The Student Artist Who Fused Classical Styles With 3D Rendering

The use of metals in art is a growing trend. (Image:  pixabay /  CC0 1.0)
The use of metals in art is a growing trend. (Image: pixabay / CC0 1.0)

Dylan Han is a fourth-year art student at the UCLA Department of Design Media Arts who has been exploring the creative possibilities of marrying traditional art styles with modern 3D renderings. Despite being a newcomer to digital 3D art, Han now prefers it for his work.

Fusion of art

“I was working on a project when I realized I couldn’t build it in real life, so I made it on a computer… Working with 3D modeling offered me more creative space than photography or painting… The DESMA classes were more pragmatic and better acquainted with 3D rendering… But the fine arts department’s in-depth approach to critique and theory really contributed to building my foundational understanding of fine art,” Han said to the Daily Bruin.

Han’s first piece that used his new technique was called Tamagotchi, in which he explored somber topics through the surreal effects created through the combination of fine arts techniques and 3D rendering. The piece used simulated pets to raise discussion about the meaning of life and how human beings perceive it.

Dylan Han’s first work was called Tamagotchi. (Image: Dylan Khan)

One of his colleagues who collaborated with him on a project believes that Han’s art style is strongly influenced by pop culture and video games. A fan thinks that Han’s 3D art signals a new approach to contemporary art and that his experiments result in works that have a futuristic cyberpunk theme. Though he has only been rendering in 3D for about a year, Han’s career is already on an upward trajectory as he has been getting numerous commission projects.

Current art trends

While 3D is gaining a growing interest in the art world, there are several other trends that artists are dabbling in. Some are investing in creating “meditative art” in which the art piece is expected to act as a calming, soothing tool for its admirers. The use of metals is also rising in the art community as the slick sheen of the material adds stylishness to a project. Not only are sculptures being made of metals, but even paintings now incorporate metallic tones. The art market is undergoing a major shift, with online sales now an important revenue source for artists and dealers.

Hiscox’s 2019 Online Art Trade Report states that “40 percent of art buyers under the age of 35 bought from online platforms, up from 36 percent last year… this increase in online purchases is seen most strongly at the lower end of the art market, resulting in an expansion of the market in diversity and size… the total market value is estimated to reach over 6.4 billion by 2020. Additionally, online social media platforms such as Instagram have become an increasingly crucial way of promoting and raising awareness of art and artists,” according to Artvisor.

Nature has always been one of the major inspirations for artists. The latest trend in this regard is the use of natural materials in artworks. For instance, leaves, feathers, etc. are being incorporated into paintings to give it a more life-like and authentic quality.

Artists are using natural elements like feathers in their artwork. (Image: wikimedia / CC0 1.0)

When using colors, such artists often give preference to earthy colors like green, brown, etc., to emphasize the work’s link with nature. “Paint Over Photos” are also getting popular. These are basically photographs that are manipulated by an artist to give it a fresh, unique appearance. The trend is largely inspired by digital photo manipulation techniques. 

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