Welcome to our third ‘Artist Recognition’ post! This time we are showcasing an amazing artist who is known for her love of ‘Days Gone’. Like before, we have asked the artist to choose her 12 favourite shots, and we held an interview with the artist. All of which can be seen down below.
VPGamers: Can you tell us a bit about yourself? @calisarah1998: Well, I’m a student in my last year of study in the accounting field, and I alternate between school and work, which doesn’t leave me much time for all my passions: real and virtual photography, video games, TV shows & movies (I’m a huge Marvel fan), reading and drawing… I’m looking forward to finishing my studies in a few months (if everything goes well) to focus on my passions and be more active in the VP community!
VPGamers: What got you into video games? @calisarah1998: For as long as I can remember, I have always played video games. From a young age, I played racing games with my dad and Tomb Raider with my mom on PS1 and PS2. I also loved playing The Sims on PC and Pokemon on Nintendo DS with my cousins, or Animal Crossing and Mario Kart with my friends! In fact, I have never stopped playing these games, they bring back fond memories of my childhood. And you could say that it was seeing the others play that made me want to play with them.
VPGamers: What is your all-time favourite game? @calisarah1998: It’s certainly not a surprise but it’s… Days Gone! I fell in love with this game within the first few hours of playing and I never tire of returning to the Broken Road. I love everything about this game: the beautiful and varied scenery, the engaging and very well written characters, as well as the different scenarios and side quests. And the hordes! I’ve never been so scared in a game… The constant tension that an enemy can attack by surprise! I’m on my 5th playthrough, and I’m still surprised when a wolf comes out of nowhere… To make it short: This world comes for YOU!
VPGamers: How did you come across the VP community? @calisarah1998: When Assassin’s Creed Valhalla was released, I was so amazed by the beauty of the game that I opened the photo mode and took some pictures. I then posted them with the #PhotoMode on my old twitter account which was useless to me. A few people then liked my photos, and @Chris25551 was one of them. He followed me, so I went to his account and discovered gorgeous shots! I followed him and he sent me a private message to talk to me about the VP community. He was right to do so because I didn’t know the community at all. He gave me tips on how to use hashtags and who to tag in my photos. So, I started sharing my shots following his advice and everything went very fast! I can’t thank him enough for introducing me to the VP community.
VPGamers: What are your thoughts on the VP community? @calisarah1998: The VP community is just amazing! It is filled with wonderful people who support us every day and always have a kind word for us. I never thought I would meet such beautiful and generous people when I started VP. I am very happy to see that new members are as welcomed and encouraged as I was, that is what makes our community stronger. It’s also a source of inspiration for me, whether it’s all the wonderful and talented artists here, or the themes that the community pages and members organize that encourage us to be creative. I have improved a lot thanks to this community!
VPGamers: Do you have anybody that you admire and love the work of in the VP community? @calisarah1998: There are many talented people in the VP community who I admire and who inspire me every day, it would be hard to name just one… However, some people have “specialties” that I particularly like: @UVioletra who shares wonderful triptychs; @DeathStrandingLand her powerful portraits; @Chris25551 who captures sumptuous and varied landscapes; @LukeKasinger, @Spectral_Lensand, @Huldera1who all make awesome edits! I’ve only listed a few, but there are so many more creative and talented people I admire!
VPGamers: Which game stood out with having the best photo mode? @calisarah1998: Each photomode has its strengths and weaknesses, but my favorite is Days Gone’s. With the advanced photo mode, we have great creative freedom in the atmosphere we want to give to a photo. It’s a bit difficult to understand all the parameters at first, but once you try all the features you can discover the extent of this freedom. We can change the color and tone of a shot, and even give the foreground and background two different tones. By modifying the gamma parameter, you can create an eerie atmosphere in the background or make Deacon’s silhouette stand out. I particularly like the Glow setting which allows me to add rays of light between the trees, or simply add a warm color to a specific spot in the photo. The fact that you can create new custom filters and save them (in addition to those already offered by the developers!) is very interesting too! The only downside is that we only have 5 slots, and that’s not enough for me
VPGamers: If you were to create a photo mode for a game, what features would you include in it? @calisarah1998: My dream photo mode would give us as much freedom in choosing the colors, tones and atmosphere of a photo as the Days Gone’s one. I would add the possibility to change the time of the day like in the games Horizon Forbidden West and Ghost Of Tsushima for example. It would allow us to get the brightness we want in a photo or to play with the shadows. I would definitely put a setting to add contrast: in some games like HFW there are only filters and no contrast parameter. I really like photos with contrast, so I really miss this setting. I also really liked the lighting settings in the Spider-Man and Miles Morales games. Adding extra light points in certain areas can completely change a photo! So, I would add this setting too. As a bonus, I really liked the animated environment of Ghost Of Tsushima’s photo mode. Besides making some shots more alive, I was able to use the travelling option to make short videos that I edited to make a long video of this wonderful game. The photo mode becomes a multidisciplinary tool with these options!
VPGamers: What next for VP? How does the community and developers take it to the next level? @calisarah1998: The VP community is already doing an amazing job! I’d like to see VP videos grow (if I can call them like that). The idea is to make short video clips of beautiful places in video games using the photo mode. There are still very few of us doing it, but I’ve had positive feedback on my videos, and some people even want to try it. It would be great to see, besides a beautiful photo, a short sequence of only a few seconds of a place, a landscape or a character! If anyone is interested in doing this and need help or advice, don’t hesitate to contact me! Regarding the developers, most of the studios already support us by sharing our shots regularly, and I thank them for that! It’s always a pleasure to see that a studio or the developers of our favorite games like, retweet or comment our shots (and even follow us!) To go further, they could organize contests with themes like Guerrilla is starting to do since a few weeks! It’s really cool to see that studios want to interact with us and stimulate us with thematic contests.
VPGamers: Finally, this month we have celebrated Strong Women in Video Games, who has been your favourite female protagonist in a video game, and why? @calisarah1998: Oh, that’s a tough choice! A while back I would have said Lara Croft because I grew up with her and I was often impressed to see a beautiful woman doing swan dives from the top of a cliff, solving puzzles or shooting down enemies and scary creatures! But now I would probably say Aloy. Her birth as an outcast and her difficult childhood away from the Noras made her stronger. She has a personality that I really like and she is always there to help other people. She is also very good at fighting against dangerous machines and enemies. She also carries the heavy burden of having to save humanity from its second extinction, which is a lot of pressure for one person! Elizabeth had other scientists with her, and the knowledge of the ancient world, but Aloy didn’t. It’s a heavy task that she has accepted and that she is successfully carrying out: even though I still haven’t finished Horizon Forbidden West, I trust Aloy, she will save the world, because she is a strong woman!
We would like to take this time to thank @calisarah1998 for allowing us to find out about not just the artist, but the person too. She is a pivitol point within the Days Gone VP community, and the VP community in general, as well as creating some absolute masterpieces. Congratulations!