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Aegis Falcon

Luc Lhuissier, also known as Aegis Falcon, is a concept artist who excels in beautiful cyberpunk inspired landscapes and architecture as well as character designs. His work captures a dystopian future in which technology rules society. With an aptitude for intricacy and detail, Aegis Falcon is certainly an expert of his craft.

Aegis 1

1. Where does your inspiration come from?

My inspiration comes from many places, I am a very big Sci-i fan, I was lucky to be born with parents who are passionate about the genre, it is not that which helped me but rather oriented me towards this direction. To answer the question more clearly, I would say that my inspiration comes from everything I see, masterpieces that come out in the cinema. So I pay attention to artistic direction, colors, design etc…. Then the gold of the passage of the sketch from the elements I observed I let speak for the inner creativity.

You can see on some artworks I sketch on my portfolio. Some are often very basic, others are abstract. I first try to have a composition before the design. I prefer to do the design step afterwards so as not to be limited by features. Then the inspiration can come from certain real time events. It can be events in Hong Kong like technologies currently under development that could upset our lifestyle.

2. How would you describe your style as?

My style is “futuristic”. OK it seems simple but the definition of this word also means that it is not just an artistic style but a philosophy. To be futuristic is to think about the distant or near future, to project oneself into a good or bad future and to reflect on many aspects of this time, the technologies that may exist in the lifetime of each individual.

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3. What kind of music do you listen to while working on pieces?

The music I listen to is mainly film music, and it varies according to what I paint. If I go cyberpunk then I listen to cyberpunk to get in the mood and accentuate my creativity. Besides that I listen chill music.

4. What are your ambitions and goals as an artist?

My ambitions are big, I aim high and I give myself the means. As any artist stay at the same level becomes one day boring, as for a game one wants to progress and this is done for life. There are ups and downs, but it must be accepted as a step in the process. I am by nature someone who thirsts for growth. Staying in a little cocoon, a comfort zone, does not interest me.

5. Do you have any advice for upcoming artists?

The advice I can give to beginners is not to miss the fundamentals, to be assiduous and regular because if you don’t practice the fundamentals often then they get weaker. Repetition is the best way to progress. Produce again and again so that everything you have learned is inked into your brain, just like the alphabet. How many times have you gone from A to Z as a child? You have to fill your subconscious with these things.

https://www.artstation.com/aegisfalcon

https://aegisfalcon.cgsociety.org/

https://www.instagram.com/aegisfalcon/

https://www.facebook.com/LukeAegis

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BOKKEN 木剣

BOKKEN is a true cyberpunk, a creative musician and a kind human. With several releases under various labels and his signature TECHWAVE sound, you need to take a dive into the world of BOKKEN and receive a glimpse of the future. He was nice enough to give us a chance to explore his world and get some insight.

 

1. Could you tell us a little bit about yourself and what style of music you create?

MY NAME IS KONRAD, AND I CAME FROM POLAND. I STARTED PRODUCING MUSIC WHEN I WAS 8 YEARS OLD IN 2000. I’VE RELEASED SOME MUSIC ON NNJL, the_accidental_poet, NOIR, AND CZELUŚĆ AND 3 SELF RELEASED EPS AND PLAYED TWO TIMES AT CZELUŚĆ FESTIVAL WHICH IS A BIG POLISH FESTIVAL THAT FOCUSES ON BASS MUSIC AND BOOKS PEOPLE FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD AND ALSO PROMOTES YOUNG POLISH ARTISTS. AS MY NAME SUGGESTS, I’M FASCINATED WITH JAPAN, ANIME AND MANGA, AND ALSO SCI-FI LITERATURE AND MOVIES. I CREATE MOSTLY MY GENRE CALLED ‘TECHWAVE‘ WHICH CAN BE INTERPRETED AS TECHNOLOGICAL WAVE/MOVEMENT IN A SENSE OF CULTURE, OR JUST AS A “FUSION” OF TWO GENRES: TECHSTEP DNB AND WAVE.

