The Star Wars Gaming Network (SWGN) is extremely proud to host a very talented artist this week. Unlike the majority of past features where we hosted fan art, this week, we have a professional artist. Rob Taylor is an amazing artist from Stratford, Connecticut. You can instantly see why he’s doing this as a full-time job. All of his artwork looks simply stunning.
For the purposes of this article, we used some of his Battlefront-inspired and Star Wars game-inspired art. We highly recommend that you follow his Facebook page where you can keep up with his latest work. Rob also runs deals, does giveaways and much more through this page. If you love Star Wars you will not be disappointed.
The SWGN would like to thank Rob for taking time off his extremely busy schedule to answer our questions.
The Empire’s Finest!
Inferno Squad by Rob Taylor
A word with Rob Taylor
1. Can you give us a brief overview of your background and your past work?
Hi, my name is Rob Taylor and I’m the owner of “Herofied Art.” I am a pop-culture artist and graphic designer. I have a background in music and studio engineering, and I worked as a full-time professional photographer for 20 years before I transitioned to digital art as a full-time career. When I’m not creating, I’m touring the country exhibiting my art gallery. I print my art on large shiny metal sheets. I’ve found that metal printing is the key to featuring my art the way it was intended to be seen.
2. What made you decide to create Star Wars art?
I am a life-long fan of Star Wars and find everything about it to be inspiring. It was very natural for my art to take shape around characters, environments, and vehicles that flesh out the epic and imaginative world that I grew up with. The first Star Wars character I portrayed in my style was Max Rebo in summer 2012. I had my first gallery in winter 2012. I wasted no time immersing myself in a craft that I quickly grew very fond of.
Delta Squad by Rob Taylor
3. Can you please give us a brief overview of how you go about creating your work? What research do you do? What tools do you use?
My training as a portrait photographer still plays a big role how I create, but now I use a completely different skill set. When I approach a subject, my bend is very portrait oriented. As a photographer, I learned so many key elements that make an effective portrait, such as composition, lighting, and color. With those essentials at the forefront of my mind, I also added another fundamental ingredient to my art that sets it apart – the use of photographic textures. I use photos of textures I’ve taken in rural and urban areas to provide an organic quality to my digital pieces. For example, I use dirty windows, scratched metal, rock, and marble at different opacities to add another level of detail to my pieces.
Accuracy and likeness are very important to me, so I do a LOT of research before I start a piece. I know that Star Wars fans (myself included) are very fanatical about details. I don’t even start a piece unless I have several solid references and know everything there is to know about the subject; but hey, researching Star Wars subjects is always fun!
Tools: I use Photoshop exclusively and find that it handles my workflow and heavy volume of high res photos of textures well.
4. What was/is the most challenging aspect of working on pieces like these?
The challenge is that my process is extremely time-consuming. A lot of guys can sit down and bang pieces out quickly. My average complex piece takes around a week of 13 hour days. I have been known to spend nearly a month of full-time work on a piece – see my 40th-anniversary Millennium Falcon. So a challenge becomes time-management; what to spend my time on based on both what I am excited about AND the likelihood of it selling well.
TIE Fighter pilots by Rob Taylor
5. Are there any other links you can share with us where fans can see your work?
Yes! Check out my website where you can see a brief process video and link to my shop here: https://www.herofiedart.com/
You can also like and follow my Herofied Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/Herofied
6. As an established artist, what would you consider your dream job?
I consider this to be my dream job! It would be great to have a high-end storefront gallery featuring my art someday.
7. Do you have any experience playing Star Wars Battlefront or any other Star Wars games in general (video games or tabletop)?
I have played Battlefront II, but I know myself well enough to predict that if I were to get a serious gaming rig, I would never see the light of day again. I do keep close tabs on the games and research them extensively when creating new art. In the past, I have created art based on Battlefront II, The Force Unleased, Knights of the Old Republic, and Republic Commando.
Thanks so much for the opportunity to introduce you to my work!
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