People often ask me, why I have become an artist, why art from everything that life has to offer, for example pursuing a secure job above all… Now, after established work in classical arts and academic research, I decided to change my line of work to the digital and game art… I know it seems crazy and illogical, but hear my story first.
I was always a very awkward kid, wanted to fit in and have friends but it never really felt right… I had some groups of them but never really fit. I grew up with bunch of boys in the neighborhood, since girly play and tea parties were never my cup of tea. I grew in extremely safe and rich area of Belgrade, away from any crisis and wars that country had faced due to my family’s status and wealth back in the day. That also led to the fact that I had the computer, gaming consoles of all sorts as they were coming to the market. My parents supported my interests in gaming, arts, mathematics and physics. As mentioned already – I was an awkward kid… Later on in high school, I was…. Damn I became even more awkward if that was possible… I was a goth, and all varieties of metal/gothic/dark wave stuff. However, did not drink, did not smoke, had straight A’s in school and never tried any drugs (still haven’t, I know, I am most pathetic artist ever). Gaming and reading remained my biggest interest regardless of the changes that life brings.
Being a nerd, goth and a gamer in Belgrade, a metropolis where style and status always comes first, where the surname and the class where you belong means everything, well lets just put it simply – it is not a good idea. But there I was, all 3 in 1, as lame as one can possibly get, including the straight A’s during the studies at the state academy as well… Most of the times the comments from the friends, some distant family or just surrounding would be rather nasty, but I really, honestly never gave a flying f*ck what people think, and nowadays even less. Just live and let live, how hard can it be!?! The best thing in the Serbian culture is that everyone knows exactly what you should do and how to do and how shameful something is, aaah all that shame that one needs to avoid. Well, as an ultimate lame nerd, I never did anything shameful, although I am sure many would disagree due to my gothic-looks back in the day, having just few friends and did not want to go out and partying… Of course that had changed at some point and I became more social and started to enjoy good food and alcohol, maybe just becoming mature, however I still prefer to stay home and play some good game instead of going out and being social, people can really drain the life energy…
But now more importantly, the link between traditional and game art, and how it all clicked.
I consider myself being a classical artist due to my academic education, moreover I do have a degree in graphic design and have been working as a designer for companies and freelance for over a decade. Therefore, I have been trained simultaneously in both traditional, very material art production and digital, contemporary design tendencies. When I moved to Finland, I decided to pursue the academic work and started my PhD research, including the teaching and establishing a studio of classical art techniques. I left the graphic design behind and did the design solutions only for the friends and family when needed.
After years of working in variety of artistic production, I realized that each of their aspects – the traditional and digital – make me as an artist capable to do pretty much anything the customers ask in their commissions. And what makes a good game artist – ability to create pretty much anything that gameplay and the narratives demand. From the imagined world and environment, to the characters, items, weapons, vehicles – whole realm of the fantastic experiences which the games are made for. This is what interests me the most, how does the game art effect or harm the whole gaming experience and what is the role of an artists in the game development. After this very short bio, I promise there will be no more talks about me, but more about the games and their aesthetics. In the next post I will start with few selected game titles and give an analysis what is the difference between the game art and game graphics.