Denise Chapman Weston is a professional Dreamist. Since the age of seven, she has been telling stories, imagining BIG, and bringing dreams to life. After graduating with a Master’s in Social Work from Simmons College, she backpacked across Europe before becoming a play therapist working for fifteen years with families of deaf and autistic children. Denise co-wrote three books teaching parents how to use play to solve their children’s challenges. She then transformed her skills of play and storytelling into entertainment on a larger scale consulting for companies such as Hasbro and Walt Disney Imagineering—developing toys, technology, and theme parks!
Known in the amusement industry as a “playologist” and Director of Imagination, she started Creative Kingdoms with her uber-cool partners discovering her greatest passion inventing the uninvented. She now co-owns over thirty-five (and still growing) patents on family interactive attractions, toys, and technology. Her interactive entertainment and unique, larger- than-life stories can be played at family theme and water park attractions all over the world. MagiQuest, an interactive, live adventure game is one of her favorite dreamiest accomplishments. The Memory Machine is Denise’s first immersive story-world creation, bringing her bigger vision of TransReadia into reality. Her next project, The Longings, is her most ambitious story world yet! It ties all her pursuits together in one juicy storytelling-machine of virtual-to-live world building while teaching kids of all ages the art of invention.
Denise grew up in Elk Grove Village, Illinois, and now lives in Rhode Island with her three children and a home filled with imaginative steampunk art and characters of her creation.
Marissa Garner is the comic artist and the hand behind The Memory Machine sketches. She is a child-at-heart storyteller who just happens to draw and sculpt. Her passion in life is to create stories that fully immerse an audience in fun and new ways that—ideally—provide experiences that make an emotional impact and bring people together.
After graduating from Savannah College of Art and Design in 2011, she has worked as a themed entertainment designer as well as a freelance concept and sequential artist. Most recently, she has had the privilege of learning and working with Walt Disney Imagineering as both an intern and a contractor, and has illustrated a children’s book: Pet Parade by Sunida York.
Marissa’s inspirations come from a variety of different places, comics, cartoons, theater, history, and music—and anyone who knows her can confirm that she never stops singing. But the most important one by far to her is her family who are all creative in their own way and have contributed to bringing it out in her. She is blessed to have incredibly supportive parents who have led lives that encourage her to do her best each and every day with love and integrity. She is also blessed to have amazing siblings who inspire her—a sister with a sheer amount of artistic talent and a contagious appreciation of life and a brother who shows everyone each and every day what true strength and passion is. He is the heart and soul from which Blue’s sketches were born, and she couldn’t have done this without him in her life.
Marissa grew up in Columbia, South Carolina, but currently lives in Glendale, California.