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Evan Gintsiak: 3D character artist interview

Evan Gintsiak

3D Character Artist

Despite claiming that he cannot even draw a stick-man, 3D character artist Evan Gintsiak can create some impressive 3D characters! Check out his interview.

Evan's profile

Adam

Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you, what do you do, and where are you located?

Evan

Hi, I am Evan. I have been into 3D art for about 4 years now, mostly working as a generalist for different studios. I decided to shift into characters full-time about a year and a half ago. I am very passionate about character forms, beauty, and appeal. I am obsessed with characters and 3D, and that’s what I am occupied with 24/7. I am currently living in Tel Aviv, Israel, but I used to move a lot during my teens: I lived in Kiev, Ukraine for a long time, and in Toronto, ON, Canada.

Adam

What was the workflow behind your latest gallery image? Where did the idea come from?

Evan

For my latest gallery image, titled Oni Girl, I didn't really have a plan in mind, I just started a quick speed sculpt of a face after being inspired by some amazing 2D art by Guweiz and WLOP (my favorite artists). I kind of liked what I had and decided to keep working on the character; it had many iterations as I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, not the best practice, but I like being free from concepts and plans, and just “go with it.”

I usually try to sculpt from a lot of references, but with no particular image in mind, after spending some time on Pinterest and picking up references and a general theme (this time it was Feudal Japan and warriors and demons), I sculpted and assembled the character in ZBrush. I’m always jumping between my tools of choice: ZBrush, Blender, and Marvelous Designer. When I am somewhat happy with the general sculpt, If needed I will retopologize and UV-unwrap the model in Blender.

After all UVs are done, I move to texturing; it’s a mix of projection painting and procedural textures. For this models, the skin was projected in Mari, and the horns were a mix of painting in ZBrush, and the clothes, for example, were textured inside 3ds Max procedurally. This was also the stage where I took the character into my software of choice for grooming, shading, and rendering. Sometimes it’s Cycles in Blender, and sometimes it’s Corona for 3ds Max. This time it was Corona: it’s very easy to set up, and I enjoyed it a lot.

I know this workflow seems like a mess, but I really like it to be free, and prefer not to limit myself to any particular workflow when working on personal projects at home. It’s constant jumping between software and just adjusting small things here and there until you are satisfied.

Adam

What challenges did the image present? Did you learn something new?

Evan

I am always trying to learn something new, whether it’s a new tool or technique. This time I learned Ornatrix for the hair, and it was also my biggest challenge, not only because I was new to this amazing plugin, I must say I picked it up pretty fast, but mostly because my ancient laptop (yes laptop) computer kept on crashing all the time, whether if in the middle of the grooming or after hitting the render button. It was too much for it to handle, so I had to render different passes of hair and comp it in Photoshop. I also used the clone brush to fix some patches of hair. I learned to save every few minutes (frustrated laughter)! Something I am not used to doing since my PC at work is a beast.

Adam

How do you keep your portfolio up-to-date? Any tips?

Evan

I am always trying to post only the best works, and only if I feel it is an improvement from the previous one I posted. I usually post WIPs on Facebook in different dedicated groups, so I am trying not to flood my portfolio with unfinished projects.

Lately I am also trying to explore and perhaps create a sort of style that works, that could be all linked into one “universe.” Although the characters are different, they do share similar characteristics, like the shape of the mouth or eye, and so on.

It's really fun, and I like when people tell me they like “my style” – there is something really cool and encouraging about hearing it. I do like experimenting with other styles as well during practice, but for my portfolio pieces I really want them to be in line with each other, and I usually remove older works, or works that are completely different from what I am doing now.

For tips, just try to enjoy what you are doing, keep practicing (cliche but true!) and do what you want to do and not what is popular right now. Don’t be afraid to filter older works, and remove them when necessary, even if you like them.

Adam

Who are your favorite artists, traditional or digital, and can you explain why?

Evan

I am a huge fan of digital 2D painting, and I am always mesmerized by how great it looks. There are a lot of artists I love, but I am really digging the styles of Guweiz, WLOP (they have great making of videos), Zeronis, and many other extremely talented 2D and 3D artists. Unfortunately for me, I quit drawing at around 14 and I can’t even draw a stick figure. And that’s fine as I can dedicate my time and focus on creating 3D art.

Adam

What can we expect to see from you next?

Evan

Oh, I am already working on two other characters; one is already in the shading stages, the second is for something different. I want to try and print it as a figurine so the workflow is a bit different – I am learning a lot. Besides those two, I already have two more in mind which I cannot wait to jump into! You can expect to see a lot more work from me, I am always trying to improve my skills and learn, and I am literally obsessed with 3D art, so I am spending all of my free time on it.

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