Wondercon Exclusive Interview: John Ottinger (Creator of Dweores)
I would like to say right here and now, the one thing I like more than anime and cosplay combined is Facebook Stickers. I probably spend more time sending stickers than I do actually speaking with people. Needless to say, I was way too excited to meet John Ottinger, the creator of Dweores, at Wondercon.
When I first talked to him, he told me that he also enjoys using them himself. “I love it! People from around the world tell me how they love the Dweores and that they make them happy.” He says, “If I want to go to Starbucks I just send the FB sticker of a Deore hol
ding the cup of Coffee, and bam I'm there drinking cup with my friend. I've had so many people tell me they have entire conversations just using my stickers. That's a great feeling knowing people around the world are having fun with my art.”
If you follow the journey on the Dweores kickstarter and website you’ll see that these unique little robot creatures live in a world of their own.
“It all started with my doodles I did on a commute on the train.” Ottinger recalled, “I was drawing robots in my sketchbook but nothing was really working. Then I looked out the train window and I saw an old-fashioned water tower. That water tower is what I based the design of the Dweores on. In the Dweores comic books, I combined Eastern culture with Western culture- Nature meets Machine to create a new beautiful interesting world.”
After seeing the intricate world that these beings inhabit, you have to wonder what stage these characters are going to be set on in the future. Ottinger stated that “the ultimate goal would be to see them on the big screen and or a video game. Those medias really give you the opportunity to tell a big adventure in a rich full world.“
The Dweores are best known now for their home on Facebook Messenger.
That's what they call “the magic of San Diego Comic Con.” It was his first year ever to show at SDCC and he was accepted the first year he applied.
“There I was, sitting in my small press booth showing the Dweores to people and a guy named Brian came to my booth and wanted me to tell him about the Dweores. When I was done he's said that he worked at Facebook and he loved them and wanted to know if I was interested in having my robots in Facebook. I said yes.“
I also inquired if he used stickers himself, and what other artists he admires who have also contributed to Messenger. “Yep I use them all the time, it's really fun using the stickers in FB Messenger. I also like using Fat Rabbit Farm stickers, they are so funny and cute.”
Closing out, my final question was to understand his journey as an artist from a young age.
“My dad is an artist, our family business was decorating shopping centers during Christmas. I would design Santa's castle and the workshop with all the elves, then go in the back and make them. Sculpt the faces, animate them with motors build their entire world. We also did the windows at Universal Studios, I made E.T., Dino's and countless other characters. I learned in college at Art Center College of Design, that you have to inspire people's imagination get them to have an emotional connection, so that's what I'm trying to do. Give them someplace new to explore with their imagination and creativity.”
Last but CERTAINLY not least, he also allowed us to have a sneak peak of his BRAND NEW book that will be debuting at Comic-Con San Diego. Walk with us through the world of Dweores and keep checking Nerdbot for more updates on John Ottinger's work and even more amazing artists!