You probably Know VFX Art Director Nick Hiatt from his masterful work on Ice Princess, Surf's UP, maybe Star Wars: the Force awakens, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II, Star Wars: THe Old Republic, but mainly The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor. Hopefully you've also checked out his new terrain domain store. What you probably don't know about Nick is that he has been the premiere Bob Ross impersonator since 1993, when he had reached the end of his career as the lead singer of a sub-goblin death metal band called I only wear black.

It was 1992. The smell in the air: Mango Splash Glade plug-ins, nine-day leftover sauerkraut, and a whisp of fear. The state: Florida. Nick was burning the midnight candle at both ends, listening to "Friday I'm In Love" by The Cure on repeat, and he finally decided that enough was enough. He needed joy. 

I was tired of dressing like a witch every Thursday night to play open mics at Chipper's Lard Lounge in Boca Raton, which actually means 'mouth of the rat'... so yeah, I realized that I should never create art without joy again."

-- Nick Hiatt, back stage at "Legends in Concert" in Las Vegas circa 1997

So after returning from a trip to Sedona, Arizona to see the five-star body healer, Ched Stamos, Nick fell asleep watching a Bob Ross marathon on PBS and awoke to the sound of thunder. At that very instant, he vowed to reclaim his life as a happy creative and stop living as a human shellfish with too much guy-liner. He locked himself in a room for 18 days straight, learned 3D as well as all the instrumental parts in R.E.M.'s "Losing My Religion", and realized that he was put on this earth to do one thing: bring the joy of painting to 3D. Since then Nick has been touring the world channeling the spirit of Bob Ross and we were just lucky enough to track him down during one of his entranced states on his über successful world tour titled, Vegas: A World Tour. 

After several bouts of begging, a fair deal of crying, fourteen contracts and thirty-seven margaritas later, the one and only Nick Hiatt agreed to bring you this quickie series: The Joy of 3D Painting.

Ep02: Bring light to your world

Every world needs light, no matter how dark your mind is. So befriend your happy shadows, play patti cake with your art school demons. Then pick your render settings and sit back to read a book while your little magical paint pie bakes in the computer oven. 

A full cup of regret is not a good way to start your Monday every week, year after year, after year. Especially without cream."

-- Nick Hiatt, back stage at "The Puppet Man" in Las Vegas circa 2002

EP03: Welcome the render to the neighborhood

If you're not having fun with your neighbors, you're doing it wrong. Have you ever had terrible neighbors who use their staircase as a treadmill? Nobody likes that. Welcome your render into the composition neighborhood with some warm tea and honey baked ham. Creating a little atmosphere for your render goes a long way. Creating a wonderful atmosphere for your render, now that's worth two hugs and a trip to the ice cream parlor.

EP04: Friendly shapes

Everybody needs a little lovin', Especially that background. make sure you paint a little history on your scene with some pleasant shapes. Reflect on those shapes; they are the building blocks to a happy scene, and more importantly, a healthy lifestyle.

EP05: smoke buddies & happy fx

Always place an ear to your artwork and listen as you would listen to a loved one; it will tell you what it needs to be satisfied. Satisfaction is the second most important human right after happiness. So remember, YOUR EFFECTS WILL SPEAK TO YOU, IF YOU'RE READY TO LISTEN.

And so there you have it. No more witches, rat mouths or songs from The Cure. Nick Hiatt has entertained millions in the spirit of the Bob we know and love, and KitBash3d has hopefully snuck a little more joy into your life. Remember if you're not having fun painting in 3D, you're doing it wrong. What's the point in creating all these fantastical, magical, futuristic worlds if you can't stop every once in a while to appreciate the happy.objs in life? Heck, we hope you appreciate a couple of happy.objs every darn day. So take a deep breath and go paint yourself a castle. 


Chris Gouchoe 

KB3D Director of Digital Marketing & Customer Experience