Holy crap dudes, I haven’t posted in 3 months! This is long overdue, but at least I have rad news. Defiance launched on Tuesday! So much jubilee. Here is a trailer that I helped with. There isn’t a day that goes by where I can’t grasp how lucky I am to work with such great talent. A year ago Golfsmith rejected my application to work on their marketing team. I can’t believe I spent a day being depressed if I meant I could work at Trion! 

image

More fabulous news! I finished Volthair #4. Three years of nonfiction stories finally coming together. I thought procrastination would eat me alive, but it didn’t! Please head over to my etsy to grab a copy. 

Some other updates: I’ll be revamping the blog to be prettier and maybe I’ll blog more. 

2013 Hoorays! Tips for Job Seekers

Happy New Year, folks! If you haven’t heard the good news already, I am now a cinematic designer for Trion Worlds. I am so blessed to have a stable home and to have a beautiful family now! Meet the newest addition, Khlobuo (Khloe) Uematsu!

Khlobuo Uematsu

To be honest, looking back at 2012 - it has been pretty rough, if not enlightening. I was unemployed for most of the year and then took a risk to move out to California for a contract job. It has been bumpy and I expect it won’t get easier, but it has been incredibly rewarding.  

My New Years Resolution:
1. Finish Volthair #4 (I’ve been writing it for 2 years now, whattt)
2. Meditate & Self Reflect more regularly 
3. Run a marathon (5K)

Currently 12 million Americans are unemployed right now. A good handful of my friends are right now. I was unemployed for 9 months in Austin. It was awful. I treated job applications as another job and it was really depressing when I would put a lot of work into my applications and receive no responses from them.  I created 20+ different catered resumes for multiple different types of jobs. I wrote my cover letters after researching a company thoroughly. Out of all my applications, it was about 85% no response and 15% rejection emails. I would have rather got 100% rejection emails instead of no responses. Being unemployed is like having a a full-time job that no one in society values. As bleak as being unemployed was, I would say it has made me more humble, more kind and overall a better person. I had a lot of time to think about my career and I learned a lot about myself.

A while ago, my friend’s boyfriend was currently unemployed and he felt quite dejected about it. She asked me for some tips and ways I kept myself busy. These are some things I did to get out of the blues:

1. Separate job search work and house work: Initially when I started unemployment, I was obsessed about cleaning, organizing and minimizing junk. This felt good, because not having a job makes you feel very powerless, so by cleaning, I felt I had more control over my environment. This is problematic when you live with other people, because they have jobs and don’t have as much time as you to clean. So you feel dependent on having a good environment to live in and then you resent the mess other people create. After awhile, you don’t feel like you have any control, because life happens, mess happens, and you can’t change other people’s behavior very easily. On top of that, I felt like I wasted a lot of time cleaning. One of the things I did was move my desk out of my room into an office or closed off area. Whenever I job searched, it was strictly job search time and no more cleaning procrastination time! 

2. Take a Class: I took a 3D modeling class at UT. I felt productive and I got to be around people. It’s nice to be around strangers. Sometimes hanging out with your close friends or old work friends is painful. They ask about how your unemployment and work search progress and then you start missing work. Austin is totally awesome in terms of classes and meet ups - tons of industry events too! 

Skillshare:http://www.skillshare.com/
AIGA Austin: http://aigaaustin.org/events
Meetup: http://austin.meetup.com/
Austin Digital Jobs post events too: https://www.facebook.com/groups/austindigitaljobs/

3. Volunteering or Interning: I volunteered for BikeTexas. They paid me a little bit, but I would put in extra hours because I just missed working. Then I started interning for the Alamo Drafthouse. I loved it. I missed being in a creative office atmosphere. Tons of non-profits or other organizations NEED designers badly. Because you are working for free, you totally get more creative authority. If you don’t like it, then don’t do it. Volunteer for something you are passionate about. I love films, so the drafthouse was perfect. 

4. Job Club: My friend and I met up a lot to talk about our job hunt, what’s working, what’s not, along with our next step plans. Finding a group of unemployed/job seeking people and meeting once a week is very helpful. It keeps you motivated and accountable, because you don’t want to look like a chump around others. Also, those people will help you when they are job searching.. it’s like having a another set of eyes when they are going through their search and talking to their contacts.

5. Exercise has helped me mentally, physically and just made me feel better about myself. After gaining 10 lbs at Bioware, I felt terrible about myself. No energy and I slept all the time. I bought so many pairs of sweat pants :O 

Fitocracy is a social network and work out tracker, it’s fun because I like games and it makes working out less.. boring. Also, I’ve made a few friends on there. Great community. 
Couch to 5k is a running program that I have heard great things about from other people.
Yogamazing is a series that I like to do for flexibility
Pop Pilates is faster than yoga. It’s about small precision movements and can burn fat quickly. Do the cardio ones!

