CG artist and architect Thomas Dubois discusses the workflow behind his latest gallery image, offering tips and insights...
3dtotal: Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you, what do you do, and where are you located?
Hi, my name is Thomas Dubois. I'm an architect and CG artist from the south of France. Since I was a little kid I have always been keen on drawing and all kinds of creations and stories. Architecture is my formation but apart from that, my passion is to imagine various visuals, stories or even plots which finally lead me to create a lot of personal passion projects.
3dt: What was the workflow behind your latest gallery image? Where did the idea come from?
This image was at the beginning a test for the new V-Ray
for CINEMA 4D
, to try this new engine. As I was happy with the first results I decided to push it more. Concerning the development process, it has naturally been set up. I always have a sketchbook with me where I put drawings and writings that make progress together and always question one another. I did other images of this ring-shaped house project before, and this one is the last I did for this project. So for this one, as I said, I started with some sketches, searching for a concept and then I moved directly into CINEMA 4D because I wanted to do a lot of things in 3D for this image and it was a big challenge. Modeling, lighting, texturing, framing all with CINEMA 4D and V-Ray. After the render, I did the post-production in Photoshop.
Octobre project developed by Thomas Dubois & Pablo Garcia
3dt: What challenges did the image present? Did you learn something new?
The main challenges were to do a lot of things in 3D like the 3D vegetation, the rocks and the water. For the vegetation I used some assets from Evermotion libraries and some I made myself. Regarding the water and the rocks, I did a lot of testing to find that tropical feeling, using displacement maps, transparency, and reflections. My main goal was to achieve a natural atmosphere with a tropical feeling.
3dt: Do you use any other software, either for work or personal projects?
Yes I also use some CAD softwares like Autocad. I recently used DAZ 3D for a new project and a little bit of After Effects. I just started to learn Fusion 360 because I think it can be really interesting as a tool to design and explore new territories. I also have an eye on 3D Coat that can be interesting. I think learning new things is always good to stimulate creativity.
3dt: How do you keep your portfolio up-to-date? Any tips?
I always try to work on personal projects that keep me challenged and push me to learn new things and new approaches. I have a sketchbook with me where I put ideas and stuff and sometimes it becomes a bigger project. I would say that challenging yourself and not being too much in the comfort zone is a good way (at least for me ) to keep ideas fresh.
3dt: Are you a member of any social media groups? Any favorite hashtags you check on a daily basis?
Yes I use Facebook, Behance and Instagram. Twitter is not really my thing as I'm on social media to see creative art. On a daily routine, I check the profiles of the people I follow, and when I see something really interesting it motivates me (and of course sometimes I feel like I'm so bad) to work harder to be as good as possible. But I try to not spend too much time on social media, It can really be a huge time consumer and I prefer to spend my time outside.
3dt: How important is the recognition of your peers?
Well it's a tricky question ! I think I don't do art to have recognition but it's always good to have it. Of course sharing thoughts and critiques with others is a must when you want to improve your work, but recognition is not a necessity. Recently I had a feedback from an artist that I had admired for many years, saying he really liked my work and I have to admit that it was a big source of motivation!
Octobre project developed by Thomas Dubois & Pablo Garcia
3dt: What are your artistic ambitions?
Well it depends on the opportunities life can brings. But I would say that making a videogame or something like that is a thing I would love to develop. Actually I'm working on a personal project around that. Working with a team, sharing a story, create emotions, transporting people to different universes is something I love to do.
Underwater project developed by Thomas Dubois & Pablo Garcia
3dt: Who are your favorite artists, traditional or digital, and can you explain why?
I have a range of references, and not so much from the digital world as I don't come from it. In architecture I have a huge admiration for Renzo Piano, Santiago Calatrava and RCR who are amazing architects. I also love the work of some architecture visualization companies like MIR and Luxigon which have an incredible eye to show and visualize architecture. I also love some fine arts/photography artists like Gregory Crewdson, Bom-K, Zest, Augustine Kofie, Jeremy Mann or Chris Bushe to name a few. I clearly love traditional painters like Rembrandt and Turner. I can't leave without mentioning Sparth, Vyle, Raphael Lacoste, Maciej Kuciara, Ash Thorp, Steven Messing, Jaime Jones, Jama Jurabaev and so many more!! These guys are a huge source of inspiration.
3dt: What can we expect to see from you next?
As I said I'm working on some personal projects. One is an interactive adventure which can be a sort of videogame. I need to push it more to see where it can go, but I think I will focus my personal work in this area. Another project is a scenario I'm working on with my brother which can be interesting to develop. And I hope that some good opportunities will appear.
Check out Thomas Dubois' Behance
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