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Interview with Wu Xiaojun


By Jo Hargreaves

Web: http://essence750.cghub.com/ (will open in new window)
Email: moc.361@057ecnesse

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Date Added: 30th July 2012
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Hi! Now I have to admit that I had a bit of trouble preparing for this interview because I like to start by checking out an artist's website and yours is all in Chinese! (I think - I must admit my knowledge of Oriental languages is non-existent so please correct me if I'm wrong). Anyway, that does give me the perfect opening to ask: who are you and what do you do for a living?

My name is Wu Xiaojun and I was born in Shanghai, China. I'm currently working for a games studio that mainly develops online games and my work is concept design and storyboard design.

Can you tell me about any of the online games you've worked on? Do you have a favorite project? And what kind of games do you like to play in your free time?

I've worked on games including The World of Legend and Magic Land. These games are mostly being operated in China at the moment. Currently I'm doing concept design for Shaft Legend, which I'd say has probably been my favorite project so far. In my free time, I like to play World of Warcraft.

Ah, World of Warcraft - that's one disturbingly addictive game! I still miss my pre-Burning Crusade level 70 Elf Druid... she was bad ass (Laughs). Anyway, moving on - we find that our artists have a real mix of backgrounds, with some having studied art at college, while others are completely self-taught. What kind of training have you had, if any?

I majored in Architectural Design at school, but I've always loved movies and manga so when I got the chance I took a job as an animator. A few years later I was lucky enough to get some film director training. So I'm basically self-taught and am constantly learning and developing my style in my spare time.

While there is certainly still room in the world for traditional art practices, it seems that digital art is the future, particularly as the world around us grows more and more dependent on technology. What are your thoughts on this?

Digital equipment brings us a lot of convenience when it comes to painting and designing, and in the hands of some outstanding artists this has resulted in a number of new artistic styles. It's a great tool, but I think it's also important to not lose sight of what we're trying to express when we are working digitally.

There's a really cool looking medieval comic strip on your CG Hub profile - could you tell me about the story behind it? Is it a work piece or did you create it just for fun? And do you have any particular comic book influences?

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I like stories set in the Middle Ages, such as Record of Lodoss War and The Lord of the Rings, which have both influenced me a lot. The story of my medieval comic describes a world of swords and magic, and contradictions and conflicts between characters. It's an experimental piece.

What techniques do you use when you're working? Can you talk us through your workflow?

I use Painter and Photoshop, with my main program at present being Photoshop. My workflow is not particularly complex; I tend to start from a traditional line drawing and then use layers to build up the color.

"Old gods and small fox!" stands out from the rest of your portfolio with its lovely cartoony style and the fact that it seems more of a completely finished piece, rather than a concept. How did this image come about?

That image is the initial concept for an animated film. I participated in almost all the primary work including scripts, character design and scene design. "Old gods and small fox!" is one of the illustrations: the story of a little fox who has stolen the Lao Shenxian's treasure. I like this cartoon-style, where the character is exaggerated and expressive.
Would you like to do more of this cartoon work in the future?

If I got the chance then definitely. But for now my work requires much more realism.

Establishing yourself in the artistic industry can sometimes be a difficult and daunting prospect for new artists, particularly if they don't have any contacts. If you could offer one piece of advice to aspiring artists based on your own experiences, what would it be?

Personally speaking, I would say never stop learning. Share with others, love your work and do what you like, because when you get confused or lost or have to face failure then this will help you to keep working at it.

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Readers Comments (Newest on Top)
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(ID: 261795, pid: 0) Katie Jenkins on Tue, 18 March 2014 9:01pm
Hi,

I have a website related to graphics and clipart. I'm interested in buying a link on your site.

Are you interested in something like this?

If so, please let me know your price, etc

Thanks :)
Katie
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