Thank you for giving us a few moments of you time and welcome to the SA Creative Network.
Your work is very detailed and ‘clean’. How long have you been illustrating, list a few of your highlights and tell us what’s planned for the future.
I studied graphic design and digital media at university. My first job was in a cartoon animation studio in New Zealand, where I worked as a 3D modeler and sometimes helped with animation clips. After a while, I found my passion was working with concept art and illustration, and I jumped into the game industry to start my painting life about 5 years ago.
In the future, my goal is to design and create more characters and creatures. I also have an interest in anatomy (animals and human) and costume study, and intend to spend more time back on traditional study. I hope to give my characters more attraction power and stronger personality.
What you do is very labour intensive, what is your process?
First, I collect lots of reference in the form of pictures and any text description. When this is done, I start to analyse for inspiration and sketch in Photoshop. I start with colour blocking and sometimes use a 3D program to achieve the perspective.
Here are some “making of ” tutorials to show how I paint in Photoshop:
(Making of Lida)
(Making of Kai)
(Making of beast)
(Making of Xing Tian)
The most important thing in my experience is the idea of sketch and human anatomy, as I spend a lot of time studying the human bones and muscle. I read throughout the painting process.
I often start painting start from black/white value as it is easier to check whether the value is correct. Once I am satisfied with the black/white result, I use a color adjustment tool like colour balance to add colour.
Besides being an illustrator, you have lots of other talents, tell us more?
I graduated from Shih Chien University in Taipei, Taiwan. I studied graphic design, 3D animation and motion graphics during those years. People visited my website to watch some of my work in a 3D gallery and animation showreel (all these works were done during my college life). This gave me a solid foundation and prepared me to jump into the industry and start doing illustration and concept design.
We have a large amount of talented illustrators in South Africa, what is your advice to them as artists and business people?
Keep your passion, practice makes it perfect.
Where can we view more of you work?
CG community (Behance: http://www.behance.net/YuChengHong