Artist Feature: Chimera46 (Exclusives)
[highlight color=”eg. yellow, black”]Note: This Interview has been updated with the animations, which were previously missing. It would be a crime to not show case Chimera46’s animated work. That’s where he excels :)[/highlight]
Sci-Fi and Fantasy have been a constant inspiration for Chimera46. From the fantasy world in Busty Babes In Peril to the Sci-Fi hotties inspired by movies like Star Wars, 3DX has allowed him to explore his deep imagination and provide some of the finest work seen in the real world. Chimera’s work in 3DX not only stops from simple pin-ups or sex scenes, but mind-blowing animations that entertain and titillate. That’s why it was our honor when we spoke with Chimera about his works and what led to being one of the top animators in 3DX today.
Tell us about yourself. Where did the name chimera46 come from? Where are you located at?
I am currently located in Ontario, Canada. I’ve used the online handle “Chimera” for many years. A Chimera is a mythological beast made up of 3 different animals, but is also a term that can refer to genetically mixed organisms, or be used as a term for “fanciful illusion”. Though not intentional, in many ways it’s an apt description for my work, where I often mix up props, characters and textures, in fantasy or sci-fi settings.
As for the “46”, that started when I needed to get an e-mail account and “Chimera” was taken, so “Chimera46” was randomly assigned. Oddly enough, over the years the 46 has come to take on more significance. I use 46 all the time in file names and even in the morph settings I use on my characters. I’ll turn a facemorph or a body morph to .46, or use .23 (46/2), .92 (46*2), or .69 (.46+.23).
You could have taken up scrapbooking but instead you chose 3DX. Why? Also tell us about your background and journey into the field of 3DX.
I’m a long time Lara Croft fan, as well as a Witchblade (comic) fan. So one day I’m strolling along the internet when I come across an image by Wyrmmaster, who happened to make a Lara Croft – Witchblade crossover pinup in Poser. That image led me to Renderosity, and a few months later I picked up poser for myself and started rendering. Slowly, painfully, I became… competent.
What makes 3DX special for you? Where do you see it heading in the future?
It was (and is) a hobby for me. I have no professional artistic or technical training, so for me this is a way to unwind and use some
creative juices that I don’t normally use in my day to day life, without needing to learn to paint in oils or sculpt. I should note
that I don’t really even consider myself an “artist” in the strict sense of the term, given that most of what I do uses pre-fab products. What I do is more like playing with lego really. Still, I do find it to be enjoyable.
As for where 3dx is heading, I’d say we’ll be going from rendering still images and short animated clips into “scripting” poses and
movement in game engines or in what is now called “preview mode” in Poser. Games like Bonetown or the Thrixxx products are signs of this, and there are already products used to rip models from from video games for posing or export purposes. In the newest version of poser, the preview mode is capable of making better images than final renders from earlier versions of that program. As computer power increases it’s only a matter of time until we can do dynamics, reflections/refractions, raytracing, etc in real time rather than wait for a render to pop.
As we “render” less (i.e. just work in real time engines), people will turn their attention from still images to animations, maybe even personality AI (see the current versatility in the free SuperDeepThroat flash game). So… that’s the future as I see it,
real-time rendering leading to less stills, but more movement and interactivity.
You seem to be a fan of the sci-fi/fantasy genre. Tell us what makes that genre interesting for you and using it as the base for many of your works?
I am more a fan of sci-fi than fantasy, truth be told. For both though, what I enjoy is that you can always play the “what-if” game.
What if there was a planet where “x” occurs? What if there was a kingdom where magic was real? All sorts of possibilities open up to explore the “human condition” by focusing on that sci-fi or fantasy element, that you can’t do in “real world” story telling.
Is the force with you?
I like to think so. It’s a fun universe to explore and play in. I of course, am partial to the twi’lek part of that universe.
Tell us about Busty Elves In Peril. Can we expect to see more of them in the upcoming future?
I have no plans to give up on BEIP, and I will continue with the series for some time. BEIP started as a spin off of Meselfr’s Aiko In Peril series at Renderosity, which was a series of pinups were the CG figure Aiko was put in perilous situations time and again. I enjoyed the concept, wanted to do it with elves, and so I respectfully “borrowed” the title. Truth be told, I concentrate more on the “busty” part than the “peril” part.
