October 2010 Artist of the Month - Chipka

October 1, 2010 12:47 am

Tags: AOM, Chipka, Writers

av415012.jpgEach month the Renderosity community votes on the Renderosity Artist Of The Month [AOM] ... October's AOM is Chipka!

We congratulate Chipka for an outstanding collection of written works in the Writers Gallery!

Who is "Chipka"?

I was born and raised in Chicago--or as a fortune teller might say of me: I was born at a very young age in a city near water. I've traveled around a bit, but I've spent the bulk of my life in the Windy City. I can't say it's my favorite place on earth, but it's pretty at night, and I do love the lake and the river, and the natural wetland surroundings. I've lived in the Czech Republic, I plan to live in Russia (eventually) and I think that the major defining force in my life (at this point) is the time I spent in Prague and in small Czech towns strewn throughout the Czech Republic; I'll be returning there as well, for yet another bout of long-term residence.

I'm a science fiction writer and lifelong fan of the genre, though I have to say that I'm pretty specific about the sorts of science fiction I like. I'd once planned on becoming a biologist, and I think that is what inspires my writing and visual artwork the most, even now. I've moved into an interest in linguistics and I suspect that much of my future work will have something to do with languages and how people perceive the world through language. This all sounds fancy-schmancy, but it basically just means I'm incredibly nosy and love getting my head around the way other people think; I've always been fascinated by that and always will be.

So I guess, in a nutshell, in answer to "Who is Chipka?" I can say that Chipka is an incredibly nosy dude with a taste for obscure music, sushi, and rice pudding. I'm also pretty big on human rights: which probably explains yet another element of my science fiction writing--I love exploring various social issues and actually poking holes in the various dogmas that rule contemporary life. I don't know whether or not I'm a social commentator, but I'll definitely say that I'm a social observer. Photographically-speaking, I'm immensely fascinated by colors or contrasts, or camera artifacts that aren't entirely photographic in the "pretty picture" sort of way.

Ode to a Threshold by Chipka
Ode to a Threshold

My nickname is Chip, and my handle here is a variation of the diminutive of my nickname bestowed upon me by my closest friends, who also happen to be Russian.

How long have you been writing?

I've been writing since the age of 12. I started writing due to my childhood exposure to OMNI Magazine and all of the amazing artwork I saw there. I didn't possess what I considered to be "artistic talent" at the time, but I was always interested in the art I'd seen in that magazine. I'd often invent stories to go along with images and, over time, I began to write them down, especially since (at that time) there wasn't very much good science fiction on television, and I was not patient enough to read "grown people's" science fiction novels. I've published a number of works (non-science fictional) in various small press publications, and I have a bit of non-fiction published in a few Chicago-local magazines.

The Ashes of Argenton (part one) by Chipka
The Ashes of Argenton (part one)

What are you currently working on?

Right now, I'm currently working on a number of photographic works, while allowing more fiction to percolate on the back burner. As anyone can see in my gallery, I've begun an exploration of a fictional country called Agara; I plan to construct a rather complex, multiple-narrative tale concerning Agara and its role in an alternate history. Though I define myself as a science fiction writer, this is probably my least overtly science fictional work. It IS science fiction, but I think it's geared toward people who tend to limit science fiction to its pulp origins. I'm also feverishly working on a "generation ship" idea, probably for a series of novellas.

The Birth of Agara by Chipka
The Birth of Agara

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

I'm actually not sure of what my best piece of work may be, but I have to say that of the pieces I've posted here, I'm probably the most proud of "The Stolen Sky."

The Stolen Sky: Part One by Chipka
The Stolen Sky: Part One

Who/what inspires you?

