Q & A with Alan Van Ryzin
3D Concept Art presents an Q & A with a very talented multi-skilled artist specializing in texturing, high and low hard Surface modeling, Alan Van Ryzin. He has been around for about eleven years (11) years working in production of cinematic and games. For companies like Crytek, Sony Entertainment, Ubisoft Massive, Crystal Dynamics and many more.
He uses skills and experience to create 3D concept art and illustrations, both 2d and 3d as a freelancer. He has been involved in high-profile AAA game projects like Mass Effect 3, Mass Effect 2, , Doom 4, The Division and more, in total 29 and counting. As well, indie projects and mobile titles. He is also the Co-Founder and Art Director of Art Bully Production, an USA based outsourcing company.
With a pleasure, we present Alan Van Ryzin.
| 3D Concept Art: Tell us about you and how did you become interested in 3D modeling and to work in the game industry?
| Alan Van Ryzin: → It all started as a hobby for me, I started working on mods for Dice’s Battlefield 1942, Battlefield Vietnam, and Battlefield 2, I later ended up working @ Kaos studios in NYC because they recognized my talent and I ended up working with my favourite group of people who were also modders which turned into a studio.
| 3CA: You have been in the game industry for many years, what do you feel is the most important to understand when your are aiming to get in that field? and of your experience, what do you feel have made you work stand out and lead you to where you are today?
| A.R: → I would say the focus is number 1, focus on doing something extremely well whether it be modeling or texturing or just modeling or just texturing. 99% of it is being noticed for your talent, you can have lots of degrees or education, but you still won’t get hired if you’re not good at it.
I was very focused on texturing first, which has pushed me to become successful because I got very good at one thing. You are better off doing one thing extremely well then doing 5 things not so great. Focus on the one thing you love the most, and keep at it, people will notice.
| 3CA: Where do you get inspiration from and who are your role models?
| A.R: → I get a lot of inspiration from real life machines, whether it be military machines, vehicles, every day objects possess a lot of beauty and subtlety that I always try to learn from, learning from nature and how things change naturally from weather and environment can really make you a better artist, but also knowing when to not take realism too far also helps.
I am also inspired daily from portfolio communities and the constant flow of awesome work on there. As far as role models go, I don’t really have any as I don’t really aim to achieve what others have or do, I more look to real life as my role model, what I mean by that is real life objects, I always feel a drive and need to capture that but then add my artistic touches which push that further to make it more readable.
| 3CA: When working with high poly models and later on to adjust a certain specification for games, what do you feel are the most problematic parts when it comes to optimizing your models, texturing and still keep the realism you are aiming for?
| A.R: → At this stage in games, I’d say the most problematic is UV’s and Baking. A lot of it is still pretty frustrating, and the fact that we even still have to UV objects today seems old-fashioned to me. With 3d painting and texturing and so much focus being put on automating texturing, I wish more people would put more focus on automating uv’s and baking. It is tedious and not the fun part of a production.
| 3CA: Any good pieces of advice for artists and students who want to get into the business as a 3D Artist in fields like props, vehicles, machines and environment?
| Alan Van Ryzin: → Focus, focus, focus pick one thing and do it obsessively and do it the best.
3D Concept Art Community thanks Alan Van Ryzin for sharing his knowledge and advices in this interview. He has been involved several well known AAA titles. As he stated in this Q & A, keep on focusing on what you love and do it best.