2012-design

Future master in training

Yay! I’ve updated finally! Thanks a lot for your patience and support.

Well, I made this outfit design in 2012 (wow!!) partially based in those from Birth by Sleep. Curiously, I was thinking in Sora training to become master when I designed it five years ago. And now, knowing that Sora is officially travelling to Olympus Coliseum for training (Thanks KH 2.8!), I decided it was time to recover it with a bit more mature Sora!  (ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧

I’m thinking on posting the original 2012 design on Instagram just to compare (✿◠‿◠)

♥ ♥ ♥

Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/princesselemm/

Slash

A character that could have been one of my favorite in 2012 series IF his design wasn’t a big ball with limbs and random spikes coming out of it and if he didn’t just suddenly become a good guy without any shown realization.
This is why I slightly redesigned him for my genderbend AU and made her one of the worse bad guys in it. Like c'mon, Slash could have been such a scary great villain, he prectically knew everything about the turts!
Also female turtles are bigger than male turtles and because, if I’m simple, Slash’s mutation is ¾ turtle she’s also bigger than the male Slash. No wonder Arty’s intimidated!

My Experience with Zap! Creatives


Alright- so here is my angry post about my experience with Zap Creatives. I really didn’t want to publish this but as many other artists also use them I wanted to share my experience with this company.  Prepare for a novel, as I am not happy at all.



I’ve been a customer with Zap since 2012. My total spent while dealing with this company totals in the thousands.  I’ve always had my files set up right, my naming conventions down pat and my colours spot on. I want to make this very clear. I used their now ‘old style’ 1 inch charms for all of my orders. The items I received never had any major imperfections, usually 1-3 in a batch of 100 of a single printed design.  I have had over 5000 charms from this company, so in the long run I had little to no imperfections. I boasted about the quality of the items, how they are durable, scratch resistant and vibrant.



Over the years I have expanded to over 50 unique designs, and had a large quality of each printed with them. I never had any issues.  The back and forth with the customer service wasn’t amazing, but it wasn’t something that really caused me any concern until recently.

In a recent order, December 2014, I ordered 500 charms. In this order, 60 of them were pony charms. Since 2012 I had updated these pony designs to new artwork. The naming convention was the same, but the customer service agent assured she replaced the files for me, and I was told all was fine. So while placing my order I did not worry - as I had reordered these newer designs multiple times in the past. So there shouldn’t be an issue, right?


Welp I was wrong, they sent me the 2012 designs rather than the 2013 designs that I had reordered multiple times throughout 2013-2014. Whatever, it was a mistake. Everyone makes them.  I’ve been dealing with them for a long time so it should not be an ordeal. I emailed them about the situation and I was given a reply within a few days

“Thank you for your reply. I have spoken to the production team and if you return the incorrect charms to the below address we will be able to get the replacements into production for you.”

Okay. I packed up the misprinted charms and sent them back to them right away. I assumed they would get my new charms mailed back out to me right away. The day I sent them back was December 19th. Well needless to say I was so wrong. I emailed Zap back for 2 months, finally getting a reply on February 4th.  They said they would have to wait for the charms to get back to them before they shipped out my replacements. I explained to them that I needed the charms for an event, and some were on backorder on my website after the holidays and I had customers expecting them.

“Thank you for your reply. I am afraid that there is not much we can do until we have the actual charms in our hands. If they do not arrive by the end of the week I will speak to my manager and see what we can do.

Please let me know if you need anything else.

Thanks :) “

So they said no can do, we need the charms in hand. I didn’t hear back from them for a couple weeks, so I sent them another email. In the email I sent them pictures of the mailed out parcel (I take pictures of everything I can when dealing with stuff like this) with the shipping label and information, and anything else I could do to help speed up the process. No reply.

March 1st rolls around. I needed to reorder another design desperately as I had sold out quickly, and emailed them saying I was pretty upset that this is being handled as badly as it was.