Music inspires me the most, I think. I'm always listening to orchestral, or "ethnic" music whenever I'm creating. Even if I'm just listening to random CDs or something, my muse goes into inspirational overdrive and often whacks me over the head with an idea that just won't let go. My friends inspire me the most: especially CoreyBlack, a fellow Renderosity artists--he and I have known each other for decades and we're both writers/photographers. We're constantly bouncing ideas off of each other. Bad art/writing also inspires me: more in terms of declaring: "what a piece of crap! I could do better than that!" I'm never really satisfied with simply saying or thinking that, however, I have to actually DO it: of course judgements of "good/bad" are purely subjective, but for me, I think that something that rubs me the wrong way ideologically will always inspire me to pick at it and create something as a way to counteract the "icky" feelings such "bad art/ideology" might inspire.

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

Renderosity has been helpful on so many levels. My work has been enhanced and will continue to be enhanced simply because of the measure of interaction I have with so many different artists here: only in an online community such as this might a real international group of people come together and have so much to share. I love the fact that I can interact with people on the other side of the planet and have something to talk about. When I lived in Prague, Renderosity was a link to the USA and now that I'm in the USA, Renderosity is a link to the rest of the planet. For me, that's incredibly inspiring in that I can look at the work of someone here from, say, Russia, Denmark, South Africa, or anywhere else, and that leads to my own exploration of artistic sensitivities native to other places.

Renderosity enhanced my work by simply inspiring me to produce it, especially in terms of my photography and my 2D stuff. Most importantly, I've discovered quite a few people here who think as I do, or are at least open to the way that I think. In terms of relationships, I've developed some very real friendships with people I've met face to face, and in one case (With CoreyBlack) a long-standing friendship has taken on an additional digital aspect. I think that in this sense, particularly, Renderosity allows both Corey and I to interact on an artistic level that continually pushes me.

In terms of learning, well...just look at the galleries here: all of the best ones have something in common, and that's the willingness of an artist to simply follow a vision and see where it goes. There's something liberating in being able to simply follow something through, to experiment, to play, and I think the most important thing that Renderosity allows is play. I think that if humans lose the ability to play, then we lose the ability to be human and so Renderosity helps to keep me playful and my interaction with other artists inspires me constantly because I'm always looking at writing ideas or photography ideas and asking myself: "Yeah, but what if I do this instead of that?" It's all play, and I love that.

The Silent (part one) by Chipka
The Silent (part one)

Do you have any comments or advice for other writers/artists?

Never be afraid to take risks, especially if they are fun risks or inspired by something deep in your gut. Art is about risk, in so many ways, and art is a way in which risk is rendered safe. You can't take risks when you're driving or about to work with heavy machinery, but you CAN take risks with colors, composition, and all of that other stuff that artists are always going on and on about. Most importantly though, have fun; if you enjoy what you do, others will enjoy it as well.

We invite you to have a further look at Chipka's Renderosity Gallery!

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All supporting images are copyright, and cannot be
copied, printed, or reproduced in any manner without written permission from the artist.

Artist of the Month is highlighting a talented Renderosity artist that has been nominated by mods and admins, and voted by the community. Recognition is given to this member for their collection of works for that year.

Since we only select one AOM per month, it is not about their works for that particular month. Instead, it is about highlighting a talented artist's works for that year, and they are recognized during that month.

To learn more about Renderosity's Artist Of The Month [AOM] award, and to view our past AOM's, please visit the AOM page, which can also be found on the sidebar under Highlights.

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Article Comments

beachzz ( posted at 10:50AM Fri, 01 October 2010

Chip---YOU ROCK, my friend and this couldn't have gone to anyone better!!

anahata.c ( posted at 7:21PM Fri, 01 October 2010

Congratulations, Congratulations, Congratulations, and 1000 more Congratulations! First GOM in Photography, now this! You're such a waterfall of talent & vision, it's great to see the sky open up and shine for you! I hope this is just the beginning Chip, and trust me when I say, this made my day! Congratulations on an incredible body of work, and thanks for gracing us all with it day after day. Many more lights to you in the future!!! Mark

arlivre ( posted at 5:36AM Sat, 02 October 2010

Outstanding artistry, congratulations !

