Jean-Claude ~ February's Artist Of The Month!

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Jean-Claude ~ February's Artist Of The Month!
Who is 'Jean-Claude'?

I'm a forty-six year-old guy, I live in Paris and I'm French. First, I am very proud to be the Artist of the Month on Renderosity. It's really an honor and homage for my work on C4D. Your votes are for me an encouragement to continue better and better...


How long have you been rendering/doing computer graphics?

Since a long time ago...I started to put some black pixels on a screen in 1981 with a ZX! But it began to be more interesting in '89 on a MAC II CI with Strata 1.0. I never stopped making 3D since that moment.


Do you have traditional art experience?

Yes, I have, my father has, my grand-father had. I did artists studies in Estienne High School for four years, but there was no computer, it was really traditional studies of painting, printing, design, art and typography history...


What are you currently working on?

I do not have a particular subject now, I'm working with my father on an old ship named "Le Coureur". I don't know when I'll make a scene with it, but I learn many things about marine's terms and construction method of that period (1700). We start from Marine Museum plans and books, it's one of the most interesting part of 3D I think. I've had the same pleasure with the "Fiat 500" and the "Emel camera". I love objects with a soul, and I try to share it to the community with my work.


How is your workflow when you model a scene, do you start from scratch and see what happens or do you do any previsualisation by sketching with pen and paper?

Generaly I start on an idea or objects which tell me something, I don't make any rough of the scene but I have it in my mind. Because it's not a command for a client, there are no limits of time for me to acheive my scene. I make tests and experiments on textures and lights, I let it down for a while, I load it again later, I change the scene, when I think it's good enough, I share it to have comments and if they are relevant, I make a new render to correct some details according to these comments.


Tell us a bit about your texturing - do you use bitmaps or procedurals? Do you create your own textures or have you invested in texture libraries?

I use every sort of textures. I discovered procedurals in Bryce and it was an experimental field I took further with SLA (Cinema 4D's procedural shaders); I explored many Noctua Graphic textures to understand the concept of SLA, but now I have my own base of textures, a result of experimentations. For Bitmap textures it's different, I make exactly what I want. I don't use any texture library, I use Illustrator, Photoshop, Pictures or Body Paint sometimes.


What is your geometry-texture balance, i.e. when do you use geometry to add detailing and when do you opt to use a texture or shader?

I don't have any balance for that moment, because I do only still images, (instead of video games or animations). I try to make a fine enough geometry and I keep it in parametric state. When my model seems to be all right (in a blank state) I put it in my scene and I make textures according to each object and lighting, to make a homogeneous ambiance in the scene, like a painting. It's not easy to explain that, but it's finally my ultimate pleasure in 3D.


What software/equipment do you use and why?

I recently changed my configuration (a few weeks) with a G4 1,25 GHz / 160 Go DD / 1,2 GoRAM (I don't tell you what poor system I had before, you'll tell me I'm a liar) and I am on OS X Panther system. It changed my life and I can tell you it will be changing my work in 3D. I use Cinema 4D 8.1 (8.5 soon, I hope) graphics softs (on MAC OS 9 / Classic only, I have not the recent one).


Concerning Cinema 4D: What are you expecting for the next version? Are there features that you are eagerly waiting for?

I've no particular things to expect, perhaps, like many of us, a better modeling interface (too much plug-ins) but I think it will be resolved in R9. If we could have some functions like Amapi has...but, never mind, I think it's a very good software, the most stable I ever used.


What do you think your best piece of work is and why?

Hard question. Well, "Emel camera" I think, I really had many different satisfactions while making it, and "Arcades" too, just after, I think it's because of the mood. Surprisingly for me the last one ("Morning in Cotentin") had a greater success in the community. I was surprised of that because, as the comments told me, there were many details I could improve. That's why I publish these images (It's only a part of my "productions"), it's a second life for them, they're always mine, but yours too.


One of the most impressive element of your work is lighting. Could you describe to us how you prepare the illumination of your scenes? Any tricks you would like to share?

