Rachel Quitevis

3D Tech Artist

                                                                                                              

PoW: Playful Corporation

Position: 3D Content Artist

Contact: rachel.quitevis@gmail.com

Portfolio: tevisart.carbonmade.com

 

 

What’s your current title and what do you do? 
I’m a Junior Tech Artist. I ensure art assets can be easily integrated into a project without sacrificing artistic integrity or surpassing the technical limits of the engine.  Specifically, I’ve been baking texture maps, adjusting them physically and artistically, and importing them into the project for designers to arrange in levels.  Designers then communicate with me if there are problems with the assets (i.e., scale, texture), and I go back to adjust the assets accordingly.  You must definitely be a 3D artist to be able to do this effectively.  For example, if there is problem with the texture baking process, you must know how to return to a high poly or low poly object and adjust it to bake cleaner texture maps from them.  This gives artists time to move forward with other tasks, and designates a separate job to integrate the objects into usable art pieces in the engine. I have had the opportunity to sculpt high poly models, but most of my job is technical art. To be honest, I had no idea that this is what I would be doing on the current project.  It’s sort of ironic, because I think my greatest weakness so far in the process of 3D modeling is texturing, and now I’m being paid to learn how to do it professionally.
 
Can you give me a brief overview of the places you have worked professionally and what you did for them?
The only place I have had the privilege to work professionally for game development is Playful Corp. I replaced all the mesh colliders with primitive collision on about 90% of the prefabs in Super Lucky’s Tale, and fixed bugs at the end of the project.  This was the first game I have ever worked on, and it’s the Xbox One X’s one and only launch title, and an Xbox exclusive.  I feel indescribably Lucky to have had the opportunity. Pun intended.  When I was finished fixing bugs, I was moved to the Star Child (PS4, VR) team, which is what I’m working on now as a Jr. Tech Artist.  I can’t say much about the project, but I’m even more excited for the world to see this one.
 
What made you choose a career path as a 3D Artist? 
I’ve been an artist all my life, and I knew that’s what I wanted my career to be centered around.  It had to be something I loved.  I have watched so many people take jobs just to make a living, and end up unhappy.  I was so, so sick of working jobs that I “had to do”, just to pay the bills, and it caused me deep emotional distress.  I tried a lot of different art majors, but when I came upon game development, it was an answer to the question I asked myself, “What is the most fun thing you could do for the rest of your life?” Game art is submersive, interactive, and usually at the exciting forefront of the everchanging technical world (VR!).  I have played video games since I was a kid, so they are close to my heart.  I originally had interest in animation when I started Richland’s program, but I enjoyed 3D modeling because it felt like real sculpting.  I’m the type of artist that can see something before I draw it, and I can draw exactly what I see, so that translated well in turning a piece of concept art into a perfect 3D replica. You always hear the phrase, “If you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life.” It is so true. Even when I stay late and work from home, it’s because I want to, and I leave work happy and fulfilled every single day.
 
How was your experience at Richland College and how did it contribute to your success? 
I’m going to be 100% honest here! When I first attended Richland, age 18, I hated it!  I felt like I was left behind by my peers who jetted off to four-year universities. A year later, I attended a four-year university, and I missed Richland! I knew it was fate when I wanted to try out game development–Richland had a program, and the university didn’t. The fraction of the cost of tuition was fantastic; I could afford to support myself and go to school.  The program gave me a solid place to start and explore my interests.  I had control over when I could take which classes, which was very convenient.  The resources available to students, software and hardware, were always up-to-date, so we were always on par with other local (and more expensive) programs.   I loved the small classes because I was able to get to know my professors, and I made friends quickly– I think that this was the biggest reason that I found passion for game dev at Richland.  Being around people who care about the same things that you do keeps you interested and inspired, and I was able to communicate honestly with my professors when my personal doubt became too heavy.  They are teaching because they’re passionate about it, too.
 
What advice would you give to new students wanting to get into your area of work?
If you want to commit your career to something you love,
1. Don’t give up, even it when it sucks. If it were easy, it wouldn’t be worth it.
2. When you aren’t working hard, someone else is.
3. You don’t have to do it alone. Never be afraid to ask for help. Game dev is all collaboration and team work, so you will literally never have to do it alone.

4. Be kind to everyone. Networking is half the battle in a professional world.

Are you working on any personal projects or passion projects?
I am, slowly but surely.  It’s an idea from my childhood combined with a struggle from my adulthood. It’s still a huge work in progress, and all I have right now is an idea and concept art for the main character. I’ll keep my portfolio updated on it.
 
If you had a dream scenario or company you’d like to work at, for what or where would it be?
I would really love to be an art director at an indie company, possibly one I helped start.  I have held various leadership positions throughout most of my life, and I have deeply enjoyed getting people motivated together under a common goal. The only thing that would make that even better is if it were art-related. I’d prefer an indie company over a large company for the same reason I chose Richland.  I believe it’s easier to build strong relationships in smaller groups, and with strong relationships come strong teams.
 
Thanks again Rachel, we really appreciate your time!
Thank you! It was a pleasure!