I use the term “series” to describe BEIP loosely. Think of it as it’s own fantasy universe, though there is no central plot thread. I try to break out of the usual stereotypes surrounding maidens in danger, Monsters and their motivations, as well as the modern day PC superwoman motif. Usually my BEIP characters, when not loafting around topless for no reason, find themselves in situations where sexuality is needed (or desired) to get through. I keep plot points to a minimum, and let the viewer read into the image/animation what they’d like to get from it. I have my own ideas about the character’s and their motivations, which are revealed in bits and pieces. That said, it’s interesting to see everyone else’s take on it. Interesting…sometimes shocking and disturbing as well. That’s part of the attraction, as I never know what the audience is going to throw back at me.
So to sum up, BEIP is about boobs, elves, and an open ended story. More often than not, there’s a monster or two thrown in.
Who is your favorite character and why?
From BEIP, Jolxea, definitely. Visually inspired by both Jolene Blalock (T’pol on Star Trek Enterprise) and Cala from Viper-RSR. As a character, I see her as a great mix of looks, charming naivety and a taste for adventure. She’s not stupid per-se, but would be the first to enter a haunted castle in search of treasure, approach a troll’s cave in search of directions, and would implicitly trust the “wallet inspector” she just met, if you know what I mean. She’s curious, adventuresome, trusting, and far from home. This leads her into trouble, which leads to fun. She plays a good foil against the other BEIP characters, which are a little more hardened and experienced in the ways of the world.
You’re best known for some of the most fluid animations in 3DX with some equally breath-taking renders too. How did get started in animation?
Thanks for the kind words, though I don’t know if I deserve that rep. There aren’t too many people doing what I do, so it’s easy to stand out. I render exclusively in poser, which has a ton of features that I, admittedly, rarely use (cloth room, why do you taunt me?!). So one day in 2008 I set to try out the animation tools available in poser, which are right there in the main window, and found that they were pretty fun. I tried out some simple movements, and things grew from there. I figured it slowly, but like anything, we learn by doing.
How does creating animation differ to creating stills? Which do you prefer and why?
With a still there is always the ability to fix problems in postwork. Darkway for instance, puts a lot more effort into post work than most, with fantastic results. That said, doing postwork consistently across a few dozen frames just isn’t viable for a one man operation. So, I need to do a lot of work in Poser before I do the final animation render to make sure the lighting is right, eliminate poke throughs, artifacts, etc. As a result, sometimes an animation turns out less than perfect, but that’s the way it is.
That said, my work in animating starts where my work for stills ends. Usually before I animate anything I first put together a scene as though I was only going to make a still image. That is, I make the best, fullest scene possible, make a final render, then start on making things move, rather than starting with the movement. I figure that if it’s a great still first, it’ll be a great animation too. If you have a great fluid animation applied to a basic character or a drab scene, it’s just not as fun.
What’s the process behind creating your animations? What software do you use to make this possible? Let us know about your work flow. For animation, how long does the average one take?
I do all my animating in Poser, and I actually try to make my animations as simple as possible.
Lets take the example of the “Six Pole Grind” animation, which I’ve included in my submissions to Affect3d, and originally seen at
Deviantart. I make a short 24 frame (or 12 frame, 48 frame, whatever) animation that loops, so you can watch it for a minute without getting bored, even though it only lasts 1-2 seconds depending on the frame rate. I usually start by moving the hip, the hand or whatever the primary action is. Then, I’ll “compensate” in the other body parts for that movement. So, say the hip is moving up and down on the y-axis, inertia and anatomy means that the rest of the body, as much as possible, will want to stay where it is for a while. So, as the hip drops, the back will straighten out, the head will tilt up slightly, the boobs will “move up” relative to the hip, etc. When the hip moves back up, reverse compensate, and bring it back to where it starts. When the hip changes direction, boob movement compensation will slightly lag behind the rest of the body by a few (2-3) frames. I find
I get better results that way.
Next, I’ll add subtle movements in the face and body to keep it interesting, and to give the viewer something to look at loop after
loop. Chances are, the viewer was looking at boobs for the first few rounds, and perhaps noticed that eyebrow twitch a little later on (if they get that far). Now… I have a “base loop” as I call it.
Sometimes, I’ll copy that loop, using Poser’s “retime animation” option figure by figure. So once I have copied the loop, I’ll make a
change to it. Let’s look at the “Nova Gets Scanned” animation. The base loop is 48 frames, and I added a second loop. In the second one, I added a blink. It’s a subtle change, but it makes the animation that much more interesting, and makes it seem much longer than it actually it.
This process can easily repeat itself. In that sense, sex is easier to animate than other movements, because it consists of repetitive
motions. No wants to see someone endlessly reaching for a coffee cup. Sex on the other hand is generally more enjoyable to watch, gyration after gyration.