Yes, the lighting is very important for me. Some people tell me: Why don't you make a photo of the scene? They don't understand my way. I made photos for a moment before 3D, I'm sorry but it's different. Since C4D makes radiosity and HDRI, I realize I could make photorealistic scene but with something more than photos. It's difficult to explain, perhaps a longer way to have the resulting image. I started using radiosity with the "Arcades" image. I tried to simulate it first like Carles Piles (a master) but I didn't have enough RAM for too many lights and I was no satisfied by the result, so I tried to use only one light (the sun) and optimize all parameters to the max to reduce the rendering time.

In my last image, there are no lights, no speculars, only one HDRI image and more or less reflective materials, that's all, no secret! :-) I think it's only a starting point to describe the parameters in a list of numbers, it depends of the scene and the mood you want to obtain.

I understand the beginners (I was one of them too): they try to get some rules but there are so many web sites (such as Renderosity) with forums, excellent tutorials, that sometimes I think that all I could say has already been said...(Aaah, modesty when you keep us...)


Your style is very photorealistic, so what are your thoughts on styles like NPR (non-photorealistic rendering), a growing trend in 3D today and emphasized by, for example, MAXON's release of its Sketch & Toon module?

It's another way of doing 3D for animations or illustrations. I tried it in Strata, so, if I can have C4D R8.5, I will certainly experiment this new module and, why not, make something this way...


Why do you like to work with 3D software?

Interactivity, infinite possibilities of expressions, creating something that could be real but doesn't exist or will exist one day. Re-creating the world, in two words. Sometimes it really frightens me when I see what beautiful images our friends publish on Renderosity, it's always a pleasure to discover new works.

Unfortunately, I have only a RTC connexion, (internet is always expensive in France!) but when I can get an unlimited ADSL, I promise you to be more diligent in my comments and participation.


Who/what inspires you?

Anything is good for inspiration, you can imagine a scene when reading a book or history, objects of your own life, painters, sculptors, and of course all the 3D artists you could see. There are no limits for imagination.


How has this online community (Renderosity) enhanced your work, relationships, and learning?

Like I said above, it's very important for me to have some good critics and comments on my work, they are often pertinent and help me to progress, but I love congratulations too. I want to thank all of you for voting for me this month, it IS the most important congratulation I've ever had, it's a very nice encouragement to continue and to be better.

Long life to Renderosity and all of the Artist Community in general. Special thanks too for my friends at frenchcinema4d.com and to my sponsor Mediaworks.

I wish all of you to be always happy to make and show new works. And at last, I hope that my work could inspire and encourage others, like many of you have done for me...

Jean-Claude Massot



Be sure to check out Jean-Claude's gallery!

Click on 'AOM 2004' on the sidebar to learn more about Artist of the Month and to view our past winners.
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Member Opinions:
By: Lon Chaney on 2/10/04
Congrats. I was very impressed with your work.

By: VOID on 2/10/04
Congratulations! You really deserved the AOM Award and I can´t wait to see, what you will come up with your new hardware. I have switched hardware some time ago too with a very similar configuration and I can understand what you mean. :D

By: karanta on 2/11/04
Congratulations. Excellent work!

By: Nounekar on 2/11/04
La persevérence, le talent et le plaisir de travailler sur Cinema 4D, tout cela sur du matériel ancien, c'est une très belle réussite. Bravo JC.

By: tesign on 2/11/04
Congraulation!....excellent work. Hope to see more of your work :)

By: Richabri on 2/11/04
Your work is an absolute marvel! Such a high level of detail and realism that is hardly ever matched. If your renders were not posted in a 3D gallery one would insist they were photographs. Truly remarkable and this is a well deserved distinction for you :)

By: Tamela.J. on 2/11/04
Congratulations Jean-Claude Massot! :O)

By: LCGuy on 2/11/04
Congratulations, Jean-Caude! Beautiful work.. you had my vote, and I was one of the competing nominees!

