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Somen Chatterjee: 3D character artist interview

Somen Chatterjee

3D Character Artist

Indian 3D character artist Somen Chatterjee currently works at Rocksalt Interactive Games, finding the balance between work projects and portfolio projects. His main tool of choice is ZBrush – find out more…

Somen's Artstation

3dtotal

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

Somen

Well I started off as a hobbyist and the past decade’s journey translated the hobby into a focused profession! A 3D character artist with an immense love for statues and collectibles, I have, in fact, been an avid collector all my life. My career contour over the past decade started off as a character artist in the 3D art domain, making my passion and profession meet in the long run. I am currently working with Rocksalt Interactive Games (Hyderabad, India) as lead character artist.

3dtotal

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

Somen

The concept is a fantasy art, and I love this genre. As a kid I remember, I used to be very intrigued by the stories and TV shows about fantasy creatures such as mermaids and sirens. Being initially inspired by Mermay sketches of Caroline Gariba, I started this work as a hair sculpting exercise in ZBrush. I eventually developed the look and worked on the proportional aspect, more to my liking, to make it appear more interesting from all the angles. That way the initial idea got transferred into a 3D sculpt.

model development rendering modelling sculpting 3d base

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

Somen

The main focus and challenge of this work was the hair. I wanted to sculpt the hair as it is sculpted in clay. In fact, I kept 3D printing in mind. So, I had to work towards an interesting hair flow and silhouette from all the possible angles. When it comes to the hair, it is always time-consuming to fine tune and detail the strands out. It is completely manual, no fancy IMM brush, or alpha were used. Each and every hair chunk and strand were sculpted and polished using standard and polish brushes in ZBrush. Hence it took more time than usual, but the end result was worth all that effort, I guess.

3dtotal

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

Somen

Yes, ZBrush is my main tool, but I also use Unreal, Maya, Adobe Premiere Pro, Mari, Marmoset Toolbag, Knald, ZBrush, Marvelous Designer, 3D Coat, Quixel, and other tools.

Also, PureRef is one of the coolest tools I have come across. It helps accommodate all my reference files on one palette.

3d character model warrior armour magical fantasy

3dtotal

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

Somen

It is at times quite challenging to balance between the job and updating portfolio, but I feel my passion towards honing my skills keeps me going. Also, I never cease to learn and am ever-inquisitive about any new/trending tools, or updates in my field – that can be another driving factor.

3dtotal

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

Somen

Yes, I am part of a few art groups on Facebook. Some of the hashtags I follow would be #zbrush #3Dcharacterart, and #cgart.

3dtotal

What are your artistic ambitions?

Somen

Honestly, I haven’t put an ultimatum on my artistic aspirations yet. I believe in ‘quality-over-quantity’ and I’d love to see myself as someone who inspires budding artists to make it big in the industry following this principle.

3d model render underwater mermaid sculpt detailing

3dtotal

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

Somen

There are a few artists that have inspired me along the way. However, two of the most prominent influences would be:

1. Mark Newman

He is an American sculptor and illustrator. I specifically get inspired from the way he tells stories and depicts emotions through his sculptures.

2. James W Cain

He is a digital sculptor based in the UK. The composition and flow in his sculptures are phenomenal. They look extraordinary from all the angles. Also, I love the anatomy and drapery work on his pieces.

goku anime head detailing sculpt render 3d model

3dtotal

What can we expect to see from you next?

Somen

I am working on a popular (and controversial!) Indian comic character. Hoping to finish it soon!

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