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By Blazej Szpakowicz     June 11, 2006

Welcome to thelatest edition of the DCG Artist Spotlight!

Our victim today isJoaquin Gonzalez, aka TRYGONEZ.

Comics2Film (C2F):When and how did you start doing photomanips? Assuming it's not covered inthe previous question, how did you discover C2F?

Joaquin Gonzalez (JG):Hi guys! First of all I want to say that it's a thrill to be in the Spotlight...Thanx B!. Well then... I started doing photomanips somewhere around 2000 - 2001for a Movie Poster Contest at Super Hero Hype, obviously I didn't win but Iwas very satisfied with my work, specially the logo (TheGreen Lantern MoviePoster) and thought that doing photomanips was a wonderful idea, then Idiscovered C2F, I really can't remember if it was in a small note in a Wizardmagazine about photomanips or if it was a link in SHH, I finally decided joiningthe DCG in 2002 and I am here since then :D

C2F:What software do you use?

JG:I always start and end in Photoshop... version 7.0, KPT plugins, and KnollFlares too. The hardware is sometimes a Mac Mini and usually a PC Workstationand a first Generation Wacom Graphire tablet. I use Maya a lot too... and Ithink I am becoming better at it each day. I absolutely hate Poser...

C2F:What is your background in art?

JG:I have a degree in Graphic Design. At a very early stage of my career Idiscovered the digital side of illustration so I started taking coursesin Photoshop, the first version I bought was Photoshop 2.0. Then I foundabout Multimedia development so I started working with Director and otherprograms such as Soundedit and Macromedia Extreme 3D II... Then I read aboutMaya so I started studying modeling and professional animation in an Animationschool here in Mexico... that was 2 years ago. Going waaaay back I draw sinceI remember and I was always doing superhero stuff. I'm not very good at it...still I try to compensate with the computer :P

C2F:What is your favourite part of doing a manip?

JG:When I finish it! Of course I enjoy the burning and dodging parts, but to besincere it is when I work in the graphic design part of the manip, I mean...if you see I don't do scenes at all, I enjoy more giving the characters aGraphic environment (the HAHAHA in the background of one of my Joker pictures,the logo in the GreenLantern poster, the layout in my first Firestorm,etc.).

C2F:What annoys you most about photomanipulations?

JG:Starting them!! I just have to be in the mood and sometimes I get frustratedwaiting for a good idea to strike. I have a problem with procrastination too...but it is because I have so many other things to do (family, work, etc.) Iwould love to do this as a job... (that way I would have an excuse to do itall the time)... Oh! And the hair and feet of the characters.

C2F:What is your favourite of your own work?

JG:It would be my first Firestormposter, and I like my last picture very muchtoo (Antmanwith the watch), also the DC1,000,000 collaboration was very funto do cause I had to match very different styles from many of the talentedartists of the DCG.

C2F:What image or images do you consider your turning point(s) as an artist?

JG:Let's see, my First Firestormbecause I like it so much :P... TheJoker in the Dark because I started using a black background technique withbrushes... The BatmanProject Teaser because it is my first work using Mayaonly... The Voltaik,cause it is my first original (at least since I was 10)...and my last Antman,cause it is my first Maya work (in comic related pictures)using the Mental Ray renderer with HDRI... I mean, photorealistic.

C2F:What aspect of your work do you think sets it apart from the crowd?

JG:Tough question, you see, I don't have as many as much pictures in the DCG asother artists, that is mainly because I like to take my time on each one andif the concept is not ripe in my head I just don't start it... I like to trydifferent techniques and I think it shows in the different styles I use formy pictures. What sets apart them from the crowd? I think the Graphic Designaspect (logo, layout, etc.)... they are more like covers, wallpapers or posters.

C2F:Who are some of your favourite images by other DCG artists?

JG:Anything by Androidrules, I like a lot theSupermanReturns posters by darthbakpao,Spideyversus the Lizard by Bill Turner,Sinister's laboratory,by Essex, Serayala'sartwork, Marrow'stoo, The Visionby B, Firestorm bydperceful, ali786artwork, Mr. Freezeby Zac, and I just wish I had the talentof SydneyLecterand Kevin Newburn... I likeMs. Jellybrain'swork too. There are many more but those are the ones I remember right now.

C2F:Who are your favourite mainstream and professional comic book artists?

JG:Alex Ross, Jim Lee, Frank Quitely. A friend of mine (a professional nonethelesswhen it comes to talent though nobody knows him) called Luis de la Cruz. 3Dartist Steven Stahlberg. And the author of the Myst videogames, Rand Miller andhis brother too... they just were a huge influence on me.

C2F:What inspires you? Where do your ideas come from?

JG:Er... movies and comics, cartoons, books, my brain...

C2F:What was your favourite theme day?

JG:Original Character day, when I created The Voltaik.

C2F:Any advice for aspiring artists?

JG:Never rush your artwork, believe me, it shows...

C2F:What are your favourite comic books?

JG:Superman books, Batman books... a little X-MEN, I completely love the DC'sINFINITE CRISIS storyline, Villains United is greatÉ

C2F:What characters do your want to manip or create in 3D?

JG:Superman, Captain America, Wonder Woman, Cyborg, Maybe more Joker... but ithas to be perfect, Harley Quinn (I just have the perfect picture for her),perhaps Batman's equipment (belt, batmobile, batcave), and a Mr. Mxyzptlk workI worked three years ago.

C2F:You've been a member of C2F for quite some time. Do you have any thoughtsabout how the site and the DCG community have developed in that time, andwhere they should be headed?

JG:I love the DCG, it is great how the people, come and go, and return, it isthe default website in my browser since 2001. And it's a great time to bethe C2F's DCG, with so many new comic based movies in development. I don'tknow where it sould go in the future but I like the path it has taken.

C2F:You've also done some 3D work in Maya, do you have any thoughts on howthat compares with manipping? Which do you find more challenging?

The 3D is more challenging but it is more rewarding, I said before I hatePoser, but it is mainly because the characters look very robotic in theirexpressions, I'm not really sure why, but in Maya I have complete control overthem. And I really don't think they should be compared at all, they arecomplementary at the core, I mean, the best works of 3D are those that areenhanced in some way with other programs and viceversa. What I really loveabout 3D is the possibilities it has of emulating reality at its presentstage, I am obsessed right now with textures, materials and illuminationtechniques to succeed in photorealism.

Well, B, thank you so very much and to all of the other DCGers, just forbeing here. Hasta la vista!!

For more of Trygonez's art,check out his DCGgallery or visit his website.

Interviewer:Blazej Szpakowicz


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