“Thank you for your email. I am so sorry about not being in touch. It is no excuse but it has been incredibly busy here and this slipped through the net. I have spoken to my manager and your returns must have got lost in the post as I have not received anything. As it has taken me so long to get back to you if you confirm what you require replacing and I can get this sent out to you this week. “

Great, exactly what I wanted to hear. Whatever, mix ups happen, the holidays just wrapped up, everyone was busy. I apologise for coming off angry, and resend her the design files and quantities to make sure they are correct. I reorder the design I needed as well.

It’s now March 10th. Zap announces they are getting rid of the old style charms. I’m pretty concerned. Now I need to backtrack to when Zap first announced they had a new style of charms – I ordered some samples of my designs in the new product. The new product is awful, the images feel like a sticker and I can literally pick them off with my finger nail (see Toothless image, top right ear). They also have this lovely white ring around the print that looks awful. So of course when I hear the style I print with is heading out, I email them to see whats up. I calmly explain to them that I was concerned about consistency (ordering restock of old style charms with the new style is going to suck, but I don’t have a choice so whatever) and asked why they are going to be discontinued out of curiosity’s sake.

“Thank you for your email. The reason we are stopping this service is all explained in the very detailed blog that Dave wrote. You can find the blog on our website. “

Wow, thanks for the copy paste answer. “Go read it on our blog!” I posted the blog the day it was emailed to me in an artist alley group I am in to give everyone a heads up about the change in case they didn’t get an email. I go on to explain that it sucks that this happened before convention season, and to port over all the charms into the new style is going to take a lot of work. I was told that it was just as much work to port over my designs to the new style as it was to go to another company, so it was up to me what I wanted to do. Wow, really? Yeah, because that is exactly what I want to hear right now after being a patron to your business for years – to be basically to be told “If you don’t like it, leave”. So I’m furious at this point, but I don’t know exactly what to do. Should I drop my entire convention budget before April 6th and order the old style charms to have enough stock for the year, just deal with it and go with the new style, or do as they suggested and go to another company? I pick the first option.  

I count my stock, tally my totals and reorder one last time with the company right before cut off day April 6th.

I still haven’t gotten my replacement charms from December. I email their customer service to inquire about the charms and to make my new order, and they reply that they were sent out in March. Thanks for the notification with tracking, that honestly would have helped out with my stress. They decided to mail the items together, and it was just yesterday, April 9th, that I received them. 

Needless to say, the items were horrible. The first thing I noticed was the acrylic was different. My boyfriend was the first to point it out. The acrylic was a different colour (more yellow then the usual white) and noticeably thinner. This doesn’t work for me, as something Zap likes to boast about how they thrive for consistency, something that is very important to me. This wasn’t that big of a deal until I seen the Baymax charms. 



The quality was just… awful. More than half of the items where misprinted or miscut, but mostly miscut. The Baymax on the left in the photo is the one from my previous order with Zap, and the right ones are the examples of how they were cut in my new order. This is just unacceptable. At this point I feel like the company is trying to make a point about their old printing after I complained to them, and now they are trying to reinforce that the printing style is bad. Never in my 3 years of dealing with them had I seen so many mistakes in one order of one design! I’m livid at this point, and email Zap telling them that this is unacceptable. I cancel my last big order of charms with them, and ask for a refund for the Baymax charms that are garbage. I write them a novel about why I am upset, how I have been loyal as a customer and want to work this out, and that I want this fixed.

And this is the reply I was given, word for word, copy pasted:

“Thank you for your reply. Once again I can only apologies. I have cancel your order for you. If you could return the charms that you require refunding to the below address and once we receive them I can process the refund.

Zap! Creatives 
3F Brighouse Business Village 
Brighouse Road 
Middlesbrough 
TS2 1RT 

Please let me know if you need anything else.

Thanks :) 


How would you rate my reply?
Great    Okay    Not Good “


Uh, needless to say it was not good. 


So I am 300% done at this point. I dropped Zap Creatives completely , and will be dealing with another company from now on. Dealing with this new company has been extremely refreshing, as they actually talk to you and want your business, unlike the automated responses like with Zap.

** UPDATE: I just checked my email, and got an email from Zap offering my money back and to convert a few of my best selling charms for free, as well as sending me some new samples - only after seeing my article.


