You might not yet have heard of mayamada but the company keeps popping onto my radar. Sometimes it’s an anime fan or a gamer friend who mentions the brand. Sometimes there’s a comic book Kickstarter. There’s even been a Geek Native post or two.
Determined to get to the bottom of this mystery I invited co-founder Nigel Twumasi to the blog and to reveal a little more about the company and their plans.
My name is Nigel and I’m one of the mayamada co-founders and writer of the Samurai Chef comic.
Most people reading this won’t have heard of mayamada or Samurai Chef, so I’ll start at the beginning…
What is mayamada?
Once upon a time there was…just kidding. In a nutshell, mayamada is a story-based clothing brand inspired by anime and manga.
We mix anthropomorphic characters with comics with clothing. That’s been the way we do things from the beginning, we love creating stories and also wanted fashion with a real meaning behind it.
For us it’s not enough to have a t-shirt design that looks nice for the sake of it, but to create clothing that has a story and some depth.
So myself and my co-founder Lao K created a world of original characters that live in a fantasy television network universe.
Think Looney Tunes meets Japanese television meets and you’ll get the idea.
Original, anime inspired characters
From Samurai Chef to Norio to Blake Serious, each one has their own story within one of the shows on the fantasy network and this is what we base all our designs on.
There are a whole cast of characters within mayamada and the Samurai Chef is the first one to get the comic treatment. It’s an all-ages action comedy story with a lot of food-based violence.
It all begins as a simple cooking competition, but becomes something else when the food is turned into food monsters and start fighting back.
Samurai Chef Volume 1 was made possible by a successful Indiegogo campaign, but when it comes to crowdfunding it’s fair to say we’ve had ups and downs like a rollercoaster.
Over the summer we launched a Kickstarter for Samurai Chef Volume 2, which fell short of its goal at 81%. Close but no cigar.
We were disappointed, but determined to get the book done so launched a second Kickstarter after studying our first effort and making some changes.
This involved lowering the project funding goal and simplifying the rewards. We also decided to go with an informational video to help give potential backers a clearer idea of what the project is about.
Our second Kickstarter ends on October 27th 2014. It reached its goal and became a staff pick in three days of launching.
Right now it’s over 250% of the funding goal and even on course to pass our original funding goal. How’s that for a thrill ride!
A big factor in the success of the second Kickstarter was the support from the first Kickstarter, even though it fell short those supporters helped us get off to a good start second time around by becoming early backers.
We’re now looking forward to the release of the complete Samurai Chef print edition. Hopefully we get to produce some of the stretch goals too.
The goals are an extended edition of the Samurai Chef book, Samurai Chef plushies and maybe my favourite…a fully illustrated cookbook with recipes that backers will be able to vote on.
But this is just the beginning. Once the Samurai Chef story has been wrapped up we’ll begin releasing new stories in 2015, including 11th Hour, Hot Lunch and Serious.
11th Hour is a mystery story in which four strangers find themselves caught up in a plot that has been put in motion by an unknown enemy.
Hot Lunch is a story centered around a crew of thieves on a mission to bring down a shadowy cabal of elite chefs by pulling a series of carefully planned heists.
And Serious is about a group of young entrepreneurs out to make a success in the business world and break stereotypes along the way. It’s a little meta…
There are more characters and stories waiting in the wings too, we want to make sure all our characters have their stories told.
Until then you can visit the Kickstarter and let us know what you think of Samurai Chef.