7. It doesn’t hurt to ask for help! Everyone has been jobless and in your shoes before. I was embarrassed about not finding employment within 3 months. I thought to myself, “how could I possibly still be unemployed?” I felt unwanted and that I was missing skills or something. That could be the case, but lets face it: the economy sucks right now. We all know it. Email your friends, reach out to professionals for advice, find mentors, just ask for help when you need it. Most people want to give advice, and they want to hear themselves talk. I mean aren’t I doing it right now? But seriously, I truly believe most peoples’ natural instinct is to give help when asked for help.

So that’s about what I did, and I can’t guarantee any of it will help. Everyone is different. I’m sure someone could try all of these things and still feel kind of shitty. This is a note from Stephen Fry to a dejected fan that I like to read when I’m feeling like nothing is working at all. 

Anyways, I hope that was helpful! Feel free to ask me questions. 2013 HERE WE COME!  

This is a tattoo design that I made for my friend, Paul. He wrote in an email: “I’ve been itching to get a small tattoo on my ankle, and had been between a bike (I’ve been biking a lot, it’s really defining my 20s at this point and it makes me so insanely happy) and a chinstrap penguin (UT’s doing a production of a ballet I wrote music for about Roy, Silo, and Tango, a same sex penguin couple and their baby at the Central Park Zoo.” He also said he was looking for “something whimsical, a little stumpy, childish but still with that tinge of “hipster-y.” 
This is the product! Designed in photoshop. I think I will add shading to the penguin for a stylized print, but otherwise on the bottom right will be on Paul’s leg. Stay tuned for a photo of Paul’s leg in the future :)
Other updates:
+ My contract with Trion ends in 2 months. The future is a bit blurry right now, but I’m keeping my hopes high for the future.
+ I’ve been churning out a bunch of screenshot art and camera footage, so they will be published SOON (I hope)!
+ Ben and I are going to make a small animation clip together! Keyword: Siren
That’s about all, other than, I want to find a good life drawing group in this city! 

This is a tattoo design that I made for my friend, Paul. He wrote in an email: “I’ve been itching to get a small tattoo on my ankle, and had been between a bike (I’ve been biking a lot, it’s really defining my 20s at this point and it makes me so insanely happy) and a chinstrap penguin (UT’s doing a production of a ballet I wrote music for about Roy, Silo, and Tango, a same sex penguin couple and their baby at the Central Park Zoo.” He also said he was looking for “something whimsical, a little stumpy, childish but still with that tinge of “hipster-y.” 

This is the product! Designed in photoshop. I think I will add shading to the penguin for a stylized print, but otherwise on the bottom right will be on Paul’s leg. Stay tuned for a photo of Paul’s leg in the future :)

Other updates:

+ My contract with Trion ends in 2 months. The future is a bit blurry right now, but I’m keeping my hopes high for the future.

+ I’ve been churning out a bunch of screenshot art and camera footage, so they will be published SOON (I hope)!

+ Ben and I are going to make a small animation clip together! Keyword: Siren

That’s about all, other than, I want to find a good life drawing group in this city! 


PCGAMER featured 2 of my photos on their page. The headliner image was taken by me :) I never realized how difficult it was taking these screenshots and actually getting them approved. I’m learning so much at Trion! 

PCGAMER featured 2 of my photos on their page. The headliner image was taken by me :) I never realized how difficult it was taking these screenshots and actually getting them approved. I’m learning so much at Trion! 

Most of my blog writing begins with, “long time no update.” Keywords to my blogging career. Welp, I’m a capture artist at Trion Worlds! I sold all my furniture, packed my whole life into a car and drove across the country to California. This is my first time living outside of the state of Texas. LIfe is pretty weird right now. 

The weather is amazing here. 

Gamers! End of Nations beta is open, sign up! 

 

I finished The Avengers Trivia videos for the drafthouse last week. My favorite video I’ve done is the Hawkeye one. Our next project are promotional videos for Prometheus and Moonrise Kingdom (too freaking excited for Wes Anderson’s new film, you have no idea). We’ll also be doing a live action project. 

On Friday, I had an interview with Trion Worlds. It went quite smoothly and I’m still waiting for the details. Please send me good energy! I will really appreciate it. A recruiter has also sent my information to Turn 10, a subsidiary game company under Microsoft. I hope this also pulls through! 

Other updates:

+ I’ve been making some marketing materials for Brave New Books. 

+ I’m designing a logo for Beyond Organix, a local organic farm in Austin, Texas. 

+ My friend, Will Martin, has approached me to design a map for his limited edition Roughrider DVDS. Way excited about this illustration project!

