Interview with Michal Kotek
Hi could you tell us a bit about yourself?
Hi, my name is Michal Kotek. I was born in March 1987 (I am 19 years now) in Frýdlant, Czech Republic. I live in Prague. I always liked to draw and paint and admired comics and several artist’s pieces. My parents bought first computer when I was 4. Some 386 I think. In that time I was using computer only to play games. I remember that I had allowed only few hours a week.
Because of my interest for graphics and computers I have chose high school of applied cybernetics at Hradec Králove, where I am graduating nowadays by the way in subject field called virtual graphics. I have been studying Photography, figural drawings, cinematography and many others.
What first got you started in 3D?
With 3d graphics I have started few months before school in 2002. This school had a presentation on show of high schools. There I have seen 3d studio max R4 for the first time. There was a student who was modeling some airplane from box and after he used meshsmooth with 10 iterations and his computer has got stucked :) 3D graphic totally consumed me; I am spending a lot of time with it. I have been doing less web design which I was beginning with and I have started to do mainly 3d. I am thinking of making my own CG server, where I was creating video tutorials and sharing textures, but there was no time for that anymore so I have canceled that.
What's a typical day for you?
I don’t have much of free time because I am a student. Few times a week I go to play floor ball, football with friends or I go to fitness center. I like to play my electric piano sometimes. In my free time I am improving myself in 3d and 2d graphics and I am working on my projects. Now I am concentrating on cartoon characters.
How long have you been in CG and what is your current job?
I have started to engage computer graphics when I was 12 when I was editing school photos on basic school. I have started intensive work with 3D a 2D CG in 2002 few months before I have started to go on high school as I have told you already. In free time I work as freelancer. For example Me and few of my friends have done a video clip for one Czech singer. There is my latest work for new web of www.adaptic.cz, I cooperate with. I work on my new website www.michalkotek.com
If you could create yourself as any 3D character whether it's in a game
or a film who would it be?
That’s interesting question. I think Mr. Incredible maybe..
Which area of 3d do your really enjoy doing?
I really enjoy rendering and + final postproduction in Photoshop (making the details on tablet and color editing).
Very important and also interesting is designing the model on the paper. By contrast the thing I do not like is long UVW mapping.
What software program(s) do you use for your CG and why?
For 3d graphic I am using 3dsmax as the most and Photoshop for post production. It is a great combination of software for me. I am working with 3dsmax maybe because it was the first program I have tried and because we have bought that at our school. Later I wanted to move partially to Maya, but there was no time to learn it to level I can use 3dsmax. I am trying Z-Brush at the moment; it is great for detailing a model. For video editing I am using adobe after effects and adobe premiere.
What is one piece of advice you would give to any artist looking to get into 3D?
For the beginning it’s good to download trial versions of 3d programs and stay at that one what we find the most comfortable. Join some community where is a lot of 3d graphic designers who will help you. After you have to work hard and spend a lots and lots of your time by making 3d graphic. For study there are lots of great books today and the internet is full of various tutorials. I prefer the video tutorials as the most.
Where do you see yourself in a 5 years time?
I would like to see myself in some great movie or game studio like pixar, dream works, blur studio, blizzard. Or I would like to create my own studio.
What plans do you have for the future?
After I completed my graduation, I will study English for one year on private school. After I would like to go to some foreign school to Great Britain or maybe more far like Vancouver. It depends on opportunities I will have.
Would you like to give any message to CGArena readers?
I’d like to tell you that I am glad to making interview with you and I hope that you were not bored a lot by reading this.