By Pierre Kosmidis
Artwork by Anastasios Polychronis
Click to read the Greek version
Anastasios Polychronis is a graphic artist, plastic modeler and aviation enthusiast, who creates aviation art in various ways.
Mr. Polychronis started with editing flight simulator screenshots and slowly evolved to creating CG artworks.
He turned professional some years ago but still feels Aviation Art is more of a passion rather than just a profession.
Mr. Polychronis is an expert on 3D modelling, texturing, rendering or all of the above simultaneously.
Here’s what Mr. Polychronis had to say to www.ww2wrecks.com regarding his aviation art.
What was your incentive to start doing Aviation Art?
Obviously my love for Aviation has been the decisive factor. What I’m trying to do is to give “life”, through an image, to events and stories that are almost forgotten.
That’s why I prefer historical themes rather than modern ones. Every one can photograph an F-16, but not a WW2-era Fairey Battle! That’s where my job comes in.
Which one is your “favorite” aircraft and why?
Years ago I would say the Heinkel He-219, for all the incredible technology it had for its time. Today, however, I will say British Naval Aircraft of the RAF, because, albeit obsolete at the beginning of the war, with inadequate support and under particularly adverse conditions, the courage, determination and skill of its pilots brought incredible results, such as the sinking of Bismarck.
You combine the illustration with the historical documentation, thus giving a realistic look at the past. How important is this?
This is why I create these images, to give a picture of forgotten stories. Of course, from time to time, I create a “portrait” of an aircraft, without any particular background, just because something caught my attention. But what I’m trying to do with my pictures is to tell stories.
What techniques do you use and how much time does it take you to complete a project?
All my works are done using a computer. I use 3D programs to create aircraft models, paint them and illuminate them for the final image. Post-processing is mostly done in Photoshop. Time depends on the complexity of the subject, the available 3D models and, above all, historical documentation. The minimum, however, is two weeks with some projects going through several months of work to finish.
What would your advice be to someone who wants to start Aviation Art?
Never stop learning and trying new things, techniques, approaches. And a lot of persistence and patience of course.
What would you like to achieve, regarding aviation art?
At first my dream was to be able to make box art sometime, something that already took place! My next goal is to be able to represent all Hellenic-Italian War 40-41 aircraft and create many images of the events of the era. It’s a joint project I’ve been working on for months with my good friend and partner Tassos Katsikas. The beginning of course came with the Bloch 151 scene.
There is an ongoing debate on whether Aviation Art is indeed “Art”. What do you think?
I don’t consider what I am doing as “art” but as illustration. If aviation painting or even illustration can be a kind of art is an issue that will probably never be answered in full and the debate is never ending. Whatever it is, I do not find it important. More important to me, is that my images are appealing to the viewer and make them interested in the story they are portraying.
Whose works have been an inspiration?
I was inspired by the box art of static models I assembled in the past, mainly those of Tamiya and Hasegawa. The illustrator I think is the best in this genre and I am seeing as an inspiration is Piotr Forkasiewicz, who creates incredibly realistic images with digital media.