May 2011 Vendor of the Month - winnston1984
Congratulations to winnston1984 for being Renderosity's Vendor of the Month for May!
Who is 'winnston 1984' and how did you come by this username?
My favorite book is "1984" by George Orwell. Of course, the main character's name is Winston. When I first registered at Renderosity about a hundred years ago, I didn't fully grasp that my login name would function as my vendor/store name. "Winnston1984" is cool enough for a personal moniker, but as a vendor name it makes very little sense. I tried-- for years!-- to market myself through my promotional images as "ImageNation," but finally realized I was not helping matters (surely, it created a lot of confusion as people searched the R'osity marketplace for a vendor named ImageNation). Thus, I finally accepted my fate. I am winnston1984 forever.
How did you originally find Renderosity?
First, let me say that Renderosity has been VERY good to me. Where else can I sell the content I really WANT to make for cold, hard cashola? My parents owned bookstores while I was growing up, and having watched traditional brick-and-mortar business run from the inside, the idea of selling digital content is simply sensational. Never having to stock, reorder, or worry about supply-and-demand! Being able to sell the exact same item a thousand times! I highly recommend it to anyone who knows how to make it happen.
Originally, I was a Renderosity customer. An employer got me a copy of Poser to make my life easier, and I found my way to Renderosity quickly after that. Soon enough, I thought, "hey, I make digital models, too! Why not try to make a little coin on the side?"
How did you get into content creation? What made you decide to become a vendor?
See above. Really, it was that simple. As a computer animator, I had loads of old Maya models lying around on my computer. I dug out a few bits that I thought might sell (some furniture elements, if I remember right), Poserfied them, and loaded them up onto the marketplace.
What are you currently working on?
It isn't Poser-related -- is that all right? I am currently finishing up a 3 month game development project for use on iPhone/iPad. It's called dream:scape and has already generated a rather shocking amount of international buzz based on the game trailer I created. Interestingly, I used another vendor's R'osity models in the game's intro cinematic! Shhh! OK, credit where credit's due: it was the Hospital Room Set from ziggie. I regularly use R'osity content in my work.
Through the creation process, from inception to finalization of the product, what is your favorite part and why?
My favorite part is when the models first begin to come together in Maya (where I create all my content). When the textures first come together on the model and it finally starts resembling what was originally in my head, that's pure dopamine. Then comes the worst part: all the technical rigamarole of poserfication (the process of getting a model to look and work right in Poser). As the consummate artist-type, I hate the technical part. Fortunately (mostly) I can do it.
I do also have a really good time making the promotional images and model logos when it's all done.
How much time goes into creating one of your products?
All told, my models average about ten days of work. I am a detail freak, and spend a good bit of extra time making the Poser library icons and putting in extras (poses, accessories, alternate mats, etc).
Where do you find inspiration for your products, and do you have any particular favorite among the products you've created?
My inspirations often come from movies and books. I love sci-fi, fantasy, and horror, thus after I watch a good genre film, I am usually raring to come back to my 'puter and start making stuff.
My favorite models tend to be the ones that aren't the hugest sellers, strangely enough. I really like the Fembot, for instance, but I LOVE the Steam Nemesis. I greatly enjoyed making the Steam Betty, but I *adored* the Advance Sentinel Drone robot, which was, by comparison, a total flop (and no longer exists on the marketplace, so too bad, most of you missed it! Heh!)
Have you created any product as a result of customer feedback?
I hate to admit it, but I don't think I have. I've gotten loads of really good, solid suggestions from customers-- I've even requested suggestions from the community before, with great results-- but in the end I always seem to end up making something completely different.
I think there is a good reason for this: in my "day job" as a computer animator, I spend most of my time bringing other people's visions to life, which can be a bit of a drag. Renderosity is a place where I can create exactly what I want to create, with no regard for anyone else's creative editing. I am very fortunate that this results in things people actually want. Thanks to ALL of you! More to come.
Who is your favorite artist - digital or otherwise?
Do a google image search for Christian Alzmann. I don't know much of anything about him except that he's a concept artist and his stuff is ripe for content inspiration. I also love Maxfield Parrish, H. R. Geiger, M. C. Escher, and many more whose names I can't think of at the time. The guy whose artwork inspired the movie "Robots", I can't remember his name but he does loads of awesome childrens' books. Excellent, retro stuff, that.
What else do you enjoy doing when you're not hard at work creating great content?
I write. I cook. I play with my kidlies. I look at the forties-era pinup babes hung over my desk. I try not to pay taxes. I have recently begun dabbling in video game creation using the amazing (if somewhat obtuse) Unreal game engine (highly recommended-- it's free unless you make $50,000 plus. Go grab it). I watch a teensy little bit of TV, read too much of my own stories (classical narcissist) and dream about having a curly slide in my house.
Do you have any advice for aspiring Digital Content Developers?
My advice for content developers is the same as my advice for aspiring writers-- just make stuff. Be willing to make a tremendous load of crap before you make anything worth someone else's coin. This is the thing people seem to skip over-- they start learning content creation (or writing) and are immediately discouraged that their first attempt is not a blockbuster. No one grabs a basketball for the first time and sinks a dozen three-pointers in a row-- everyone knows that being a great athlete requires years of practice-- but people tend to think they can grab a mouse or a word processor and become an instant overnight sensation. My advice: put in the time shooting baskets and missing. Make stuff that doesn't sell and then make more stuff. Every failure is a road-sign on the way to success.
Do you have any final words (any info you want to share with the community)?
Just this: THANKS for buying all my crazy stuff for all these years! Renderosity has been really good to me, but it's all of you-- the buyers who grab my stuff and the content creators whose works inspire me-- who really make the Renderosity world go 'round. Thank you, thank you, thank you. If I could, I would come to every one of your houses and make you all a sandwich.