Today we return to ‘meet the colony’, where we put one of our talented team members in the hot seat to pick apart every fibre of their very being. Don’t worry, it doesn’t usually hurt.
Our team is the driving force behind Mooncolony’s success, providing premium art and illustration services to video game developers and publishers around the world. So, who is our next rockstar?
Meet Joris Dewolf. Joris is one of our newest team members, joining us in June of 2022 as an Art Director. Originally from Antwerp, Belgium, Joris completed his bachelor's degree in Graphic Design in 2011. However, he had always dreamt of pursuing a career as a Concept Artist. He went down the self-teaching route, sharpening his art skills using books, online resources including YouTube and magazines such as ImagineFX.
After starting his career as a freelance artist, Joris received a job offer in 2013 for his first in-house position as a Concept Artist. So he packed his bags and moved to Canada to join Volta Studios. Joris quickly fell in love with the process of creating games. From then on, he was always on the hunt for new opportunities in different countries to enhance his experience and knowledge.
Joris has since worked all over the world, learning from great teachers and making many friends. He worked for Social Point on projects including Dragon City and Monster Legends, as well as Digital Legends on projects including Afterpulse and Respawnable Heroes. Most recently, Joris lived in Paris, working for Ubisoft as a Junior Art Director on two mobile projects. Moving into a supervisory position felt like a natural move for Joris, enjoying communicating with other people and sharing ideas and feedback.
Joris now holds over 9 years of experience creating Illustration & Concept Artwork for Video Games, Mobile Games, Cover Artwork and Animation, with 4 years of experience in supervisory creative positions. These global adventures have turned Joris into a very passionate artist, leader and collaborator. In June of 2022, Joris became a proud member of our team as an Art Director, moving all the way from Paris to the main space hub in Cambridge. So far he has loved that we have an international atmosphere and enjoys being surrounded by so much talent.
We asked Joris some more probing questions to get to know him a little better…
What advice would you give to someone who wants to get into a similar position to the one you are in?
Firstly, always follow your heart and do what you love to do the most. Ride the natural wave of life. If you would like to become an art director, focus on your craft first, sharpen your communication skills and learn all about the industry you would like to flourish in.
But be prepared. Art Direction comes with a huge sacrifice. The more you roll into a managing position, the less time you have to do any fun and creative artwork yourself. So this might not be the path for every artist.
Life is all about trying out new things. To get where I am now, I simply applied for an Art Supervisor position, tried it out and loved it!
How do you motivate yourself? What inspires you at work?
The variety of talented artists that we get to work with!
Which Artist(s) inspire you?
Of course, Mid Century illustrators such as Norman Rockwell and J. C. Leyendecker. But honestly, my passion for art isn’t limited to illustration and fine art only, but also Graphic design, Modern Art, Architecture, Sculpture, Music and so on. Inspirational current-day artists very much depend on the project I’m working on, so there are too many to pick from.
What’s the biggest misconception people have about your position?
That I’m here to be a boss. I’m actually here primarily for mentorship and direction more than being a boss. I’m just a fellow artist really!
What are your favourite games?
This is difficult… I like games from Clash Royale to Elden Ring. I love Naugtydog’s games, Ratchet and Clank are great. I love Ubisoft games, and that is why it was so appealing to go and work for them. Oh, Lara Croft Go has some amazing Art Direction that I really like. And Outer Wilds is a great and beautiful indie game.
What do you typically play on?
Playstation and mobile.
What other hobbies do you have?
Working out, CrossFit, playing the guitar, sketching, walking and exploring.
What advice would you give to your teenage self?
Don’t smoke! Other than that, keep doing what you’re doing and keep following your dreams. I have no regrets about how I did things, because that’s how I got here!
If you could click your fingers and become an expert in something, what would it be?
Languages. That way I could communicate with anyone in the world!
The zombie apocalypse is coming, who are three people you want on your team?
My wife, Chuck Noris and Macgyver.
What’s your favourite family tradition?
Just going back to Belgium to see my family. We used to have great family BBQs at my uncle's.
What is your favourite Adobe shortcut?
What is your most-used emoji?
What’s your favourite food?
Belgian fries, which are fried twice, traditionally in Ox fat. And vol au vent, I always have this when I go back to Belgium.
We hope that you’ve enjoyed getting to know Joris as much as we have! If you want to see more of Joris’ work, check out his ArtStation here!
Don’t forget you can interact with our team and network with your fellow artists over on our Discord server, where you can get a peek behind the scenes of the galaxy’s fastest-growing concept art and illustration studio. See you next time on “meet the colony”!