Exclusive – Ninjabot’s In The Hot Seat Discussing Their ORIGIN Series Kickstarter


The folks over at Ninjabot were able to fit in a brief chat about the O R I G I N Series Kickstarter during their trade show filled weekend. Ninjabot is comprised of Arnel and Estefania, both are accomplished illustrators, graphic designer’s, and effects artists. They met while in art school back in 2007 and decided to start their own business, thus Ninjabot was born! I thought it’d be fitting to share a bit about the pair before we get into the interview about their wildly successful Kickstarter-Campaign that’s currently close to 600% funded, and for good reason.

At any point throughout the interview if you’d like to check out the Kickstarter and pledge to this great project – just click the great looking banner ad at the top of the page!

Now it’s time to get down to brass tacks and see what these two, in their own words, Geeky, Nerdy, Artsy people are all about.


Dylan: First of all, thank the two of you (Estefania and Arnel) for taking time out of your busy trade show and Kickstarter schedule to talk to us! My first, and most anticipated Q that I need an A for is…how’d you, first, come up with the Ninjabot company name, and second how was that awesome domain name still available in August 2011!?

Arnel: Steph and I realized we couldn’t call our company “The Art of Estefania Rodriguez and Arnel Baluyot”

Steph: That would never fit in one banner.

Arnel: The name had to be catchy, easy to remember, and indicative of pop culture.

Steph: And the domain Ninjabot by itself, wasn’t available!, boo! but the name “TheNinjabot” was, so we were able to keep our name.

Dylan: When did the two of you meet, and how long did it take you to start creating art together?

Steph: We met a little over six years ago in art school, and we’ve been dating ever since, but we didn’t start the company until about a year, and a half ago after we decided we wanted to work for ourselves after we left SDCC ’11.


Dylan: Is the O R I G I N  Kickstarter Ninjabot’s first crowd funding effort?

Arnel: Nope, our first one was a series of pin ups, that we were also able to fund with Kickstarter.

Dylan: Ninjabot’s portfolio spans just about everything one can imagine in a pop culture sense. What’s your favorite genre to portray in your art?

Steph: Aw, thanks. For me it would have to be funny. I love creating prints that are funny, and cute. Pun filled prints are awesome! I love making those.

Arnel: I love designing movie posters. Trying to sell a story in one image is one of the most enjoyable things about our company.


Dylan: We’re (iGR) all totally had a nerdgasm when we saw your art. What perspective did you take when coming up with the concepts for the ORIGINS prints?

Arnel: We wanted to take a very intimate and personal perspective for the series.

Steph: We wanted them to be more than just posters, we wanted them to be stories.

Dylan: When it comes to the ORIGIN Series, and some of your other work, we see characters from DC, Marvel, Image, and other comic book series. Based on the characters and execution of their stories, who’s your all time favorite comic book publisher?

Arnel: It’s hard to choose between the two big houses. Both have been in my life has far back as I can remember. I would have to say though that I lean more towards DC. Superman is my all time favorite character.

Editors Note: Bazingaa!

Steph: We seriously do love all of them really. We don’t do stuff because it’s one house, or the other, we do stuff because we are passionate about the characters, and the stories they bring to life so, I don’t think I can pick one, sorry.


Dylan: In respect to the ORIGINS collection, what was the hardest part of converting an entire super hero origin into an image that conveys the story, tone, and feelings of that Seminole moment when a hero is born?

Arnel: Everything.

Steph: ..and more! Haha! There was no easy part, so we can’t say what was hard. None of these prints were born in a day. Everything about them was intense research, and thinking, and over thinking but I think it really paid off. I love them, and I, hope, that people love them too.

Arnel: This is probably the most ambitious series we have ever done. So far.

Dylan: Are you guys gamers? If so, in your opinion, do you game responsibly?

Steph: Yeah, we are. We love playing video games, and I especially love board games. Do I game responsibly? That would depend on your definition of “responsibly”, haha. But no, probably not, because that would mean that I can stop myself when playing after 3 hours… but sometimes I can’t! So, no. I don’t. It’s hard, games are awesome!

Arnel: No, no I do not game responsibly. If I’m into a game I will compulsively play said game until you pry me off of it.

Editors Note: We all have our moments of weakness, iGR forgives you Ninjabot.

Dylan: When are you going to do some video game prints!? What character would you be most interested in creating a work of art for?

Arnel: We’ve actually done a couple. We did the mushroom princess as pinups.

Steph: We do have some stuff in mind, but honestly we have such a big list of things to do, and it’s only 2 of us so it’s hard to keep up with our minds, and ideas.


Dylan: The final stretch goal on your Kickstarter-campaign is titled “The Scarlet Duo”. I’m sure most of your backers know who they are. How special are these characters to you, and how badly do you want to create a print for them?

Steph: I’m actually ever more excited for a “secret” Stretch goal that we came up with two new prints for, but we haven’t mentioned it because we are kinda far from the goal so in case it doesn’t make it we don’t want to disappoint to many people.

Arnel: I love both of these characters. Both characters are funny in totally different ways. I can’t tell you how excited I am to finally show them off!

Again, I wanted to thank Arnel and Steph for giving us some of their time. It feels foreign to cover something that’s not video game related! But, one has to break away from the chains that bind every now and again. This dynamic duo has taken the time to research each of these characters and create expressive representations of their respective O R I G I N events. They are deserving of your time, and your pledge if you are passionate about any of the characters they’ve portrayed. Again, if you want to see more, click on the banner at the top of the page, it will navigate you directly to their Kickstarter-Campaign.

O R I G I N  Series - Art Prints by Ninjabot -- Kicktraq Mini

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Dylan Zellmer

Dylan splits time between games journalism, designing video games, and playing them. Outside of his deep involvement in the games industry, he enjoys It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Shameless, A Song of Ice and Fire, fitness, and family.
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