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The Work That Made Me: Izik Roitman

Imaginary Forces' director and VFX artist discusses his best and worst projects over the years, and creative content that has stayed with him

The Work That Made Me: Izik Roitman

Izik Roitman originally hails from Tel-Aviv, where in his early career he specialised as a flame artist who quickly progressed to directing and filming high-end visual effects. He’s worked on everything from hyperreal VMA-winning music videos, photo-real award-winning ad campaigns, to mind-bending interactive projects and installations. His wide-ranging body of work shares the common DNA of visual intelligence, innovation and elegant movement - expressed beautifully.

Here, Izik talks through the work that has stayed with him throughout his career and his own favourite works. 


The ad/music video from my childhood that stays with me...
I think a music video that stays with me is the a-ha ‘Take On Me’. Seeing those drawings was such an incredible experience, everything before that music video was just shots. That was the first time i saw something that had a design narrative in it and it really stayed with me.


The ad/music video/game/web platform/film that made me want to get into the industry...
For me it was 'Blade Runner'. It just blew my mind. Seeing 'Blade Runner' for the first time was an eye-opening experience, I had never seen something like that before. The overall aesthetics of the movie inspired me. When I saw it, I knew i wanted to create something like that although i didn't even know what it was called - i didn't know VFX or motion design, or cinema design was a thing, I just knew I wanted to make something like that. And as a kid after seeing it I just started drawing scenes and objects from the movie. I would say it was something that started my career even though, not knowing i wanted to do it, or knowing the name of what it was.

The creative work (film/album/game/ad/album/book/poem etc) that I keep revisiting...
Again, I watch 'Blade Runner' (the first one) every couple of years, and every time I watch I think it won't hold up but it still does. It's an exemplary piece that has stayed with me for years.

My first professional project...
Around the age of 15, I was hired to help an older designer who had a hard time transitioning from doing graphic design with pencil, pens and physical means to a computer. She bought a computer but didn't know how to operate it, and she hired me to convert her pencil work onto a computer. I was paid $4 dollars an hour to show her how to use it. It was my first professional work.

The piece of work (ad/music video/ platform...) that made me so angry that I vowed to never make anything like *that*...
I never really got angry at anything in this field. I always followed my moral compass and I never got involved in something that doesn't align with my moral values.

Any that disappointed you...
I think as a creative, some jobs can end up being disappointing because time frames and political constraints sometimes hinder the creative process.

The piece of work (ad/music video/ platform...) that still makes me jealous...
Honda's 'The Impossible Dream' anthem spot, it has so much soul, I wish I had the opportunity to do such a piece one day. Although it’s not really designed or much VFX just the pacing, it was such an inspiring piece that i want to, one day, do this iconic anthem piece that is so close to my sensibilities.


The creative project that changed my career...
Working on Katy Perry's 'Dark Horse' music video was a dream job, the style and the opportunity to bring my visual ideas was incredible and how it was perceived was an eye opener, the idea that with design you can reach so many people. I was the creative director on it and it was very design heavy and it was such an iconic piece that won multiple awards. It was the first piece in history that passed one billion views on youtube. Knowing that frames and designs i made were viewed by so many people across the globe really made me appreciate how far a creative vision can reach and how many people it can touch.


The work that I’m proudest of...
Again, it will be Katy Perry's 'Dark Horse' music video was a dream job. I am most proud of it because I knew that it reached so many people, as an artist that made me really proud.

I was involved in this and it makes me cringe...
As before, I see this as a craft, we bring art to a commissioned job, as long as I agree to take a job, I can't judge it. There were opportunities along the way to get involved in projects that were lucrative, but went against my moral fibre, so I never got involved in those. I’ve never done a project that goes against my values.

The recent project I was involved in that excited me the most...
Working on the 'Pepsi - Super Bowl' 2019 halftime show was a visually exciting project. Being involved with an iconic brand and an iconic event that has a great amount of reach, that has 100+ million people have their eyes stuck to it. It excites me to be able to put my creative vision to so many people.


Visit Izik's own website here.

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