Interview with Maplestick

April

25, 2017

by Mr_Root


Creators Gamers

Maplestick, a rendering artist on Roblox, has made dozens and dozens of inspiring and imaginative artworks for the community. He’s known for his amazing rendering skills, and he’s always searching for ways to improve his technique. We wanted to learn a little more about how he found Roblox and his passion for rendering. Check it out:

 

How did you find Roblox?

I saw a Roblox advertisement while playing on an RPG site back in late 2008 and decided to sign up. Around mid-2012, I created a fresh account and called myself maplestick. I would often play tycoons and obbies. They’re still very fun and enjoyable for me to this day.

 

When did you start rendering?

The first time I experimented with rendering software was back in late 2014 when I was 15 years old. I was trying to import Roblox characters into Garry’s Mod, which didn’t go very well. In early 2015, I decided to familiarize myself with these programs and started teaching myself how to render Robloxians. Shortly after that, I got my very first client and started working more frequently from that point on.

What interests you the most about rendering?

What I think is absolutely awesome about rendering is having the ability to create anything you want, from huge landscapes to architectural designs. I am obsessed with CGI movies and animations, and I’ve always wanted to create these on my own.

 

What software do you use? What do you recommend for beginners?

Blender is the only program I use. It has a very active community and a developer team that works hard to create lots of new features for artists in every update. The program itself is free and open source, so I highly recommend that beginners give it a go!

 

What is your ultimate goal with rendering? Do you plan to turn this into a career?

My ultimate goal is to provide Roblox developers and myself with awesome and memorable imagery. I recently got into college for graphic art and design, which has been really educative for me. I always try to learn new things to improve my work as much as I can. Hopefully I will be able to get a job at a professional animation studio someday, or perhaps even work at Roblox.

 

What is something on Roblox that inspires your work?

Roblox has a wide variety of accessories and models that allow me to experiment with many different styles. It’s also very exciting to work for developers and make something with their game assets. Every developer wants something different and it’s always a challenge to try and make something unique.

Do you have any tips on making great renders?

I personally recommend that people watch a lot of tutorials and courses. Some of my favorite tutors are Blender Guru, CG Cookie, and Creative Shrimp. The videos can be quite long, but most of them are very easy to follow. Once you understand how it works, you can try implementing it into your Roblox renders.

 

What are some challenges you had to face as an artist?

The main issue I run into is the limitation of my hardware. As I learn to make bigger scenes and more advanced materials, my computer is having more trouble handling it. The required video cards can be quite expensive, and making renders isn’t the most well-paying hobby. When it comes to doing jobs, another problem is not knowing what to make. The client sometimes allows me to come up with something on my own, but I always fear that I will provide the client with something he or she may not like. I always prefer to get guidelines and a detailed description of what I should make.

 

What do you think is your best Roblox creation?

Something I’m really proud of is the cave image for berezaa’s game “Azure Mines.” During the process, I taught myself how to create a voxel cave system with randomly-placed ores using procedural textures and particle systems, as well as a railroad system using splines. I had also recently created a node pack that people could download on Blendswap. It featured all Roblox materials with pre-configured nodes, so that beginners can create their own Roblox renders without having to do the intricate stuff.

Are there any games, places, or works of art on Roblox that you really admire?

There isn’t one in particular; I think all of them are really cool. There are a lot of builds I haven’t seen yet, and I can’t wait to learn more about those as well.

 

Do you have any shoutouts to any Roblox friends?

I want to thank InsanelyLuke, Wsly, mircostaff, ScriptOn and many other developers for supporting me and my hobby. I also want to give a huge shoutout to berezaa for his continuous support throughout the years. Without him, I may not have gotten to where I am today.

 

Any final suggestions for beginner artists?

I suggest you practice a little bit every day. Watch tutorials, model something, or try making new materials. If you’re not familiar with how things work, you can experiment a bit, press a few buttons, and see what happens. It may look a bit difficult at first, but after a while you’ll begin to understand how things work and you can start making anything you want using your imagination.


You can find maplestick on Twitter at @maplestick1. Follow him for more tips and incredible artwork!