We had the good fortune of connecting with Sascha Montgomery and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Sascha, can you tell us about an impactful book you’ve read and why you liked it or what impact it had on you?
Rumo and His Miraculous Adventures, by Walter Moers. It’s funny because, at first glance, you might think it’s a children’s book. And it is a wild, youthful, creative romp through a fantasy world, but it explores some very adult themes. This book inspired me to give in to my stranger whims, to explore the dark or uncomfortable corners of my mind, and to bring to life characters, stories and colors that might have made me worry about being judged before. I let those things thrive now, I let my characters feel cute or childish or creepy or whatever they need to be. I allow the worlds I design to feel intense, technicolor, expansive, scary or delightful. I’m no longer just interpreting the world as it stands, I’m interpreting the world that lives inside my brain.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am a visual artist working a variety of creative roles in film. That includes concept art, character design, storyboarding, color grading and digital matte painting. I have plenty of on-set experience in art direction and production design, but my passion lies in creating the look and feel of a film through drawing and visual effects. I love building worlds, and I enjoy designing the characters that live inside them.

I wasn’t trained formally in any film roles, my education was focused on studio art and technology, so I’m largely self taught! It has been a challenge to develop these skills without the support of a professor or teacher and other students. It’s taken years of research and practice, but I’ve found myself in a place where I can visually develop any idea that pops into my head. I can design my favorite characters, I can sketch out the spaces they inhabit. I can storyboard out an entire film on my own, ensuring that the vision I present to an audience is true to the things I imagined in my mind. And I’m always adding new skills, for example I’m currently working on moving from 2d to 3d. I’m learning Maya and Nuke, and it’s exciting and difficult.

It’s absolutely possible to teach yourself a new skill (or maybe 15 new skills!) It can be intimidating, but there is a wealth of knowledge available on the internet, and a ton of people sharing resources for other artists to find and use. If you can find time, and motivation, you can become the creative you’ve always wanted to be.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I like to mix it up depending on the person! But I usually mix in a visit to the beach, often somewhere around Point Dume, a day to walk around Ventura or Sunset, and a night out at Idle Hour. I also enjoy walking around at Hollywood Forever. I don’t do this with a big group, but with a friend or two it’s always a nice walk and good conversation. And finally I know In-n-Out is great, but I prefer Mel’s Drive-In! That’s my choice for a relaxed lunch out.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
The person who deserves the most credit in my story is my creative partner Ben Pierson. He is oftentimes my director and my co-writer, and he is always my biggest cheerleader. His work is phenomenal, and he makes everything I do that much better.

Website: www.saschamontgomeryart.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/saschamontgomery_artist/

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