Irena Kuo: Character Animator

Personal Work

This section is a select collection of some of the work that I've done for myself. Most of my professional work is bringing to life the illustrations or models that the talented illustrators and artists on my teams have created. The following examples are almost all drawn or created by me and will probably tell you quite a bit about my interests and what I'm like.

To see what I've been up to even more recently, check out my:



While some pictures are worth a thousand words, occasionally a few words can irrevocably alter a single picture, or as the case may be, a single animation. I love stories and I feel like there are so many methods of telling a story that have yet to be explored. This project that I did in some downtime was a way to spice up some cycles I wanted to do.

Unfinished Game

These were not drawn by me, but by the talented Lamnho Giang. A group of friends and I started making a mobile game. That's one of the best things with working with creative people - the fact that we all want to make something! Alas, like many creative endeavors, in the end, we never finished. But it was super fun to animate and collaborate with friends. Perhaps one day, we'll complete it!

Checking Out What the Excitement is About

I've been aware of this kind of augmented reality for awhile now, but had no way of looking into it until I got into Unity. I decided to check it out and modeled the crown in Blender, put some Unity FX on it and tried it out. (The lightbulb image is an old block print I drew and carved.) Overall, it came out pretty well! I do have some ideas with this tech and maybe when I have a little time, I'll try more.

Figure Drawing

One thing I've done off and on since high school, and recently every week, is figure drawing. Not only is it pretty calming, but I just keep learning new things!


Here is some work that I did long ago, that I'm proud of. Some of the mediums in this category I haven't explored in awhile, but I'd like to revisit, so it's here as a reminder to myself as well as for posterity. As always, to check out my newest things, click on my instagram or tumblr!

The above is from a creature design class with Teryl Whitlach. It illustrates events from My Father's Dragon by Ruth Stiles Gannett. Below are some character concepts from animation class!

I created the following video with a lunchbox, a lunchbox! I drew all the frames and manually photographed each image using a lunchbox that automagically recorded it onto VHS. Despite having access to DVDs and the fact that they got rid of the lunchboxes a year later, I am grudgingly glad I had this experience. I believe my short film was a runner up for Academy of Art in San Francisco's Spring Show. I don't quite remember because I didn't attend, but people told me so. :D

. . .and these are a few oil paintings I did in class. I would really like one day to go back to this medium, or in the interests of not being around turpentine, further explore digital painting. I do find that I like tactile mediums, but creating digital paintings with a similar feel seems a worthy challenge for the future!