Renderfeed: Murat, first of all, thank you very much for taking the time to sit down with us. Can you start out by telling us a little bit about yourself and about your central statement: “I am refractive and my art is the refraction of my life.”?

(Murat) Although I don’t like using words to describe my work, I actually did write this statement. I see life experience as light and whenever it passes through a prism, it is being refracted. I see myself as water or as a diamond that disperses light in the rainbow colors. Whatever happens in my life is being translated and painted on a canvas. Art is refraction to me.

Renderfeed: Let’s travel back to your childhood: You had a very multinational upbringing: born in Prague, a childhood spent in Paris, High School in Ankara…How did this influence your work?

(Murat) Well, I do not really remember my childhood. It is like I was someone else. So consciously nothing really influenced my work. I guess I was a happy child.

Renderfeed: What were the major artistic influences that shaped your life? Did you admire any artists in particular?

(Murat) I don’t really get influenced or inspired, I always prefer experimenting new concepts and techniques. I enjoy the works of Erwin Olaf. Storm Thorgerson, who sadly pasted away last year, is also one of my favorite artists.

Renderfeed: Did you go to university and if so, what did you study? If university wasn’t part of your plans after graduating from high school, what led you to the decision to jump straight into work?

(Murat) I subscribe to the motto of “We don’t need no education”. I went to Istanbul Bilgi University and studied Photography/Video. I went there as an observer, just to experience what it was like. Then I dropped it out during my last year. I did not want to graduate, did not want it to be on my biography. I was far more capable than the people who were around. Art is not something you learn from others, it all happens within oneself. As for work I always try to create for my own sake. I am not a professional.

Renderfeed: Tell us a bit about your photography work. Surrealism or augmented reality comes to mind – are we correct in our perception?

(Murat) I do have great interest in surrealism and symbolism. It is very hard for me to produce conceptual work without a dose of abstraction.

Renderfeed: We loved your latest short film, Zodiac, in particular because of the black and white color scheme, the surreal imagery and the unusual musical score. Can you explain the idea behind Zodiac?

(Murat) It is a very fast film. Sometimes I wonder if I should have presented my ideas at a slower pace, but I decided that people who are truly interested will take the time to pause in order to understand the symbolism. There are numerous symbolic references to pop culture, Genesis and mostly astrology in the film. You can even find figures like MJ, Madonna, Eminem… I am a Pisces by the way and the film focuses on the evolution of the sign.

Another one of my short films, “Volans” is also connected to Zodiac in the sense that Volans depicts a constellation – here again the story of a flying fish (Pisces) is part of the narrative. Overall I can say that all my works including photography are merged into one artistic identity.

However, I like to keep some secrecy around my body of work, so as to make it a challenge for my viewers and to leave my work open for individual interpretation. There is a reason why artists don’t write books – we don’t necessarily want to explain our work. That is up to our audience.

Renderfeed: Zodiac was made with the help of Cinema 4D. Can you explain the workflow you followed? Which steps were necessary to complete the project and how long did it take?

(Murat) It took about three months. I had lots of scenes in mind and the footage I gathered from Cinema 4D was two times longer. But the animations seemed very slow, so I composed a fast music score and pushed the animation to keep up with the musical pace.

Renderfeed: What was the most difficult part of producing Zodiac?

(Murat) The most difficult past was the editing of the film. I really did not know where to cut and paste things – it was a big mess!

Renderfeed: You are a composer as well, correct? Did you write the music for your short films – Zodiac, Volans and Ratio?

(Murat) Yes I did. I have a passion for music.

Renderfeed: There seem to be clear references to the Genesis in Zodiac. Can you explain the role of religion in your work?

(Murat) Well I believe in everything, in every religion. Even Star Wars is a religion to me. Art is religion. So I try to link several religions in my work to showcase their similarities. They all say the same to me: LOVE.

Renderfeed: How did you manage the render of a large project like Zodiac?

(Murat) Zodiac was easy, about five minutes per frame. I like rendering, it forces me to think on improvements while waiting.

Renderfeed: Did you ever suffer from artist’s block and if so, what did you do to overcome it?

(Murat) I didn’t. I have so many stories to tell! I hope I will get artist block one day’ that would grant me freedom – freedom not to have to worry about how to express an idea.

Renderfeed: What software do you use to produce such beautiful work – aside from Cinema 4D, that is? We would guess that Photoshop is a flagship tool?

(Murat) Realflow, Photoshop, AfterEffects. That’s it.

Renderfeed: Do you choose to render your Cinema 4D projects in-house or do you prefer to outsource your rendering process, for example by using cloud providers?

(Murat) I release only a few projects per year and I don’t profit from my films, so I render at home to reduce my expenses. In addition, the technique always comes second; my main objective is the content.

That being said, if I was a commercial artist producing high volume renders on tight deadlines, I would welcome the opportunity to shorten my render times by using a Cinema4D focused renderfarm such as Renderfeed.

Renderfeed: Thank you very much for this very enlightening conversation and good luck with your future projects! To finish off, we’d like to ask you one last question: What projects can we expect from you in the near future? Are you planning on producing more Cinema 4D projects like Zodiac or Volans?

(Murat) I just released a short film called “Attraction”. It looks a bit like Zodiac in that I kept the backgrounds simple, which reduced the render time to about 5min/frame. Previous films were taking about 20 minutes per frame and I currently don’t have the patience for that.

I thank you very much for the conversation, it was a pleasure for me.