This should be something that is offered to all of those who have been using your service for years and are on the fence about the new style charms. When you have people that are concerned about the new style printing, like myself, this was something that should have been offered from the start to keep their business. You could spend pennies offering people who are genuinely concerned about the switch by sending them some samples to prove this is a superior service. Or you can just lose peoples business all together.



People don’t like change, this is a fact of life. And there has been little to no accommodation regarding this change.



If you are going to change something, you can’t just tell people "Trust me, our new products are better” after they have been purchasing the same product from you for years.

**UPDATE 2: Zap retracted their offer to refund me after I emailed them the amount not usable and return shipping. Zap is officially one of the worst businesses I have ever dealt with. 

image


Moral of the story - I guess it takes an angry article to get good customer service, rather then years of being a loyal customer.

The deaths in The Witch’s House are frequent, haunting, and sudden- unless the player is expecting them, it’s rare that they will actually be able to avoid them (if they can be avoided at all). This is taken into account with the game’s puzzle design, however. Because many of the puzzles require somewhat esoteric solutions, deaths actually act as clues as to what you need to do on your next attempt. Thus, players won’t feel cheated by a death the first or second time it happens, but rather feel like they have another piece of the puzzle solved.

Only 2 days until Halloween… oh my gosh… Game requested by @chivi-chivik

It takes very little to kill or be killed in Hotline Miami- one or two bullets, a knife, even a well-slammed door can get the job done. This applies to the player and their enemies, but what makes this engaging is that it matches the extreme speed that everyone is able to move at. With no resistance, the player can run from one side of the largest map to the other very quickly- and closing the gap between themselves and any given enemy is a small feat. This speed, coupled with the brittleness of every character, means that the player is constantly playing the odds, trying their hardest to not be taken out while also rushing to take out any enemies in their way as fast as possible. 

4

Watching Doctor Who last night, I thought Bill’s kitchen looked rather familiar… and then I realised it’s a set I designed in 2012 for the Welsh soap Pobol-y-Cwm!

And I only noticed because I saw some cabinets and wondered to myself “Who would put cabinets like… Oh my god, I would put cabinets like…!”

When speaking to various characters in Katawa Shoujo, their placement and size are often changed to reflect their current role and relationship in the conversation- they are larger when they are speaking loudly or confiding in you, smaller when they are less engaged or on the fringes, etc. Doing this, rather than fading them out as many visual novels tend to do, keeps every character relevant to the conversation, and conveys more information in the limited format.

2012 April O’Neil

A little Pro-2012 April post.
I don’t always agree with the writers but I can appreciate that this April has grown probably more than any previous incarnation. She’s not just a maternal or sisterly figure. In fact…

When Ciro designed 2012 April, he basically made her a turtle.

Check her out. 

1. All of the turtles have their designated colors. April has always been assigned yellow. It represents happiness and sunlight (something the turtles saw very little prior to meeting her, I’m sure). April’s headband is a modified version of their masks. It seems like a little thing, but in Costume Design it’s a way of tying her in with the rest of the team. The same can be said of her wrist bands. It’s not the same padding you see on the turtles, but it’s a designer’s subtle way of saying “She belongs here. She’s a part of this team.”

2. The number 5 is pretty obvious. Ciro flat out says, he slapped a 5 on her shirt because, dammit, she’s the fifth turtle.

3. People often complain about April’s clothing in 2012. Admittedly, her style is a little odd, but there’s a reason for it. Her undershirt and leggings? Green. Not a coincidence. Those massive boots? April gets a lot of flack for wearing those boots, but here’s the thing:

Giant feet! Even the stripes on her socks could be compared to the lines in their knee pads.

These days, April gets to wear her ninja gear because she IS a ninja, but from the very beginning the creators wanted viewers to understand that April was in every way a part of the team. Even when Leo told her she wasn’t.

Anyway, what I’m saying is, I love this girl. She deserves so much.

(Is this coherent? I can’t tell. Momma needs some sleep.)

“A naughty paddy obstinately came out, because of softness or toughness? Impulsion and apperception come from the very ordinary, familiar and strange to everyone” by Bentu - an independent design brand founded in 2012 ➕ #nowyprodukt