Q & A with Riyahd Cassiem
3D Concept Art presents an Q & A with a very talented Visual development artist specializing in Concept design, illustration and Character creation, Riyahd Cassiem. He has been around for about seven (7) years working in production of short and feature films, advertisements and games. For companies like Video lab, Monster Studios, Refinery, Pollen, and is a lecturer in concept art for animation, games and films at Open Window School of Visual Communication.
He uses frequently his talent to make concepts and illustrations, both traditional and digital as a freelancer and also teaches valuable know how in different workshops. His work has been published in different international publications like 3d world, 3d artist, Advanced Photoshop, Exotique, Bio Mech Art, Imagine Fx and many more.
| 3D Concept Art: Tell us about you and how did you become interested in concept design, illustration and 3d modeling?
| Riyahd Cassiem: → I am an independent freelance artist based in Johannesburg South Africa. I have been into art since I was a young, fascinated by graphic novels, games, and films which lead me into computer graphics.
I’m continually evolving as I explore different subjects and mediums using a mixture of sketching, digital sculpting, and painting to visualize ideas. I like to work within the science fiction and fantasy genres and enjoy creating character concepts.
| 3CA: Your specialization is within visual development, in your opinion, what defines a good concept and illustration?
| R.C: → I think a good concept design or illustration should convey the idea as clear as possible and fit the brief of the story line, as well as enhancing on the original concept if the brief allows for it.
Be it designing a character or concept a scene where conveying the mood is more important than the rendering. Fundamental art and design principles come into play to achieve a good design, from anatomy, form, light, composition, texture, and color ,shape all of the wichs contribute to the final result.
| 3CA: Where do you get inspiration from and who are your role models?
| R.C: → The fantasy and science fiction I was exposed to as a child had a profound effect on my art. Films like Aliens, Blade Runner, Predator, Akira, Ghost in the shell and Terminator hit my imagination. Particularly the dark and gloomy sequences and the underlying currents of horror within a distant future.
I draw inspiration from my environment and subjects I’m interested in, from real world science, technology, robotics, industrial design, as well as science fiction and fantasy sources. To name a few artists that have inspired me is Hr Giger ( Alien Film illustrator), Syd Mead (Blade Runner Film concept designer), Katsuhiro Otomo (Akira, manga creator), Greg Capullo (comic book artist) and Frank Fezetta (fantasy artist).
| 3CA: Describe your process for achieving fast concepts and nailing down the defects and pros in your idealization?
| R.C: → It does depend on the requirements of the project in order to gauge which techniques and workflow to approach going forward. My mood and state of mind play a role in which direction I take.
I tend to use a mixture of 2d and 3d techniques to work out the concept. I will either start sketching out the rough idea on paper, or produce digital or 3d sketches to block out the concept for the project. focusing on getting the idea across using fundamental art and design principles from composition, form, silhouette and lighting to establish the initial concept. Then I go through the iterative process of developing the concept further going into a more refined digital painting or composite.
| 3CA: Any good advice for artists and students who want to get into the business as a visual development artist within the 3d space?
| R.C: → Practice, Practice, Practice, Let your imagination soar. It takes hard work and dedication towards your craft, to get some where in this business. This industry does require you to have a thick skin and being able to learn from your mistakes. Do not let failure depress you, look at it as a learning curve. Having a solid foundation in the fundamentals of art and design help to develop your self as a artist.
Practice, Practice, Practice, Let your imagination soar. It takes hard work and dedication towards your craft, to get somewhere in this business. This industry does require you to have a thick skin and being able to learn from your mistakes. Do not let failure depress you, look at it as a learning curve. Having a solid foundation in the fundamentals of art and design help to develop yourself as an artist.
Research and absorb art history, learning from other artist, sculptors, writers. Be like a sponge.
It’s important to network and market your self-consistently. Create a platform to showcase your work, like creating a website or blog, posting your work to the online galleries and forms, interacting with your peers and community, making sure your work is getting seen by others. Draw inspiration forms the subjects you interested in, be open to new tools and techniques and try to push your limits of your skill set. Use your instincts and trust your intuition.
3D Concept Art Community thanks, Riyahd Cassiem for this interview. For sharing parts of his experience and knowledge. He gives really important information in this Q & A but also about what you should think about during the road on becoming a better artist. A solid foundation in fundamentals of art and design to help develop yourself, don’t forget to be an explorer.