• About

    Black-and-white headshot of Darian Shump.

    I’m a career grad student and instructor turned amateur game dev. My interests primarily revolve around narrative and worldbuilding, but I have a soft spot for art and a growing love for production and small-team mentorship.

    In general, though, I still like to think of myself as an “independent scholar” before anything else. My research in that capacity builds upon work I pursued in my previous life: I’m especially interested in visual culture in contemporary Japan, including artistic representations of shape-shifting yōkai and the ways their transformations manifest across print, animated, and interactive media. The way I see it, images of shape-shifters quite literally embody the myriad relationships between human and non-human animals — and in doing so, force us to reconsider our relationships with the environment.