‘Once I do it, I am unable to cease’_ 69-year-old gamer-artist finds fulfilment in creating paper mache artwork

When he was caring for his ailing mum again in 2015, Simon Tan discovered a method to move his time — crafting paper mache artwork — and it is change into a ardour of his ever since.

This sexagenarian even change into a minor superstar inside some communities and was invited to the Diablo IV launch occasion in Actuality Rift at Bugis+ final Saturday (June 10).

In an interview with AsiaOne on the Diablo IV launch occasion, this 69-year-old shared how he obtained into the craft.

“My mum was very sick and wanted somebody to take care of her, so I used to be pondering that I ought to,” he mentioned.

He defined that he tried out paper mache artwork then, and even after his mother handed away, he continued crafting new works.

First starting with a masks, he tried out different creations and has since made many items of artwork, notably a Diablo IV protect and enormous scythe, in addition to different popular culture items comparable to an Iron Man helmet.

His newest masterpiece is a life-sized bust of Lilith, an antagonist in Diablo IV, an motion role-playing sport with multiplayer components by Activision Blizzard.

Simon shared: “This one (Lilith bust) took me about six months to do.”

He added excitedly: “The horns are fabricated from paper cups, ? The face is fabricated from paper and cardboard and issues like that.”

Though he is made many advanced items of paper mache artwork, having carried out them earlier than does not make it any simpler, he mentioned with a smile.

“Particularly the horns, they have been fairly troublesome to make — and the face, after all, is essential… it higher look the identical [as the original].”

So as to take action, Simon refers to his iPad and pc to search out movies that he makes use of as reference materials.

Whereas most of his works are left unpainted, this Lilith bust was masterfully painted by professionals by request of Blizzard.

Talking of the popularity that he is gotten from Blizzard and the Diablo IV neighborhood, he revealed: “I really feel good — I’ve carried out this for fairly a very long time already, however there was no one who actually reached out to me.”

He expressed his gratitude and added: “I get pleasure from doing this. Once I do it, I am unable to cease. As soon as I am completed with one, I will begin doing one other, and one other after that.”

Simon additionally mentioned that he is at the moment engaged on a brand new venture, though he did not reveal what it was.

However each endeavor is a problem to him, he mentioned, additionally stating that he would maintain practising his craft “so long as he can”.

Romance cast in ‘Hell’

Whereas Simon has furthered his repute as an artist by means of Diablo, one other particular person has superior one thing else — his romantic relationship.

Quek Yeow Chong informed AsiaOne that gaming and Diablo are inherently linked to the recollections he created along with his then-girlfriend, now-wife.

Quek, 39, has performed Diablo since its first iteration, which was launched on the finish of 1996. He is performed each Diablo II and III, in addition to different Blizzard video games.


Collectively along with his spouse, he spent “numerous hours” in Diablo III, an expertise that he described as being “fairly thrilling” and “fulfilling”.

“As a result of once you work collectively to take down the ultimate boss — that was actually one thing… it was fairly an thrilling second after we managed to take it out,” he mentioned.

The duo had met one another in one other on-line sport and step by step progressed their relationship as they tried out completely different video games.

They even obtained a digital marriage in World of Warcraft previous to their marriage in actual life — a narrative that in addition they shared with Blizzard as a part of a contest that they later gained second place for.

They tied the knot in 2011 and now have three youngsters aged 11, seven and 4.

Though it is troublesome to search out time to play video games now, he tries his greatest to place in an hour or two each few days, he mentioned, striving to strike a steadiness between life and gaming.


“It is not one thing that is mutually unique… I do not assume it really works that approach. You possibly can have a life and you’ll nonetheless sport and you’ll nonetheless have these fantastic recollections.”

He additionally feels that it is “inevitable” for his youngsters to be launched to gaming, so he intends to “mannequin the way in which” for his youngsters.

Gaming is one thing that, if not managed correctly, can result in dire penalties, Quek admitted.

Nonetheless, if dad and mom are in a position to perceive video games and the way they need to assist their youngsters handle their time, it ought to simplify the scenario.

In main by instance, he hopes to point out his youngsters how you can prioritise duties earlier than delving into video games, and the way they can not be enjoying video games for too lengthy.

He added: “I actually hope that at some point folks can perceive that gaming itself shouldn’t have the form of unfavourable stigmas in the direction of it… I’ve my very own profession and I am doing properly. I am not extraordinarily wealthy, however I am getting by and my youngsters are properly taken care of.”


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