Meet our AREA February 2020 Artist of the Month, Michael Robson! We've long been admiring Michael's fantasy-themed renders that seem straight out of another world. Read on to get to know him and his incredible work.
Hello! My name is Michael Robson. I'm a 26-year-old 3D Character Artist living in Curitiba, Brazil. I'm currently working at Fuze Image Maker, an advertising studio focused on CGI and Post Production here in Curitiba. During my free time, I mostly create personal work involving different types of characters.
How did you get started in the 3D industry?
I've been always a huge fan of fantasy. As a kid, I played a lot of card games like Magic The Gathering. I originally wanted to be an illustrator before working in 3D, but I was getting frustrated with the quality of my work. So to change things up, I stopped illustration and started to learn Zbrush to create my own sculpts.
What was your first job in the world of 3D?
One day, I picked up the phone and called an advertising studio here in Curitiba that focused on CGI. I told them that I was learning 3D, wanted to know more about the process and the pipeline of a real working environment, and asked if I could visit them.
They said yes, so I went there and showed my stuff (which was very beginner-level at the time). They gave me a bunch of tips to improve my work which was great. I later continued to do personal pieces and would post my work on social media. One day, I got a call from one of the guys from the studio asking if I was interested to work there as a 3D artist, I said yes and got the job!
"I told them that I was learning 3D, wanted to know more about the process and the pipeline of a real working environment, and asked if I could visit them."
What inspires your work?
A lot of things inspire me, but my main influences are from the fantasy genre. I really love the work of Tolkien, Warcraft, Diablo… Those dark medieval movies have a huge impact when I'm planning something new. I love the armor, swords and that kind of stuff.
What do you love about your job?
I love translating nice concept art to 3D. That includes modeling, sculpting, texturing, shading, lookdev, hair…
What's your least favorite part about your job?
When there isn't any coffee!
What are some of your favorite films/TV?
Oh, the list is huge! As I said, I'm a big fan of fantasy and medieval worlds. Gladiator is one of the best movies I've ever watched. The Lord of The Rings is amazing. I also loved The Hobbit, Warcraft, Robin Hood (with Russell Crowe, 2010), King Arthur (2004), Game of Thrones, Vikings, Conan...
What are some of your favorite games?
I've been playing Dark Souls for years. Bloodborne and Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time were also big parts of my childhood. Recently, I played Horizon Zero Dawn and Assassins Creed Origins. And then there's Mortal Kombat, The Witcher 3, Shadow of War and Shadow of Mordor. There are so many more but those are the ones off the top of my head.
What project have you worked on that you are most proud of?
Personal projects are one of the most important things for me. I made a character based on the Warcraft universe called Magni who’s a dwarf. It was one of the most challenging pieces I've made and certainly the one I'm most proud of.
How do you use Autodesk software?
Maya is one of the main tools to produce my art. I use Maya for modeling, UVs, rendering, grooming... Sometimes, I also use 3ds Max for specific tasks. In general though, I'm more of a Maya user.
What is the most valuable advice you've received in your career?
Study hard! Never stop learning.
Take the time to relax and enjoy your life.
Take it easy. It takes time to develop your skills.
Always do personal work.
What projects are you working on next?
I started working on a really cool project, but can't give away too many details just yet. Aside from that, I plan to create characters, practice more anatomy, and develop my skills as a character artist!
Want to see more from Michael?