Wazzy88: The Poké Ball Master
Suggested by Michael Contino.
“I started making poké balls because I really like changing peoples views on things,” Wazzy told us over email. “I researched DeviantArt and found that a lot of attention was paid to the pocket creatures themselves but not a lot on their ‘houses’, so I made my first poké ball which was a basic water bubble (above) and the rest is history!”
Since then he’s done all kinds of different poké balls, including some custom poké balls for individual Pokémon like Mewtwo to the right (click to enlarge!), as well as branching out into completely different franchises like Ōkami, Avatar: The Last Airbender, Portal and Hetalia.
“I loved Pokémon as a kid but I also love anime in general as well. Not to mention movies,” said Wazzy. “[But] the thing that led me to making custom pokeballs that didn’t exactly relate to Pokémon was the demand I got from the DeviantArt community. They are a great bunch of folks who are so creative and talented, [and] I actually now decide what I do next by holding polls on my page.”
If Ōkamiden‘s Chibiterasu could be caught, this is definitely the poké ball we’d like to use.
Unfortunately, though, these masterpieces only exist as images on Wazzy’s hard drive. “What I do is basically find a great stock photo from either DeviantArt or stockxchange that has a sphere/ball or orb and lay my pokéband around it,” he said. “It took a while to create the first pokéband (the black bit with the circle) at first, but I now use another one from the talented Masteraar.”
Wazzy then uses his Photoshop skills to push in the sides and make it seem like there are two halves. “From there I insert either some sort of cutout or effect like smoke sparkles etc., [and then] it’s a matter of changing the colors and sometimes using filters to make it look the way I want.” The hardest part, he says, is the colouring and making sure the brightness and contrast levels are just right. “It usually takes a while because I won’t settle until the image looks right.”
Yet even though Wazzy’s creations are sadly just as fictional as the poké balls in the games, he definitely thinks he could give Kurt a run for his money. “Yeah I think I can,” he said. “Wouldn’t it be weird and interesting to have Wazzy from some town dishing out your poké balls in the games? I think it will!”
But while Wazzy’s poké balls will no doubt keep on coming in the future, he’s also got big plans for the future. “I’m now working on creating character based cyborgs and [I'm] getting close to transforming DeviantArt artists’ original characters into a more realistic way by using Photoshop,” he said, “but I’m always growing new skills with every picture I make. I believe I am nowhere yet near my full potential.” And we certainly hope so!
If you’d like to see more of Wazzy’s work, make sure you check out his DeviantArt page, but for now we’ve gathered together some of our favourites below. Enjoy!
From left to right: Pokémon Crystal, The Poké Ball of Wall-E, The Poké Ball of Severus Snape.