Featured Pro Portfolio: Mari.K
Equipped with a lifelong love for art, a sense of creative curiosity, and an eye for fine detail, artist Mari.K (MadMaraca) has constructed an impressive portfolio of isometric voxel micro-worlds.
Mari is an Istanbul-based independent 3D designer, voxel artist, and Metaverse Architect. With more than 10 years of experience in digital art, she has worked as a freelance 3D artist/motion designer, and on several voxel-based indie game titles including Cloudpunk and Bonfire Peaks. She received her bachelor’s degree in Digital Art in 2014.
Read on to discover Mari.K’s memorable portfolio along with advice for creating your own voxel portfolio!
Where did your journey with voxel art first begin?
I came across voxel art in 2016. I saw a post from one of my favourite low-poly artists, Timothy J. Reynolds, introducing MagicaVoxel (a free voxel editor) for the first time and it caught my attention. It looked like a fun, fresh way to be creative that I had to try for myself. I started playing around and fell for it right away, and haven’t stopped since. Through the years I managed to develop my own art style using voxels and made it not only my hobby but also my career as well.
What has most helped you develop your art style?
Two things that have had the biggest impact and influence on developing my art style would be video games (specifically Isometric indie games, such as Monument Valley, which has been one of my biggest inspirations to date) and my enthusiasm for architecture.
My influence and inspiration come from both the physical and digital worlds. I let myself get inspired by anything from anyone; from a physical diorama model or a building in real life to a piece of music or a digital piece of art by a fellow artist. Having a background in 3D design and digital art in general also helped a lot with the process of shaping up my career as a voxel artist.
Do you have an average amount of time it takes for a typical portfolio piece from concept to final?
It varies from piece to piece. Sometimes I have a solid concept/idea in mind and work towards that, and other times it’s just a matter of playing around and improvising. On average it takes me between 20-35 hours of work from start to finish.
What software is your go-to for voxel art?
Why did you choose ArtStation to host your portfolio website? How important is community engagement for you and your work?
From the very beginning of my artistic path, I’ve always felt the need to present my portfolio in a professional and classy way. ArtStation provides the tools needed for that goal. It’s very easy and straightforward to set up a personal website using ArtStation as the host, and it’s great how it automatically updates your website each time you post a new artwork to your portfolio. I also really enjoy the aesthetics and the design of the website.
As an entirely art-focused platform, ArtStation has a very active and engaging community. This is not only a great source of inspiration, but it also leads the artists and clients to easily connect and find jobs. I’ve had numerous commissions and job offers through ArtStation from companies and indie clients throughout my years of being a part of this community.
Mari’s website uses the Sidewinder theme.
Can you share a sentence or two of advice for others looking to build their own voxel art portfolio?
Loving what you do and being passionate about it is the most important thing in building any portfolio, as well as practicing a lot and being patient.
Voxel art is rather new and there is still a lot of potential to explore. Build and grow your own style. Never be afraid of accepting new challenges and trying new mediums/tools. Keep experimenting with different tools until you find the right one for you.
See more of Mari’s work on her portfolio website.
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