Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Gear: Voxel

Tell me a little bit about your company and the founders? What made you decide to get into your field?

I’m the founder, and my hobbies/interests helped to form the company. Of my many interests I’ve always been into gaming, engineering, and designing.

One day I was out and I saw an 8 bit flat perler that someone made. I thought it was really cool to see an 8 bit character in real life. I probably would have bought it right then and there, but the other parts of me wanted to learn how to make them myself. I researched perler art/sprite craft and began doing it myself. After making a few, I had already reached the point where the “magic” was gone, I wanted to do something new that no one else had, I wanted to literally take these sprite characters and make them 3D in real life. Basically take the pixel and turn it into a Voxel (the 3d form of a pixel).

This is where things got a bit complicated. I researched and tried many different programs, most of which had one aspect that helped, but then other options that hindered me. Finally I settled on having to create each character a few times in different ways to actually give me what I need to start the perler.

A lot of people seem to think it’s as simple as making a pattern and there you go, but the process of creating that pattern can take a very long time. That’s why it’s a downer whenever someone says it is simple and you can find instructions all over the net. Since I started, there are a few other people out there making voxelized characters, but no sure way for anyone to simply design and create a 3D pattern. This is another reason why I don’t sell or give patterns away at the moment.

What is the vision of your company? What do you hope to achieve?
Honestly I started it as a way to make money doing one of my hobbies. I didn’t have much free time due to college, but needed some way to have time for my hobbies and hopefully earn some income. Since the beginning the popularity has grown, and I’ll be attending my first con in June. The convention will be a large deciding factor in how much time to continue investing in making Voxel characters. It will be the Albuquerque Comic Con June 27-29th, I’m hoping to be able to gauge the interests of con goers, and have already bought a table.

I also hope to continue pushing the idea of what you can do with beads to create sprite art. For instance I made a Metroid in a glass and perler bead capsule that actually lights up with LEDs. Its fun to get more of the electrical engineering involved with my hobby. I love wiring and soldering to create lighting effects. Recently I made a Tardis that opens up to reveal a cool compartment, but it also lights up from the inside with LEDs.

What is your favorite design? Why?

This one is kind of hard to answer, I love the big projects that let me do something new, such as the LED Metroid capsule. I also enjoy any character that you can show side by side with the original 2d and they look identical. For instance retro Mario, and Link. Actually if you put the Metroid capsule next to a picture of the start menu from Super Metroid I got it pretty accurate, which wasn’t easy.

What do you think about the rise in popularity of small collectible figurines with personality? Where do you see the field going?

I think the rise in popularity is cool, and totally understand the trend. If you love something from popular culture, you want a small reminder or token of it, and its perfect to get a little character from the game, movie, comic, etc. Also I think its natural for humans to want to collect things. I know tons of people that have gone all out with there POP collections, it’s like Pokemon “Gotta catch them all”.

What is your website? Contact Info? is my store site. I can also be found on Facebook, Deviant Art, and Instagram @VoxelPerlers

Additional Comments?

I just want to say thank you for your interest, and thank you to everyone that supports what I do. It’s the positive feedback and vibes that really get me motivated. When someone says something nice, or understands the time invested in creating Voxel characters, it brings a smile to face.

If anyone wants to see the characters in real life, and a few other surprise creations I’m working on, they can come out to the Albuquerque Con June 27-29th.

Thanks again.

Post by Vikki
Twitter: ProfessorWhite

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