction in hundreds of planets that are procedurally generated (instead of having a limited number of pre-designed ones). One of the cool things about it is that it’s constantly evolving, both in game mechanics and in story. In recent months, for example, a plot event titled “The Agaran Menace” unwrapped itself, starting with suspicious spores that popped up in various worlds, followed by mean-looking mushroom people. We uncovered the truth behind this worrisome phenomenon in a trailer, written by Starbound writer Ashton Raze and illustrated by me.

The event was accompanied by an old movie style poster:
Starbound: the Agaran Menace poster

And two comics pages you can see in the Chucklefish forums by clicking this first panel:
Starbound comics: McVicar Makes a Friend

Two Starbound wallpapers, the first of which came out together with the Agaran Menace and is kinda relevant:
Starbound wallpaper: Apex lab
All sizes at the bottom of this newsletter

Starbound wallpaper: Glitch knight
All sizes at the bottom of this newsletter

And last but not least (but kind of a bummer): my first task when I started working for Chucklefish was creating a cover illustration for an issue of PC Gamer UK, that had a long article and interview about Starbound. I worked on it for 3-4 days and was really pleased with the result, but the issue ended up having a different cover. I guess it’s hard to beat a Blizzard all-star design, but I still think it’s nice.
Starbound PC Gamer cover (unused)

Of course, all images and characters in this post belong to Chucklefish Games.

May your May be awesome,
Aviv

V for Voldemort, Violet, Vaarsuvius and V

March 16th, 2014

…and also for Victory!

V for Voldemort, Violet, Vaarsuvius and V

Previous letters

Happy New Year!

January 2nd, 2014

My 2014 starts in London, about 3 weeks after moving here with my boyfriend to try our luck in the Isles. I hope for an exciting year, full of British charm, new friends and good beer.

Incidentally, I also hope to find a job here, preferably in the games industry. If you happen to know a studio that’s looking to hire, I would very much appreciate it if you dropped me a line. Even updated my portfolio and everything.

Happy 2014

Have a wonderfully happy new year!
Aviv

Q, R, S, T, U

December 30th, 2013

Haven’t updated the ABCharacters project in a while! Here’s a bunch of ‘em.

ABCharacters: Q for Quetzalcoatl and Qetesh

R for Rush and Rumplestiltskin

S for Snow and Snape

T for Trinity and T'ealc

U for Ursula and Uhura

Previous letters

Scratch That!

November 28th, 2013

I spent a large portion of my time as a freelancer working with the lovely Jelly Button Games studio, and under Playtika‘s wing we worked on a scratch-card game for Facebook called Scratch That.

I can finally show some of the stuff I did for them, so here are some highlights:

The game’s mascot: a character that guides you through the game and appears in loading screens, various UI spots and marketing elements. The idea was to create a cute and slightly crazy animal, the grumpy scratch-card booth owner’s pet. You don’t see much of the owner’s character in the final version of the game, but I still like the idea.

Scratch That: Hamster designs

Scratch That: marketing Hamsters

 

Some of the game’s worlds: the scratch card + background + icons + minigame – all in the same theme.

Scratch That: Safari card

Scratch That: Boxing card

Scratch That: Diner card

Scratch That: Moon card

 

Some more splash screens and icons for other worlds’ minigames:

Scratch That: splash screens

It was really fun being part of the project from the very beginning, and seeing the different artists’ styles in various game world.

Aviv