I DON’T LIMIT MYSELF WHILE MAKING TECHWAVE. IT GIVES ME FULL FREEDOM ON WHAT I CAN DO. I CAN MAKE AN AMBIENT TRACK, SOFT WAVE TRACK OR MORE HEAVY DNB INFLUENCED STUFF. MY GOAL IS TO TAKE EVERYBODY ON A MENTAL TRIP WITH MY MUSIC AND VISUALS, JUST TO TELL A STORY ABOUT THE FUTURE AND TEACH SOMEBODY A LESSON. I JOKE THAT MY MUSIC IS FROM THE FUTURE, COS I HAVE A SYNESTHESIA AND FOR ME SOUNDS ARE COLORS, SHAPES, OR SCENES, AND VICE VERSA. SO I CLOSE MY EYES AND FULLY EMBRACE THE SETTING I WANT TO INCLUDE IN MY STORY AND TRANSFORM IT INTO THE SOUNDS. AND MY MOTTO IS “STAY SAFE, STAY TRIPPY”  😉

2. Who are your influences?

OH THERE ARE TOO MANY TO SAY, BUT I MOSTLY TAKE INFLUENCE FROM BOOKS, MOVIES, ANIME AND MANGA AND THAT TRIGGERS ME ENOUGH TO MAKE A TRACK. IN TERMS OF MUSIC… BILLAIN !!!! THIS GUY IS INSANE IN HIS TRACKS, VISUALS AND AESTHETICS, AND HE ALSO MAKES FUTURISTIC STUFF SO HE IS MY BIGGEST IDOL, BUT ALSO NOISIA, EVOL INTENT, G JONES, DEADCROW, AND MY POLISH FAM SOKOS, LOAA, AND BIG UP TO GEDZ RAPPER AND PRODUCER THAT INSPIRED ME FOR A LONG TIME AND HE IS THE REASON WHY MY CARRIER EVEN STARTED !!

3. Do you have a method or pattern on how you create each song?

I DO HAVE A SPECIFIC WORKFLOW AND COLOR CODING COS OF MY SYNESTHESIA. THE BASS IS VIOLET, LEADS BLUE, DRUMS ARE RED, PERCS ARE GREEN AND EFFECTS ARE YELLOW. SO I ALWAYS GROUP SOUNDS IN THAT MANNER. MOST OF THE TIME I MAKE EVERYTHING IN ONE PATTERN AND THEN I JUST SIMPLY MAKE ‘A WHOLE TRACK’ AND ASSIGN TO MIXER CHANNELS AND BUSES, AND THANKS TO THE FUNCTION IN FL STUDIO CALLED ‘SPLIT BY MIXER CHANNELS I HAVE THEN EVERYTHING SEPARATED INTO PATTERNS AND I CAN ARRANGE AND MODIFY FREELY.

I DO A LOT OF SOUND DESIGN STUFF, OR JUST TAKE A SIMPLE PRESET AND MODIFY IT TO SUCH EXTENT IT CAN’T BE RECOGNIZED, COS I USE A LOOOOOOOOOOOOT OF GLITCHING AND ‘ERRORS’ COS EVERY MACHINE MAKES ERRORS. PEOPLE JOKE THAT ‘I BOKKEN THE SHIT OUT OF SOUNDS’ HEHEH. MOST OF THE TIME I JUST START WITH A LEAD, BOKKEN THE SHIT OUT OF IT, MAKE A REESE BASS, AND ADD SOME DRUMS ETC AND VIOLA. THEN SOME ARRANGING AND SOME CRAZY AUTOMATION AND THE TRACK IS DONE. IT TAKES ME FROM 1H TO 20H TO FINNISH A TRACK. FOR EXAMPLE, “DIGITALIZATION” THAT I RELEASED ON CZELUŚĆ TOOK ME 10H AND 23MIN AND IT’S ONE OF THE MOST COMPLICATED TRACKS I’VE EVER MADE.

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4. You create concept albums that tell a larger story as a whole rather than just a random collection of songs thrown together. Is there a specific inspiration for this?

I ALWAYS TRY TO RELEASE AN EP ON MY BIRTHDAY (15TH DEC) AND EVERY TRACK HAS A MEANING AND EVERY ALBUM IS BASED ON SOMETHING. MY FIRST EP CALLED KOMOREBI (SUNLIGHT FILTERING THROUGH TREES) COS MY SURNAME IS GAŁĘZIA (WHICH MEANS A BRANCH IN POLISH) AND I CALLED MYSELF BOKKEN (WOODEN TRAINING KATANA), AND IN THE SAME MANNER AS A BRANCH NEEDS TO BE MADE INTO A BOKKEN, I HAD TO DEVELOP AS AN ARTIST TO GROW, TO NOT ‘SEE THE SUN THROUGH THE TREES’ BUT TO GROW ENOUGH TO BE ABOVE THE FORREST.

