Just found some free time today to update my super outdated personal profile. Added a bunch of new stuff that I’ve gathered/experienced over the years. I will be constantly updating this page from now on as I’ve been on a blogging hiatus for quite some time. I’ve been super busy for the past year with work that I find it very hard to keep my blog updated. Fortunately, 2018 has been very good to me in terms of work and life balance so I’ll be able to blog actively again ^^;
Nico here and thanks for dropping by! I’m a figure collector who loves tech, video games, and cycling. I’ve been in the hobby for roughly eight years now, and my collection is mostly from my favorite anime TV shows and superhero movies. Aside from collecting figures, I’m also into headphones and cycling.
I won’t be able to support this hobby without a job ^^; so I’m very fortunate to be working in the design/development industry for more than ten years now. Started freelancing way back in my college days and turned full time two years after. Most of the work I do ranges from illustrations, UI/UX, Motion, Web, and Print.
About The Name
I’ve been using the moniker “needlemouse” in all of my professional works before so I had to think of a name that is somewhat related to my hobbies and interests. I’m not sure why or if I’m just lazy that day but what I did is I just replaced the first half of my work alias with the word “otaku” (so much for being creative lol).
The name served me well though since it did get me some high profile gigs that were all related to my hobbies – like working with anime studios and doing design/development work for Culture Japan. It has its fair share of negatives too since I usually get derogatory remarks about it especially with people not familiar with the actual definition of the word “otaku” – which I don’t mind ^^;
Design has been my real passion, and I find joy in creating and designing stuff for other people. I learned a lot over the years of doing freelance design work for both local and international clients. With that experience, I was able to work on any types of design projects whether it’s print, web, illustrations, UI/UX, and motion. I’m no master in any of those fields, but it allowed me to be a very flexible designer that can adapt to almost anything which is a big plus in the freelance world.
My flexibility as a designer was tested when I did some work collaboration for Danny Choo (Culture Japan) where I did work in almost every field of design. It was a pretty challenging collaboration since I had to do print, motion/VFX, and web while making sure DC doesn’t spot any inconsistencies in my work ^^;
Well, he did spot a couple of errors from time to time, but you can’t avoid it ^^; He’s very particular when it comes to details. To cut the story short, it is one of the best experiences in my design career, and like my other previous experiences, it made me into a better designer.
Will try to post more about our collaboration sometime in the future.
I’m so lucky that I was able to do what I love for work. Similar to the famous saying of “Choose a Job You Love, and You Will Never Have To Work a Day in Your Life.”
I wasn’t planning for coding to be a part of my workflow since I suck at math, logic, and problem solving – yet here I am doing development work, writing code, and solving problems for different clients. I don’t develop enterprise level apps or complex games or anything like that because they are way out of my league, but I think I can say I’m pretty much average when it comes to the technicalities and overall concept of coding.
I love photography, and this is one of the reasons why I sometimes take pictures of my figure collection. I don’t have any particular style, I grab my trusty camera and start taking pictures whenever I feel like it. If my photo session turns out to be good, I use the photos and sometimes make them into a small toy or figure review.
My interest in photography also allowed me to publish a community driven magazine called Phygure. It’s an online publication I created where I showcase some of the most talented figure photographers from around the world. It’s currently live on Apple iBooks and Rakuten Kobo which are 2 of the biggest registry of online books and magazines. You can also read it online via Phygure’s official site.
Initially, there were plans of making this into a physical magazine as many contributors are requesting it to happen. I had test prints to check how the digital version will compare to the physical release, and the results were amazing. Unfortunately, I had to temporarily pause the idea since there are a lot of legalities involved like copyrights and royalties for all the contributors.
Regarding photography gear, I’m a Nikon user and switched to Fujifilm after a couple of years. I currently own 2 of their cameras, an X-T10 and an X-T2 Graphite which is my current daily driver. I have a mixture of vintage and Fuji lenses depending on the situation with my current favorite being the 60mm F2.4 macro.
I’m semi-active in social media, but I’m very active in checking my emails daily ^^ If you want to ask something or just wanted to say hi, shoot me an email at email@example.com.