Want to learn how to create eye-catching digital art? Find out how digital artist James Bahadur uses Envato Elements to bring his weird and wonderful imaginings to life.
Digital artist, graphic and motion designer James Bahadur produces creative photo manipulations featuring floating astronauts, surreal settings and imaginative imagery. His curious compositions are nothing short of mesmerizing: we’ve fallen in love with them, and we know you will too!
After working in photography, tattooing and graphic design, James found his calling when he began experimenting with digital art and photo manipulation – two crafts that allowed him to bring his wildest dreams to life. His striking creations have now earned him over 11k Instagram followers and counting, with his work has even being featured and shared by the likes of Adobe Creative Cloud, and – of course – Envato.
We took a glimpse behind the creative curtain to learn about how James, who grew up in Nepal, uses Envato Elements to create art without limits, and bring his weird and wonderful imaginings to life…
What’s your artistic background and how did you get into digital art?
I think I always knew that art was a part of me. When I was kid, I used to draw a lot and do silly craft experiments. I even used to do tattoos as well! I have always loved art – especially making it my own.
Digital art has helped bring my thoughts to life. I can now live my dreams with my art.
What’s the mission or meaning behind your work?
I’m very curious about everything beyond our universe! Sometimes, I find myself simply sitting and enjoying my artistic imaginings. I believe that art is freedom, and it allows me to live my thoughts to the fullest.
It is far more difficult to make a work of art that requires deeper consideration, or that reveals something new each time you visit it. Making an artwork like that is my biggest dream and something I want to achieve.
How do your ideas get from your imagination to Instagram? What’s your creative process?
Instagram has always been a platform for me to connect with people. It motivates me and that is what inspires me to keep going. Apart from that, I sometimes like to look back through all my work which helps me to study my growth and see how far I’ve come.
My imagination is also fuelled by comics, games, and movies. Sometimes I’ll look at an image for hours to come up with an idea or figure out how to make it better.
Photoshop has been an essential part of my journey. It has helped me bring my imagination to life.
At first, I create a draft sketch of my art, then I search for images and objects to fill up the rough sketch. After that, I construct the composition and light conditions. I mainly focus on art perspective and storytelling.
How does Envato Elements help you create?
What Envato Elements items do you use the most?
Most of my artworks contain 3D items from Envato Elements, which save me heaps of time when it comes to matching the perspective in my artwork.
For this ghost piece, I first searched for an image of a castle. And then I changed its exposure, color balanced it to make it darker and then replaced its sky and added the moon. Finally, I searched for the ghost 3D model on Envato and boom! It’s ready!
As I mentioned earlier, I live my imagination through my art. For this composition, I found an image of mist at night. Secondly, I added the computer and some astronauts. Then I finished it off by matching the color and light.
What programs, tools and techniques do you use to create your work?
All my artwork is done using Photoshop, Lightroom, and Cinema 4D. Whenever I am unable to model 3D in Cinema 4D, Envato’s got my back! I can easily find whatever object I need with the perfect perspective. To be honest, Envato Elements has become a part of me and my work. Sometimes when I am out of concepts, I check the site to find some cool images and 3D assets just to gather ideas and concepts.
Where do you sell or promote your work? Or where has your work been featured?
I love making art – I live for it. I get a lot of inquiries about my artwork on my Instagram and I have successfully sold some of my artworks to musical artists and bands.
Apart from this, I have been doing graphic designs for Neplay Events; an Australian-based event company where a lot of my work has been featured in branding and marketing. My work has also been featured by Adobe Creative Cloud.
What’s the biggest learning you’ve had as a digital artist?
I have learnt that your work and creations give you permanent happiness, which keeps you going and keeps you motivated.
The software that I use to make digital art is so powerful. There are so many controls and options, and effects – the possibilities are endless.
It’s easy to make eye candy, and our various feeds are overflowing with visual novelties. If you unlock your phone it just comes pouring out. And just as quickly, those images are forgotten, replaced by whatever comes next on your social feed.
The biggest thing I have learned from the beginning is to keep on creating. The more you create, the more you learn. And learning new things should never stop. So, my advice to all the beginners is to give your dreams a try. All you need is a good focus.
Art is a beautiful thing, and when combined with digital, it is simply beyond.
James is an Envato partner. All opinions provided within this interview are their own.