ALSO MY FIRST TRACK I MADE AS BOKKEN WAS MOKUTON NO JUTSU (A TECHNIQUE FROM NARUTO THAT THE USER CAN FIGHT WITH A WOOD AND PLANTS) THAT I MADE INSPIRED BY THE FIGHT IN THE NARUTO OF THE 5 KAGE VS MADARA. SO I’VE FINISHED READING NARUTO AND ADAPTED HIS ‘WAY OF THE NINJA’ THAT NO MATTER HOW BAD YOU WERE IN THE BEGINNING, CONSTANT TRAINING WILL MAKE YOU BETTER AND BETTER, AND YOU WILL BECOME THE BEST. SO KOMOREBI EP IS 100% ON NARUTO MANGA AND IT WAS THE BEGINNING OF MY JOURNEY.

IKIGAI (IN JAPANESE IT MEANS THE WAY OF LIFE), I’VE READ THE BOOK “FUTU.RE” BY DMITRY GLUKHOVSKY WHICH I HIGHLY RECOMMEND TO ANYBODY INTERESTED IN CYBERPUNK, AND IT IS MY LOOSE INTERPRETATION OF IT. IT TAKES PLACE DURING AN EXTERMINATION MISSION THAT THE MAIN CHARACTER HAD TO TAKE, AND HIS CHANGE OF CHARACTER AFTER MEETING THE EASTERN PHILOSOPHY. I WAS SO FASCINATED BY IT THAT MY EP WAS READY IN JUNE. IT ALSO REPRESENTS THAT I FINALLY FOUND THE WAY OF MY LIFE, THAT MUSIC AND ART IS EVERYTHING FOR ME AND I WILL FULLY DEDICATE TO IT. EVERY TRACK ON THIS EP REPRESENTS THE EMOTIONS THAT THE MAIN CHARACTER FELT.

AND FINALLY THE TSUJIGIRI (A JAPANESE TERM FOR A PRACTICE WHEN A SAMURAI, AFTER RECEIVING A NEW KATANA OR DEVELOPING A NEW FIGHTING STYLE OR WEAPON, TESTS ITS EFFECTIVENESS BY ATTACKING A RANDOM DEFENSELESS PASSER-BY). IT IS THE EP I’VE RELEASED AS A FULLY FLEDGED ARTIST “A TRUE SAMURAI” AND IT IS ALSO AN INTERPRETATION OF AKIRA, MANGA AND ANIME. I TRIED TO BALANCE THE TRACKS IN THE SAME MANNER AS THE MOVIE AND MANGA STORY ARCS TAKE PLACE SO IT GOES FROM SOFT TUNES, TO HEAVY BASS TRACKS. IF YOU LISTEN CLOSELY YOU WILL HEAR IN THE TRACK ‘LATE NIGHT IN NEOTOKYO’ THE VOCALS FROM THE ORIGINAL AKIRA SOUNDTRACK, A HOMAGE TO THIS MASTERPIECE.

5. You also DJ. What sort of music do you do in those sets?

THE ANSWER IS SIMPLE. I PLAY BASS MUSIC. DNB, DUBSTEP, GRIME, AND EVERYTHING THAT IS WEIRD OR GOOD ENOUGH TO TRIP EVERYBODY INTO ANOTHER DIMENSION HEHE. I ALWAYS TRY TO MAKE PEOPLE REALLY FEEL THE VIBE AND MAKE THEM GO WILD.

6. What are some of your favorite films or series?

MOSTLY CYBERPUNK AND SCI-FI ONES. AKIRA, GHOST IN THE SHELL, THE MATRIX AND ANIMATRIX, BLADE RUNNER AND ITS SEQUEL, ALTERED CARBON, OBVIOUSLY NARUTO, ATTACK ON A TITAN, AND I LOVE DARK TOO. I ALSO HAVE TO POINT OUT THAT MOST OF THE PHILIP K. DICK’S NOVELS ARE HUGE INSPIRATIONS FOR MY ART.

7. What is it about cyberpunk culture that fascinates you?

IT’S EVERYTHING, TECHNOLOGY, THE POLITICS, THE PEOPLE, CITIES, THE FIGHT FOR FREEDOM, THE ARTIFICIAL LIMBS, THE A.I. I MEAN EVERYTHING. I DO BELIEVE THAT WE ARE ALREADY LIVING IN A CYBERPUNK SOCIETY BUT I WOULD LOVE TO LIVE IN A  MORE FUTURISTIC WORLD AND HAVE AN A.I. COMPANION, AND THAT I COULD CONNECT TO THE COMPUTER SO I COULD MAKE MUSIC AND ART FASTER AND BETTER.

