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Yanal Sosak: character artist interview

By 3dtotal staff

Web: http://www.facebook.com/yanalsosakartwork/ (will open in new window)

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Date Added: 3rd August 2016

French character artist Yanal Sosak predominantly uses Blender for his works – check out his awesome characters and workflow...



3dtotal: Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you, what do you do, and where are you located?

Yanal Sosak: I am a passionate character artist who just finished his masters in 3D and Visual Arts. I love sports, nightlife, TV shows, manga and arts. I am currently finishing up an internship in a studio situated in Paris.



3dt: Where did you find the inspiration for your latest gallery entry? What's the story behind its creation?

YS: Yokai is my latest entry. I originally entered a character competition and as usual, I went to Pinterest for initial inspiration. After researching, I started doing a rough sculpt using Blender, and complimented it with some painting. The idea was created with time; the more I advanced, the further my idea went. To be honest I rarely have an initial idea on what I want to do; I usually start moving my hands and feel the character coming to life and tell its own story. In a weird way, I let my art make its own decisions – I just have to listen!


3dt: What software and plug-ins did you use to create this image? Did you face any difficulties, and how did you overcome them?

YS: Blender, from sculpt to render. The difficulty is the style of life I have which makes it hard to have deadlines and limited time on personal projects. I have a day job, and I hit the gym almost on a daily basis. I go out a lot as well, which leaves a few tiresome hours at the end of the day. Seeing as it was for a competition, I only had a little time to do what I wanted.

To overcome it, well, organization, enough sleep and discipline. It is easy to get back home and throw on the blanket, but my dreams always help me overcome that feeling. Also, I made sure to plan a little ahead, about what I will focus on the most in the image, and what I can leave out. Spending some time on the concept art helped a lot as well.


3dt: Do you normally use this software in your workflow? What other software and plug-ins do you favor?
YS: I almost use only Blender on my personal work. That said; I do use other software such as Maya, ZBrush, 3ds Max, NUKE, and Adobe Suite during my day job. I definitely favor Blender for many reasons. I do enjoy the occasional ZBrushing from time to time though.


3dt: Are there any particular techniques that you use often? Or do you like to experiment?

YS: I am very young in terms of an artist's age. I started very late, so I am still in the experimental stage.

3dt: What are your artistic ambitions?

YS: Work with big studios and artists, and eventually open my own business. I'd love to pass on my knowledge and skills to the next generation of artists!


3dt: What software would you like to learn in the future to expand your portfolio and skillset, and why?

YS: Well, Substance Painter is definitely up there on the list. I do however, believe that the software are only a mean to an end. I would like to focus on learning and improving my drawing and painting beforehand. Also to continue learning anatomy. Simply because these are what I believe to be important for a character artist.


3dt: How do you keep your portfolio up-to-date? Any tips?

YS: I think people get too worked up on portfolios; I tend to focus on improving myself as an artist. The portfolio evolves as a product of that. Whenever I end up creating an artwork worth showcasing, it joins my portfolio.

However, do be careful because as time goes, you will improve and will have to update your portfolio by removing some work, and adding others. It is important to showcase your best work only, as your portfolio is only as good as your weakest piece.

Another thing to be careful about is not to add things to your portfolio that you would not like to be working on in the future. For example, if you want to be a character artist, fill your portfolio with characters and not cars. I have been a victim of this, as I got recruited as a 3D generalist, rather than a character artist, due to my diversified portfolio.


3dt: Who are your favorite artists, traditional or digital, and can you explain why?

YS: I was hoping I never get asked this question. First of all, definitely digital, as you can get a wider range of colors and create amazing pieces. It just gives me more of that amazing rush you get from a piece that you just love.

Well, for me, artists are like art; my taste changes and improves with time, which is why I never really have a favorite artist. That said there are certain artists that I tend to follow as they inspire me. One example that comes to mind is Johannes Helgson.


3dt: What can we expect to see from you next?

YS: I don't like making promises; life keeps throwing things at you so I can never really say for sure. That said, characters are definitely my main focus. I would like to create some fan art soon, and try a variety of styles.



Related links

Check out The Journey in the 3dtotal gallery
Head over to Yanal's Facebook
Grab a copy of ZBrush Characters and Creatures


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