Arch-viz artist Mohsen Hashemi explains how a near-death incident spurred on his creative need, and shares awesome work from his portfolio...
3dtotal: Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you, what do you do, and where are you located?
I am Mohsen Hashemi from Iran, and I achieved an Architect and Design Masters in 2017. I am an architect and designer and also 3D artist and illustrator. I've taught visualization for about 4 years too. I started to work in 2008 and my career began with graphic design. After a while I started to learn 3D software like 3ds Max, Autocad, and Rhino, and a new career opened up in my life. As an artist I found myself really passionate and I decided to extend my artwork to different fields, so I started to practice and improve my skills in different fields of visualization. As I love design and architecture, I felt I have to present my design and project on a realistic way. So my efforts are spent on visualization and render engines and how to create a photoreal image.
Afterward, I understood there was something more than the use of software for creating an eyecatching image, so I studied more about different fields like photographic rules, lights and colors, composition, painting, and the philosophy of art. I started my professional career in 2014 and opened my little studio name Phoenix Archviz team, and for now we produce images and we have clients from all around the world, but still I practice every single day to improve my skills, and that's my most important goal to be one of the best in the world.
3dt: Tell us about your art: your style, themes, genre, and some of the favorite projects you have worked on.
In my opinion, style is something that flourishes from instinct, and instinct is an inner element. It more or less exists in different people and has huge potential if you can feed it well, because talent is just some part of instinct and history shows that there are other important factors existing which contradict the idea that "if you are not talented, you should leave it behind.” And those factors in my opinion are attitude, passion, and hardworking.
I always love to experience different styles and moods, so I don't stick to a default setting and for each work I try to show something new. But as a personal taste I love when two huge different tones come together in a neutral space.
I love all my projects that I tried hard on, but I have two projects that mean a lot to me. One of them is "The Second Chance” and I named it this because I started to study some new philosophies for my work, and all of them were practiced in this project. Also, in the middle of the project I had a lethal accident and I died for couple of seconds, so I named it "The Second Chance” because I returned to life, and at the time I understand what precious gift living is, and how easy we can lose it.
And the other project was the "Intense” project that I did for a competition. I was creative and ambitious to create a specific mood, because sometimes people need to have opportunities to show themselves and push themselves. I didn't win but I learned a lot.
3dt: Can you describe your typical workflow, and the software/hardware you normally use when creating your artwork?
Typically, I don't use specific software, and each time I try to make something new with some new tools. Recently, I've become a huge fan of Corona Renderer and V-Ray RT because they have become really cool and powerful.
My workflow starts with gathering references and I try to gather applicable references, because I think not all of the references will always feel right, and maybe some of them make the artist more confused and lost. During modeling I always try to get rid of unnecessary polygons, and I'm very meticulous with the chamfers. I really enjoy making my shaders as they exist in the real world, so making shaders in different layers is always joyful for me, and on the other hand, I can really feel the characteristic of the real shaders on the natural lighting. Lighting is the part I spend most of my time on, and I feel really intense when make different moods in an environment, but sometimes clients aren't quite so passionate about a work as I am!
3dt: What inspires you?
Every single picture could be an inspiration if you open your eyes. Every single sentence could be an inspiration if you hear it well. Every single musical note could be an inspiration if you listen carefully. I think we live within a huge inspiration named the galaxy, and with our artistic spirit and intense passion, we can find every element inspiring, and what has the most intense effect on me is my inspiration for current work.
3dt: How do you keep your portfolio up-to-date? Any tips?
It's a really important issue, that we keep updating our profiles on the social network and professional forums. It's important for an artist to show progress. It can lead to good work opportunities and projects for the artist, and without this process everybody would forget the artist exists! Something that was really obvious, and I used it as a big lesson, was we shouldn't hurry in sharing our works because as good work can bring advantages for us, bad work can completely change the way people count on you. I saw this effect even with big artists too. In my opinion, if you want to share something spend a week more, but share something that's worth sharing.
3dt: Who are your favorite artists, traditional or digital, and can you explain why?
I have a big list of the artist that I love but I will name a few that were most inspiring in my career. Santi Sanchez is the artist I find is really amazing in terms of composition and lighting. I'm a huge fan of his because there's always new points to his artwork. Bertrand Benoit is a person whose work I always show as an example for photorealism. Mir Studio is the best source for natural visualization. Alex roman, Pawel Podwojewski, Tamas Medve, Csaba Benati, Nuno Silva, Thi Lima, Jeff Mottle, Ciro Sannino, Studio ailko, brick visual, Kilograph an Binyan: I find each of these leading the way in the archviz industry, and I follow them because I think they have great talent.
3dt: What can we expect to see from you next?
MH: I always try to improve my work. At this moment I feel I have huge potential to push myself towards producing better and better images, so it's vital my goal to never miss a single moment to enhance and find flaws in my work, and try to move forward, is achieved. I think I expect to better represent myself now and in the future.
Mohsen Hashemi's website
Mohsen on Behance
Mohsen on Facebook