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Fri, Jul 8 2011 16:53:21 UTC

Interview: Marek Denko

Today we have the pleasure of hearing a bit about Marek Denko, a 30ish years old digital artist from Slovakia currently living in Prague.

Getting started

Marek has been doing digital art for quite a long time. ''I started with computer graphics in 1995 when I was 15 years old studying high school in Banska Stiavnica. Slowly I learned to work with 3D Studio myself on my own mistakes with never-ending testing and trying. There was no internet, no video tutorials, no books, no help and at the end I wasn't speaking English at all. In our small town there were only 3 guys I knew interested in CG. We became very good friends and we spent a long time together.''

Tools of the trade

When asked what software tools he uses to do his work, he says ''My favorites are 3dsmax, Vray, Photoshop and Fusion. I use lot of others for particular parts of the production.'' The diesel train piece, for example, which he calls Hektor, started with a sketch on his tablet, then over the course of 2 months he recreated it in 3D. ''I studied railway construction at a university of technology, so this image is really a small tribute to all of my old friends and teachers.''


One easy to see feature of his pieces is how realistic the work is. When asked about it he remains modest. ''I know more realistic 3D works than mine, but thanks. I like to polish my works as much as possible. It's always good to put a little more in your work. The fact that I always did had a big impact on my life.''

It's also clear he gets a lot of inspiration from the world around. When asked what inspires him the most he says: ''It's hard to say. I just relax and look around. I don't really force it and search for all cost. I guess it is somewhere inside me and pops out from time to time.'' He does use many photo references however. ''A LOT! When you have your idea set the only thing you need is to not mess it up, so references are a very big part of my work.''

Everything is beautiful

The airport image above is one he called Everything is beautiful. According to Marek, the whole piece, except for the sky, was made in 3D using 3DS MAX and ZBrush. ''I spent on this one quite a long time. Not that it was too complicated but there were periods of time when I really couldn't touch it for several weeks. There was lot of testing, removing things... it was about 3 months if I remember right. Lots of time and work in it indeed.''

He also founded his own studio called NoEmotion. Was it a big challenge to get it started? ''It was quite a smooth transition from group of 2 freelancers into a studio owned by 2 ex-freelancers, me and Peter Sanitra. We had a lot of clients from the past so it was all nice and without any extra pressure. It is still going very well so we are looking forward to future projects.'' About these future projects, he says ''We have a several commercial projects running and I'm also doing some personal, non-commercial work. I hope I'll finish soon and share with the world.''

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