Thierry Doizon (barontieri) is a longtime veteran in game concept art, having worked as both an art director and designer at AAA studios across the world. With the ArtStation Pro Mosaic theme, he can showcase his portfolio with thumbnails that respect the aspect ratio of each artwork, enabling his viewers to get a good idea of his range of work straight on his homepage.
In this interview, we discuss his collaborative wildlife awareness project, his career journey and more.
How did you start your career as an artist?
In my opinion, we all start our lives as artists and along the way most people just forget it for various reasons. As a child I never stopped drawing, imagining and creating things using every surrounding mediums available. This eventually led me to follow an Art & Literature program in Mali but it is only when my dad and I discovered that Industrial Design (ID) was a “serious thing” that my career started to take shape. The fact that one job could blend my love for technology, fantasy and art together was unbelievable! Joining the ID course in Toulon really shaped my way of seeing the world through a designer’s lens. It helped me understand how things generally work and the whole creative/economic/technical process behind the making of products that everyone take for granted.
In 1995 I was offered a chance to work on a videogame at Cryo Interactive in Paris and have kept busy ever since. It was quite different back then at the birth of the 3D consoles and the first graphic cards, designing anything was very challenging due to the technical constraints and a lot of details were lost in translation between our drawings and the final results.
In that pre-digital era, the concept art position was not very well defined and if you had a decent art portfolio you could easily get a job. Nowadays, just looking at the front page of ArtStation is both terrifying and inspiring because the average skill level is so impressive, it means that the competition to get in the Entertainment industry is fierce!
Tell us about the Expedition Art Project.
The idea initially started with Manny, David and Kristy who wanted to use their skills for something other than a videogame or movie. When they reached out to me and a bunch of industry veterans to join the project, there was no second thought. I really missed them anyways (we use to work together at Acclaim and Steambot a few years back) and I think we all reached a stage where we wanted to make a more meaningful gesture for the planet. So why not mix art and our love for the outdoors to do something where we could feel really proud to have made a difference and inspire new generations?
In retrospect, this whole collaboration to raise awareness for wildlife and nature conservation through art happened very naturally, and it’s beautiful to see how it continues to evolve with so many incredibly talented people coming on board. Our company works with other non-profit organizations focused on conservation and helps them educate others through the power of visual communication.
Go check out our Expedition Art website and join us in this amazing adventure!
It is quite difficult to only pick one lesson so maybe it would be Progression… and I mean at all levels. Whether it is about skills, personality or professionalism. Working with people on a project is like a fast-forward lifetime experience, it is a microcosm in which you are constantly learning. You learn to work, to interact with others, to make mistakes and to find solutions and eventually to get better.
On another hand, Progression has always been an integral part of my being as a boardrider. To be able to improve and have fun while skateboarding, snowskating or whitewater stand up paddling is a long and somewhat painful process. My goal is to enjoy the ride despite the obstacles.
Inspiration is everywhere, you just have to look for it.
I always had multiple interests outside of the Entertainment field and certainly the privilege to live in many countries and learn from those different cultures. The amount of moments, dreams, references and memories that I keep accumulating defines my artistic endeavour. It creates a metamorphic visual library, a reservoir of images and sensations that I can tap into at anytime. One of the greatest things about our job is the amount of mandatory research time we need to spend on a daily basis. It keeps your mind sharp and hungry for knowledge, it forces you to challenge your ideas or the current trends and stereotypes and potentially make something more original and personal.
Having said that, I am utterly fascinated and humbled with the best of all designers. Mother nature so far has been my main source of creative stimulation.