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Prasanth Chundakkattil: lighting & look dev artist interview

Prasanth Chundakkattil

Lighting-Look Development artist

Lighting and look-dev artist Prasanth Chundakkattil shares impressive work from his portfolio and talks about his passion to continue evolving as an artist. Read on…

Prasanth's ArtStation

3dtotal

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

Prasanth

First of all, I want to thank you for the interview. My name is Prasanth, I'm from India, I did a certificate course in Maya, and I started working in 2007 as a lighting artist for Technicolor, Bengaluru. I worked as a full-time lighter during my first few years. Nowadays I'm looking for an opportunity in the industry as a 3D conceptual visual developer for movies, games, and TV series, with a main focus on lighting. I am always looking for great projects and a team for contributing my skills, and learning whatever I can from them, as I am always ready to learn new things and broaden my experience.

3dtotal

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

Prasanth

Let’s talk about my latest work "Craving." The workflow was a very usual one, since I was making a single frame render. I had a real photo reference for making this image, and I thought it would be great to make a story telling image with a cute character. Usually, I make a screen shot from very appealing images and videos for my inspiration and reference. Every artist around me is influencing me one way or the other. I always strive for making good looking images and update my portfolio.

This image was done using various downloaded assets which are free on the web. I used Maya and Arnold for rendering. Textures were made in Quixel Mixer and Substance Painter. Some were free with the assets. I love using volume for my scenes which brings in extra bits of realism and blending. The hair was generated from curves using the Maya nHair system (painteffects), and I also used XGen for the hidden rat and small fur on the shirt.

space ship wreck astronaut 3d model scenery

3dtotal

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

Prasanth

The challenge was to get the right mood, color, and focus. Of course there were other technical challenges to achieve this like having the patience to extract the curves from the hair mesh and applying hair to it. Also, the various steps of XGen were also something new to learn.

On the other hand I was really comfortable with Arnold Render since it’s very unique in giving the desired output. I really love adding volume in my scenes and look forward to learning more.

female character model 3d render scenery

3dtotal

Do you use any other software, either for work or personal projects?

Prasanth

Yes, I do. I use a bit of many software for my scenes. Sometimes I use ZBrush and Mudbox for sculpting details and Marvelous Designer for cloth. I constantly use unfold3d (Rizom UV) for UVing my assets, which is really great. I use almost all industry standard render engines for Maya from time to time. For texturing I use Substance Painter and Quixel Mixer.

3dtotal

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

Prasanth

This is one thing I always do since my job is my passion and hobby. I always imagine what to make next and start it without a 2D concept art. I usually develop my scenes fully in 3D, but one thing I don't actively do is modeling. I don’t usually model all the assets I use. I download free assets and start a scene with them. There are many resources on the web for clarifying the doubts.

Almost every day I work on something after my production work. My passion and openness to learn from around me keeps me going. I usually try all kind of images like stylized cartoon, game, and movie concepts, and cinematic styles. I would like to advise all wannabe artists to dream what you want to create, don't take it as just a job. Always check art sites and get inspired. It will instill sense in you.

dark alleyway 3d scene render model magician rat

3dtotal

Are you a member of any social media groups? Any favorite hashtags you check on a daily basis?

Prasanth

Yes, sure. I frequently use different social media and webs. CGsociety, Artstation,3dtotal, and Facebook are my favorites. I use Artstation as a source for inspiration. Facebook groups can be very useful when it comes to getting feedback and meeting other community members. Finally, I'm on other websites similar to 3dtotal. Some of my favorite hashtags to follow are #lighting, #lookdev, #conceptart, #cgi, and #render.

3dtotal

What are your artistic ambitions?

Prasanth

I am slowly working towards my goal to become a semi-generalist as my focus is on lighting and look development. I enjoy all aspects of CGI. Knowledge of every department is required to be a perfectionist. Also, I am looking forward to working with big studios and getting my name on the credit list of great movies and projects. I hope one day it happens.

dark night scenery model environment apocalyptic

3dtotal

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

Prasanth

In general, I follow a lot of artists from different fields, it depends on what I'm looking for. I am huge fan of Marek Denko who really is my first inspiration in the CG industry. His artwork has influenced me very deeply. Rafael Lacoste, Ian Spriggs, Kris Costa, Georgian Avasilcutei, Antoine Boutin, Vladimir Manyukhin, Hristo Chukov, Cedric Peyravernay, Ben Nicholas, Pascal Blanché, and Marco Plouffe are artists that I've been following lately.

Marek Denko, Kris Costa, Georgian Avasilcutei, and Pascal Blanché are very experienced artists and they get involved very actively in social networks and share artworks which boost your inspiration. There are many others from whom you can learn. You only have to open your eyes and know what to choose.

3dtotal

What can we expect to see from you next?

Prasanth

On a personal level, I am interested in working on more 3D concept art focusing on environments. I am learning Unreal, and I would like to go deeper and present the new projects for my portfolio in UE4. The possibilities of UE4 at the render level are impressive, and I definitely want to bring my real-time concept art to the next level.

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