Hi! My name is Elora Pautrat. I’m an environment artist currently working in London. I love to create stylized models with hand painted texture and bright colors!
I grew up in the French Alps and I think it really shaped my interest in everything that surrounds me, as well as my interest in any form of art and colors. My love for traveling and being able to combine both my passions for art and travel is what I’ve always dreamed of.
My professional path has been kind of hectic. In high school my major was Science, and at university, I started studying Law as I pretty much had no idea what to do with my life.
Growing up where I did I also had the disadvantage of everybody around me telling me that art was not a career, so I never thought about making a living out of it.
I always loved painting and drawing but it had only been a hobby for me. At some point, I just realized that it was what was making me happy and that I wanted to dedicate the rest of my life to it.
As for my influences, I’m a huge fan of Ghibli films, Moebius, Erin Hanson, and Mateusz Urbanowicz. Most of my inspirations come from painters because 3D came into my life way later.
With that fine art background, I originally wanted to focus on Concept Art. I had loved to draw since I was a kid. With my grandmother being an artist as well, she introduced me to drawing and painting, and all other kinds of mediums. But I somehow had not touched any 3D program or drawn on a tablet until I started studying Game Art!
I had no idea how to do anything other than on paper. Game Art school opened my eyes to a whole new art world. I didn’t even know there were so many jobs in the game industry. All I wanted was to keep painting and I was honestly so lost for the first two years of my 3D training because I was mainly doing realistic assets without any artistic approach to it; I almost quit because of that. I only realised during my summer holidays after playing Firewatch that what I loved the most was to work on stylised and colorful projects rather than super realistic environments (which was what we were focusing on during the training). As somebody who enjoys painting more than modeling, I realized that and got the chance to “get back” into it by making textures. And I’ve been having so much fun ever since, much more than if I was only doing 2D!
Model based on the very poetic illustration of Maggie Chiang, Most of my works on Sketchfab are 2D works from artists I love, that I try to recreate in 3D:
Getting my confidence back
I got introduced to Sketchfab pretty early in my training. Although I was instantly inspired by other artists’ work, I always thought that my own work was not good enough to be displayed on the website.
I didn’t have much free time back then because I had to attend college during the day and I also had a job at night. Instead, I would just watch, take notes, and be inspired by their work until I could publish one of my own models someday. During my last year of training, I finally got some free time. But still, I couldn’t bring myself to finishing any piece of 3D art in my free time and also did not think I was good enough. I was afraid of feedback because the feedback I’d gotten from my teachers and classmates was often really harsh and, because of competition between students, mean.
I was always discouraged by my own work and it took me a while to realize that feedback on Sketchfab was much more helpful and encouraging than the feedback I was used to hearing every day!
Uploading my work on the internet, for others to see, helped me grow – I have gotten so much better since the first piece I posted on here! This was thanks to all the feedback, and the motivation I got from it! I started working even harder than before and the stylised scenes I was doing in my free time for fun eventually helped me land my first job.
I never felt so motivated in learning and creating art than I did when I started to post actively on Sketchfab and other social media, like Twitter.
I think the main reason why I joined Sketchfab was to overcome my fear of putting my work out there so others could see it, and to have useful feedback and tips from the community. Sketchfab helped me become a better artist and gave me a lot of confidence, and I met lovely people thanks to it. I’m so happy to get so much positive feedback and support from the whole community that encourages me! Sadly I’ve been super busy with work lately and haven’t been able to post much, and I miss it!
Thank you so much, Abby, Mieke, and Jasmin for reaching out to me and letting me speak about my experience on this Women on Sketchfab series. Being a female in art is complicated, being a female game dev is even harder, but what I see every day warms my heart and knowing that we all support each other is incredible.