You are obviously passionate about helping professionals and students get better. What are your thoughts on the current state of education in the world of CG and how has that influenced your Master Classes at ZackPetroc.com?
Many students are falling victim to a seductive trap: they are going to schools and taking classes in hopes of getting a job, not an education. An education is what qualifies you for a job, not the act of taking a class.
The number of jobs available compared to the number of applicants shrinks every day. With a great education, you can get a job, create your own job, help drive the industry forward and redefine who you are as an artist. The people in this industry who excel are the ones who realize this. They are still looking for ways to grow their craft and to be inspired.
I wanted to create an experience where students and professionals who understand these principles, who have bigger aspirations than their current achievements, can come in order to redefine their career and their art. I don't want to teach the most students. I don't even want to teach the most artistically talented students. I want to teach the most DRIVEN students who want to be challenged, who are truly passionate about improving their craft and realize the value of an education.
It's easier than ever to spend money on a CG class or degree. As a CG Artist you have to be extremely careful about where you choose to learn from. If an educational program is willing to take your money they must be good, right? If only that were true! Do your research. Find out what you are really getting from the class or degree. Ask yourself what you really want to gain from the experience. Learning the software should be the easy part. Every year the tools get easier, the techniques get easier. Refining your art however, does not. If you can find a program that teaches you the techniques but focuses on the art, you are off to a great start. And that is where we wanted to focus with our classes.
Could you list the training materials you've released and put them in an order that you recommend for people view/read them in? Do you have a favorite?
The majority of my lectures don't need to be reviewed in any particular order. When it comes to recommending a place to begin in general, I would suggest the study of anatomy. From figure drawing, to cadaver labs, to ZBrush ecorche models, the study of anatomy is a great foundation for any artist wishing to get started in our industry.
The course I'm most proud of is our upcoming Character Creation Master Class. I wanted to create a class that would allow me to present advanced production work-flows together with the next level art and design concepts that defined my art and career. My goal was to create a class that is both inspirational and instrumental in helping artists elevate their craft and careers.