Andrew Owen is a multimedia and information technology kind of guy. His digital work ranges from producing marketing material such as 3D 1:1 scale helicopters for the San Andreas movie launch to his concept art being used by actor Barry Bostwick, from The Rocky Horror Picture Show, at the fan conventions he attends. He’s an illustrator and painter too, but we really want to talk to him about his Tech Games Fest that has just got game enthusiasts’ tongues wagging.
Andrew brings his A-game to everything he does. This 46-year-old Somerville trainer and assessor in the IT Communications and Business department at Chisholm has energy to burn and is so passionate about bringing technology to the masses you’d be forgiving for thinking he was still in his teens. Gamers never grow old, do they?
Surrounding himself with popular culture and all things gaming from an early age, he’s been involved in esports for about 10 years and created the Tech Games Fest after hosting his Computer Games Boot Camp for six years until about five years ago. There’s been four major three-day Tech Games Fests held at Chisholm, which has been a great supporter of the event, and the most recent one last month was bigger and better than ever.
He explains. “The event has something for everyone across cosplay, gaming, networking, programming, virtual reality and ethical hacking. It also covers pop culture, card and board games, esports, video games, plus there’s talks by industry sponsors. There are also opportunities for work experience and volunteering, which is great for meeting like-minded people. It’s a real labour of love. I start working on each event six months ahead, but it’s worth it to provide a place for people who love particular brands of gaming and want to share that passion with others. Plus it’s great fun.”
Andrew has raised up to $30,000 for TLC for Kids, an Australian children’s charity helping sick kids and their families, from his events over the years. Last month’s free Tech Games Fest was open to the public for the first time, with 30 volunteers and 160 work experience students on board. Watch out for his Beyond 2018 event at the end of the year. Log on to Facebook @TGFTechGamesFest and Instagram @andrewoonline to take a look.
Game on, people. Wag away.