Interview With Santiago Vilaseca, Who Won “Best Commercial Render” in Evermotion Challenge 2022
The Evermotion Challenge 2022 differed from previous ones. Instead of suggesting a topic to contestants and setting 1st, 2nd, 3rd places, the contestants can submit original work in four categories and the best work in each category was selected. Fox Renderfarm, a world-leading render farm and cloud rendering service provider, also a long-term partner of Evermotion, sponsored this competition and witnessed the birth of many excellent and beautiful artworks.
Here, we had the honor to interview Santiago Vilaseca. His work "Hotel in the Train Station, Versailles" won "Best Commercial Render” in this competition. Thanks a lot for Santiago spending his time doing our interview. Now, let’s know more about him and his award-winning work.
Hotel in the Train Station, Versailles © Santiago Vilaseca
Kraken Studio of Santiago
Instagram of Kraken Studio
Fox Renderfarm: Hi Santiago! We are honored to have you here! First of all, congratulations on winning the "Best Commercial Render" in the Evermotion Challenge 2022! How do you feel about it?
Santiago: Thank you very much! I'm thrilled and honored to have won this award. I'm excited to see what the future holds and will continue pushing my craft's boundaries..
Fox Renderfarm: Could you please introduce yourself?
Santiago: My name is Santiago Vilaseca, and I am the co-founder of Kraken Studio. Originally from Argentina, I am now based in France where I work alongside my wife Sélène in Architecture Visualization. I am deeply passionate about my work and feel fortunate to be able to pursue a career in the arts. Apart from 3D creation, I also love to play the guitar and drums. Music has always been a significant source of inspiration for me and an essential part of my life.
Fox Renderfarm: Could you elaborate a bit on your workflow/pipeline of this project? And how long did it take you?
Santiago: This was a commercial project with defined deadlines, so we had to work efficiently to meet the client's needs. Our workflow started with the 3D modeling. Then, we proposed different camera angles to the client and worked together to find the best perspective to tell the project's story. After this, we started decorating the scene, which involved placing all the necessary elements such as vegetation, rails, and other details that fit with the chosen camera angle. Once the scene was fully decorated, we worked on lighting and textures to achieve the desired mood and realism. The next step is post-production, where the magic can happen. Overall, the creation of this image took about a week.
Fox Renderfarm: The hotel you created is so amazing and realistic, could you share with us the modeling process?
Santiago: Regarding the modeling process for this project, we received a basic 3D model from our client (SAFE Architecture) and enriched it with details by referring to pictures. Since it was a renovation project, we relied on photos of the existing building to model and make the project as realistic as possible. Also, there is an existing bridge in the project that we replicated exactly to make the site recognizable.
On the left : 3D model we received from the client / On the right : our 3D model after adding details based on site pictures
The final 3D model after modeling facade details
A picture of the actual building from the bridge (the other side of our camera)
A picture of the actual building from the railways (closer to the building than our camera)
On the left : a picture of the bridge / On the right : 3D model - details of the balustrade we create
Fox Renderfarm: One of the juries commented that your work was "a typical daylight scenario but with beautiful work in the foreground." How did you set the lighting and create the shade?
Santiago: As for the lighting, we used an HDRi from 3D Collective (Adam Martin collection: HDRi 044 1945). Once we import the HDRi, we start the interactive render and rotate it until we reach the appropriate light. For me, lighting is really the most important feature when creating an architecture visualization. If the light setting is wrong, even with the best modeling and textures, the outcome will never be satisfactory.
The white render to appreciate the light
Fox Renderfarm: One jury mentioned "the element of out-of-focus on the camera," what did you think? Is there any intention?
Santiago: We realized that an error has occurred in the image delivery process, as there was a blemish present on the image that didn’t exist in the original. We promptly reached out to the jury to inform them of the issue and requested that they update the image to the original version. We apologize for the confusion!
Fox Renderfarm: Did you meet any difficulties during this project? How did you tackle them?
Santiago: As a commercial project, we had to work closely with our clients, which meant there were a lot of back-and-forth exchanges and feedback to take into account. However, overall the project went well, largely due to the trust we had built with our clients. This made it easier to reach a satisfactory result that met both their needs and our own. I'm really proud of the teamwork that went into this project, and I believe it's also a reflection of the strong relationships we've developed with our clients over time.
Fox Renderfarm: What is your most satisfying part of this work?
Santiago: For me, the most satisfying part of the work is the initial exploratory stage where I try to find the most effective and artistic way to express a given project in 3D. I'm really fascinated by this research phase, as it's always full of surprises and unexpected discoveries. You never quite know what the end result will be, which is really exciting to me.
Fox Renderfarm: How did you encounter CG and become a CG artist? Could you share your educational and work experience with us? Do you have a plan for your future CG journey?
Santiago: I started with studying architecture and then switched to learning Multimedia and Graphic Design at Da Vinci school in Buenos Aires (Argentina). So working in architectural visualization is really a perfect combination of my interests in both 3D and architecture. I believe that for a CG artist, it's essential to constantly innovate, absorb new technologies, and above all, bring a uniquely human perspective to our work. Although computers are powerful tools in architectural visualization, it's the artist's personal touch and creative input that truly enhance a project and bring it to life. That's why I consider the human factor is the most valuable asset in our field.
Fox Renderfarm: Any artworks or artists inspire you the most?
Santiago: I find inspiration from a variety of sources, not just from other artists or artworks in the 3D field. For me, everything in art is interconnected, and I draw inspiration from my surroundings, experiences, and travels. I'm particularly sensitive to the beauty of nature, and the way that light interacts with different environments. As an Argentinian living in France, I find that my roots and the unique light of my homeland continue to inspire my work. I believe that inspiration can come from anywhere, and it's up to us as artists to remain open to new experiences and influences in order to continue growing and developing our craft.
Fox Renderfarm: Have you ever tried the cloud rendering services of Fox Renderfarm? If you do, what do you think of our services?
Santiago: I haven't had the chance to use Fox Renderfarm's cloud rendering services yet, but I'm always interested in exploring new options and finding ways to improve my workflow. I'll definitely keep your services in mind for future projects, and I look forward to the opportunity to try them out.
Fox Renderfarm: As a CG artist, do you have any advice for people who are still new to the CG industry?
Santiago: As someone who has been in the CG industry for several years, my advice to those who are just starting out would be to never stop learning. The CG industry is constantly evolving and there is always something new to learn, whether it's new software, technique or trend. Take advantage of the resources available online, such as tutorials, forums, and online communities. Don't be afraid to ask questions and seek feedback from more experienced artists. Also, it's important to stay passionate about your work and never give up. The road to success in the CG industry can be long and challenging, but with perseverance and hard work, it's always possible to achieve your goals.
Once again, congratulations to Santiago for winning the "Best Commercial Render". For the Evermotion Challenge 2022, Fox Renderfarm provided each winner with render coupons as a prize, and we look forward to their more excellent work rendered with Fox Renderfarm.
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