Entry: Lifeseed

Location: Russia, Moscow

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.hellstern.ru

Favorite Software: Adobe photoshop CS

Inspirations: Art, nature, sky

Favorite Games: Planescape: Torment and Fallout

Favorite movies: The Fifth Element

Favorite music: In Extremo and Allen Lande

Good habits: Waking up early

Bad habits: Rather often, I can forget to eat when I am inspired and drawing.  Do not put things back where they belong.

Future Goals: Release my in-progress graphic novel, continue working on interesting projects and with interesting people, polish my skills and finally, to become a hokage =)))))

Dogs or Cats: Cats!

How do you bounce back from a bad day: I haven't had many bad days - but when my mood is down, I often go for a walk just gazing at the sky...

What's a good day: A warm sunny day


Let's start at the beginning, how did you become an artist?
I started to draw when I was only 6 years old.  At the time, I loved creating illustrations of Ancient Greek Mythology – which was my favorite book back then. At school I continued to draw, often taking lessons in art. When it was time for college, I decided to enter Moscow’s Academy of Art, which I completed just one year ago. We only had classical studies in school, so I needed to develop my CG art skills by myself. It was a lot to learn, but I was very inspired.

This year's Dominance War must have looked like a hard challenge. Personally, why did you enter Dominance War III?
Dominance War III was my first BIG competition. Actually, it was my first competition for anything, so I don’t really have anything to compare it with... but if I put aside the fact that it was a competition, and just think about how I absolutely love to draw characters, my idea of participating in the event goes with a Russian saying - "I show myself when I look at others."

Tell us about the process you undertake to get the results that you do? How do you come up with your ideas?
I often start by creating tons of different sketches. This helps me filter my thoughts and allows me to find ideas that would be nice to realize. Then, I create a full color piece with suggestive lighting and a vague pose, which allows me to see the possibility of an idea as a whole. Then, it’s time to add a story - in details, clothes, gear, and more details - according to the idea of character.  If the idea is good and I like it, then it’s time for major anatomy, composition and styling corrections. And the last stage before finalization - global coloring, working out further details, applying materials and lighting. It might sound like a lot of work, but it gets quicker the more you do it.


To get this entry done must have been no easy feat. Tell us about your working habits? Basically, what's your secret to your apparent success?
First and final thing - I clearly know how much I can do in different amounts of time – so planning my work, is a key to success. Often, artists have a difficult time calculating how much they can do in a given amount of time, this usually results in a lot of wasted time when they try to come up with something splendid too quickly before the deadline. I think my second key to success is, I am always trying to make my next piece better.

What would be your advice for aspiring game artists out there? What type of training do you think would be helpful in becoming a successful concept artist?

Do not make a jumble of things in one concept! Develop a story behind your image - this will help you understand your character's personality, things he or she may have, and the scenery around him or her. Once you have done this, you will find that the story, items, and scenery, in combination, will make your concept look much more constructive and alive. Also, it is very helpful to draw quick sketches of nature and everything you see around you. In time, you'll develop an image library inside your head, which you can then use to combine, manipulate and create images that is purely inspired and doesn’t use realtime references.  I guess, in the end, as they always say, the more you draw – the more you grow.

Was there someone, or some thing that helped make you who you are today? Is there anyone you would like to thank, or at least give a shout to?
First, I want to thank my mother, who made it possible for me to study art in a college. Thank you! I would also like to thank my friends who always help me with some criticism and good ideas. And finally, a personal big thanks goes to Aziral, molotov, Andead, and VS. You were a big help!

Would you do it all again next year if you could?
Yup! It was a very inspiring and cool competition! I can't wait for next year! Thank you!

Your work in Dominance War III was an inspiration to all! Thank you Elena for your time. I am positive that we are all looking forward to seeing more of your fantastic concepts in future Dominance Wars!

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