Hello, Dani!

Arcade hires are coming thick and fast at the moment, and we are delighted to bring in our first Game Artist, the incredibly talented Dani Verburg! Dani will be based in our Netherlands office, and joins after impressing as a freelance artist on our National Gallery project. You can check out her portfolio here!

Welcome to Arcade, Dani! Tell us a bit about yourself.

Heya! I’m Dani, a Dutch game artist and illustrator! I’ve studied Game Art at the University of Arts located in Utrecht, the Netherlands, and gained my Bachelors Degree in Creative Media and Game Technologies there.

What have you done that you’re most proud of so far?

I am proud of my Game Art graduation project, which was an ambitious world building project as a proof of concept for my own action-adventure metroidvania game, as well as research about using colour psychology in visual storytelling.

Stunning work! Now you’re moving to permanent role with us at Arcade, what are you most looking forward to?

Contributing to amazing projects that that give people unique and awesome experiences, as well as the amazing creatively inspiring team!

What excites you most about immersive technologies?

I love how the field of immersive technology is still so full of potential. I’d love to see where it goes in the future and how I can contribute to it as a member of Arcade.

Us too! Can’t wait to start throwing your art into our projects. So, what do you get up to in your spare time?

I love to play video games like ‘The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth’ and ‘Hollow Knight’, and watch animated TV-shows like ‘The Owl House’ and ‘Amphibia’. I also love reading!

What sort of music are you likely to put on when you’re in charge of the playlist?

Lots of different things! From ‘Monster Cat’ electro mixtapes to punk rock bands like ‘Nothing But Thieves’, to beautiful video games scores like Gareth Coker’s soundtrack for ‘Ori and the Will of the Wisps’.

Yep, you pass! Anything else you think we should know or are prepared to admit to?!

Don’t be surprised if I suddenly show up in a conference call with an entirely different hair colour. I tend to just go from blue, to pink, to something else entirely unannounced. Keeps the creative energy flowing, ya know?

Fantastic, love a bit of colour around the place. Thanks for talking to us Dani, and welcome again to the team!

If you have any questions for Dani you can check out her various profiles here, or give her a shout at dani@arcade.ltd.

Hello, Jagoda and Shahd!

Over the summer we invited several hugely talented Masters students from Goldsmith’s AR/VR MA course to join our Arcade internship programme. After astonishing us with their skills and enthusiasm, we are thrilled to announce that Jagoda Wrobel (Immersive Experience Designer) and Shahd Sherief (AR Developer) have accepted full time offers and are now permanent members of the Arcade team! We thought it might be nice to find out a bit more about them.

Welcome to Arcade, Jagoda and Shahd! Tell us a bit about yourselves.

Shahd Sherief: Hii! I’m Shahd, I’m a Computer Engineer turned AR developer now at Arcade from Egypt!! I got my undergrad at the American University in Cairo, and am doing my masters in AR/VR at Goldsmiths in London!

Jagoda Wrobel: After living my best life in Newcastle for three years studying Graphic Design, I moved down to London to start a new chapter and, like Shahd, gained my Masters in VR & AR at Goldsmiths University.

A pair of Masters – how exciting! So, what have you done that you’re most proud of so far?

JW: While at university I co-created a few small companies with my friends that were recognized and won awards. However, my first full-time position was at the Arcade, and so far the whole experience has been amazing.

SS: Workwise, I am super proud of my academic projects. I love bringing my own ideas to life and I actually have another AR one in the works! The proudest is of my undergraduate thesis which was an AR projection mapping projector that we made from scratch with its own visual scripting interface! Lifewise as pertains to work, I’m most proud that I made the leap to quit my old very technical job that I just couldn’t see myself in, and move to London despite everyone saying it was a bad idea (I am known for those, but this wasn’t one of them).

What do they know?! You’ve made a great choice. What are you most looking forward to, working at Arcade?

SS: I’m most looking forward to being part of working on amazing projects honestly. I get really excited to see cool projects come to life, and feel so proud to know I was a part of that! And also to being a part of the absolutely unanimously wonderful team.

JW: I am looking forward to working on real-life briefs with existing clients alongside the professional team, to carry on exploring the creative possibilities of immersive technologies and create authentic experiences that immerse the audience and make them believe in the moment.

You’ve both spent time studying the immersive space – what excites you most about immersive technologies?

JW: It is exciting to shape the future of one of the fastest-rising industries and bring immersive experiences into everyday life. For now, there is a big knowledge gap when it comes to understanding terms like AR and VR. However, being part of the group that is spreading the awareness to a wider audience and seeing people try these immersive experiences for the first time is pretty awesome.

