Contributor Spotlight: Billy Reiter
Meet Billy Reiter, one of our amazing Adobe Stock 3D contributors. Billy creates an array of stylized 3D models that are optimized to work perfectly within Adobe Dimension. We recently had the opportunity to talk to Billy about his background, inspiration, and what drew him into the exciting world of 3D.
How did you first start making art?
I have been drawing since I could first pick up a pencil and I just never stopped. As a child, I remember pausing animated shows and movies so that I could draw the characters that I would see on the screen. I have been an artist since I can remember and have no doubt that I always will be.
What let you to become an artist specializing in 3D design?
I signed up for classes in 3D design a year before graduating, which is when my community college started offering these types of courses. Although these classes were not a part of my original curriculum, a few friends and I decided to try them out. I was hooked right away, and I have been creating 3D works ever since.
What is your professional background?
I currently work as a 3D artist in the military simulations industry. In the past, I used to work on everything from video games and independent films to music videos. I also spent some time as a college instructor teaching classes in game design, 3D animation, and graphic design.
In what way does your current position differ from previous experiences you’ve had with 3D?
Unlike previous experiences I have had in 3D, my work in the military simulations industry is always grounded in reality. There are real-life counterparts to what I am creating, and so it is crucial that everything is exact. Other than that, most of the core ideas and 3D techniques are the same.
What motivates you to create symbols and other abstract elements specifically? Where do you usually find your inspiration?
I usually find inspiration in my everyday life, including personal interests such as video games and movies. I often challenge myself to create something I have never made before or something I haven’t done in a long time. Sometimes this may be a 3D model of a weapon, other times, a background image or even an abstract element. When deciding what I might create, I initially went online and searched to see if other artists were creating symbols. I noticed that these types of 3D models were scarce and quickly realized that this was a content gap I could fill.
Which 3D model are you most fond of in your Adobe Stock portfolio, and why?
My personal favorite would have to be the round piggy bank model. I really liked the idea of creating something with an iconic design, such as a piggy bank and putting my own twist on it. Creating a stylized version of this object was a fun challenge and the result turned out a lot better than I originally thought.
What are some of the biggest takeaways you have had from working in 3D?
Working in 3D has sharpened my problem-solving skills exponentially. Whether it’s topology-related (such as deciding the right geometry for a certain model) or watching where the seams on a model are placed, each step of the creation process has its own set of problems and obstacles to overcome. When it comes to working on personal projects, I really enjoy the feeling of creating something out of nothing. I also love being able to mix and match certain elements while figuring out what makes an asset unique.
Do you have any advice for artists who are interested in learning 3D?
More often than not, you are your own biggest obstacle. This is something I would always tell my students back when I was teaching 3D. The only thing you can do about it is to keep working and never stop learning. Thankfully, there are plenty of instructional videos and forums online so you will never run out of material. With every object you create, texture you make, and animation you work on, you will learn something new. I was able to teach 3D to others because no matter the topic, it was something I had already done and messed up a hundred times. In my opinion, making mistakes is how you truly understand the best way to do something.
To learn more about Billy and his work, please visit his website.