May 25, 2020

The Chaos Within – Find an Idea and Run with It with Christian Hegg

by joeyphoenix

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Christian Sterling Hegg joins Joey Phoenix on The Chaos Within podcast to talk about Tales from the Dragon Eye Galaxy, following your curiosity, and asking important questions like hey, what day is today anyway?

Christian is a graphic designer, cosplayer, actor, singer, performer, writer, and director. He’s worked with theatres in New York, Utah, and Massachusetts, designed t-shirts and book covers for local authors, including Salem-based Matt Phillion’s YA series The Indestructibles, and created a number of personas including That Fett Guy – a mashup of Boba Fett and many other things like Doctor Who and the Simpsons. 

He’s also the creator of the 8 episode sci-fi radio series Tales from the Dragon Eye Galaxy, which came out in 2019 and was inspired by old radio shows like “Buck Rogers” and “The Shadow,” which is available wherever podcasts are available.

Thorio and Luiki
Colin Carlton and Christian Hegg

Mentioned in this Podcast

Matt Phillion’s the Indestructibles
Gauntlet Creative
That Fett Guy
Colin Carlton
Post-Meridian Radio Players

Pop Culture References
Stan Freburg
Buck Rogers
The Shadow
Star Wars
Star Trek
Dr. Who
The Simpsons

Meanwhile in the Dragon Eye Galaxy

Starring in order of appearance:
Colin Carlton – Dr. Destructo/Simon/Cricket/Pirate
Kristopher Moreau – Red Dog/Patrol Officer Jones
Tristyn Sepersky – Blue Falcon
Matthew Phillion – Jack Cutlass/Termite
Jennifer Bean – Dr. Bonnie Starr
Kitty Drexel – Kerri/Pirate/Maria Starr
Shawn Fitzmaurice – Pirate/Councilor Jordan
Mary C Ferrara – Councilor Allen/Zera
Susan Muller – Warden Jenkins
Christian Hegg – Narrator/Patrol Officer Smith/Pirate

Sound engineering by Gauntlet Creative.

About The Chaos Within

Hosted by Joey Phoenix, The Chaos Within is a podcast celebrating the weird, the wild, and the creative – featuring makers, doers, artists, and oddballs exploring the unknown and tapping into their creative energy.

The Chaos Within is produced by Creative Collective and is available on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.

The Logo was designed by Anton Presents, the intro music is by Paul Senn ( using the Theta-U Creative Circuit System, and the outro music by Chris Wilson Sound using one of Joey’s maternal Grandmother’s haunted music boxes.

Click here for an up to date listing of Virtual Experiences

Creative North Shore is produced, curated and managed by Creative Collective, we are trying really hard to make sure that we don’t have to put a paywall in place and could really use your support to keep afloat and make us able to keep a few of our staff employed and providing you with content and information. Please consider supporting us with any amount.

Audio Transcript

Joey Phoenix 0:05
The Chaos within, part of Creative Collective presents is a podcast celebrating the weird, the wild, and the creative, featuring makers, doers, artists, and oddballs, exploring the unknown and tapping into their creative energies. The Intro Music is by Paul Senn and the outro music is by Chris Wilson Sound.

In the beginning, there was chaos. I’m your host Joey Phoenix.

Joey 0:30
Christian Sterling Hegg is a graphic designer, cosplayer actor, singer, performer, writer and director. He’s worked with theaters in New York, Utah, and Massachusetts. He’s designed t shirts and book covers for local authors, including Salem based Matt Phillion’s YA series The Indestructables and created a number of personas including that fat guy, a mashup of Boba Fett, and many other things like Doctor Who and the Simpsons.

He’s also the creator of the eight episode sci-fi radio series “Tales from the Dragon Eye Galaxy”, which came out in 2019, and it was inspired by old radio shows like “Buck Rogers” and “The Shadow”.

We will include links to it in the show notes, but it’s available wherever podcasts are available. Christian joins me on the podcast to talk about Tales from the Dragon Eye Galaxy, following your curiosity and asking important questions like hey, what day is it today anyways?

Welcome Christian!

Thanks for having me. Joey.

Christian, what day is it today anyways?

Christian 1:30
That is an excellent question.

Joey 1:34
So I think like finding structure and quarantine is definitely something that I because it’s like the world split kind of in half. We have like essential workers who are busy going off having normal things happening. And then like kind of the rest of us that are working from home from our behind our computers trying to connect. So like, How have your days been, what are you up to?

