The Art & Models of German Impache
While we’ve been building simple models of airplanes, boats and cars, following closely the specific blueprints, instructions and ‘glue here’ etches on pre-molded plastic shells, knocking out generic creations that we brought at the store; some artists have taken their interest in model making to a whole new level by making something special and (fairly) unique, from the ground up. Enter Germàn Impache, an Italian born concept artist and model maker with a particular interest in science fiction content, including characters, weaponry and space-craft.
A Borrowed Concept for Models
Germàn Impache can be quoted as making claims like “being the first to bring spacecraft into a modern art gallery”, which is quite a bold claim to make, but no bolder than we should expect from a certain type of artist. One that has spent a lifetime developing a certain skill, and is now applying it to something that he loves. And in this case, that would be any and all things sci-fi: guns, spaceships, outfits and characters; Germàn Impache has spent a long time building and refining his tastes in all. Besides his prowess in building captivating models, Impache has also proven his skill, time and again as a freelance concept artist (an industry which is surprisingly difficult to be successful in).
Most of his models are intricately crafted replicas of iconic sci-fi film spaceships, designed to capture perfectly, our reminiscence of the entertainment industry’s ability to push the bounds of creativity, and keep our imaginations captive. Each model is a tribute, appreciated not only by the audience, but by Impache himself. His enthusiasm in the content is there, and so his favoured influences are strongly felt in just about every one of his projects, especially where military grade space-hardware is concerned.
Homeworld, Mass Effect, Borderlands
I’m not just talking about replicas from movies here, many of these models hold a steady resemblance to craft, guns and characters from popular gaming franchises like Mass Effect, Borderlands and Homeworld. But let’s be honest, if any particular genre is perfectly suited to cross the boundaries of film, gaming, literature and art making; it’s probably going to be sci-fi, since it meshes fantasy, possibility and reality as part of its defining feature.
But drawing on already conceived content by no means, means that the process will be easier. Taking a good look at that of Germàn Impache’s, reveals a certain level of the extensive work, careful planning and meticulous attention to every detail which is required to create such impressive models and drawings. Let’s take the presented MPC-Superba model as an example.
This work gives us an opportunity to view the pre-rendered design in all of its intricacy, where clear attention has been paid to each line and stroke of the concept art, laid down for both aesthetic and functional purposes, from absolutely every angle (as is obviously necessary with 3d modelling).
A True Digital Artist
Impache is not limited to epic, space aged constructions, and makes good use of the artist’s keen grasp of developing great concept art in producing digital copies of comic books. The project is called Evo-Z, and provides viewers with a free platform for losing themselves in a rich science fiction world which is highly co-operative with the models -they definitely influence one another. As I said earlier, one of the best things about this project is that the comics are free to view and are updated consistently to keep its followers wanting more.
The influence of classic and contemporary science fiction culture (as predisposed by gaming, literature and the film industry) is fairly plain to see, but by no means are they plain to look at. As you can see from this frame, there is a strong influence from the characters in Borderlands 2; most notably Zero, the assassin and Mia, the siren; who are both playable characters in the second instalment of the game. But when we move beyond the comics and see the creations come to life somewhere other than as pixels on a screen, that’s when you start to truly appreciate the level of detail that goes into modelling science fiction replicas.
Besides those inspirations -perhaps by chance or on purpose, the models’ qualities seem to draw a lot from the Mass Effect series, both in the design of weaponry and that of space-craft, being evident right down to the font used to label each product. This stands true to the works’ claims of being replicas of iconic science fiction material…not just in the sense of how it was created, but how it has been displayed as well (and let’s be honest, what kind of self-respecting sci-fi enthusiast wouldn’t want their very own SS Normandy, mounted as a mantel piece?).
If your answer was ‘not me!’ then you’ll be pleased to know that you can get one of these models for yourself, at an average cost of around €100.00 which isn’t really that much when you consider the extensive amount of hours spent on each model, not to mention the cost of materials and shipment. The models can be purchased from Impache’s Kickstarter page on Mache Models, and often enough come in bundles with digital downloads and printed copies of his concept art collection and comic books as part of the package. Or you can just buy the models by themselves, along with resin kits, digital art; or you can use the site to read Impache’s weekly comics, Evo-Z. Even if you are not buying, it is well worth checking out.
So if you want to experience something that is wonderfully unique in the art world, or you wish to own one of these fine models for yourself, visit his website and take a look.
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