3DValley Featured 3D Artist of March 2007 – ChRiz Wong. ChRiz is a toy designer and 3D modeler from Hong Kong, China. He recently published his own 3D comic book with his characters KiKy & Friends, which is all about spreading the message of love & peace into the world. Read the interview to get to know ChRiz, KiKy & her Friends a bit better.
Christa: Can you tell us a bit about yourself: Who are you and what do you do in your daily life?
ChRiz: Hi, my name is ChRiz Wong I’m a Toy designer, comic artist & website founder from Hong Kong, China. I’m 35 years old and work with a Premium toys company as Toy designer. Before that I’ve worked at a magazine & educational publishing company.
Christa: I’ve read online that you design toys. That must be a great job 🙂 what kind of toys do you design? And what’s your part in the design process?
ChRiz: I design Premium toys e.g. plastic capsule toys & small plushy toys. There are two parts where I take responsibility: Follow up the clients design, e.g. draw the concept pictures, 3D artworks & structure of toys and design the new office toys from concept to structural drawing. I also follow up the hand samples & finished products and I’m also responsible for the booth design & toy packaging for the toy fair every year.
Christa: Do you have traditional art experience?
ChRiz: I graduated with a Diploma in Design (Graphics/Illustration) from a Hong Kong technical institute, which has equipped me with the necessary knowledge in graphic & illustration techniques, & creativity exploitation in design concept. My first job was assistant model maker by two Australian model making masters, who also learned me a lot.
Christa: Which software packages do you use for your artwork?
ChRiz: I use Strata 3D CX, Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Pagemaker & Premiere, and Macromedia Director MX.
Christa: Can you tell us a bit of the way you work on your art?
ChRiz: I always think about the story & draw the storyboard first. Then I set up the objects, lighting & finally the rendering. I think for a good idea, concept, or design the techniques you use are most important in the process. I always spend half of the working hours to think & research. The other half of the working hours I use for production.
|Kung Fu Tattoo||iBee|
Christa: What and/or who inspires you?
ChRiz: Several Hong Kong (e.g. Mr. Tony Wong), Japanese & European (e.g. Simon Bisley) comic artists inspire me to draw comic. Eight years ago a 3D advertisement of Maid Brand ham in Hong Kong and the opening of the Japanese game Tekken inspired me to learn 3D.
Christa: Do you have a favorite piece of your own artwork and if so, why?
ChRiz: My favorite piece is all my own artwork I’ve done for KiKy & Friends. I can’t choose between them. I love them all 🙂 It’s because I’ve put all my design concepts & 3D techniques into them.
|New Year wishes|
Christa: What is your goal as an artist?
ChRiz: To bring happiness to people and remind them that some problems we experience all in this life. It’s means a lot to me to do these things through my comic stories & 3D techniques.
Christa: Besides 3D Valley, which other CG sites do you visit regularly?
Christa: Do you have any tips for the artists who admire your work?
ChRiz: It would be great to know if somebody admires my work. I think research & drawing technique are the most important. See more and new toys outside, or from magazines & internet. Keep an open mind, brainstorm, and don’t give up any possibilities in the process.
|Brokeback chicken||Trash mountain|
Christa: How is the CG industry in China?
ChRiz: The CG industry in China is currently much better, especially the last ten years it keeps improving. It’s because of the fast development of games, advertising & toys, etc. China is also starting to build up a style for itself, e.g. making some animations and artworks of traditional Chinese objects & graphics.
Christa: You recently published a 3D comic book in China; can you tell us a bit about the process, the characters and the message in the story?
ChRiz: I have asked most of Hong Kong publishing companies to issue KiKy & Friends. Unfortunately, all of them rejected because 3D comics are very, very rare in Hong Kong/ Asia. So finally I decided to publish KiKy & Friends myself. First, I modified all the pictures & dialogues. Then I applied for a ISBN number by a department of the government. Later, I asked the World Publishing Company to publish KiKy & Friends (let me thanks Ms. Cannice Ng here), and I found C&C Security Printing Company willing to print KiKy & Friends (let me thanks Mr. Mike Mak & Mr. Daniel Chan here). Thanks to all the people who have helped & supported me in the process. Finally the comic book of KiKy & Friends is published in Nov 2006, spreading the message of Love & Peace.
|ChRiz with KiKy & Friends|
KiKy is a clever & naughty baby monkey, Flower Butterfly & Space Frog are spokesmen for Environmental Protection & Space Exploration. In the future I want to draw more about Environmental Protection because this problem is serious gradually for all the people in the world. I really hope there are some foreign publishing companies willing to help publish more versions in the future, e.g. a English & Japanese version. I also wish that there will be some products of KiKy & Friends, e.g. toys & accessories. Maybe even a movie or TV series of it. ‘You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one’.
Christa: You also created a short animation for KiKy & Friends, can we expect more?
ChRiz: I would like to search a bit further first to see if someone might be interested to invest in a KiKy & Friends TV series or movie for the future. It’s also because I’m very limited if it comes to creating animations myself. I’m planning to to publish at least one KiKy & Friends 3D comic each year.
|KiKy & Friends trailer|
Christa: Which areas of your work do you enjoy the most?
ChRiz: In fact, I really enjoy all the steps in the process. I like coming up with a story, the making of the model, the lightning set up & camera. I’m always very exciting when seeing the image after rendering! I enjoy both aspects of my work, creating the real toys and the 3D artworks. In fact, they’re two completely different media types. I also enjoy playing with the toys that are designed by me 🙂
Christa: Is there something you can’t work without?
ChRiz: Music is necessary in the process 🙂 Especially Hip-Hop & Rap (e.g. Snoop Dogg & Jay-Z). Sometimes I can imagine the scene through some impact beat. I also love jazz (e.g. Jamie Cullum) & soul (e.g. Isaac Hayes).
Christa: What do you do when you are not working or creating something?
ChRiz: I go to church, read a comic or book, watch an animation or movie, listen to music, play a game or with my toys 🙂
Christa: Thanks for your time and the interview ChRiz!