You guys!!! I was in the top five finalist for the VFS Women in Games Scholarship. I am so proud of Ben and I. He had the inspiration and general game ideas. I totally hashed it out and visualized it. VFS offered me half off their tuition. I declined after much thought, because the other half is pretty expensive and I think if I were to go back to school, I’d like a more extensive program that can help me 3D Model and animate like a BOSS

Other exciting news…(drumroll)… I’m a motion graphics intern editor at the Alamo Drafthouse! I love it so far! Everyone I work with is super nice and HILARIOUS. I swear I spend half of my time there laughing. 

Currently I’m working on a rad Avengers trivia video that will play in the lobby before it premieres.  So incredibly excited. Everyone should go to the drafthouse and watch it. Do it! 

Other news:

+ I’ve expanded my job search to outside of Austin. Unfortunately, I must change up my job hunt game plan to get results. If anyone knows any design, cinematic game design, junior art game, and related jobs, please let me know! Send me listings at my email at kathytran@volthair.com. Thank you, I’ll be eternally grateful!

+ I’m finally getting a neat batch of design gigs including: Chronicle Ads and some interesting marketing materials for Brave New Books

Well folks, that’s all for now! 



Long time, no update again! It’s difficult balancing work and talking about work, huh? Social media is an interesting world. It makes me think of this graphic:


It’s like we live in two different worlds! Reality is strange, eh? Anyways, the top photos are a game concept Ben and I crafted together for the VFS Women in Games Scholarship. Ben provided the inspiration and I hashed out the details. Coming up with game concepts are REALLY DIFFICULT. There are so many gray areas I can’t make up details for without ACTUALLY doing it. I realize from this project that I have a difficult planning without doing. This is something I need to work on. Planning is the most important stage! I like to skip it and JUST DO, which in some cases is great, but then I end up wasting a lot of time. 
Anyways, things are a changing as Bob Dylan would say. I have exciting news that I won’t share until I’m certain about it. Cross your fingers for me, whoever reads this. 
UPDATES:
+ I’m finishing up the animation project, “Once Again.”
+ I’m helping Ben Bays with an awesome fake trailer where he stars as a super rad caveman
+ Candace and I are working on Austin food related pun illustrations. 
+ Volthair #4 is almost DONE. 
+ My cat is really cute. TRUTH. 
+ CAPS.

Long time, no update again! It’s difficult balancing work and talking about work, huh? Social media is an interesting world. It makes me think of this graphic:

It’s like we live in two different worlds! Reality is strange, eh? Anyways, the top photos are a game concept Ben and I crafted together for the VFS Women in Games Scholarship. Ben provided the inspiration and I hashed out the details. Coming up with game concepts are REALLY DIFFICULT. There are so many gray areas I can’t make up details for without ACTUALLY doing it. I realize from this project that I have a difficult planning without doing. This is something I need to work on. Planning is the most important stage! I like to skip it and JUST DO, which in some cases is great, but then I end up wasting a lot of time. 

Anyways, things are a changing as Bob Dylan would say. I have exciting news that I won’t share until I’m certain about it. Cross your fingers for me, whoever reads this. 

UPDATES:

+ I’m finishing up the animation project, “Once Again.”

+ I’m helping Ben Bays with an awesome fake trailer where he stars as a super rad caveman

+ Candace and I are working on Austin food related pun illustrations. 

+ Volthair #4 is almost DONE. 

+ My cat is really cute. TRUTH. 

+ CAPS.


+ I used to blog all the time! But now I’ve been so lazy or… productive? Above is a sketch from Dr.Sketchy’s Burlesque Sketch Night. I really enjoyed this set up! I feel like the tight fitting clothes helped my proportions. However, the lighting in the room was not as good as Naked Lunch and I was situated very far from the model. I think that is why my sketches turned out very cartoon - like, which is not a bad thing, tres interesting. 
+ Below the sketch is another still from the animation I am working on. Whew… almost done!
+ Ben and I made a game concept together! Alot of the original idea was from him. I did most of the translation of the idea. This is for my Women in Games scholarship with VFS. I will post a photo later this week. 
+ SXSW is starting…soon for me! Chiang is visiting me and we’re going to make some cool stuff. Sooooo stay tuned, folks. 

+ I used to blog all the time! But now I’ve been so lazy or… productive? Above is a sketch from Dr.Sketchy’s Burlesque Sketch Night. I really enjoyed this set up! I feel like the tight fitting clothes helped my proportions. However, the lighting in the room was not as good as Naked Lunch and I was situated very far from the model. I think that is why my sketches turned out very cartoon - like, which is not a bad thing, tres interesting. 

+ Below the sketch is another still from the animation I am working on. Whew… almost done!

+ Ben and I made a game concept together! Alot of the original idea was from him. I did most of the translation of the idea. This is for my Women in Games scholarship with VFS. I will post a photo later this week. 

+ SXSW is starting…soon for me! Chiang is visiting me and we’re going to make some cool stuff. Sooooo stay tuned, folks.