Christian 1:56
I’m very, very fortunate that I work for a company that’s able to have remote working. I mean, half of the team, or more than half of my team actually works all over the United States. So everybody’s pretty much we were interesting, very interesting, dynamic. There’s many people based in Massachusetts, and then many others are based in Montana, in Illinois in Chicago, my company has already had that set up. So we were lucky enough to have that ability to work from home. So my days basically have been, you know, working the nine to five, of course, having the opportunity to be home and, you know, maybe if I need to take a break, go off and do something, but for that part of the day, I’m, you know, sitting away and clacking away on the laptop and doing my work,

Joey 2:35
but you have always been involved with many more things…

Christian 2:41
I have! I guess, I mean, yeah, that that that’s part, part a part B, of course, is kind of be able to try to carve out some time for me to, you know, to focus on trying to be creative. I mean, even if it’s just goofing around and working on some tiny graphic design products or projects, or even finding the time to maybe go back and look at stuff that I’ve previously written, I’ve kind of really embraced this whole writer persona, which is really kind of evolved over the last many, many years kind of less and less performance and more kind of focusing on writing and structure and all this stuff.

So a lot of my time is if you know, I’m feeling so inclined to take a look at about stuff I’ve written and maybe improve on because you know, with with anybody, I am not satisfied sometimes with with what I write, so I have to go back and look at it and be like, oh, gosh, maybe I need to take a little more time with this and it’s less about seeing something actually come to fruition, it’s more just kind of keeping the cobwebs out and just making sure that I’m spending my time doing that stuff like that. And of course, from time to time, whether it’s writing or maybe coming back to an old cosplay I’ve been working on or just as I said, little tiny graphic design projects, little things here and there. It’s really just it’s it’s kind of not as fun forcing myself to really address those things. But also just like making sure that I’m spending some time to kind of focus on that because I am home a lot. And so a lot of my time needs to be spent on kind of distracting myself.

Joey 4:13
It sounds like you are a tinkerer, and like, you just pick up things as

Christian 4:19
it is. I mean, that’s, I mean, that’s really kind of how I’ve always been, like, I’ve never I’ve always kind of challenged myself as an artist where I’m not satisfied with what like I’m not satisfied just doing one thing, I have to focus on many things, whether I, if it’s something that I like, end up like doing or end up by having having difficulty with, it’s more just trying and as you say, tinkering with with various things. And, and I think to me, that’s kind of how I work, you know, I have to focus on I have to have little things here and there. And I’m notorious, I guess it’s a it’s a, it’s a positive and a negative, I guess, in some ways in the sense that I never I’m never satisfied and I have to kind of push myself creatively from time to time.

Joey 4:59
It’s like going into your laboratory and like seeing what things you can make happen.

Christian 5:03
Exactly. You know, mad scientist is not a is not a I would I have actually embraced that as it were to have to be all over the place and making sure everything is just right. So

Joey 5:16
yeah, like I think it’s created some pretty incredible things out of a [inaudible] my favorite of yours is the Mario and Luigi Thor…

Christian 5:25
Yeah, that was that kind of stuff. I mean, the cosplay stuff is, I see so many things. A lot of that was inspired by why there’s so much great cosplay out there. And there’s so many great artists out there. And I think a lot of the time I see that and I’m like, Oh, God, I really will love that. I would love to try that. And so but then if some random idea strikes me and I bounce it off some friends and they’re like, Oh, this is really great. I mean, I was very lucky to have Colin Carlton, a buddy of mine, too, to kind of join me in that that crazy idea that we had and it was a hit and ever since then it’s kind of like alright, What’s the next one? What do I want to do and I have Three or four different fat mashups in the works that I’m trying to work on. And a couple years ago, my wife and I bought a 3D printer. So that’s kind of like helped fuel many different ideas. So I think that in itself is is really great where, you know, you find an idea and you kind of just run with it. Right, whatever resource that you have something you can design it you can have it in your life.

Joey 6:20
Exactly, exactly. So, so you had a new project that came out last year? Yeah. Dragon eye galaxy…will you talk about that?

Christian 6:31
Yes, I shall, um, I this has been, you know, one of a handful of projects that I’ve really kind of thrown myself into. It started with the idea that again, I grew up with a lot of specifically the comedian friend, Stan Freberg, who did a lot of really great comedy, audio as well back in the day. And so I think that was kind of that was kind of a little bud. It didn’t really kind of develop into something bigger until you know, when I started actually working with a lot of local theatre companies, specifically audio drama companies like postman in radio players. So that kind of started the voice acting thing. So that was the beginning of like my interest in voice acting. And of course, writing was not far behind.

