An Interview with one of our very own: Haroon Akram

 

As I was sitting in my work chair working and absolutely IN NO WAY playing Skyrim a thought popped into my head –

 

“Damn, look at that… The wind brushing past the mountains like silk. The beautiful sunset and the aurora that gives your heart that moment of peace in which everything seems weightless. Oh, how the corpse of that dragon that I just slayed had its skin turned into ashes!”

 

I thought to myself as I sipped on my cup of coffee *sluuuuurrrp* – “Hmm, how do people think of creating these amazing animations and illustrations? *Slurp* OW! HOT!… Do they copy someone else or start from scratch? Are they ‘Gifted’ or did they started from the bottom? How do they make these absolutely beautiful and PERFECT! pieces of art!!? *SLURP!!!*”

 

And so I took it upon myself to talk to one of our artists and try to get to know them and about their creation process a bit better.

 

SO! Naturally, I tried to schedule an interview with one of our very own artists and thankfully he took time out of his busy schedule so I could interview em’! I asked them a couple of questions and they were kind enough to answer all of them.

 

So here they are ^_^

 

How easy is it for you on a project when provided with all the details? Does a detailed document matter?

“Well, If a client provides me with a document with clear instructions about what he or she wants then my job becomes super easy which means that in the end, I get good feedback. ‘Cause a detailed document means that the client knows what they want or what they are looking for but if their instructions aren’t clear enough then obviously miscommunication is bound to happen because you’re trying to understand what they want even when they don’t know what they want, get it? Experience really matters. So I never hesitate in asking a senior artist for help.”

 

What sparks your imagination?

 

“Now that’s a good question! Imagination is what you have… it’s what makes YOU when it comes to being an artist. For me,
imagination comes from various aspects of life and the experiences that you go through. It’s not just about the things that you’re studying.

 

For example, over the years I have traveled and that has allowed me to meet new people, see new faces and live in completely different environments which gave me new things to think about. It kind of expanded my imagination because you’re supposed to learn and pick up new things. If you have your mind filled with variety then that would make your life colorful. Having that variety will allow you to think and imagine things that you never thought were possible!

It’s quite a beautiful process.”

 

What are the things that make you want to create?

 

“It has a lot to do with meeting new people, listening to their ideas, Music, TV Shows and Movies because it’s not about just listening or watching, no. It’s about knowing what goes on behind the scenes which then makes me say ‘Yeah, I can do that too!’ That’s how imagination goes ‘When you feel… you can.’ Otherwise, you’ll always be stuck in the same loop that ‘Oh, that’s not me. I can’t do that.’ Imagination is about triggering what’s not there. If someones better than me then I want to be the best!

 

So keep trying. Stay Confident. Don’t hesitate when meeting new people. Don’t stay stuck in a single place.

 

Go where ever you want.

 

Live.”

 

What studios, artists and artworks do you most admire and how do they influence your work?

 

“Well, most people would say, Disney, Pixar, and other studios but I like Massive Black, CD Projekt Red, and Garfit studios!
But that doesn’t mean that I’d always choose a studio, no. Sometimes, I’d go for the artists.
There are a couple of them that I really like!

 

Jama Jurabaev who did some of the concept art for ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them’. He started his career
in the Gaming Industry and then moved on to better things like VFX and concept art and such. The thing is that once you’ve discovered your style then you prefer the artists over a studio. The way they think, their art style, their lifestyle, the way they dress and carry themselves.. for me, I think that a single artist should be enough for you.

 

So yeah, my inspiration comes from a single artist named ‘Jama Jurabaev’. *chuckles*”

 

What is your role at Frag Games? Which pieces (that you made) are you most proud of, and why?

 

“You see, I’m primarily an Architect and I joined Frag Games to design the environments. A good game experience requires a great level of detail! And I believe that an architect or an interior designer can really make it happen ’cause they will always pay close attention to the details. And since I was in Fine Arts as well I started working on Concept Art which really helped improve my work and taught me how to pay more attention to the details. My job is to think and define what you think from
scratch.”

 

“As for the second part of the question. Oh boy… that’s a very difficult question… umm… I loved my work on this one project that I like. It’s one of the projects that I recently did. I REALLY loved imagining the entire scenarios and was absolutely thrilled by creating something amazing out of nothing!” *stares into the distant*

 

Every famous ‘Great’ artist will never call their work perfect. They will always want to add a stroke of brush here and
there, at what point do you think that you want to put the pen down that you’re done with your creation?

 

“I think when the idea is conveyed then it’s done. Even the paintings by the famous Leonardo DaVinci, I bet he didn’t stop until he was absolutely certain that his ideas were being conveyed through his paintings. Even if he just doodles something or creates a masterpiece or even if it’s incomplete, YOU KNOW that it was his final brush stroke. What I’m saying is that to an ordinary person, it might look like it’s incomplete but to the artist, it’s complete when it’s done.”

 

How has designing and FRAG helped you develop as a person?

 

“Frag helped me a lot because this is my second job and this is one of the reasons that I’m still here. I’m learning more than I
was before and the best part is that Frag has two perks when it comes to game development or anything related to gaming.

I mean, we are a Gaming Studio so yeah haha. It’s the variety that hasn’t already been pre-defined as a rule. You have the right to follow your mind, your process and you can manage your time however you like. If something doesn’t work for you Frag
will make sure that it does.”

 

What are your future aspirations? Where do you see yourself in the next few years?

 

“It’s a funny question but not in the next five years I mean it’s sort of difficult to say where you will be in the next two years, you know. But if I had to say then I’d say that within the next five years I’ll most probably be doing my Ph.D. and I’d be working for an architectural firm that would utilize my skills and what I have learned when it comes to environments.”

 

 

What advice do you have for people who are starting their career in the art industry?

 

“Hahaha, this question. Oh man, I strongly feel that I’m the one who needs words here, to be given some advice. I don’t think I can give good advice at this stage. However, I would say that – ‘You should have the ability to own your work. Respect your work. Build up your self-esteem. Treat others as equal and you’ll be working all your life so follow the norms and values and be adaptable which would then allow you to work better. Follow your heart and your desires. Learn to adapt to the culture of your workplace and know what self-respect is all about and everything will come along.”

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