New Featured Artist Interview: Peter Minister
Digital-Tutors: Thanks for taking time to talk with us! Let’s start with what are you are currently working on? Peter Minister: No problem, I feel a little like I’m stuck in a prehistoric rut at the moment, modeling lots of dinosaurs for a couple of projects, one for print and the other for animation. I shouldn’t complain as it was always my ambition to make dinosaurs, so to pay the rent by doing this is a blessing. Digital-Tutors: How did you get started in the industry? Peter Minister: I sort of had to get in the industry. I had no choice really. I spent the best part of 20 years as a special effects model maker making models, props and special effect---lots of full size dinosaurs in glass fiber for museums. Years back I was asked to quote on sculpting maquettes that were to be scanned for a TV program on the BBC. I didn’t get the job and the program turned out to be Walking with Dinosaurs. The work started to thin out after that as CG was the way to go. I became quite disillusioned around that time and actually took a job as a bus driver for a couple of years. That was sort of a sabbatical and it helped me focus my resolve as to what I should be doing. A friend of mine sent me a link to the trial version of Zbrush 2 and I was hooked. I’ve never looked back. Digital-Tutors: Was this something you knew you wanted to do since you were young? Peter Minister: Like lots of people, I was inspired by the work of Ray Harryhousen’s stop motion movies. I spent most of my young life sculpting plasticine dinosaurs on the kitchen table. What I do now is just an extension of what I did as a kid. Digital-Tutors: Why does sculpting appeal to you? Peter Minister: Sculpting in my view is completely different to modeling. I believe sculpting is something someone is blessed with as an ability. It’s a desire to accurately shape form and mass. I don’t think I’ve peaked yet. That’s why I love the digital medium. It lets you develop and grow. Digital-Tutors: What’s the best part of what you do? Peter Minister: The best part is looking at something you put hours of work into and seeing it again the day after and thinking, “did I do that?” Digital-Tutors: What is the most difficult part? Peter Minister: Technical innovations throw me massively as I’m dyslexic and I depend on a good video tutorial to help me take baby steps to learn. It’s something I would think I like to demonstrate in my Digital-Tutors videos. I learned the basics from Digital-Tutors and I still keep on learning from them. Digital-Tutors: In what way has Digital-Tutors affected your career as an artist? Peter Minister: I owe a huge debt of thanks to Digital-Tutors. I forced myself to diligently follow all of the early Zbrush tutorials to completion. Digital-Tutors: What was your favorite project you have worked on? What software did you use? Peter Minister: My favorite project is the one I’m working on right now and rather annoyingly, I can’t mention it yet. It involves dinosaurs, dinosaurs with LOTS of feathers. Digital-Tutors: What has been the most defining moment thus far in your career as a CG artist? Peter Minister: This is a difficult one. I’ve done so many projects through and for other artists and it’s only over the past few years that I have received full credit for my input on a number of dinosaur publications. Digital-Tutors: How do you continue to grow as an artist? Peter Minister: You have to be passionate about what you do. I’m often pigeon holed as that guy who does dinosaurs…and I don’t mind. Do what you do as well as you are able and if possible, keep raising the bar. Digital-Tutors: If you weren’t an artist what would you being doing? Peter Minister: Driving a bus…I was a good bus driver. Digital-Tutors: What advice do you have for young artists trying to get into the industry? Peter Minister: Keep practicing your craft. Don’t ever get disillusioned. You’re trying to get into an industry full of generous and helpful people. Digital-Tutors: Where do you see yourself and your art going next? Peter Minister: I would like to see my art keep going in the direction I’m taking. I’m in a good groove at the moment and it’s been a really good experience to share my techniques and methods on Digital-Tutors. Digital-Tutors: Thanks for your time. Any last things you’d like to share with the world? Peter Minister: Eat less meat To see more of Peter's work check out his resume and portfolio - and learn with Peter in his four Digital-Tutors courses.
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