Monday, February 22, 2010

Buddy Monday - Tim Aste

Many years ago my main squeeze, Adam, moved here to Eugene, OR for an internship, which then led to a job and him living far far away (I was in Maine!) and living with some dudes that he worked with. One of those dudes was named Tim Aste! When we moved here a few years ago I finally got to meet Tim and I'm so glad! He's one of the nicest people I have ever met and he makes everyone laugh like crazy AND we share a love for Archie comics. Tim is an artist, musician, adventurer, super supporter of this blog and all around awesome. Adam and I can't wait for him to be in our wedding and show him around Maine a little bit!

1. Tell us about yourself?
I'm Tim and I make computer art! I went to a formal four year art school for Graphic Design but after three semesters I decided it was for chumps and dropped out to move back to my hometown and eventually pursued other interests (booze and dames). I kept up with my art in my spare time, but my real interest was in 3D and sadly there weren't as many programs around for that style of art nine years ago. I tried to keep up with my own art as a hobby and after a few years of adventures and shenanigans I had my portfolio noticed by GarageGames in Eugene, OR and eventually moved cross country for an internship there which turned into a career. Never did get that degree, but I guess that's ok. Outside of art I like to hike, photograph, drink beer and compose goofy music.

2. What do you make?
Like Adam (who I met at GarageGames years ago) I also make video game art for a living. I am currently the only artist in a small company so this covers a very broad spectrum depending on needs. I am not masterful in any one area, but I have the ability to do a lot of things averagely. That can be a good thing I guess! Depending on what is needed I will either be creating 3D Models, Animating 3D Models, creating 2D images, performing a variety of Branding/Graphic Design tasks, or designing Websites. That covers about 90% of my time, the remaining 10% is party time.
3. How did you come up with your shop/business/blog name?
Our little company, PushButton Labs got it's name because one of my partners already owned the domain name and we all thought it was pretty good. Afterwards, designing the logo was a pretty straightforward deal since it's a pretty easy name to iconify. I still did about 50 thumbnails, but the simplest idea won out, and probably for the better.

4. Influences?
Oh man, well I guess it depends on the project. For the project I'm working now I'd say Todd Pickens, The Sims, Kodomo Manga, and Valve's Team Fortress 2. Actually, probably Tyco Toys too, remember those awesome trucks? For some personal art I've been working on when I am motivated and have free time I'd say it's pretty Warhammer influenced, it's a nice "sharp" contrast to the very "bubbly" looking stuff I'm working on at work, I enjoy both. It's hard for me to figure out key influences as hundreds of things come to mind. Like a lot of people I usually delve deep into research before setting out to concept a new look or idea, I have a whole bookcase full of good research material I constantly rifle through.
5. Who would you like to collaborate with?
Mostly a lot of the guys I currently work with! I am lucky enough to currently work on site with another company here in Eugene, and it's got tons of great talent there. I wish I could show off the project I've been working on for the last few months with these guys as it's probably the best looking project to date in my career. I can't wait to show it off! It would be fun to work with Mark B. and Adam (read Adam's Buddy Monday here!) from Mad Otter someday, if only because we'd have a good time regardless.

6. 5 songs you like to work to?
Well, this week I'd say:
Eluvium - New Animals from the Air
Godspeed You Black Emperor - Dead Flag Blues
Russian Circles - Geneva
Nine Inch Nails - Just Like You Imagined
Reggie & The Full Effect - R
To learn more about Tim click on any of the images in this post, become his friend on Facebook, follow him on Twitter or visit the PushButton Labs site.