JustinOperable's WSAS Project
1.1) Write a small introduction to yourself. My name is Justin Nichol. I am 24 years old from Riverside, Ca. I'm an Illustration/ Entertainment Arts student and free media advocate. I've contributed for a short while to Battle for Wesnoth, and the fife based PARPG. I also am the founder of an organization dedicated to the creation and proliferation of freely license tabletop games, including a CC licensed RPG system.
1.2) State your preferred email address. Anok@riseup.net
1.3) If you have chosen a nick/screenname for the Wesnoth forums, what is it? Justinoperable
1.4) Why do you want to participate in the Wesnoth Summer Art Scholarship? My aim is to contribute heavily for the foreseeable future to free and open media projects. In fact, I would like to make my living as an artist by providing freely licensed media. So it seems a natural step in that direction to work on Wesnoth and provide for my monetary needs in the process.
1.5) What are you studying; i.e. subject, level and school? I have two associates degrees, one in Graphics Technology. I have a certificate in Illustration and am currently working on transferring to a 4 year instution and attending Riverside Community College. I also apprentice with a local Entertainment Design artist who has worked for Disney and rhythm and hues.
1.6) If you have contributed any art to Wesnoth, please list what you have worked on below: I have created the portraits for the Young Ogre/Ogre, the Tomb Guardian and Lionel from Delfadors Memoirs and I am near completion of several other portraits.
2.1) Are they any art projects you have worked on before, if so, what are they? Battle for Wesnoth, PARPG and personal Open Media Projects related to tabletop gaming and creating generic raster game art for prototyping new games.
2.2) Have you created art in a team environment before? In school I have had to work on group projects, and I consider my experience in Wesnoth prior to this to be a team environment.
2.3) OPEN SOURCE
2.3.1) Are you already involved with any open source development projects? If yes, please describe the project and the scope of your involvement. I am foremost an Art Contributor for Battle for Wesnoth. I have also created Concept Art pieces for the new project PARPG, some of which have been made into committed in-game models. Additionally I have created generic raster game art which I have contributed to the new website Opengameart.org and have been a monetary contributor to open media projects such as big buck bunny, yo frankie! And A Swarm of Angels.
2.4) GAMING EXPERIENCE
2.4.1) Are you interested in playing videogames, and if so, what genres are you interested in? Yes I am, I tend to gravitate towards RPGs, RTS and TBS, and inventive casual games.
2.4.2) Are you more interested in story or gameplay? As a player, gameplay is intensely important and I can put up with a cliché story if the gaemplay is good, but as an artist I'm primarily interested in narratives, so I'd have to say I'm more interested in story as an artist and creating a sense of place and history.
2.4.3) Have you played Wesnoth? If so, tell us roughly for how long. We do not plan to favor Wesnoth players as such, but some particular projects require a good feeling for the game which is hard to get without having played intensively. I've played extensively for about two and a half years, I've tried every campaign but only completed Heir to the Throne, Tale of Two Brothers, An Orcish Incursion, Delfadors Memoirs, The South Guard, Liberty, the Hammer of Thursagan, Son of the Black Eye, The Rise of Wesnoth and Under the Burning Suns. I am currently playing through IftU.
3) COMMUNICATION SKILLS
3.1) Though most of our developers are not native English speakers, English is the project's working language. Describe your fluency level in written English. Native English Speaker (American)
3.2) Are you comfortable with giving and receiving very technically-oriented criticism of your work, or do you feel that art should be exempt from criticism? I am very comfortable technically oriented criticism and am drawn to illustration precisely because it is technically oriented and has more to do with proper execution than mere taste.
3.3) Are you patient enough to simultaneously give attention to good, productive criticism, whilst not being inflamed by incorrect or offensive criticisms? I have become somewhat flustered with incorrect criticisms in the past, but I've gotten a much thicker skin through interaction with the Wesnoth community and would certainly be as open as possible to criticism from the community in this regard as I would essentially be an employee of the project and would owe even more credence to the wishes of the community and developers.
4.1) Did you select a project from our list, if so, which one? Otherwise, if you have invented your own project, please describe the project and the scope. The overall polish of Wesnoth art has been driven higher and higher rapidly over the last year and a half. One glaring gap in this polish is the campaign portraits. Many mainline campaigns have portraits which are either not up to current mainline standards or are beautiful in their own right but well out of the current style of the project. I would like to finish my current portrait projects (trolls), and then set about redoing 17 portraits from mainline campaigns. These portraits would satisfy the portrait needs for the campaigns Two Brothers, Heir to the Throne, Descent into Darkness and The Eastern Invasion. My aim would be to remain true wherever possible to the intentions of the original artists and maintain as much of the likeness of the characters to which Wesnoth players have become accustomed as possible. I would also aim to point out where in all mainline campaigns we might be able to substitute substandard campaign portraits for generic portraits.
4.2) Why did you choose this project, and what do you expect to gain from doing it? I chose Wesnoth because I am a fan of Fantasy and a long time player of the game. It is in a very advanced stage of development, and contributing to it helps to polish one of the most visible free games and enables newer projects to borrow from the art assets we create here.
4.3) Include an estimated timeline for your work on the project. Don't forget to mention other obligations like "I've booked a holiday between A and B" and "I have an exam at ABC and will be occupied, at that time".
July 15th- Arne (TB), Bjarn (TB), Great Troll, Troll Shaman, Troll Warrior
August 4th- Darken Volk, Dela, Malin (Young, Old, Lich) (DiD)
August 24th- Gweddry, Owaec, Dacyn, Konrad II, Mal Ravanal (EI)
September 13th- Delfador (Old), Konrad (Normal and Angry), Lisar, Asheviere (HttT)
4.4) What would make you stay in the Wesnoth community after the conclusion of this scholarship? A better question would be what would make me leave. I am interested in continuing to make art and polish my skills to the benefit of the project whether or not I get the scholarship, and would continue long after either way. The scholarship will help me devote more time to the project over the course of the summer.
5) PRACTICAL CONSIDERATIONS 5.1) What computer platform do you use? Ubuntu Studio Linux 9.04
5.2) Do you consider yourself to be good with computers? I am skilled in XHTML and CSS, and consider myself a Linux Power User. I do not know WML but I don't imagine I would have much of a problem learning, though I prefer to stick to straight illustration in this project)
5.3) Have you ever used IRC? Yes
5.4) At what hours are you awake and available to communicate? 4pm - 8am UTC (I'm in the Pacific Time Zone FYI)