It’s always amazing to speak with artists directly about their work, but every now and then we get the opportunity to speak with prolific creators who are actually helping shape the future of 3DX.
Puppetmaster is one such creator! Anyone who’s a fan of the futa genre has undoubtedly seen an episode of PuppetMaster’s ‘Sensual Adventures’ series. I’m super stoked to have had the chance to do a phone interview with them, so here we go!
Cafe: Alright, we’re gonna jump right into it, here. Puppetmaster, how long have you been in the 3D game?
- PM: I’ve been doing 3D for…a long time! I don’t even recall exactly when I started; somewhere around my early twenties: I’m thirty eight now. Originally, my main motivation was Jurassic park. When I saw Jurassic park one, I was blown away, literally. Like, whoa, fuck, they’re real! My plan originally was to become a genetic engineer and bring real dinosaurs into the world (if it was possible), or, create robots that move physically like the terminator. But I ended up doing animations in 3D. To animate means to bring life to a creature, ultimately, so that’s what I ended up doing through 3D.
Cafe: Wow, that’s amazing! I never would have guessed that! That’s pretty cool.
- PM: Yeah. At First, I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life, in general. I tried a couple of things like marketing, but 3D was always interesting to me. I started learning 3D studio Max for DOS, so you know I’m really old! (laughing) I’ve been doing this for quite a while!
Later, I had to learn Maya, for my job at a game studio in Vienna. It was basically the standard for 3D animations at the time, so I had to switch from 3D Max to Maya. It was hard for me, but since then I’ve been using Maya, and I’m pretty happy with it.
I would like to give some advice to artists on that note: even though I use Maya, I would highly recommend Blender! It’s free, it’s a great tool, it can do everything! A lot of professional studios switch to Blender because it’s free, and the support community is great. I haven’t had the time to learn it, so I still use Maya, but for artists starting out, Blender is a great option.
Cafe: That’s some great advice! I’ve seen some amazing things come out of Blender, it’s hard to believe that it’s free, sometimes!
When did you make the switch to 3DX?
- PM: That was 2016.
Cafe: Oh, so fairly recently?
- PM: “Yes. I talked to Miro from Affect3D in 2016. I saw one of his videos in 2015 and I thought it looked amazing. I just wrote to him and told him I wasn’t happy in my current job, working for a big company. I wasn’t satisfied, so I told him, hey, I’m a professional animator who’s worked on films and commercials, are you interested in a collaboration? So he hired me as a lead animator for Bloodlust.
Cafe: Wow. I feel like that just came out, I can’t believe it’s been that long. It still looks great!
I hear that from a lot of creators: they are stuck in a job they’re not happy with, so they make a break for 3DX. Everyone I’ve talked to that’s done that seems much happier with their work.
- PM: Yes. I’ve been working from home full time, so I can devote my time a little better. I usually do my work very early in the morning when my kid is sleeping. I have family also, so it’s always good if you need to run errands; you can get everything done.
On the other hand, it can be difficult to separate work from private life. It’s like you have your computer at home and there’s always ‘one little thing’ that takes two hours, meanwhile all your family is waiting for you.
Cafe: Yeah, I feel you. I work from home as well, so I know how tempting it can be to try and squeeze in ‘just a little more.’
Speaking of getting away from work. What kind of hobbies do you have outside of 3D?
- PM: I love to exercise! I love to go mountain climbing, do crossfit, and spend time with my family. Quality time with my family is super important to me. I love working from home because I can just jump on youtube or an online zoom class. A friend of mine has started doing gym classes online because of Corona.
Family takes most of my time, but I really just love to be outside. Everything with nature is great for me.
What’s the story behind the Puppetmaster name?
- PM: I don’t remember exactly where, but I was given a nickname in one of my previous jobs. Like I was a marionette. It made sense, so I kept using it.
Cafe: Simple enough. It definitely suits the kind of work you do.
Do you listen to music while you work?
- PM: Actually no. Sometimes when I have minor tasks, I’ll watch videos on the side… (oh my cat is coming to say hello) but it’s actually very distracting when… (shhh, it’s okay, I’m having an interview) haha, she’s demanding love.
Cafe: (laughing) I have two of my own, I understand.
- PM: yes, she’s very gentle. Anyway, I need to be efficient because of my limited time, so I like to focus. I also work with voiceovers often, so I need to listen to those while I work.
Cafe: Ah I see. I hear artists go either way: they say they can’t work with music or can’t work without it.
What was your inspiration for the sensual adventures series?
- PM: I love everything adventure. Uncharted, Indiana Jones, Tomb raider. I work with Marie from Affect3D. She writes all the scripts. We figured out that we were both into this adventure stuff, so we thought to create something with hot futa, adventure and excitement.
Marie is great: her sense of humor and all the twists she adds, I really love her scripts, even her first versions. I always laugh out loud when I read them.
Cafe: Yeah, the animations are very well scripted! It’s much better than just pure sex. The storyline and dialogue really sets the Sensual Adventure series apart from many other animations.
- PM: Yes, the story is very important to me. I hate things that are just pure sex. All of my work is meant to present a positive view on sex. All the characters are really into it: they’re horny and they really want to have sex. There does need to be some tension, though.