SS: I love that immersive tech is a relatively new field! It’s very cool to feel like you’re working in a field that you have the possibility to pioneer. What is also super cool, is that you can use XR as a tool to elevate basically most project ideas!

Great answers. So, what do you get up to in your spare time?

SS: I love to play the piano and guitar (as much as I adore London, I’m devastated to have left my piano behind) it’s truly therapeutic to me. I also sometimes write music and poetry!

JW: In my spare time, I like to keep myself busy and active. Usually, I would dance, meet up with my friends or do those two things together and hopefully soon get back on the plan to travel the world.

Music, dancing, poetry, travel – sounds very cool. Speaking of music, what are we going to hear when you’re in charge of the playlist?

JW: I have eclectic playlists that range through all sorts of music. What I listen to depends on my mood and the season of the year. Autumn is usually reserved for some post-summer nostalgia and indie rock.

SS:I’m a huge music snob and have a significant superiority complex when it comes to my music taste. It’s hard to describe so here is a playlist of songs that I decree as being fantastic. Which reminds me, I need to force this on everyone at Arcade in office!

Wow. I’m sensing some intense office debates – bring it on! Before you go, is there anything else you think we should know or are prepared to admit to?!

JW: I was very proud of my paper aeroplane making skills, which I had a chance to show off at the Arcade away day over the summer! If we ever have to enter some kind of origami competition I think I might be the right person for the job!

SS: Yes, I’m freakishly good at playing PianoTiles. I can play with one hand (trained myself to master it with both left and right) and even one finger. I get all of my best ideas when I play it, and if ever I’m stuck on a piece of code/work I just play PianoTiles for a bit and somehow the solution comes to me. Like I said, I owe my sanity and livelihood to the piano. This may or may not be my way of asking for a Steinway in office.

Well, it’s good to have an outlet! And as for the piano, we’ll definitely add it to the wishlist…! Anyway – thanks to both of you for speaking to us, and welcome again to the Arcade team.

If you have any questions for Shahd or Jagoda you can check out their LinkedIn profiles here and here, follow Jagoda on Twitter here, or give them a shout at jagoda@arcade.ltd or shahd@arcade.ltd.

Hello, Livvy!

Please join us in welcoming our newest Arcade team member, Olivia Hinkin! Livvy joins us as Arcade’s first specialist project manager, and brings a wealth of experience in the immersive space from her time with our friends StoryFutures. Find out more about her background and Eurovision obsession below…

Welcome to Arcade, Livvy! Tell us a bit about yourself.

Hi! I’m excited to be here. I’m a project manager based in Hampshire. I studied for my Masters in Film, TV and Screen Media at Birkbeck in London, and I’ve spent the last few years working on facilitating R&D projects for companies working with immersive and next-generation technologies.

So, what have you done that you’re most proud of so far?

I’ve been fortunate to link up companies with world-leading academics to help them solve challenges for their immersive projects. I’ve worked on projects involving haptic VR sculpting, reducing cybersickness in VR and live AR theatre distribution. It’s really satisfying to help small companies access support which allows them to grow, and I’ve learned a huge amount about immersive along the way.

As one of the beneficiaries, we know how important your work with StoryFutures was! Now that you’ve jumped to the agency side, what are you most looking forward to?

I’m looking forward to expanding my knowledge of immersive workflows and getting stuck into some of the incredible projects you guys are working on! It seems like things are getting pretty busy so I’m hoping I can help organise and streamline things.

Indeed they are, and we couldn’t be happier to have you on baord to help keep things organised! What excites you most about immersive technologies?

I think it’s easy to forget when you’ve been around immersive for a while how fantastic the reactions are from people who are experiencing VR and AR for the first time. That combined with the accessibility of AR technology means it has the potential to draw in huge audiences and have a big impact, especially around specific locations.

Agreed – hopefully you’ll be able to see lots of those reactions in person soon! So, what do you get up to in your spare time?

I always seem to have one or other DIY project on the go, so you can usually find me painting or varnishing something whilst listening to a true crime podcast. When I’m feeling a bit more chill, I might play some Destiny 2 or go watch a movie with friends.

We might have to get you working on a few office improvements when we get back into one! What sort of music are you likely to put on when you’re in charge of the playlist?

I listen to all sorts of things. I’m partial to Smooth Country FM during the workday, but you’re also likely to find Placebo or Lady Gaga on my playlists.

I think the team will be happy enough with that! Anything else you think we should know or are prepared to admit to?!

