Who are you? Let us know where you hail from and what you do.

Jerrod Maruyama

My name is Jerrod Maruyama. I’m a freelance illustrator currently residing in Sacramento, California. My work centers around character designs of all types, but primarily the cute stuff. The cute stuff is what I’m best at. I work with existing properties as well as creating completely original characters. Whether it’s for a company mascot or a T-shirt, my goal is to create appealing images with personality. Past clients include Disney, DreamWorks, Nickelodeon and Facebook.

What are you working on?

I am currently developing more pieces for Disney’s WonderGround Gallery located in the Downtown Disney District at the Disneyland Resort. I am developing quite a few digital sticker packs for various companies. And I am always developing characters for a variety of clients both big and small. Much of my work is done at the conceptual stage of projects so I am often unable to share what I am currently working on.

Choose a favorite shot of yours. Why is it a favorite?


I’d have to choose my first shot, Kawaii Woody and Buzz. This image was important to me for so many reasons and is still one of my most viewed. This image was eventually featured on a T-shirt sold exclusively at Pixar’s studio store in Emeryville, California. It got a lot of attention and opened a lot of doors for me.

Tell us about your setup. What tools did you use to create the shot (e.g. hardware, software, pens, paper, blowtorch)?


My setup is simple. All my work is done in Adobe Illustrator. I still use a mouse. Never transferred over to a stylus. I usually stand at my desk - though I have a tall chair that I rarely use. The shot was created in Adobe Illustrator. No bells and whistles, really.

Choose a favorite shot from another Player. Why do you dig it?


That’s a tough one. There are so many great shots out there. Recently, I have really enjoyed the Junk Drawer series from Matt Stevens, particularly his Paging Mr. Herman piece. It’s a great concept and so nicely executed. What a great combination of illustration and design. I hope he does more.

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