Thanks to April Winchell for the heads-up about this lovely article and semi-interview with her and Craig McCracken.
For the design of Wander himself, McCracken harked back to a specific image from his childhood. “I guess if he was really based on anything, in the late ’70s there was always those weird furry hippy guys that were kind of just these fur balls with feet and they would hold signs and they were protesting about something,” he said. “He started off as one of those. And then when I first drew him I’m like, ‘He kind of looks like a furry Blue from Foster’s with feet. So I don’t want to do that shape again.’ And then he developed a head and a body and he kind of just became this stick-figure guy. And I always like designing characters that kids can draw very easily. So Blue was a very simple shape. The Powerpuff Girls were very simple shapes. Wander is basically that stick figure that kids draw on the corners of their flip books.”