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Everyone is capable of learning. Learning is part of life. It is a social process of living and bringing everyone to share their inherited resources and discoveries. All of us can influence the life of others through sharing and caring. It is our belief that everyone should be a lifelong learner.

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Saturday, 13 August 2011

Q & A, Featured Artists: Steve Mai

Featured SketchUp Vray Artist: Steve Mai 

This week, we want to feature a California based Visualizer and Designer, Steve Mai. Steve's visualization style is very noticeable;  classic warm color palette, specular bloom and attention to details.

We were always interested with Steve's work in various forums and we kept an eye of him and his work. We were very elated, when Steve accepted our invitation for a small interview, and to feature his work with our blog readers. In this small interview, we learned so much from Steve. We are now happy to share with you this conversation.

 
SVR: Please describe briefly about yourself. 
Smai. My name is Steve Mai and "Smai" is my nick in ChaosGroup and other forums . I am living in California, USA. I have been working in an architectural firm in Irvine, CA just after I graduated from California State University Long Beach in 2004. I have a great passion in architectural design and rendering because feel like I can let my imaginations freely grow.Besides my works, I love to spend time with my wife and kids. I also try to learn new things related to my career and as much as I can everyday if time allows. I believe that once we find our professional passion in life, we never stop learning and even by doing simplest projects, we learn something new. In the field of architectural design, only sky is the limit. I also love wide open spaces and quiet areas with lots of sunshine and shades.

SVR:What is your favorite project you’ve designed and visualized, and why it is your favorite?

Smai. To me every project has its unique meaning. I like all of my projects because from each project I have learned a little bit more about designs and how to visualize them in Vray. I like projects that challenge me and make me think out of the box, seeing the "unobvious." With some projects, I start with one idea and what is awesome about them is that I discover some new techniques along the way or gain a new perspective by editing, revising, getting feedback from people, and the end results are unpredictable and spectacular.

SVR: What or who inspires you in visualization?

Smai. I am a big fan of Evermotion, Romen Bekerman and CGarchitect.com

SVR: What do you do apart from visualization?

Smai.Besides visualization, I also design my own projects. In addition, I also manage 3d modeling and rendering by myself. Two years ago, I introduced Sketch Up and VraySketchUp to my firm and since then, they became the main program package that we use for visualization of our designs. Even though I became very busy at work, I love what I am doing. I love my job because of my passion for architectural design and learning. As I put greater effort in learning about 3d modeling, making vray materials, and rendering fine images, I have learn a lot more since then. This field is a lifelong learning experience that I am looking forward to everyday.

SVR: How do you see yourself in 10 years time?

Smai. I would like to put some finest green buildings on our earth. :) I would also like to able to help and share with other my knowledge and passion in design. I want to learn more about architectural designs to achieve the finest images of rendering of my designs and share with others.

SVR:  Do you have any special advise to other artists?

Smai. Achieving a good rendering is not an easy task in a short period of time of learning. It requires a lot of practice and patient. However, you cannot do it without a passion. To me passion is a key of success in doing in any kind of work. Keep practicing on your spare times, learning from the experts, and participate in the forums. However, the most important thing is that you have to have your own STYLE. Be creative. Practice and practice to develop your own unique style that represents YOU.

I also advise that you should have two different types of monitors for the computer that you are working on image post production. Because a different monitor would show a different image in terms of its color saturation, sharpness, and brightness. This happens due to monitors' resolution size. (For me I have Dell 2007FP and Dell S2409 monitor). So if your final image after post production looks good on both your monitors, it has more chances to be seen good at other monitors. However, most of the time image will look good on one monitor and badly on the other. If this is the case, you just adjust post production of your image until it can been seen good in both monitors.

All in all, the most important thing is that we love our work and put genuine effort and time into it. It means we found a passion in our life.

SVR: Thank you Steve for this short interview.

Here are some of Steve Mai's visualization work:

30 large jpg

26-b3-5-24-11b-small

26-2a-done-small-a

office e-small

office-smai

If you want to see more of Steve's work, here is his Gallery

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