Have you come across one of our Planimals in LiquidPlanner? Thanks to one of our senior developers, Adam Sanderson, they exist! However, they’re going into hibernation for our next release. To pay tribute, we decided to catch up with the artist to learn about the man behind the Planimals – and why he started creating these lovable creatures.
How did Planimals get started?
One of my coworkers seemed to be having a bad day and I thought I’d slip an Easter egg into our application to amuse him. Then once I’d drawn one little animal, I thought: “Hey why not stick in something for everyone.” So I gathered up suggestions and when I had a spare evening or two, I would draw a few more.
Whose idea was it to include them in LiquidPlanner?
I have nobody to blame but myself. I did get permission from Charles, our co-founder and CPO – he said I could do whatever I wanted to get a certain feature implemented. I don’t think he had the Planimals in mind though.
Are you surprised that people find them?
Why do you think people like them so much? What are people responding to?
People like surprises, especially pleasant ones. They’re the core of entertainment.
Obviously drawing is sort of a hobby – what else do you like to draw?
Anything but people. We’re really good at recognizing when people don’t look quite right. We’re not nearly as good at seeing flaws in a mountain goat.
Do you think people will be surprised to hear that the Planimal creator is a developer?
I couldn’t say, I’m surprised by all kinds of things, like what’s in the fridge (some very old eggs!), so I’m a bad person to ask.
What does drawing and coding have in common?
Creation. I think a lot of developers enjoy being able to make things from thin air. Drawing has a similar allure.
What’s your favorite Planimal?
I love all my Planimals equally. However, I love the whale more equally than the rest.
What do you think you’ll draw next?
Now that would be telling wouldn’t it?