Uses This

1201 interviews since 2009

A picture of Arda Koyuncu

Arda Koyuncu

Character artist, photographer

in artist, photographer, windows

Who are you, and what do you do?

I'm Arda Koyuncu, a character artist and a photographer currently working at Goodbye Kansas Studios, Los Angeles. I'm the Head of Character Art, making a bunch of characters for various projects, figuring out how to utilize the newest technologies to make better digital characters and create new workflows. I find nature really inspiring, which definitely helps understand and improve making characters but also pushes me to be outdoors, capturing moments I want to come back to.

Spending a good amount of time outdoors triggered certain thoughts and ideas quite some time ago; so on the photography front, a few friends and I are currently working on making a new type of content for Virtual Reality we call Holophotography.

You can find my artwork on ardakoyuncu.com and Instagram.

What hardware do you use?

I'm working with two separate workstations at the moment. One of them is an Intel i7-6800K, 64GB RAM, GeForce GTX 1080 with 2x27" LG 4K displays. The other is an Intel i7-8700K, 64GB RAM, GeForce RTX 2080 TI with 2x27" HP displays.

My go-to mouse is Logitech MX Master. When I'm sculpting and painting I use the Intuos 4 Pro and Razer Nostromo as my input devices. I also work on the 15" Razer Blade, (the non RTX version, unfortunately - that one came out 3 weeks after I purchased mine) when I'm away from home.

For my photography, timelapses and photogrammetry I use a Canon 6D. I own a variety of lenses and hardware that go with the camera - the EF 50mm f/1.2L USM, EF 24mm f/1.4L II USM, and EF 85mm f/1.8 USM are my go-to lenses. I have a couple of fisheye lenses and polarizers, and my tripod is an Oben CT-2461 that works with the Manfrotto mini ball head.

When I'm developing Holophotography for VR, I'm on the new Oculus Quest and an Oculus Rift S. I am also waiting for some new DJI toys - curious to see what will come after Mavic. Once they release the next generation of drones I'm definitely getting one.

And what software?

I use a lot of different software for a lot of different things. If I'm making digital character stuff I am generally busy in 3ds Max, Maya, ZBrush or Marvelous Designer. If I'm painting I prefer Mari, Substance Painter and Photoshop - I haven't had the time to get into Substance Designer yet, but it's definitely on the list. There are also a lot of tools I use here and there to make various things; xNormal, CrazyBump, Ornatrix, XGen to name a few.

When it comes to look development, depending on the project and the need, I end up using V-Ray, Arnold, KeyShot, Unity and/or Unreal Engine. More and more I am spending time in real-time engines instead of offline renderers, especially Unreal Engine and Unity. I am one of those people that think real-time is the future, but I definitely enjoy seeing little boxes resolve my offline render while sipping my coffee.

My go-to photogrammetry tool is Reality Capture. And then there's Lightroom, After Effects and LRTimelapse for my photography.

Most of the time I find myself jumping between all of these tools constantly - I start from one tool and end in another one. There are many times I discover obscure tools freely available on the web to experiment with tiny tasks here and there. If they end up being useful, they become another tool I'd like to have in my arsenal. I keep lists of things I'm failing to do with the tools I know how to use, and once I find something that might help me check another issue off the list it becomes another permanent tool. Lately I've been looking into tools that can do precise mesh matching with minimal input, regardless of scale and orientation.

What would be your dream setup?

My dream setup would be a semi-autonomous setup that can order its own upgrades online :)

Uses This is supported by ZSA, makers of the Moonlander, ErgoDox EZ and Planck EZ keyboards. They also publish an awesome newsletter.