I always thought that drawing was cool, and the more I work at it, the more joy I find in the craft itself, as well as the concept.
Even Mehl Amundsen is a far–traveled fantasy artist from Stabekk, Norway. Currently, he is living in Denmark. He has worked for Blizzard Entertainment, Games Workshop and other reputable companies in the past. This artist’s career started in Quebec, Canada, where he worked for VOLTA, a studio that is well known in the entertainment industry. This is where Even spent three years learning the ropes of his new job with the help of a great many artists who he looked up to at the time. Working in-house at a studio is a big step-up for any artist and it definitely helped Even kick-start his career as an artist and propelled him to where he is today.
Tell us about your journey so far.
Well, I’ve been to many different places. I studied in Falmouth and Oslo too, I dropped out of college after that and managed to get a job at Volta, in Quebec, where I was able to work for three years, learning from a small but very skilled phalanx of heroes before I felt the strings of old Europe call out to me. I was living in Prague for a year, freelancing and making merry, until the fine folks at Blizzard Entertainment came calling, asking me if I wanted to come work for them. I went across the pond again, but I found that California, for all it’s charms, was not for me. I came east again, and can now be found in the land of the Danes.
What motivates you to create art?
The act of creating, Yes, it may sound a tad pretentious but it is as true as any attempt at boiling down a complex motivation into something manageable in an interview. I always thought that drawing was cool, and the more I work at it, the more joy I find in the craft itself, as well as the concept.
How did you go about finding a personal style?
I can’t say that I have one. I know a lot of people aim to have a specific style but I do my best to remain pretty organic in the development, studying artists I find interesting and taking in bits and bobs of their work. I think that it is more important to be fluid in expression and to apply all of those techniques that will express what you want to express in your work.
Unicorn Rider: a personal artwork
New ways of working are continuously being introduced, what do you do in order to keep up?
I think that being conscious of the goal is far more important than all those fancy techniques. There are still prolific artists working with oil paints, so again, the expression is more important than the technique. If I have a problem, I try and find a technique to solve it. That has always worked for me.
Describe the types of software and processes you use to create artwork.
I use a pen and paper as well as Photoshop for digital art. I follow a simplest set of rules – as simple as I can in fact. It always boils down to going from generals to specifics, also being conscious of the problem I am trying to solve at any given time and always being ready to kill my darlings. I try not to maintain any one approach, I much prefer the reverse engineer process, depending on what result I want to achieve.
I see that you work on personal artworks as often as you can. What are some other good habits every artist needs to succeed?
I always try and keep my sketchbook near me so I can get my ideas out of my head and down on paper. I do try and return to the basics as often as I can, just with a new angle. After all, these are the building blocks for all of that fancy stuff!
The Hero Of Time: tutorial by Even Mehl Amundsen for Imagine FX
How has working at Blizzard Entertainment helped you become a better artist?
I got to work alongside some kick-ass artists and that definitely helped me out! I got to learn from people like Jake Panian, Josh Tallman and Laurel D. Austin, all of whom have skills that surpass my own in more ways than one.
Can you tell us a little bit about your work over at Blizzard Entertainment?
I worked on the cinematic trailer for the Whispers of the Old Gods – the third Hearthstone expansion. I actually got to do some of the establishing artworks and I did the base design for the troll character. It was a good bit of fun to work on, and I had to chance to have my work critiqued by the terrifyingly skilled Laurel D. Austin. That sure taught me a few things!
What’s next for Even Mehl Amundsen?
Next I will be living and learning while here in Denmark, close to hearth and home, friends and family. Of course, I am still on the lookout for new adventures!
By VoxGroovy staff writer; Upper left artwork: Waffle and Jams;
All images used with permission by the artist.
© Even Mehl Amundsen or their respective copyright holder.
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