Consensual sex doesn’t mean boring; like in the first 2 episodes, where Trinity totally fucked up and comes back to see Brittany. You can feel the tension, and Brittany is still mad at her, but they have sex anyways. Without the tension, it would be boring.
Cafe: I get it! As a writer myself, if I didn’t have that tension, I wouldn’t have anything!
There are a lot of artists that just wanna jump right into the action, but good writing makes the characters sexier and it makes people care about them.
What’s your favorite libation? Coffee, tea, something else?
- PM: I love anything homemade. We have a big garden. I love homemade apple juice and cherry juice. I do drink coffee and tea, but mostly tap water. The tap water in Austria is great!
Cafe: That’s great, sounds healthy!
- PM: Yeah, soda and stuff like that is too sweet for me. The older you get, the slower you metabolize.
Cafe: Hey, I’m 32; I’m not that far behind you in age, I get it!
- PM: Yeah, that’s why exercise is so important!
Cafe: Yes, indeed.
Alright. If you can’t give specific details, that’s cool, but do you have anything other than the Sensual Adventures series planned in the future?
- PM: I don’t have any plans to stop the Sensual Adventures series. I’m not sure if you knew, but I switched from pre render to real time rendering in unity. I actually have a benchmark for that!
- Of course, for everyone who doesn’t have a powerful PC, there will be a ‘regular’ movie version. Everybody who owns a capable PC should be able to run this benchmark to see if their PC can handle the episode 5 full version.
So, there will be 2 versions, one with more of a ‘movie’ feel, complete with a bonus ‘movie maker’.
The main version is real-time with all kinds of additional bonuses: Customization, Day/Night, Anal/Pussy decision and so on. And you will also be able to check out poses from a “movie-maker” selection. In that mode (not the “story-mode”) you will also have full control of the camera.
The second version is a regular MP4 movie file for everyone who does not have a PC that can render the real-time version. So people will still be able to enjoy EP5 on their Phone/Tablet/TV/anywhere 🙂
The reason for that is to have a unique selling point. Piracy is a big issue for me.
Without my Patreon,none of my productions would have been profitable. Patreon really saved my ass. I get lots of good feedback from Patreon, and people tell me when they love my stuff.
There is a big community that doesn’t want to pay for anything, but I am trying to offer them a reason to buy my product.
For instance: 50% of my patrons prefer anal penetration, 50% prefer pussy penetration, so in the full version, you can choose which penetration you want to see.
Cafe: Wow, that’s awesome. Very ambitious!
I think it’s really important for people to know that when they’re not supporting an artist (especially full time artists) they are really only hurting themselves. If you lose the ability to make content, then…well, there’s no more content! If people love your animations, they should contribute to them. You ask for very little for how much you give in return.
- PM: That’s what people don’t understand. I started my patreon account in 2017 after Bloodlust. There was a period of time where I had a few months off. That was when I made “Brittany’s Joy Ride” and my patreon. My patrons were very supportive. They are always there for me with feedback and financial support. I became even more aware of it after my wife and I crunched the numbers. I would not have been able to do this without my patrons, so big thanks to my Patrons! They are amazing!
Cafe: I’m super glad you have them to support you. You are more than worth the cost of a few bucks a month!
Last question here, a pretty standard one but important nonetheless.
Do you have any advice for aspiring artists? You already mentioned Blender, which was great, but anything from your own experience?”
- PM: Yes, I have a few pieces of advice!
First: Be open to feedback, that’s very important.
Young artists make something, and it’s their baby. Of course, it’s natural to get attached to your work, but if 10 people tell you the character’s nose is too big, you may want to consider changing it.
Feedback is difficult in any creative industry. It can be offensive, depending on how it’s delivered, but if you react poorly to it, you’ll never get anywhere.
Somehow you need to boil down all the feedback to be useful to you. The more people comment on one thing, the more relevancy there probably is to that feedback. If you’re going to do this for a living, you’ll need something that’s appealing to more than just 10 people.
Second: Learn the basics of lighting. A lot of people use Daz, which is great, but as you said earlier, they want to jump right into the action.
So two characters look okayish, but if the lighting is off, you lose details and all kinds of stuff. Lighting makes a huge difference.
There’s so many cool tutorials about how to start 3D: like 3 point lighting as a keyword.
Third: Involve the community. Not just for feedback, but for collaborations, as well. If you’re really good at character design, but suck at animations, try to get some help. You don’t need to be the lone wolf doing all the work and spending forever on something, only to end up with something you’re not happy with.
It’s better to get a small team and work with people. It’s more fun, less lonely: if I didn’t have my family and my team I would be totally lonely working from home!
Fourth: Exercise! It not only helps you stay fit, but affects literally everything in your life.
Fifth: take breaks. If you work on something and don’t nail it (pun intended) take a break. Take ten minutes. Go for a walk. Exercise. Play the guitar. Spend time with your family. Do something not in front of the screen.
If that doesn’t help, take a longer break and sleep on it.
That’s happened to me so many times: I’m totally frustrated and I want to solve it and, oh fuck! The animation looks shit, and how/why, and… yeah and then I sleep over it and I come back to it later and the answer just comes to me.
Thank you very much for the interview! It was very nice talking to you and giving you a little insight into what I like and how I work.
Cafe: And thank you so much for your time! We’re super excited for Sensual Adventures 5, and we can’t wait to see what else you have in store for us!