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2010 SVS Christmas Card

2010 SVS Christmas card. I really think it captures the spirit of the season.


We did a pitch for a Conan iPhone game to line up with the new movie. We were told we could take it in any direction we wanted so I went for the Frank Frazetta style Conan, just a big, grotesque brick of a guy, done up all stylized, kind of like Shank.
And by "take it any direction you want" they actually meant, make it look like Jason Momoa from the movie.
While I was at it I figured I might as well do one of this guy, too. Terrible Governor, pretty good Barbarian though.
Gamplay concept.

MLB Body Types

Tim Lincecum, Derek Jeter, and Albert Pujols for an MLB pitch we were bidding on. Pitch, get it? Because it's baseball? No, we didn't get it. The project, I mean.

Speed Paints

This was a series of speed paints we did at work just because. We were given two animals to mix together as a sea creature, then based the next three pieces on the form created by the first. I started with an eagle and a tick. The topic for the second set was "Flight".

Pass 1: Underwater Eagle Tick.
Pass 2: Wrestler Transport.
Pass 3: El Estegosaurus.
Pass 4: The Horse Tosser.

Ye Old Graphite Markings

I used to have a DeLorean, back when I was awesome. Here we are as Flintstones.

The Story of the Order Up!(!) Box Art... Story 

When this game originally shipped on the Wii it was with some of the ugliest drawings I've ever done, right there on the front of the box. Oopsie! Luckily for people who dislike looking at hideous art this game was practically impossible to find in stores. So a few years later SVS was able to team up with some brand new publishers for a hopefully much wider release of the game. The upside for me was a chance to redeem myself with a new and improved box cover. 

Here we have the original cover. Not too pretty.
Here are the revised characters. Much less awful.

This is a lineup of the chefs with a bunch of their assistants.
This is the "Conan" cover. It wound up on the back of the instruction manual for the original Wii release.

For the new release we were thinking about going with a brand new cover, but this one wound up being too busy. The delicious steak in the foreground was painted by Kelli Davis. I did the rest.

Here's the cover I did that the UK publisher approved. I was much happier with this one.
The North American publisher wanted a few more changes and this is what I wound up with. Not any better or worse than the previous one in my opinion. Still works, just a little different.
Here's a close-up of the background detail. This guy reminds me of Fred Mertz.Beneath that jacket his pants are probably pulled up to his armpits.


Some Comic Strips

One day at work we all decided to make a comic strip. I decided to name mine after a misunderstood lyric from a song Chris Glenn always used to play in our office. Can't remember the song now. Pretty good story, huh? Anyway, the strip was about some monster being a real grump.

The second one I did as a teaser to let people know Order Up! was coming to the PlayStation 3, and was compatible with the Move controller. Looking at it now the drawings of the Chef seem pretty wonky. Oh well, or as Chef would say "Brnnt!".

Here's a handful of character concepts I did when we ported Toys for Bob's THDJ from Wii over to PlayStation 2. I'll be honest: This game was a bit of a turkey. And I believe we used about zero of these concept drawings. In fact, Toys for Bob actually hated these if I recall. Way to embarrass yourself, Van Dalsem. Now get back to work. These toilets aren't going to clean themselves!

General Insurance TV Spot


I animated one of the very last General commercials before they switched over to motion capture. Not sure what that says about my work, but I animated everything here except for the scenes involving The General's ultra-swanky luxury tour bus.

Having never seen anything I've done broadcast on TV before, I watched and watched hoping to see this air but only ever caught the last 2 seconds once on SyFy The Sci-Fi Channel. A couple of my friends said they saw it though, and I believed them.

Here's a test I did for them before starting work on the actual project:

In a lot of ways I actually like this test better than the final commercial. I think the main reason for that is because I got the final audio from the beginning. On the commercial I had to animate to temp audio with a temp voice actor and then swap in final audio later read by a different voice actor. I probably would've made different acting choices if I had known from the beginning how the lines were going to sound. Still, I think it turned out ok given how short the turnaround was.