flavia49 ( posted at 4:57PM Sat, 02 October 2010

Congratulations!! You deserve it!! It is a thing of beauty to read and watch your art.

tresamie ( posted at 7:23PM Sat, 02 October 2010

Congratulations! What great news :)

romanceworks ( posted at 2:18AM Sun, 03 October 2010

Congrats, Chip! So well-deserved. You are an exceptional writer and one day I know your name will be on a fantastic sci-fi novel. And your photography is another way you so beautifully express your unique vision. CC

carlx ( posted at 11:28AM Sun, 03 October 2010


auntietk ( posted at 6:01PM Sun, 03 October 2010

I've been checking back every day (okay, it's only been three days, but I was on pins and needles the whole time!) waiting for your interview to appear. This is great! I love seeing you as AOM for the Writer's Gallery. You have such talent, and the honor is more than deserved. I look forward to the day I have a signed, first-edition copy of your first Agara book in my hot little hands! I know it's just a matter of time. :) Congratulations and hugs galore, my dear! >:D

TwoPynts ( posted at 9:11AM Mon, 04 October 2010

Congrats my friend, you truly deserve this honor!

Meisiekind ( posted at 11:26AM Mon, 04 October 2010

Oh Chip - How wonderful to see you on the Homepage! You are a very special artist in every way and a dear, dear friend! Congratulations Chip - nobody deserves it more than you do! I am so proud of you and I'm sure a certain Russian is too! Hugs, Carin

Cameocat ( posted at 10:22PM Mon, 04 October 2010

You have amazing talent. I hope you can go far with it.

shorterbus ( posted at 5:20PM Thu, 07 October 2010

About damn time!!!

Danny_G ( posted at 5:23PM Fri, 08 October 2010

Well deserved congratulations

Roxam ( posted at 6:11PM Sun, 10 October 2010

Congratulations Chipka! You're so very talented, and a very charming person.

calum5 ( posted at 6:39PM Mon, 11 October 2010

Well done on the award,love alot of your images.Keep going:)cal

myrrhluz ( posted at 7:57PM Mon, 11 October 2010

Very well deserved! Many congratulations!

Jean-Luc_Ajrarn ( posted at 8:57AM Wed, 13 October 2010

Congratulations! :D

lwperkins ( posted at 10:36AM Sat, 16 October 2010

Yes, congratulations! You are very inspiring, both your writing, your attitude and your excellent photography-- you are one of the people who make Renderosity such a great place !

texboy ( posted at 1:24PM Tue, 19 October 2010

Congratulations, Chip! It's always a pleasure to read your words and see your pictures; good work!

kgb224 ( posted at 1:46AM Thu, 21 October 2010

Well deserved for you to appear here my friend. I cam say Chip is a very talented writer and artist.From nothing he can create something. Congratulations my friend.

lick.a.witch ( posted at 4:47AM Fri, 22 October 2010

Congratulations Chip! You so deserve this! Your art is a total pleasure both to look at and read. ^=^

grimx ( posted at 7:43PM Fri, 22 October 2010

Nice work. The art you make is superb.

lior ( posted at 9:14PM Sun, 24 October 2010

Congrats: well seserve!

helanker ( posted at 11:39AM Mon, 25 October 2010

Yeah ! It had to happen. Your amazing way of thinking is always fascinating me and many other members. Your philosophical little narratives are beautiful and always worth reading. You certainly deserve this. Congratulations Chip.

aksirp ( posted at 2:04PM Mon, 25 October 2010

wonderful work, congratulations!!

jo_dis ( posted at 8:00AM Wed, 27 October 2010

Congratulations Wonderful

babuci ( posted at 7:08AM Fri, 29 October 2010

Well recognised talent. Congrat.

marybelgium ( posted at 10:26AM Sat, 30 October 2010

Wonderful ! very well deserved! Bravo Chip !

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