is a digital artist by design. He has been highly motivated, starting at a very young age, to create immersive and enjoyable game experiences. From developing art and systems for video games, to creating board, card and physical games with friends, to playing a variety of recreational and collegiate sports, Aaron has always been fascinated with games and driven to explore new game ideas with other people. He loves creating exciting and engaging art as well as improving technical aspects of game development, whether developing tools for the pipeline or just problem solving, in order to make digital art and design a more fluid process.
Intrigued by the interaction between anatomical forms and musculature, Aaron is naturally drawn to creating characters and creatures when working in 3D. His favorite aspects of character design are balancing the relationship of individual parts with the whole, and manifesting the character's story in physical form.
Aaron is also excited by creating visually stunning effects that are fun and readable. He believes that skills and effects within games are most stimulating when they look and feel dynamic, allowing for the player to be further engaged in the experience.
Aaron enjoys delving into new worlds of art and development. He learns quickly and enjoys expanding these worlds through both asset and tool creation. Aaron has great communication skills, and is practiced at documenting and guiding others through workflows. He thrives on team cooperation and accountability. He is easygoing yet hardworking, and enjoys helping to organize team efforts in order to achieve goals.
"Aaron is an extraordinary game developer. He is willing to tackle anything with enthusiasm and carries a "whatever it takes" attitude. I and the team was very fortunate to have him do tech art, shaders, and even VFX. He was thrown into the VFX realm and tackled it with both technical know how and with artful eyes. His timing for VFX animation was impeccable. He was able to author everything with the utmost efficiency, speed, and pleases the eye. Everything he touched was always delivered with perfection. A true craftsman."
-Alan Lee (Environment Technical Art Director at Counterplay Games
"Aaron reached out to me looking for a new opportunity, and he exceeded my expectations when he joined the Technical Art team. He ramped up quickly on several projects, not only learning what he needed to complete his assigned tasks, but also going outside his comfort zone to contribute to other areas like VFX. His work not only showed technical prowess, but he has a good eye for art as well. He gained the trust of Art Directors and team members as a go-to artist when they needed to improve art tools, to create new pipeline processes, or to solve problems. He will be a great asset on any project lucky enough to have him on board. And the ultimate compliment, he is a colleague I hope to work with again."
-Mike Popovich (Senior Technical Artist)
"Aaron stood out immediately among other candidates when he was hired at Halon. His technical knowledge and ability to find ways to make anything work was impressive, and even has the eye to make the work look good and polished. His desire to learn and grow was apparent to me when we briefly worked together on the same project - very easy to work with and trustworthy. I'd work with you again, Aaron, any place, any time!"
-Jason Choi (Technical Director, Game Engine Production at Frame Machine)
"Aaron is one of the most talented and dedicated to his craft that have I ever worked with. We worked together at Flatter Than Earth, where Aaron lead the team of 3D and 2D artists and engineers. Aaron is a very passionate and knowledgeable specialist that can resolve any pipeline related and code related issues which is why another of his responsibilities was to design the art pipeline and write the explanatory documentation for programmers who would work on visual effects and create new shaders based on his designs. Aaron was also part of the design group and was responsible for designing and implementing new game mechanics from paper prototype to polished in-game experience. Over all, he worked very hard, over 12 hours a day and on weekends if needed. He knew his stuff so well that he would spend lots of time teaching the rest of the team on better ways of doing things. He would passionately show how and explain why it is necessary to do so. All I can say is that he is a great artist, teacher and technical lead and it was an honor to work with him."
-Andry Fedorchuk (Unity Developer at Innovation Group WellsFargo)
"Aaron has been one of the most promising students I have come across during the last few years. He has shown great enthusiasm to learn and an eagerness to improve his skill set and artistic prowess. He has always been open to criticism for his work, and through it has improved greatly in a very short amount of time. He would be a great addition to any team looking for a focused and talented artist, one who's always willing to bring their best to any project."
-Shon Mitchell (Sr. Technical Artist at Amazon Game Studios, Previously employed as Environment Artist at 343 Studios, and 3D Lead Artist at Massive Black Inc.)
"Aaron Aikman was a student of mine in an advanced game character modeling class. On the first day he showed a lot of talent, and a good eye for anatomy. He was very easy to direct on his projects for the class, and has the modeling and texturing skills that made project discussions focused around creative decisions, which is great. I still know him now as a very talented artist always seeking to learn more, and creating great art."
-Vaughn Smith (VFX Supervisor at AnatomyTools.com, Previously employed as Jr. Artist at Industrial Light and Magic and Modeler at Lightstream Animation Studios)
"Aaron has the makings of a hard working industry professional. He has demonstrated excellent leadership skills and I would definitely hire him to be a part of a growing team."
- Charles Huenergardt (Online Director, School of Game Design, Academy of Art University, Previously employed by Sega, Sony, EA, Pirate Games, Crystal Dynamics, Shaba Games, and Page 44 Studios)
"Aaron has impressed me with his drive and determination. He is hard working and pays close attention to details. He has a positive attitude and a pleasant demeanor that allows him to work effectively with others. In the classes that I have had him he has constantly performed at the highest levels. In team situations using scrum he was able to both organize his teammates and motivate them to higher levels of achievement. He is a fast learner and his skills are developing nicely. Aaron would be a value add for any team that chose to take him on. I highly recommend him."
-John Hessler (Artist, Game Designer at Spiralate Creative, Previously employed as Online Development Director, School of Game Design, Academy of Art University, Previously employed by Autodesk, Multiverse, and Locomotive Games)