By: Mahna on 2/11/04
Your work is just fabulous and so realistic. I thoroughly enjoyed viewing your gallery. I had no idea such realism was possible to achieve in any 3D program. Congratulations for such excellent work, you deserve this! ;-)

By: John-Katris on 2/11/04
Bon travail Jean-Claude, Je n utlise pas Cinema 4D mais j ai remarque que tu as un tres grand talent pour ajouter les lumieres dans tes scenes. Bravo et encore Bravo!!!

By: sulian on 2/12/04
Super JC, on est tous très fier de toi. Bonne continuation.

By: steph56 on 2/12/04
Félicitations Jean-Claude ! C'est beau de te voir ici ! Félicitations pour le travail de Dez également.

By: jic on 2/12/04
I'm realy happy to see you here !
Congratulations Jean-Claude: A modest guy, with an amazing talent...
JC: one of your fans ;-)

By: Aaronheart on 2/12/04
Congratulations! Very well deserved :-)

By: micaelito on 2/12/04
Je te remercies Jean Claude pour ton travail exemplaire de qualité et de precision, tes images sont formidables, ma femme et moi nous ne nous lassons pas de les voir !
Je rends aussi un hommage a ton grand pere, il peut etre fier d'avoir un petit fils comme toi.
Merci encore pour ton talent, ta maitrise, ta sensibilité et ta générosité,.
Michel Agullo
www.3dkool.com

By: carmello on 2/12/04
Congratulations, Jean-Claude!! you have an extraordinary talent! All the best for you future work :-)

By: N-Light on 2/13/04
Beautiful work Jean-Claude.

C'est vraiment impressionant! Le plus beau travail avec Cinema 4D que j'ai vue depuis longtemps...

Felicitations! (et desole pour mon Francais!)

By: Lynne on 2/13/04
Thank you for sharing your work with us...congratulations!

By: Pen_Is_Envy on 2/13/04
Félicitations, Jean-Claude!! Tes objets d'art sont incroyables. Félicitations mille-fois! :O))

By: Mercytoo on 2/13/04
Congratulations :-) I enjoy your art and it inspires me to keep learning Cinema :-)

By: papyes on 2/14/04
tout simplement bravo!!!vraiment fier de toi sans te connaitre;) a quand des freestuff et des tutoriaux debutants?felicitation sincere

By: Spkr4TheDead on 2/14/04
Congratulations! Very good artwork and modelling!

By: rdf on 2/15/04
Your work is terrible, awlful, reaaaally baaad!!! Just kidding. ;*) It's really quite excellent. Congrats.

By: mia_ on 2/15/04
..truly a master dont be too modest...;-)

By: aceface041973 on 2/15/04
Congratulations! your work is stunning !!

By: KnightWolverine on 2/15/04
Congratulations on a well deserved honor, your work is top notch :)

By: schmums on 2/16/04
Félicitation pour ta nomination!! Qui est entre nous amplement mérité. Continue de nous emerveiller comme tu le fais, c'est magique!!

SCHMUMS

By: tradivoro on 2/16/04
Absolutely brilliant work Jean-Claude... Your work is inspiring to all of us in the community...

By: wack103 on 2/18/04
yo shits hott, holla back

By: kennyliu on 2/20/04
Congratulation! Very nice work you did!

By: capture on 2/21/04
you're from the top!!! absolutely stunning:)

By: davidm on 2/21/04
Very well deserved! Excellent work! :-)

By: Perry6 on 2/23/04
Congratulations!!!! You deserve this honor!

By: gmark on 2/23/04
Well spoken Jean-Claude! As I read between the lines it is clear that no one is "born" with the ability to satisfy an audience - one must work for it. But it doesn't hurt for someone to through out a tow line once in a while. Cheers!

By: rollmops on 2/26/04
Tumbs up ,Jean-Claude!!:)

By: slm on 2/27/04
hé hé ! une place de 1er qui n'est pas usurpée ! ouf ! félicitations pour un travail hors du commun ! Maître du TAO , trompe l'oeil assisté par ordinateur, le talent de Cadiou armé de Cinéma 4D - le rêve

By: aghasett on 2/28/04
Congratulations Jean-Claude. A beautiful collection of work. "In Memory" particularly floored me. I could stare at it for hours. Wow!!


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