8. Any recent albums or releases you’ve been listening to a lot?

OH WHATEVER I FIND ON SOUNDCLOUD COS I DIG A LOT. JUST CHECK MY REPOSTS HAHA. BUT RECENTLY I LISTEN TO DEADCROW – TRANSMISSION EP, AND GEDZ – BOHEMA LP, AND BILLAIN – NOMAD’S REVENGE LP.

9. What valuable lessons have you learned since you started making music?

THAT PATIENCE IS THE KEY AND LIKE NARUTO, NEVER STOP BELIEVING NO MATTER WHAT PEOPLE SAYS. I’VE BEEN WAITING 17 YEARS FOR BEING DISCOVERED AND NOW MY HARD WORK PAYS OFF. ALSO YOU NEED TO STAY HUMBLE AND HELPFUL. THAT’S WHY I EVERY TUESDAY I HAVE A FEEDBACK SESSION WHERE I HELP PEOPLE WITH THEIR TRACKS, COS I LOVE TO SHARE THE KNOWLEDGE.
AND REMEMBER, STAY SAFE, STAY TRIPPY 😉

 

BOKKEN 木剣:

Bandcamp

Facebook

Spotify

Soundcloud

Instagram

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ALTITXDE

We’ve had the pleasure of getting to ask some questions to one of today’s most talented digital artist, Ash Cox, also known as ALTITXDE. While she is a 3D and digital artist with a unique approach to futuristic & cyber themed art, she is also an exceptional motion graphic artist for Music Videos, Web Graphics, Compositing and GIFs. Featured on custom apparel and album covers, Ash is definitely one to keep an eye on. Her passion for art is apparent and her style is distinctive and unparalleled.

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1. How would you describe your style?

My style is definitely cyber-fueled mech, dark future and any kind of cyberpunk bot or character is my favorite thing to create.

2. Where does your inspiration come from?

My inspiration comes from a lot of things… dreams and visions from my meditations, though I’m yet to totally be able to recreate any of the crazy art I see in my mind so far. I get inspiration from other art; I especially love 2D illustrations and anime art style. Nature is definitely a huge inspiration to me. It’s not necessarily a subject matter but it just recharges me to keep creating.

3. What are your ambitions or goals as an artist?

You know, I’ve never been one to set goals (in terms of… like in 5 years time I want this and this) I’ve honestly always just followed my heart with everything I’ve done. As long as I get to do what I’m passionate about and makes me happy, it’s all good as far as I’m concerned. I want to remain open to any opportunities that might come my way. I think if you are following your heart (living your bliss) then all the rest kinda takes care of itself. Amazing things happen when we get out of the way by thinking we know how it should all pan out.

4. If you could pick a favorite piece of yours, which one would it be?

I don’t think I’ve created it yet!! Still to come.

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5. Any particular artists you admire?

There’s too many to name and no specific ones that have influenced me the most but I have so much respect for people who are just doing their thing and putting their art out there into the world.

6. What kind of music do you listen to while working on artwork?

I used to be a total drum&bass girl and still love it but now I’m also lovin so many different genres…hip hop and rap, electronic, experimental, wave… I was listening the Blade Runner 2049 soundtrack the other day while working …You can’t NOT be inspired by that.

7. What is your favorite sci-fi/cyberpunk film?

Blade Runner, Ghost in the Shell, anything Star Wars.

8. Any advice for up upcoming artists?

Don’t compare your work to other peoples’ work! That’s been a huge one for me. Especially working in 3D, I used to look at all those guys on Instagram and thought I have to be doing the same kind of stuff they do to be successful. I was watching this video by a woman just the other day and her advice was to just keep your head in your lane don’t go looking around at what everyone else is doing and don’t try to be like anyone else. Be yourself, just let what is inside you come out.

The hardest thing is trying not to judge your creations. It’s definitely a fine line between looking at your work objectively and crossing over into judgement, but I really think the whole creative process is inextricably linked with knowing who you are as a person on all levels (physically, emotionally, spiritually). If you have that self love and acceptance and are grounded in the truth of who you are then I really think that’s when you can become fully into a state of creative genius hahaha Not saying I’m anywhere near that but if I had any goals I guess it would be that 🙂

The best advice I’d give is to come at everything with a sense of fun and play and just follow your heart. If you loose that and get too caught up in being a success or worrying about what others think then it just becomes ‘work’. Also, just make sure you’re passionate about your art, like you can’t wait to get outta bed and keep working on that project you started the day before. I love that feeling.

