Game Development Graduate Diploma

Gregor Czaykowski leads a creative double life. By day, he’s a UI artist at Gameloft. By night, he’s the man behind the highly amusing web comic Loading Artist, which he describes as “ a web comic about many things, sometimes revolving around an artist who wants to become rich and famous.” Here, we talk to him about his creative outlets, his change in career direction, and how Media Design School helped him get to where he is now.


Tell us a little bit about your role as a UI artist at Gameloft. What does your job entail and what is your workplace like?

I have been the Lead UI artist on a couple projects ('My Little Pony' and the recent 'Ice Age Adventures'), which means I'm in charge for setting the style of the game's interface, building the menus in Photoshop and Flash, sharing ideas with the designers, and trying to keep the peace with the programmers.

When did you first decide that you wanted to follow your particular career path?

I'm kind of jumping in between two paths, destroying some plant-life along the way. On one path I'm a UI artist in the games industry and, on the other path, I'm a comic guy making comics. I've kind of been dancing between the two ever since I can remember.

I originally wanted to be a 3D artist (or a 2D concept artist) in the games industry, but during my Game Development Graduate Diploma at Media Design School I realised I had a passion for designing a game's interface and I capitalised on it. Now I'm at Gameloft.

Your web comic, Loading Artist, is hilarious! When did you come up with the concept for it?

Thank you! I started Loading Artist in the beginning of 2011. I didn't know where I wanted to take it; I just knew I had to do something ASAP. I guess you could say I had a bit of a quarter-life crisis.

Loading Artist is about an artist who wants to become rich and famous. How's that working out for you?

I'm incredibly happy with where I'm at considering my posting schedule ranges anywhere between 'once a week' to 'once per blue moon'. I plan on seeing it through to the point where leaked naked pictures of me become newsworthy.

What inspires you the most?

The occasional realisation of how extremely limited our time on Earth is.

Is there a particular piece of design work or a film out there that you wish you'd created yourself? Which one and why?

The web comic 'Cyanide & Happiness', just so I could say: "Why yes, that is exactly what I do".

What is the project (at work or otherwise) that you've worked on that you're most proud of and why?

Aside from Loading Artist, I'm also proud of everything I'm involved with at Gameloft. I was Lead UI artist on the 'My Little Pony' and 'Ice Age Adventures' iOS games, and while they're not exactly the kind of games I wouldchoose to make, I am proud of how much my team and I accomplished considering all the hurdles thrown at us.

What's the best piece of advice someone has given you?

It was never given to me, but I always refer back to this Akimbo comic (#202) from time to time. It puts things into perspective for me and makes me (re)prioritize my life.

And the worst?

That I should check out a site called 'reddit'. I have wasted so much time on Internet fluff. It's it's an addiction I'm trying to break.

On reflection, what is the one main thing you wish you'd known about your industry when you were a student at MDS?

There's nothing about the industry so far I regret not knowing sooner.

What's next for you? Any idea where you are headed?

I want to eventually make Loading Artist my day job and primary source of income, then after that I want to look into getting a small team together to create games published under the Loading Artist name. And then after the first dozen or so million dollars, I'd build a giant cat sanctuary for kitties in need and then I'd take walks through it from time to time with Jerry Seinfeld whom I'd be a close friend with, and we'd laugh and laugh and laugh…