Are you interested in render art and digital art? Then you should not miss any of the issues of DAZ Studio Creative Magazine, because you will find lots of related content from interviews to render artworks, even tutorials, contests, and everything related to the most popular and powerful render art software of our times, DAZ Studio.
Daz Studio Creative is a magazine that represents the universe and community of all the render artists and content creators out there who have made use of this tool to fulfill their artistic vision. In this interview we talk with Camilla Melander Drakenborg, Phil Thompson, and Totte Alm, editors of Daz Studio Creative Magazine.
- How was DS Creative born and why did you want to make it a reality?
(Camilla) - Well I was kind of left with little choice in this matter. You see, in a DAZ artist group on Facebook that I am a member of, I posted a comment as to why there wasn´t anything like an online magazine around where you could get all manner of DAZ things in one place, instead of having to roam the net so to say. It was just a curious question and perhaps someone knew of a mag or something similar that I didn’t know of. Next thing I knew, Phil, now my partner in crime and production designer, said something like- Hey great idea let’s do it, I’m in! And then Totte our technical editor, chimed in and started a Facebook group for the magazine on that very same evening, added us and I was appointed to be the team manager and the one to contact potential vendors for features, Phil got the visual part of the mag, putting together the pages and with Totte’s technical experience with DAZ Studio and computers in general, he started writing up some tutorials and got the contacts we needed to get it started and it took from there.
I had no intentions to actually start a magazine when I asked the question, it was just a question, but hey, 20+ issues later, almost 2 years in ( July 2016), here we are and what a ride it has been. I think I speak for us all when I say we have learned so much. Not only about how the DAZ program works but how the business side of DAZ works as well and just how awesome the 3D community can be! Slowly but surely we have built up a network of artists, vendors and sponsors to help us make this vision come alive.
We are independent of DAZ3D, meaning we are not DAZ, although some of our team members work for DAZ one way or the other.
We do the magazine because of our passion for the arts and 3D, DAZ Studio in particular, but anything that works in the DAZ Studio program, whether it comes from DAZ3D or other sites such as Renderosity, RDNA, YURdigital or other reliable store sites, we want to show our readers all the wonderful items that can be used in the program and therefor it’s not only DAZ vendors that are featured. Through it all we have worked hard to make sure the magazine stays free for all so people from all over the world and no matter what their life situation is can enjoy it and gain something from it. Hopefully, do we not only bring fun and knowledge to our readers but also traffic and some insight to the hard working vendors that provide us with the tools to make our imaginations come to life in our artworks.
(Totte) - I like doing things like that. I saw a need, and people with an idea, so I put them together and it clicked. Sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn’t, but if you follow your instincts you’re bound to get it right some times. I’m happy this went so well.
- For a newcomer to Daz Studio and render art, in which ways can DS Creative Magazine help them to start in 3D?
(Phil) - It’s not just tutorials and tips which are of course an invaluable source of information to someone starting out with DAZ Studio as there is always something we can learn, but the galleries are such a rich and varied source of inspiration and ideas, that may well inspire you into an unfamiliar genre for example.
(Camilla)- As Phil mentioned tutorials and tips gives them the tools they may need, but the images we show are from people all over the world with all kinds of skill sets which can hopefully inspire others, but also show others that we welcome all regardless of skill level.
We have also had a few walkthroughs I guess you could say as to how to get started. If you have never seen the DAZ program before it can be quite overwhelming at first but once you get over that first "shock" hopefully with the help of some of our guides, which by the way we are planning on updating for the new 4.9 version, they will find out it’s not as hard to understand as it may appear at first.
- What do you think DS Creative means for the community of Daz Studio users? How would you like it to be seen by them?
(Phil) - At the magazines very core is the DAZ community and we couldn’t survive without them, the community is woven firmly into everything we do, from the artist spotlight to the galleries, so I personally hope that after 20+ issues we are an integral part of the DAZ Studio world, we receive so many emails from readers telling us how much they appreciate all the hard work and effort that goes in to each issue.
(Camilla)- Hopefully that they are part of the community as a whole, not just as a buyer or artist or even just as a vendor. As we are dependent on our readers to help us fill our pages each issue they are part of creating the magazine itself and I for one am very proud how we have banded together for a common passion.
- In which ways can readers and render artists participate in DS Creative? What should they do if they want to do it?
