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Interview with mech-master, Mohammad Attaran (next)

By Mohammad Hossein Attaran

Web: www.mhattaran.com (will open in new window)

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Date Added: 15th August 2014

3D mech-master, Mohammad Attaran, chats about life as a freelancer creating mechs for graphics companies and exploring personal projects...


3dtotal: Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you, what do you do, and where are you located?
Hello everyone! I am Mohammad Hossein Attaran, from Shiraz, Iran. I am a freelance 3D artist. I started CG when I was 11 by using MS paint! I made up my mind at the age of 16 and learned Photoshop. I was attracted to 3D animation at the same time, but one day when I watched the Transformers movie accidentally in 2009, I decided to jump into 3D. So the story began! I found my way very soon. I always loved robots and anything mechanical from the age of childhood. I remember I had heavy trucks and construction machine toys. I also used to draw robots and spaceships on any piece of paper I could find.

Now I am working in this field (mech design) professionally. And that's what I always used to dream of.
I am also a senior student of animation directing MA in Tarbiat Modarres University And as a matter of fact, my thesis is dedicated to mech design too! I am doing a huge amount research to discover the principal rules in mech design both aesthetically and technically.

Face to face with Iron man

3dt: Tell us the story behind your recent gallery entry, Sunday Morning (The Next). What inspired you to create it?
Well, as a consequence of my love for mech design, I always loved flying and especially aircrafts and aviation accessories. But this feeling has only evolved recently! I have made a series of aviation illustrations, and this illustration stands as the last one until today.

I had absolutely no idea what I was going to make

I have been studying tons of aircraft and aerial photographs and these are indeed what inspired me. I explored them intently and spent hours until I had reached my desired composition.

Also, let me tell you about the strange naming. I have a delightful memory from my childhood, when one weekend morning I was taken to a little airport near the city, where people flew their model aircrafts. It was really amazing for me then, and I have never forgotten it.

Flying with best friends on a delightful Sunday morning

3dt: What software did you use and do you have any tips for using this software, or any other software that you use to create your art in general?
I started 3D by learning 3ds Max, but it took 3 years to understand that it was not appropriate for my way of mech designing. Actually, I knew that when I began learning ZBrush!

ZBrush has very good tools for modeling and sculpting, but the thing that made it special for me, was the creative progress in modeling. I often don't know what I will come to when I start a project (personal projects of course!) I just have a feeling and know the mood. So my feelings/intuition lead me to the final outcome. However, I have not left 3ds Max completely, but I use ZBrush for almost all of my works.
One of the principal members of the Mine salvation series

This may be weird but I do almost all my renderings with ZBrush too! In fact, I create the visual in the post-processing stage of Photoshop. I am not afraid to say that my renderings are way far from what you see in the final presentation. Compositing has always been fun for me. It usually takes me 2 or 3 days (and I find this process the most fun stage).

Mine Salvation is a series I've been working on since last year. Hopefully I'll be making a short animated movie based on it, later
this year

3dt: Would you consider yourself to have a particular signature style, or techniques that you use often?
Yes, I guess so. As I said earlier, my intuition designs for me, and as a matter of fact they barely change. Wicked or evil tones, and realistic detailing, are the 2 principal characteristics I portray in my artworks. I can barely achieve a kind and lovely tone and still love it! And that's not cool, of course. It may be one of my weaknesses.

Done for Sapphire graphics card packaging

3dt: What software would you like to learn in the future to expand your portfolio and skillset, and why?
Actually I can find nothing more attractive than ZBrush. So, I'm just waiting for the next version of it! Maybe I would like to improve my modeling skills in 3ds Max too, so that I can adapt my ZBrush characters for production in a better way.

3dt: How do you keep your portfolio up-to-date? Any tips?
I'm just following my interests. I get attracted to some issue for a while and that makes me do some illustrations around that subject. I jump into another issue right after I have quenched my thirst!

Done for Sapphire graphics card packaging

3dt: How do you like to unwind after a hard day's (or night's) work?
I seldom get exhausted of work - because I love it. The only thing that bothers me after hours sitting behind my computer is the backache. So I need to do some exercise. Secondly, I love listening to music while I lie down. Too lazy! Isn't it?

3dt: If you could choose any superhero power, what would you take?
Hmmm! Absolutely I would love to fly. Fly to undiscovered places. Of course, I'd rather be invisible while flying, because I want to pass the borders without being shot. So maybe a combination of superman and the invisible woman!?

Just another member of the aviation series

Related links

For more of Mohammad Attaran's work, head over to his site
Are you a ZBrush user or looking to try it out? You may find our ZBrush Character Sculpting book useful
Want to submit to our gallery?

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