In honour of International Women’s Day, we’re spending today getting to know the wonderful women behind some of your favourite Codemasters games! Today we’re having a chat with Ara Carrasco – one of our very talented Artists here in the DiRT studio…
Hey Ara, thanks for taking the time out to sit down and have a chat with us! So, first question: how long have you been working for Codemasters?
I’ve been here a year plus a couple of months.
How did you get into the games industry?
I couldn’t afford a proper games course, so I took the one that was available in Barcelona – where I’m from – and then I worked on my portfolio. From there, I started getting some freelance gigs and eventually got a full-time job.
What does a day as an Artist at Codemasters look like?
It can be anything! Sometimes I correct bugs related to environment art, on other days I model 3D assets, sometimes I create textures. Sometimes I give feedback to other Artists in our office in Kuala Lumpur.
How did you get into Art?
I’ve always loved drawing, and it’s a hobby I still keep nowadays. When I started in the industry my 2D knowledge helped me pay rent because some small companies wanted artists that could model 3D environments and simple characters, as well as being able to hand-paint textures, illuminate, do a bit of particles…
Getting into bigger and bigger companies, the 2D part slowly disappeared from my daily workflow and I started doing 3D work only – and that’s the short story of how I became a full-time environment artist. I kind of miss using my other skills though! :)
What’s your favourite project you’ve ever worked on?
I worked for a VR project based on a very famous Spanish TV show. It was really heart-warming talking to fans of the show and letting them know I was working on that project when they finally announced it. People seemed so excited I got to model certain assets and rooms that featured on TV!
Working on something like a TV show experience must’ve been super rewarding, especially when you get such a warm reception from fans! What games are you enjoying at the moment?
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. And a tiny bit of Red Dead Redemption when I have the time.
And finally… What’s your favourite thing about your job?
When I get to model trees and terrain and, after placing them, everything starts coming together. At that point I like to think in which part of the world that environment is placed, whether something looks good as it is composition-wise, and what could potentially be done once the final lighting is in place.
In a nutshell, what I love about environments is how capable of telling a story they are, and how many levels of details you can introduce in a composition.