(Phil) - There are so many ways to participate, from the obvious submitting an image to the gallery to writing a tutorial(which now has a chance to win a prize), we now include a readers comic strip and are open to more, and of course the big one the artist spotlight which includes creating artwork for the cover, but if anyone has any ideas for future issues then get in touch with us you can email us our various addresses are in the magazine or the quickest and easiest is to drop us a personal message on Facebook.
(Camilla)- It takes a small army to create each issue of DS Creative and that army is "you"
- What is the magazine section that you like most and why?
(Phil) - Wow this is difficult to answer, but if I must choose then I will pick the Fave Five, this simple feature was the first one I came up with on my own, and it really is simple just tell us the five items in your content library that you couldn’t live without. But I do have an idea in mind for quite an interesting new feature for the future.
(Camilla)- Well I’m a very visual person, I love looking at art! It inspires me and pushes me to broaden my horizons and to what I feel comfortable doing. As an artist I think it’s important to do so. So for me the art section and the competition section are my favorites. It´s fun to see how other artists interpret the different subjects we have as our monthly contests. But I’m also a very curious person by nature so it’s quite interesting to get a hint of what goes on in a vendors life.
- In many interviews you ask what would you like to see as a new feature in DAZ Studio. What is your answer to this question?
(Phil) - I would like an option to have DAZ temporarily downscale texture files for selected items in your scene to lower your Vram usage, with possibly the option for scaling the textures to 75%, 50% or even 25%, I don’t need 4K textures if the item is in the background, therefore making it possible to have more content in the background of your scene.
(Camilla)- Program wise I would say batch rendering for Iray! I often have several promo works going on and although I have a Nvidia card and a pretty good computer, I always make my renders as big as I can so to make sure I get them crystal clear in huge sizes I let the final piece render while sleeping. Trouble is I can only do that with one at a time and since I’m sleeping I can’t put on the next when the first is done and I simply don’t have the patience to sit and wait for 2-3 hours or more, at a time while I could be working on creating new art instead. So batch rendering would be ideal.
AUTOSAVE- yes that is so needed! You know just as the comp crashes you remember, ouch I forgot to save. Would be good to have the option in DAZ to have it do a autosaved file each time you add something new to the scene in form of content or lights. So just encase you worked hours on something and it crashes you don’t have to curse yourself for not saving and do it all over again. It doesn’t matter how often you tell yourself or others save and save often, it does happen we forget.
As for the DAZ site I would love to see more gender equality. Lol can there be such a thing for 3D people? But for example, right now there is 6 pages of clothing for the "new" Genesis 3 female & 16 pages of clothing for Genesis 2 female, but for Genesis 3 male there is only 1 page, and 5 for Genesis 2 male. I understand that women’s clothing sells more, but that doesn’t mean it has to be all about the girls so to say.
And lastly I would advise to let people get the chance to catch up to the new technology. Internet and technology is in constant change and upgrading which is all good, problem is, often, people’s lives, jobs and money don’t....
- The magazine is already full of content, but as it has become more and more rich in the last months, I see it is in constant evolution. In what direction do you think DS Creative should go in the future (new sections, changes, new ways to participate)?
(Phil) - While I am all for change, it has to be done very carefully and over time, but the magazine is always evolving it’s almost like a living breathing organism. Where should we go in the future, onwards and upwards hopefully, I’m certainly hoping to bring in many more new features and I look forward to including not just the current readers but people new to the craft.
There is one thing about DS Creative that must never change, and that is, we must always stay 100% free .
(Camilla)- Well the team and I often have small ideas or new ways we want to go, tricky thing is how to go about it, who can we get involved and what would it take. As we are firm in keeping the magazine free and frankly since we are just a couple of ordinary people with little money to spend which goes to our daily lives and our passion for DAZ, we have to find creative ways and generous sponsors to help us provide goodies such as freebies and prizes for our contests, which can sometimes limit our ideas. But we have gotten really good at it and I think by having done the magazine as a community thing its brought out a lot of creativity and alternative thinking.
But we have ideas for new features we are working on which I can’t speak about just yet, don’t want to spoil any potential surprises. However, we always strive to be better, make sure we can provide something for all, from the beginner to the pro. And hopefully we will be around for at least another 2 years to come or even more!
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