I have a reputation of being a bit obsessed with Eurovision. I hold a big party and sweepstakes every year, and during lockdown I even hosted a virtual version for all my friends and colleagues, complete with powerpoint and voting app! They threw me a Eurovision themed leaving party when I left my last job…

Wow. Well that’s the next Arcade team day sorted then! Thanks so much for taking the time to talk to us, and welcome again to the team!

If you have any questions for Livvy you can check out her LinkedIn profile here, follow her on Twitter here, or give her a shout at livvy@arcade.ltd.

Hello, Abbie!

We’re delighted to announce our newest member of the team, Abbie Peach! She joins us with bagfulls of expertise and enthusiasm, and a desire to make the impossible possible – just don’t ask what her spirit animal is…

Welcome to Arcade, Abbie! Tell us a bit about yourself.

‘ello, I’m an AR Designer & Developer from North Yorkshire! I studied Digital Media at the University of Leeds and since then, I’ve been exploring the interactive design world and developing my skills within mixed reality.

We’re thrilled to welcome you to the team, even if you are from Yorkshire. So, what have you done that you’re most proud of so far?

I am most proud of getting the opportunity to work on some amazing AR projects for Facebook and working across loads of exciting productions at The Walt Disney Company! Also, seeing people (particularly celebs that I love) use my Instagram filters is a very rewarding moment!

Bet it is – here’s to seeing many more. What are you most looking forward to, working at Arcade?

I’m looking forward to learning all things AR & VR with the talented team! Also, to be involved in some really exciting projects that I can boast to my friends about.

Boast away! What excites you about immersive technologies?

I love bringing my imagination to life through XR and making the impossible feel possible. Combining design with technology has always been what I’ve loved to do! I think it enhances everyday life and it excites me that we don’t know what technology might come next so there’s always something new to experiment with.

Love that and couldn’t agree more! So, what do you get up to in your spare time?

I often find myself on my computer making personal Instagram filters, but when my eyes are getting too square, (pre-covid times) I love to go exploring cool art/design exhibitions and finding the best places to eat! I also have an old film camera that I like to snap some pics with.

Culture and cuisine, the perfect combination. Music of choice?

I listen to all sorts to be honest, in the day I usually like to listen to some Neo Soul/R&B/Hip-Hop. But, I have many guilty pleasures and love to blast out 00’s pop from time to time!

So long as it’s only from time to time. Anything else you think we should know or are prepared to admit to?!

Luckily I didn’t do this in my interview with you guys, but once in an interview, they asked me what my spirit animal was… I panicked and replied “dolphin” so they asked why and I said that I can make a really good dolphin noise. They asked me to show them so I did my amazing impression… then I didn’t get the job *face palm*

If you’d busted that out in our interview, we’d have hired you on the spot. Thanks so much for talking to us Flipp-, I mean, Abbie, and welcome again to the team!

If you have any questions for Abbie you can check out her LinkedIn profile here, or give her a shout at abbie@arcade.ltd.

Hello, Zach!

Hire alert!! Zach Thompson-Howley joins Arcade full-time as a 3D Designer after an internship in which he wowed us with his incredible commitment, curiosity and character! We just hope he can keep himself out of A&E…

Welcome to Arcade, Zach! Tell us a bit about yourself.

Thanks! I’m a self-taught 3D artist and programmer always eager to learn absolutely everything and anything I can.

That’s a big goal. So, what have you done that you’re most proud of so far?

Most of the things I have made that I am most proud of have actually been during my short time here at Arcade. The scope of the projects that I have worked on have been far more grand than anything I had tried to produce personally. In my short time I’ve already worked on some fantastic challenges such as making stages for virtual gigs, or a segment of a dense forest.

And brilliant work it was too. What excites you about immersive technologies?

Immersive technology is an incredible bridge between a user and a machine. Allowing people to engage with technology in a way that really pulls them into the experience. The added depth of feeling like you are inside of the tech brings something that nothing else can.

Nicely put! So, what do you get up to in your spare time?

You can usually find me walking my dog, playing games, learning a new song on my guitar or a new recipe to try to make for dinner.

Yum! Music of choice?

The music I listen to is what I call dad metal: Megadeth, Iron maiden and Metallica along with lots more! I like to listen to the type of music I enjoy playing.

Now you’re talking. Anything else you think we should know or are prepared to admit to?!

I am extremely accident prone! If you think there isn’t a way for someone to hurt themselves on something, don’t worry, i’ll find it.

Stay safe, Zach. You signed that workplace accident waiver, didn’t you?

What wai-

Nevermind! Thanks for talking to us, and welcome again to Arcade.

If you have any questions for Zach you can give him a shout at zach@arcade.ltd.