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A picture of Tooba Rezaei

Tooba Rezaei

Visual and animation artist

in artist, mac, windows

Who are you, and what do you do?

I'm Tooba Rezaei, and I'm a visual artist and animation artist. I've been working in the industry since 2003. I work both digitally and traditionally, and my work has been released in animated shorts, animated features, animation TV shows, games, books, and gallery shows in many different countries. The animated short I created and directed has received over twelve screenings worldwide alongside nominations and awards, and my fine art paintings have been included in over twenty solo and group shows. I have studied and worked in many different countries such as Iran, Holland and the USA.

Currently I live and work in Los Angeles.

What hardware do you use?

I alternately use a Mac and PC to do my work, and I'm very comfortable working with either of them.

I use mostly a Cintiq for illustrations and animation these days, but I can work with the simpler pen tablet that I used in the past. Of course, I also use traditional art hardware like pencils, paper, and paint to do my work. I enjoy using both types of creation tools, and try to use the ones that best fit the particular project I'm working on.

And what software?

When I started to work digitally, Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator were the programs that I mainly worked with. But now I work with over ten software programs, such a Adobe After Effects, Autodesk Maya, Mudbox, SketchUp, ZBrush and more.

When I'm designing concepts after doing research, I start drawing a lot of thumbnails, I choose my favorite ones and I start to make them in 3D software programs such as SketchUp or Maya - sometimes I use both of them. I use these two programs to create the environment, and for my characters I use Mudbox, Maya and Zbrush. When I'm happy with the design and perspective, I paint it in Photoshop. Sometimes I start to work directly in Photoshop, skipping the 3D stage.

For my animation I use Photoshop, After Effects, Flash and sometimes Maya. For the editing part, beside After Effects, I use Premiere, Snagit and Camtasia.

What would be your dream setup?

On one side of my studio, I would like to have a Mac Pro with a large monitor and Cintiq tablet, with all the software programs I need. I'd love to have a nice north-facing window to look out of as I work on my computer as well.

On the other side of my studio, I would like to have all the equipment for doing traditional art. I'd like a big oak easel and shelves for all my art books all around the easel, so I could use them for reference very easily. A nice rolling wood taboret for my supplies with a palette in the top would also be a wonderful help.