So the idea kind of came up from I really loved the whole buddy cop concept. You know, he’s a, he’s a tough, you know, veteran who has been through so much stuff. And he’s a new guy in the force and has to follow the rules, you know, that kind of that kind of relationship I’ve always loved too. So that kind of came into the idea of writing a kind of that kind of story. So I started writing ideas down about what I wanted to do. Initially, it started off as something where I was like, Oh, this is kind of serious that this is kind of silly, but then I want to make it more serious, but then it kind of maintain the pulpy sci fi aspect.

And the sci fi, of course, was partially inspired by a lot of the Star Wars Star Trek Doctor Who stuff that I that was exposed to as well. So that kind of fed into the idea. I just wrote a just a story. synopsis of all different episodes where I wanted things to go. And of course, the first iteration, the first draft of all those ideas weren’t necessarily what it became. Obviously, it was kind of like the foundation of it. And then from there, I just decided to write really short 10 minute episodes for every single one. Based on these notes I wrote for all these different and so, obviously, that kind of evolved into more episodes, fine-tuning. And of course, I wanted to make sure that I involve people that I had worked with previously or had wanted to work with previously as well. So that kind of came from recruiting a lot from people to help me read it, and then have an actual read through which is really helpful.

I was lucky to find a sound engineer – Gauntlet Creative. He had done a lot of podcasts, audio stuff as well. And this was something that was cool for him to try. And then eventually we just recorded it. We recorded the whole thing in a 12 hour day, all eight episodes. Yeah, it was intense. I’m kind of blown away by by how much got done, how many talented people were involved in the performances and everything kind of came together unexpectedly and was a good kind of that feeling where you see something completed and you’re just like, oh my god, like this is really I got to take a minute like I want to focus on the next next series, but I also have to appreciate that this you know, this actually is a thing it got done.

Joey 9:12
So what is the premise of this tale? Like? What do we get into with this?

Christian 9:19
So the premise is this. So these two pairs of spacecraft, USS Blue Falcon and Red Dog are teamed up to capture the Mad Dr. Destructo, who is this evil despot who’s bent on destroying the galaxy. And due to some unforeseen circumstances, Blue Falcon has to team up with Red’s estranged daughter, Dr. Bonnie Star, and together she’s this engineer, you know, by the book kind of thing. And Blue Falcon is obviously a little, you know, more of a loose cannon and of course, that that creates the whole dynamic between the two of them, these two women working together, unlikely partners, forced to work together to capture the Mad Dr. Destructo. But of course along the way, they run into a series of obstacles that they have to overcome together.

Joey 10:01
That sounds wonderful. Do you find that your ideas keep? Like you can revisit things later? As long as you write them down? Or how does your process work on that?

Christian 10:09
I know a lot of the time I go back to something. And it’s I usually look at it and 50/50 I would say, sometimes it’s the ideas are really great. And I’m like, Oh, I remember um thank God, I wrote that down, because I really liked that at the time. And then sometimes as I look at it, I’m like, no, maybe if I take it this way, because at least it gives me an idea and a foundation of what I want to do. And then, of course, there are other times, I would say, not as much where I look at something like what was I thinking, I don’t really like this, what did I What did I do? So it could be a variety of different things. So I would say most of the time, it’s the middle where I’m like, Oh, this is a really cool idea. But what if I take it to this next level and see where this goes?

Joey 10:49
That makes a whole lot of sense. I’m systematic in the way that I do things and I’m sort of like realizing now in our current situation that I’m not able to just be a linear thinker anymore. Like I really admire people that can like pick up things and put them down as needed.

Joey 11:09
So if you would like to tell our listeners where they can find out more about you


If you can. Yeah, go for it.

Christian 11:17
Obviously, the show can be found on my website at Sterling Arts and Design dot com but it is also available on SoundCloud, Spotify, iTunes, Google Play Music, and Stitcher.

Great. Thank you so much for being a part of this and for giving a bit of joy and what’s the word intrigue to sort of a grey time.

Christian 11:42
It’s It was a pleasure being a part of this. Thank you so much for having me.

Joey 22:23
The Chaos Within is produced by Creative Collective. Creative Collective connects creativity, community and commerce across the North Shore. As a collection of creative professionals, small businesses, organizations, and individuals. They coordinate a series of events, traditional and non traditional marketing initiatives, resources, and best practices to define why creativity matters in all aspects of life. In the beginning, there was chaos. Then you make it yours.