Interview with Ray Olivares, Computer Visualization Artist

by Rakks | October 3rd, 2014

Interview with Ray Olivares

At Rakks, we are often contacted by talented designers and architects who envision Rakks in a project they are working on. In this case it was Ray Olivares, a very talented computer visualization artist who sent us this illustration of his proposed Rakks installation in his new Chicago home.

Ray’s illustrations are so realistic they are often mistaken as photographs. That was the case at Rakks, when he sent us this illustration. We did a double take and looked very closely at the screen. This must be a photograph was our response. We were wrong. Ray is a master!

He was kind enough to talk to us – virtually of course – about Rakks. If the finished installation is as impressive as his work, it will be worth the wait.

1. What is a computer visualization artist?
We are the director of photography, the cinematographer and the producer of finished art in a virtual world. People come to us when they have a design that needs to be conveyed. We work closely with our clients to create something out of nothing other than a set of floor plans, elevations, and a whole lot of interpretation.

2. What drew you to this profession and how long have you been doing it?
I was lucky enough to go to school at Texas A&M University in the early 90’s when they had an architecture program that was so ahead of its time. I believe back then there were only two other universities in the US that involved computer generated imagery in the designated architectural design curriculum. I remember we had specialized silicon graphic workstations that were “top of the line” and you could just imagine the primitive technology we were using by today’s standard. I’m talking about 3d studio V2 and adjusting everything in Photoshop V2 which didn’t even have layers back then! Any given program on my iPhone is probably more advanced than those programs.

3. Did you study art and/or design in school?
Yes, the studies at my university were for architectural design. But I feel that so much of what I do incorporates much more than architecture. It’s also photography, time management and an understanding of what’s possible given your technological limitations.

4. What is a typical project for you?
A typical project for me involves a series of renderings for a developer trying to sell an empty marketable space in NY or Chicago. That’s where the money is and business is business, money is money, etc. I take great pride in making my renderings photo-realistic, appealing and giving the client exactly what they want. But I’ll admit, the most fun and insane projects were the ones you have to be sworn to secrecy over. I once had to live in an artist’s NYC SOHO studio for a month to animate a video of collected elements in his paintings that he was exhibiting for his opening. I won’t divulge what exactly I witnessed, but P.T. Barnum would be proud!

5. Do you have any exciting new projects on the horizon?
I’m currently working on a few projects that I think are coming out amazingly. The latest being a rendering for a residential space in NYC. It has a very 20th century modern aesthetic. It’s just my style. You’ll recognized the aesthetic and my personal style in my apartment rendering.

Interview with Ray Olivares

6. How did you discover Rakks?
I’ve had Rakks systems in my home for the past 7 years. I lived in a tiny apartment in NYC with 8 foot ceilings. Then I “upgraded” to a 9 foot ceiling. Now I live in Chicago and I have much more room and a 10 foot ceiling. Thankfully Rakks has extensions I can order. In my new space, I am installing Rakks Spring Compression Poles with Rakks Brackets and I am also using Rakks Brackets as bookends.

In the rendering, you can see my personal photography on the wall. I also plan do have that printed and mounted. They’re pretty much from my Instagram account.

7. Do you have a photo of the finished project?
I don’t have a photo of the finished project yet. I’m still so inundated with work at my new place that I haven’t had time to set up my furniture. My very good friend just drove my belongings from Brooklyn to Chicago. Most importantly, my stuff is here!

Thank you Ray! We look forward to seeing the final installation.

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