Subscribe now and receive the PDF for FREE every month
(can’t see the subscribe button? – try this page)
Welcome to our new ‘Future Transport’ issue, in which we survey designs ranging from future trash-trucks to sleek racing wheels, via personal VTOL flight and more. What you won’t find here is the stereotypical ‘shiny red sports car’ that was so often seen in the old 3D modelling magazines, and still pops up now and again. Although we do allow one or two stylish hover-cars sneak into the issue, here and there, just for old times’ sake.
We’re pleased to talk with the cover artist for famous books such as Asimov’s Foundation trilogy and TTA Spacewrecks.
BRYCE | MODO | 2D
“… in a movie, most designs are on the screen for seconds. In those few seconds the audience needs to understand the context of the design and the mood the production is trying to achieve. Is this a good guy or bad guy? Is this alien or human technology?”
Veteran Vue science-fiction artist Vladimir Yaremchuk talks about learning, loss and the cosmic in sci-fi art.
BRYCE | VUE | STOCK
“… my Windows machine crashed … All of my collections of models and the applications were lost! A tragedy? I wouldn’t go that far. My head and hands are still in the right places. We can always create more. In stressful situations people often express bigger potential.”
Carter is a young New Zealand designer who cut his teeth on real bus-shelters and bike racks, and now works with sci-fi.
RHINO | KEYSHOT | PS
“… I’m constantly considering the context that this vehicle exists in; who are the people who built this vehicle, what type of world does it operate in, and so on. This level of detail means I can dive deeper later, drawing things like cutaways, environments, or liveries”
- FUTURE ROBO DRIVERS
- BACK ISSUE INDEX
- GO FLY!
- COVER ART: SOLAR SAILS
We’re pleased to interview veteran science-fiction artist Fred Gambino.
His cover work stretches from the first Dangerous Visions to the cover of TTA Spacewreck and beyond — but he now mostly creates for big-budget movies and TV series.
DAL: Fred, welcome to Digital Art Live.
FG: Glad to be here.
DAL: Let’s start at the beginning, how did you first become aware of your artistic talents, beyond the usual child drawings, and how did these talents express themselves?
FG: Like many artists I’ve been drawing as long as I can remember. Once at school it became apparent I had some kind of innate ability.
Or it may simply have been that I was so rubbish at everything else, it seemed like I had an innate ability. At any rate, my best subjects at school were Art, English and Woodwork, so very early on I decided I was going to be either a writer or an artist. When I left school I considered an apprenticeship as a woodworking joiner but I opted for a Graphic Design course at an art college instead. Graphic design was the way to make a living in art, I was told. Forget illustration, no one could make a living doing that.
About half way through the course I went to see an exhibition of book cover originals by Chris Foss and that crystallised my ambition. At that time publishers were the biggest patrons of science fiction and fantasy art. I’m not sure the term concept artist had even been coined then, and the games industry simply didn’t exist. So, if you wanted to get paid painting science fiction or fantasy, publishing was where it was at. Once I left college I got a part-time job delivering groceries and I painted in my spare time. I made a few trips down to London to see art directors — and finally got my first commission and an introduction to an agent.
DAL: Great. An agent was a big thing in those days. Still, is, to many. In those early days, did you find people who helped and developed your talents?
FG: I got a lot of support from my family and girlfriend at the time. There was one lecturer at college who I found very encouraging, in a course otherwise aimed at graphic design. He was a brilliant illustrator.
I’m also grateful to Alison Eldred who has been supportive and helpful above and beyond the call of duty, in giving me a place to stay during those periods when I worked in London film studios and at The Sarah Brown agency, who helped get me off ground in the very early years.
DAL: Great. What were your early influences in science-fiction? Were you a reader, or was media — the many late 60s and 1970s British TV shows and also radio — a more important influence for you?
FG: I was an avid reader, often a book a week. A big fan of Asimov, Clarke and Larry Niven. Film and TV science-fiction were thin on the ground in those days, but as a child the Gerry Anderson puppet shows were a huge influence. Fireball XL5 was the first I remember properly, followed by Thunderbirds. Of course 2001 was seminal in film and is still influencing design in movies today.
DAL: Indeed. You mentioned you went to one of our British art schools in the 1960s or 70s? If so, what was that experience like? Also, was it a culture shock?
FG: My art college experience wasn’t brilliant. There were a lot of policy changes made in the four years I was there and really, I came out without a decent portfolio in either graphic design or illustration. Apart from that one lecturer, I had little proper illustration tuition, so I can say I am largely self taught, but at a time when knowledge was a hard thing to come by. No Internet or YouTube then! I think I muddled through ‘the book cover years’ and it wasn’t until I found myself working in film studios with people much more talented than myself, that I really began to learn my craft.
Although I considered moving down to London, I never did, apart from latterly, for short periods, while working at big studios like Framestore….
See full interview in Issue 57