Womenize! – Inspiring Stories is our weekly series featuring inspirational individuals from games and tech. For this edition we talked to Julie KaneFounder of Midori Animation. She speaks about balancing creative and administrative tasks, the inspiration and ecological focus of her project “Vesturia: The Scarlet Bloodline,” and the rewarding impact of promoting environmental awareness through her start-up.  Read more about Julie here:
Hi Julie! How do you balance the creative aspects of your work as a graphic designer and illustrator with the commercial and administrative demands of running your own start-up?

As a graphic designer and illustrator, my passion lies in creating visually captivating stories and experiences. However, creating a start-up also requires a lot of time and energy devoted to administrative tasks, strategic planning and financial management. To achieve this balance, I adopt a fairly structured approach. I allocate specific blocks of time for creative work and commercial tasks. It’s very important for me to stimulate my creativity. It helps me to stay focused and make sure that no aspect is overlooked. Being a very undisciplined person, the Pomodoro method is my best friend! I try to integrate my creative processes with the company’s objectives and those I’ve set myself. Not forgetting that I stay up to date, generally by keeping a close eye on what’s going on in the industry, so that I can better anticipate and adapt as I go along.

What inspired you to write “Vesturia: The Scarlet Bloodline” and how did this project evolve into a video game with an ecological dimension?

“Vesturia: La lignée écarlate” was inspired by my love of manga and animation, fantasy, and my ambition to make an illustrated novel. I didn’t particularly like writing, but having this idea of writing each story unique to my characters, drawing them and making the close link with the planet Vesturia was stronger than my aversion to writing, so in the end I learned to love writing. The story began as a novel, focusing on fantasy and adventure themes while subtly incorporating messages about ecological responsibility and the interconnectedness of all life. The characters in the book draw their energy from the planet, just as we benefit from the bounty and riches of our own. In the story, if the planet Vesturia is disrupted, the people will be directly affected, in a way similar to us. In the meantime, I’ve realised that I’m having an impact by playing video games, and that they emit around 37 million tonnes of CO2 a year. So the evolution into video games was a natural progression: I want to create a more immersive experience where players can actively engage with the story and make decisions that will influence the plot. Turning the story into a game will allow me to integrate ecological themes in a more dynamic way. Players will be able to see the consequences of their in-game actions on the environment, which raises awareness and encourages sustainable practices. Video games have a wide reach and can engage a variety of audiences. By turning “Vesturia” into a game, I hope to inspire a wider audience to think about their impact on the environment and take positive action.

What has been the most rewarding aspect of your entrepreneurial journey so far, and why?

The most rewarding aspect of my entrepreneurial journey is the opportunity to make a significant impact through my work and my actions. Setting up projects that resonate with people and showing them that video games are a powerful vehicle for conveying messages and raising interest in the environment. Creating my own start-up allows me to pursue projects that align with my values and vision. And it’s this creative freedom that is both motivating and liberating, driving me forward every day with new ideas that I’d like to implement. Like developing a mobile gaming application that challenges players about their gaming habits!  It’s also immensely gratifying to receive positive feedback from people around me, from professionals and from my followers, who in turn feel inspired by my initiatives. It reaffirms the importance of my mission and encourages me to continue. Entrepreneurship is a continuous learning process. Overcoming challenges, whether creative, technical or commercial, contributes to my personal and professional growth every day. My ambition is to build a community around my projects and connect with every like-minded individual and organisation. 

I think it’s time to bring some green in the game and a new dimension to the industry and unite a committed community. It’s possible to enjoy video games while being aware of their impact! 

Thanks for this interview, Julie!

Julie’s links: LinkedIn

Womenize! – Inspiring Stories Feature by Madeleine Egger