ALTITXDE:

altitxde.com
www.artstation.com/altitxde
www.facebook.com/altitxde/
www.instagram.com/altitxde/

Limbix

 

We had the honor of speaking to Jonathan from Limbix. Limbix is a San Francisco based company that aims to make virtual reality applications widely accessible to clinics and patients. Using software to help treat anxiety-based disorders with exposure therapy, Limbix intends to improve several aspects of healthcare.

1. Thank you for your time, I appreciate it. So Limbix uses VR technology to help patients?

We’ve seen a lot of research supporting virtual reality applications for a variety of mental health including exposure therapy, so a lot of the content we made is built for phobias and other disorders where exposure therapy can be applicable. Things like trauma, anxiety, addiction and other types of cases as well. We’ve also helped build a lot of other programs that can be used to supplement other aspects of therapy such as skills training, mindfulness applications, psychoeducation and other things that that can be used to supplement what’s also done with exposure therapy.

 

2. When discussing exposure therapy using Virtual Reality, do clients always find it easier to do the real thing afterwards or is there still a disconnection between reality and simulation?

In our experience, what we see in research is that showing the elements of what their fear is or the source of distress is one component of it, but equally important is the therapist training and things they do to help them cope. What we are is a tool that helps therapists who use exposure therapy as part of CBT (Cognitive behavioral therapy) for the way they treat patients. They’ve got a better way of doing that with Limbix. We do see that it is really effective.
The research has shown that to be the case but it still requires inclination to understand how to build a fear hierarchy which is something you do with standard exposure therapy methods today which are generally just imaginal, where you just imagine the issue or in real life which is usually not very practical. Those are the two ways that people do it today. We give a better way of doing it. The research is pretty strong, it shows that VR is equal or if not more effective than classical exposure therapy methods. So I think we’ve seen some pretty awesome successes with that.

3. With VR becoming more accessible to everyone via their smartphones and gaming systems, do you feel this accessibility will be advantageous to psychologists using VR for exposure therapy?

I think in the long run, yes. Right now the way Limbix thinks about it is we build a VR system that is appropriate for use in clinical environments. You can’t go to Best Buy and purchase a consumer VR device and bring it into a hospital, there’s a variety of problems with it. You can imagine a few things like having access to app store accounts, that’s a big liability for a hospital. Patients could download anything. You have to make after market parts that can be sanitizable.
You can’t really have people sharing the same headsets in a hospital environment. There’s other things like functionality whether it needs to be connected to the internet. If you’re using Oculus app store accounts or other consumer devices, you’re going to have to connect to the internet which is generally more friction when you’re trying to make a sale to a hospital because there’s usually requirements around security and other things like that that we can get around by being offline. There’s a bunch of different requirements that hospitals and clinics have to provide to incorporate VR, so we try to address a lot of those with our solution for them.
Now in the long run, what Limibix would like to do is to eventually make some of the stuff we do available on consumer devices, ultimately thinking that might be a way to have wire access. I think for now, VR is very much in its infancy still, although we are seeing some growth so I think the right way to go direct to consumer is not just to put something out in an app store but to go through an FDA process, make sure there is some sort of approval and research that goes behind it before you make something that consumers can use, that way it can be prescribable by a doctor. What we see in this country is a six month wait list for mental health services and things like that, so I think the way consumer VR can be interesting is if you make solutions that can help address people who are stuck on wait lists and can’t get access to care.

4. What is your outlook on the future of this research and development? Any predictions?

I see people in this space making plays at treating things like chronic pain, depression, anxiety, trauma and addiction and I think in all five of those areas there are opportunities to use VR in a way that can help address problems there. I think there’s been a little more than 300 peer reviewed publications in the last 20 years showing VR can be helpful for a variety of healthcare applications, mostly around mental health.
So as these devices get cheaper and cheaper, I expect more and more companies taking advantage of hardware prices coming down and existing research being promising. That’s really the thesis behind Limbix.
My prediction for the future is that with recent changes in the FDA regulatory environment, making things like prescribed digital therapeutics more possible as alternatives to pills, that we’ll see more companies more interested in creating digital devices, whether that’s VR, apps or other things that can be alternatives to taking things like Ritalin, Adderall or antidepressants or other things like that.