I have the wonderful opportunity today of bringing you the work of up-and-coming concept artist Alex Andreyev. Andreyev is a Russian based concept artist living and working out of Saint Petersburg. Having started out as a graphic designer he quickly developed a love for the digital arts and now creates amazing concept art series, stills for animations & more. Take a look at some of his work below from his â€œA Separate Realityâ€ series (my personal favorite) and see what Andreyev has to say about himself, his work & his process as a concept artist.
Q: Tell us a little bit about yourself
I`ve been drawing as long as I remember myself. After finishing art school and university, I moved to Saint-Petersburg, where I currently live and work. I still can`t decide what it is more interesting to me – graphic design or the fine arts. But recently I tend to commit to digital art more than anything else. I had several personal exhibitions, but I prefer to place my art on the Internet. It`s free and you never know what careless user would come across your pictures. As I feel that my works do not belong to me, I only take them from some informational environment and return them there. Currently I hold a position of Creative Director in a major advertising holding, primary focus of my work is development and promotion of brands.
Q: Would you describe yourself as a Concept Artist? Matte Painter?
I think I’m good at Concept Artist. I’m not patient enough to be a Matte Painter. I always have too much ideas and no time 🙂
Q: Did you train in traditional art forms before moving to digital art?
Yes I did. I tried out various techniques, including traditional inks, pens, brushes (you can see it on my site www.alexandreev.com). I also experimented with digital art, and now I use Adobe Photoshop and Corel Painter all the time, just brushes, no effects or filters. By using limited toolset I am able to achieve stylistic consistency throughout my portfolio. I focus more on expression of my creative concepts than on technology or tools. I am free of limitations of traditional tools, such as drying of oil paint, changing of gouache color or etching line width. Also I am able to constantly see and control final result of my work during creation, and that suits my style.
Q: What work are you most proud of?
I don’t have any favorite work – I don’t like most of them, I see all bugs and mistakes. But I hope I can proud of our animation film Â«Kin-Dza-DzaÂ» (01.01.2013).
Q: Do you have any inspirational artists?
My favorite artist is Zdislav Beksinski – He is from Poland, and his art is said to be Â«post-Auschwitz poetryÂ». I feel very close to his perception of the world and combination of mystical revelations with the reality of our time. I can say that our internal receivers are accepting the same information waves, we are on the same frequency here. Besides him, I like Magritte very much.
Q: Do you feel that living in Russia helps to influence your work?
Yes. I`m deeply in love with USSR literature, music and movies. In general, I can tell that I am fascinated by an aesthetics of the Soviet period. That was an interesting time, now long gone, and endless space for ideas. I`m not talking about politics here â€“ this sphere of a human life is deeply unpleasant to me basically.
Q: Are there any common themes, ideas or motifs across your artwork?
Usually i`m being named a Â«surrealistÂ». For me only a result of mystical revelation can be considered a true art. Other products of intellectual speculations can only interest me from technological point of view. My favorite paintings are created during insight, sudden connection with a certain information field. The interpretation of my vision, using all of my life experience, is the result of my work. Carlos CastaÃ±eda gave a definition of creative process, with which I agree most: Â«The Nagual Elias, as a solitary dreamer, visited, letâ€™s say, the junkyard of infinity, when no one was around â€“ and copied whatever he saw, but never knew what those things were used for, or their source.Â»
Q: Are you working on any exciting projects you would like to share with us?
Currently I am working (besides day job) as environment artist on animation film Â«Kin-Dza-DzaÂ», based on the soviet movie made in 1986. When the film came out, it influenced me a lot, and now I am happy and proud to work on this remake. This animated cartoon is being created by the original movie director George Danelia, who is very famous in Russia and is my favorite The film is about the fall of human culture, and my job is to develop landscapes, constructions, mechanisms and devices.
Q: Is there any advice you would like to give to aspiring concept artists trying to break into the industry?
I don`t think I can give any advice, but I can say that if a person really wants to create, nothing can stop him. And that person would lead a really happy life.