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Okay, as promised, the follow-up to our mini-autobiographies!


Kuri

After a brief excursion in the world of computer graphics in Condé-sur-l'Escaut (A terrifying barbarian land without which little Kuri would never have met Toto the powerful), off he goes with a skip in his step to the land of chips and mayonnaise (otherwise known as Belgium).

After two years of drawing in the Comics section (and many overdoses on rotten mayonnaise), he takes the bull by the horns and decides to find a way to buy some real food. And what better way to fill up the fridge than to get a real job? That’s how, in the little suburb of Fives (metro stop CHR B, don’t leave the house after dark), he met his grandmaster, the dark sidious of Flash: ‘Nomoon’ (head of backgrounds for Wakfu).

After a few long weeks of dedicated training to learn how to control the beast, the incessant duels with the tyrannical artistic director of the good ship Toon 8 got the better of his iron will. Little Kuri, disillusioned by the harsh reality of professional life, jumped ship and had to say goodbye to Nomoon. (Cue violin and piano) Tot, for his part, with whom he had wandered for years, had just set up a little company with two friends in a super 30m square building with a leaky roof (an…ka…ma I think they called it). I’ll let you imagine the rest… little Kuri found his Toto. They lived together and even named a few monsters – Tofu, Gobball… and so on… A strange family…

Tcho

Hello! My name is Kim, but they’ve called me Tcho since time immemorial. I come from a little corner of paradise! Coconuts, palm trees, hot sand, beaches, bikinis. Yes… I come from Guadeloupe, one of the most beautiful islands in the French Antilles When I was a little moun (child in creole), I always loved scrawling on the walls of the house! I was part of the “Club Dorothée” generation, and I grew up with Mickey, Bugs Bunny, San Goku and Totoro. I soon became a teenage surfer chick with Bermuda shorts and a windsurfer.

It was around then I decided I’d like to work in comic books! And my parents helped me too, while everyone else said that drawing was not a real job! At 17, once I had my high school Art degree in my pocket, I decided to set off on this early adventure…

So off I went to France, my head filled with “Walt Disney” and “Miyazaki” fantasies. I landed in the North, signed up to an Art school and hup, Dreamworks were on the phone within a year!? Well, after wandering for a year through the freezing corridors of an Art school, I ran off to do another art course in the ESAAT (Ecole Supérieure des Arts Appliqués et Textiles) in Roubaix.

Here I discovered the DMA, or to be specific, the Diplôme des Métiers cinema d’Animation (Professional School of Cinematic Animation). I sweated for a long year and finally came out with a qualification from this famous faculty, which was for me the key to the world of animation. I met some great people there, refined my drawing, my sense of color and all that I needed to continue on my path!

As soon as I got my degree, I left to find a job in… not Dreamworks, unfortunately, not Disney either… in a video games company, to my surprise. It didn’t turn out to be all I’d hoped for, but one day, as I was exploring a manga convention, I came across the phenomenon that is DOFUS. Once again I was full of energy and courage, just like a Iop. With my book under my arm, I resolutely left to conquer Ankama! And that’s when I met Tot the Great, who decided to give me a go on his team!

So since I’ve been here in Ankama, I’ve had the chance to do a bit of everything! Creating monsters for Ottomai Island (notably the Kimbo), creating illustrations, drawing animated monsters that’d have you eating the dust. I’ve had my finger in all the pies!

I actually haven’t had the time to get bored! I’ve learnt so much over this past year. It really was a stroke of luck to find myself in a place where working is pleasure in itself! Today, thanks to Tot and the support of Xa, I’m a Pandawan working on character-design, mostly in the Wakfu universe and for the animated television series. I’m delighted to be part of this increasingly wonderful adventure! Yours truely Yeah babay Tcho’s website

Stef

Crushed to bits by the faculty of English after two fruitless years I decided to go for the Supinfocom entrance examination… and ended up staying there for 4 years. I made a short film there called “Metronomius” which was fairly successful among the oyster-farmers in and around Nouvion-en-Thierache. Fresh out of the place, I joined the ‘œil pour œil’ team who were developing a bloody beast of a game, but an interesting one.

I stayed there three years and finally got out early for good behaviour… so I decided to take matters into my own hands. After discovering I didn’t have the wandering spirit, I invaded the city of Ankama where I’ve settled down nicely…

Ntamak

I am Fabrice Nzinzi, alias Ntamak baby! I’m 26 and I’ve been working in graphic design for 5 long years! As for my education, I received my high school degree in applied art, then a DMA (Art degree) in traditional animation and finally a higher degree in Visual communications with an option in graphic advertising publication. When I finished my studies, I quickly joined the team at Poulain Studios, a company based in Lille which specialises in printing. There I cut my teeth in graphic art (print, web) but even though I enjoyed the work, I still felt my soul lacked the foundation, the drawing, animation… illustration.

So I set myself up as a freelancer at the same time in order to make my childhood dream possible! This second job gave me the opportunity to work on a graphic bible for an animated series, a graphic bible for a video game and some contracts in animation and illustration… In four years of this double-jobbing, I realized without a doubt that my passion lied in illustrating and animating. That’s why I’m delighted to have come to Ankama. I’m a character designer and an animator for the game Wakfu, and maybe more if things work out! Ntamak’s website

Xav

Hiya! My name is Xavier, Xav ou Xa (sometimes even "X" if you’re lazy ). I’ve been working here at Ankama for 6 years I think (I’ve stopped counting). Since there weren’t many graphic artists at the beginning (kuri, Tot, Arno and me), I started out doing a bit of everything but the coffee: illustration, backgrounds, animation, character/monster design, spell effects, interfaces, game maps (I get a spasm every time I hear that word! I used to eat maps for dinner ') and even some websites! These days, I focus more on character design on the game and animated series, Wakfu.

I think of myself as a bit of a survivor since my future was meant to involve the drawing of bolts, gears and cross beams all day long. I completed a degree in the conception of industrial products (industrial drawing). But even then, I was considering a career in computer graphics/drawing. Being the little geek that I was, I loved designing manga and video game characters. Even though a career in the area seemed a little too optimistic given my standard, I worked hell for leather to escape the terrible machine that was closing in on me, spitting nuts and bolts as it went. My parents (who I cannot thank enough) allowed me to take a one year top-up course in computer graphics. That’s where I met that funny troupe made of Tot, Celine, Kuri, Crounchann. I was happy. I had found bigger geeks than me! .

After that, I worked with an animation company with the gentle name ‘the image factory’ (some sort of irony ^^' ) on the backgrounds for a series called "T'choupi". At the time, even if the work wasn’t that creative, I had the impression I was realizing my dream – I learnt a lot about color. The company closed one year later.

Then I arrived in a little “startup” called Rhinoféros and soon after discovered Flash, a computer program that offered many possibilities. But what happens? The company closes and is reformed under another name (Popup interactive) like a flamboyant phoenix. We did a few nice projects and I worked with Flash a lot (programming, design and animation), website design etc. Unfortunately, being the post internet bubble time, that company closed too, like so many others around Lille. At just that moment, Tot contacted me to offer me a job with Ankama. He was already working hard on a little project called DOFUS… and you know the rest… Xav’s Blog That’s all for now! Many other artists remain in the shadows, but we’ll get the chance to drag a few of their secrets into the light before too long