I’ll usually render the animation as an uncompressed AVI file (to ensure quality), then take that file into a 10 year old version of Ulead gif editor for editing (Really!). I’ll add my logo, do some limited postwork if necessary, and stack/loop the frames differently than what was done in poser. So for instance, in the base loop of say, 24 frames, sometimes I’ll make a loop-within-a-loop (“Inner loop”), where say frame 6 meets up with frame 18. So, I can duplicate frames 6 to 17 (the “inner loop”) a couple times, and now the animation eases from position A into position B, repeats a few times, then eases back out to the original position A. This way, I get a lot more out of the original loop. Included in my submissions to Affect3d is a tit fucking animation I keep going back to and re-doing with different characters. In this one, you’ll see this process in action, where first there’s a full lick, then some boob pumping, then more repeated licks (the multiple licks is where the inner loop comes in).
Finally, I export the redone animation as an uncompressed avi, as well as shrink the image size and pump out a .gif or two. Then I use a free conversion tool by Pazera to convert the larger animation to a .swf file.
Easy as pie.
As for time, generally a couple of hours per piece I suppose, easily, before rendering. I don’t count the hours. Like any hobby, you tinker away at it so long as it’s fun, and you stop when it’s not.
[highlight color=”yellow”]if you don’t see the animation below, wait a while for it to download and show[/highlight]
Your also a Renderotica Prmier Artist. Tell us what this program is about and how did you become one and what does it entail for you?
The Premier program at Renderotica is a special gallery of select artists to which people pay for access (to the entire gallery, not
just on an artist by artist basis). Generally premier artists are expected to put out 1 “free” image in the main gallery for every 9 they post to the pay Premier gallery. I’m not sure how many premier artists follow that guideline, I don’t. Usually, if I put a 720p or 1080p animation in the premier gallery, I’ll post a smaller, sometimes shorter lower quality animated gif version in the main gallery. That said, there are a few stills and other items you’ll only see from me in the Premier section. The attraction for me is that I get to post as much as I want (no space limits), which comes in handy when you post animations regularly. Also, I get a wider audience than I would with my own blog, with none of the maintenance hassles of running my own site.
As for how I became a premier artist, popularity, theft, greed. For some time I had been dominating the animation gallery at Renderotica in terms of hits, so much so that I held the top spot on the site for “most views” for both animations and stills. With popularity apparently, comes theft, as it wasn’t long after that I saw some of my animations being used as promos for cg pay porn sites.
I figured that if someone else could make money off my work, surely I could as well. So… I made the pitch to the powers that be to become a premier artist, paraphrased as follows:
“My work is good enough for paysites to steal, so it must be profitable, we’d might as well make money on it too”
The pitch worked.
What are your inspirations for your art?
I would say that many of the other artists doing this sort of thing are an inspiration. Wrymmaster, meselfr, poserhobbit and Giolon from Renderosity. Gazukull (is everywhere, really), Darkway, Spike 4072, ButtercupSaiyan, Dezmondel and Stimuli from Renderotica. RGB Babes, Reiq and Ganassa from DeviantArt. Also many many others who’s names escape me at the moment.
It helps to converse and collaborate with other artists, bounce ideas off people, you feed off each other.
Do you have any advice you’d like to give to any aspiring artists?
We learn by doing. It’s only when you dive into it that you actually learn things, even if slowly and painfully. Also, build off what
you’ve done before. I’ve got many scenes that I’ve left by the wayside for months, only to come back to it later to make something useful from it. Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions from others. You can learn a lot that way.
Which do you prefer v4 or v5 and also DazStudio or Poser and why?
I only use Poser, and until they get V5 to work properly in Poser, I am unlikely to use V5, and will stick to V4. With a weight mapped V4 now available, she’s not bad at all, and I wish she came like that from the start (joints that work!). That said, DS has come a long way, and from what I understand has some features that poser still does not. For instance, Daz’s/V5’s grafting technology would likely help me out quite a bit to make animations that don’t need postwork.
What do you have coming up in the near future?
More BEIP, more sci-fi, the usual.
Where can we find you online at?
There is no one stop shop at which to see all my work. I’m spread out across Renderosity, Renderotica (main and premier gallery), DeviantArt, and RadiantCG. If you google “Chimera46”, you’ll find much of my stuff posted without my permission on other sites. if you want to see my full galleries, go to the places I’ve listed, the rest are woefully incomplete.
Any last words for our dear Affect3D readers?
Thank you for your time.