With GDC fast approaching, we’ve dedicated this week to all representation from Scotland attending the conference thanks to IGDA Foundation programs. To round up our celebration of scholars, we have an interview with Llaura Ash McGee. Llaura is one of the inaugural recipients of the Next Gen Leaders Program.
What do you do?
I make games! I run an independent studio in Dublin, DREAMFEEL, and we’re known for games like ‘CURTAIN’, which follows the unhealthy relationship between two women in a Glasgow punk band, our upcoming game ‘If Found, Please Return’, in which you erase the universe, and art installations like ‘Fluc’ that let participants relax inside a rainy tent and warp the rain to create visual art. You can find my work at http://dreamfeel.org and I’m on twitter @dreamfeelx. I also run events in Ireland, help people make games and lecture in the Dublin Institute of Technology. My interests lie in experimental and expressive video games.
Where are you from/what is your connection to Scotland?
I’m from Donegal on the North West coast of Ireland, but I lived and worked in Scotland for a number of years. I studied at Abertay in Dundee on the MProf Masters programme in 2011 and 2012 while I worked on my own indie games, and then I worked in a startup games company Secret Lunch on the game PS4/PC game Shu for almost a year. After these experiences I returned and based myself in Ireland, but I have a lot of connections to indie folks and friends in Scotland and it holds a special place for me.
Why did you choose to apply to IGDA Scholarships specifically?
I got two student scholarships in 2012, which brought me to America and help me meet the wider game development community. I was very grateful for the experience and since 2014 I’ve helped by judging student entries for them. This year they started a new program called ‘Next Gen Leaders’ for folks from minority and marginalized backgrounds who have been working in the industry for a few years. I was really excited for this initiative, and the chance to meet and learn from a really diverse and interesting group of people.
What are you most looking forward to at GDC?
I’m looking forward to exploring the Alternate Controller section of the expo floor, and the narrative summit in the talks. However, most of all I’m exiting to meet and talk with new people and to see old friends again!
Is there a specific goal you’re hoping to achieve at GDC?
I’m taking my latest game ‘If Found, Please Return’ and showing it to publishers and planning for the future of DREAMFEEL. Most of all my goal is to learn and come back even more excited to make mind blowing games.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Create the art and the video games you want to see in the world. Make weird, personal and interesting work, then support those who do. And try to look after yourself in the present as well! <3