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Crystal "Tala" Austen
2D Animator + Character Designer
Otis College Alum
Based in San Francisco, CA
Currently Available For Work
[email protected]
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About Me

Crystal "Tala" Austen
Character Designer / 2D animator

Pronouns: They/Them or He/Him
Nonbinary Queer Artist

My name is Crystal "Tala" Austen and I am a California born Animator, Visual Development Artist, and Character Designer! I recently graduated from Otis College in Los Angeles, CA, receiving my Bachelors in Fine Arts- Animation after 4 great years!My passion is- and always has been- telling stories that people can see themselves in, regardless of who they are. Representation of all kinds is very important to me given my identity, so one of my major passions is creating characters that are loved by a wide range of people!When I'm not animating or drawing, I'm listening to music, daydreaming, playing video games, and wandering around San Francisco.Connect with me!
[email protected]



2023 Reel

Animated Projects

Fall 2022/Spring 2023Sushi Shop- Two animal burglars sneak into a sushi shop, but quickly find out the owner has certain ways of dealing with criminals.

Fall 2022Various re-animated shots of the Spongebob Episode
"Band geeks".

Character Concepts


Personal Projects

2020- present
Various projects lumped together- character designs, worldbuilding, and storytelling.

Commissioned Works

2020 - PresentFreelance Illustration and Design work I have been commissioned to create.

Lost Worlds

Winter 2024 - Present


Summer 2023
You play as a stray cat exploring 1800s Noir London, slipping through alleyways and through sewer systems to escape.

Sushi Shop

Fall 2022- Spring 2023
A raccoon and a Fox sneak into A sushi shop to steal some goodies. They find out the Owner has ways of dealing with thieves...

Spongebob Reanimate

Fall 2022
Various re-animated shots of the Spongebob Episode
"Band geeks".


Spring 2022
A disgruntled man needs to mow his lawn and decides to yell out his frustrations. His next door neighbor takes notice.

Soft Fuzzy Man

Fall 2020
Various short animations with a character I dubbed "Soft Fuzzy Man".

Youtube Animations

Various Animations I made over the course of High School/college for Youtube.

Commissioned Work

A collection of pieces commissioned by other artists.

Personal Projects

A collection of various projects I have developed.


Tagline TBA

The Lost Worlds
(2024 - present)

I was hired to help a small team design characters as well as create turnarounds, expression sheets, and pose sheets of various pre-designed characters and characters designed by me.

Nox (Noir Cat Game)

I was put on a team to work on character concepts and merch ideas for our game, Nox. I had to follow a strict lighting design for the cat when drawing its poses, as well as follow prompts for the human character designs. These went through many passes before we came to the final designs and sent them to our 3D modeling team.

Finished Work

Sushi Shop FIlm

A pair of robbers- Fox and Raccoon- break into a sushi shop as its closed. But when the owner comes back earlier than expected, they realize there are consequences to their actions.

This project was the first large-scale animated piece I've done. Ive had done shorts in the past, but those lasted anywhere from 30 seconds to 1 minute- this one was a bit of a beast, landing at around 4 minutes with animation, sound design, full backgrounds, a script, and character designs all from scratch.

Process Work

"Band Geeks" Reanimate

Over the course of the Fall 2022 Semester, I was tasked under Otis Instructor Lexi Vay to animate 6 shots for the Spongebob Episode "Band Geeks." I opted on redesigning and re-animating them in a more unique, exaggerated style.

Process Work

Working on this project was a welcome change, as this was developed at the same time as my final film, Sushi Shop. This project consisted of nice, shorter animated segments which I found fit my development style a lot better at the time. Along with that, the weird exaggerated style was fun to draw and work with- stretching the anatomy of Spongebob and friends to help me stand out in the final episode was a fun challenge!

Full Reanimate Episode:

Lawnmower Short (2021)

Its a nice Summer day, and a man decides to rant out his frustrations while mowing his lawn. However, his neighbor takes notice and tries to make small talk.

Over the Spring of 2021, I was given the chance to animate anything I wanted in a 30-60 second time-frame. I decided to animate to a Markiplier clip, as it showed good character interaction and acting as a final piece.

Process Work

This project was the first fully animated project I had done for college and I'm still very proud of it. Working by myself in developing this short was a bit stressful, but it was also extremely rewarding to see it all come together alongside my professor. Being able to use the criticism she gave me to constantly improve the project was essential to the completion of the short.

Soft Fuzzy Man (2019)

For my first proper animation class, I was tasked with creating and animating a character all semester. I wanted something cartoony and simple so I didn't put too much work on myself, but complex enough to make compelling animations. Thus, "Soft Fuzzy Man" was born!

Process Work

Youtube Animations


Aug 2021
Gift animation including my friends character and my own.

Electro World

Apr 2021
Quick fan-animation for a different Youtube Series- ENA.

Apple Pie

Aug 2020
Most viewed animation; Introducing my characters Vinny and Violet.

Why I havent Uploaded...

Nov 2019
Short Animation telling my viewers why I hadn't posted in a humorous manner.

All Eyes On Me

Dec 2018
Animation including an early design of Violet, as well as some vague backstory.

Summer Vibes

Aug 2018
Mini animation that I made after being at California College of the Arts' Summer Animation program.