David Longdon is the lead vocalist and co-songwriter for Big Big Train—a British prog-rock band that’s been on the rise since its revitalization. It’s interesting to note that its newfound success came about as a result of the changes that were made in 2009. Of course, the band has been around since the 1990s, but its current roster is very different to what it was twenty-seven years ago. David said that he had joined the band alongside Nick D’Virgilio and Dave Gregory, and it would seem that combining these musicians’ talents with the remainder of the band’s members was a recipe for success. Still, I urge you to listen to The Underfall Yard—a 2009 album that would leave expectant crowds hungry for more Big Big Train.
Michal Sawtyruk is a digital painter and illustrator based in Warsaw, Poland. His work was recently published in THE BEST POLISH ILLUSTRATORS 2—a hefty art-book that features some of Poland’s best contemporary artists. A few well-renowned ones have already been featured on Vox Groovy. But today’s interview is with someone whose work we absolutely love! Sawtyruk has a wonderful collection of personal artworks on ArtStation, but he’s also had the opportunity to work with 3DTotal, DreamWorks Animation and Platige Image in the past. We’re going to talk to him about why you should only draw what you enjoy, and what that could mean for your future as a creative professional. As well as that, we’ll be looking at the ongoing changes in the Polish art scene—specifically at how digital art has changed the industry’s landscape for the better. Finally, you’re going to learn more about Sawtyruk’s journey and personal approach to creating art.
Geoffrey Ernault is a French concept artist based in Los Angeles. He’s currently working on R&D for Riot Games, so there’s a good chance we’ll be seeing his ideas come to life in the near future. Of course, this isn’t the first time Geoffrey and his team started from scratch. He was actually R&Ding for Guerrilla Cambridge when the team came up with RIGS: Mechanized Combat League—one of the first games made available on PlayStation VR. He’s only been with Riot for a little while, but in the interview, he said that, “Working at Riot felt like a natural progression to me, as I love being a part of projects at the core.” It seems that Geoffrey is a concept artist through and through.
A new type of article? One that gives aspiring artists an opportunity to have their questions answered by hardened industry professionals like Even Amundsen, Grzegorz Rutkowski and Yohann Schepacz. If you’re a beginner who wants to learn more about the art world, you can now send us art-related questions on the contact page anytime you want.
Leon Tukker is a twenty-five year old freelance artist from the Netherlands. He is currently working from the city of Utrecht, and has recently finished concepting for Starfinder by Paizo Publishing. Alongside that, Tukker is working on a new installment in the System Shock franchise. Together with OtherSide Entertainment, and Warren Spector—a renowned American video-game designer—they’re sure to make a standout title for us in the near future. Of course, those are some of the more recent clients. Tukker has worked with Paramount Pictures, and the more local KeokeN Interactive, in the past.
Wendy Tan Shiau Wei is a twenty-two year old freelancer from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. She focuses on illustration and storyboarding in her artwork, but she also has a strong background in multimedia design. The illustrations she makes are quite telling, and each and every one of them is overflowing with sincerity and a genuine love for art. Wendy’s personal style is cartoony and light-hearted in its own unique way. It’s important to note that the style is very different to what we usually see because there’s a bit of a clash between the two influences—East Asian and Western art—both of which subtly shine through her many canvases.
The SPA Studios is planning to bring traditional 2D animation back with Klaus, an animated feature film by Sergio Pablos. It’s important to note that Pixar and DreamWorks Animation have been dominating the animation industry with computer animation as opposed to hand-drawing the frames like Klaus, so this is an interesting development for this industry. Szymon Biernacki is one of two art directors—working alongside Marcin Jakubowski to develop the art style for the feature—and he is the one we are talking to today.
A-1 Pictures really went out of their way to make Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash look and feel different to the other anime in this slightly worn-out TV trope. After all, we’ve all seen our fair share of “trapped in another world” anime this season. I guess it’s impossible to miss it with shows like KONOSUBA and Re:ZERO stealing the spotlight all year round. However, the main reason Grimgar is a standout is because of the weight – both physical and psychological – it presents to us.
I love painting portraits more than anything else, mainly because of their ability to tell you more about a person. One of the things I like to include is photo-references, and I have a tendency to use these a lot. Popular opinion — or the loudest one anyway — holds that using photographs in a painting is cheating. Moreover, copying is another things that this community frowns upon, but you actually learn a great deal from copying. To tell you the truth, it may well be the fastest way to improve as an artist. My recommendation is to study old master paintings. You will need to be very observant in order to learn how they did it, but you can apply everything you learn here in the future. On a side note, the 10,000 hour rule is not going to apply if you are practicing wrong.
The Malaysian art scene often goes unnoticed in the art community. After all, there’s only a handful of names that we all know and love. Incidentally, we have interviewed Puppeteer Lee in the past, but we didn’t get a chance to ask him what it’s like to be an artist in his home country. This is why we interviewed Kael Ngu, a Concept Artist from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. “I feel that there will be many more young aspiring artists coming out of Malaysia in due time, and the culture will get stronger as time goes by.” said Kael. The artists all know each other, and they collaborate on various art-books, two of which have already been published. Of course, their day-to-day tasks at work keep them busy, but you can look forward to more collaborative projects by Kael and the others in the near future.