We’re glad to introduce the interview with Maurizio Gastoni, a SOA student from the Masterclass#8.
Could you present yourself to our readers and tell them the position you currently hold?
I studied at State of Art Academy 3 years ago while I was working as Freelance Engineer in Italy. Back then I had the passion for rendering but no technique, and almost no knowledge of postproduction, so I wanted to take an important step and understand whether I could be or not a professional in the Visualization field. The masterclass has been a great kickstart giving me the tools to understand how to work and how to be professional. Of course, after that I had to work a lot before being able of producing something interesting enough to get me a job and. When I started I wasn’t ready to produce in the industry but I was there and from there I learnt (hopefully quite well) what was needed.
Now I work in a Danish company called VISMO. Each single person in the company (it is a small one) takes care of any phase of the image, often of a full project, depending on the amount of work we have. My task can go from dealing with the client in a preliminary phase to seting up the project, from preparing the 3d model, to just doing the post-production. I can even just help somebody to finish an image doing a part of it, our roles are mostly swappable.
Why have you chosen to become an Arch-Viz Artist?
I coudn’t really stand the fact that working as an architect or an engineer, the creative process was so much “castrated” by laws and rules. Eventually, I came to a point in which my job was not to create something but it was more about knowing what I could do, draw a project in some days and then fight for months to get it approved. The creativity was gone. So I started to play with the visualization.
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What were the biggest difficulties you faced at the beginning of your career? How did you handle and overcome them?
The main difficulty is that even a very good school cannot get you ready for a job in the industry unless you already have a strong background. I wasn’t ready and I knew it; that was the difficult part. I also knew that I had some rough knowledge after the masterclass so I needed an internship to build a career up. In the end I created a portfolio good enough to get me an internship. Waiting for an answer while motivating yourself was tough as well but that goes for anything in life.
Is there a work/ an image/ a project that you created which is most valuable to you? Why?
I think the first image that I did from scratch was a milestone. In that moment I actually realized I was 100% doing my job. After that, there are many other goals that you feel you can achieve during the process. I remember as a great relieve the day in which I realized that, no matter what, I was finally able to say that I could deliver a good quality image despite the difficulties encountered during the process. Now I have that confidence every time I start an image. I know what I can do and I know that it will be an high standard even if the feeling with the project or with the model is not the best.
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What do you do in your free time after work? Can you balance your working life and your private one?
I do have a very good balance between work and private life. I rarely overwork or stay late therefore I have time to do my stuff like going to the gym or just going out for a drink with my friend or doing whatever I have to do. Sometimes I work in the weekends but it is a very rare occasion and in any case it is something I have a complete control upon. It could be interesting to have more flexibility of coming and going during the week or to have a fresh Photoshop start on Monday or just to meet a deadline with less pressure. In any case the balance is very good.
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