Gleb Alexandrov is an award-winning artist with 100K+ following on Youtube. To live his life as an independent creator and to help others to get better at computer graphics, he founded the Creative Shrimp blog.
Now Gleb is one of the most popular Blender tutors. He supports the open-source movement and digital freedom. Spreads the coffee propaganda. Has a wife Lena and a kid Lev.
As a youngster, I played computer games a lot. Doom was the first game that made me think “Hell, Gleb, you should be doing this”. I thought that you can go all the way to the Martian mountains lingering in the background.
When I was 13, I tried creating something by myself for the first time. I started with the teapots in 3ds Max. It was devastating to not know the f#ck about computer graphics, and learn it by trial and error. Back then we had no internet. I thought, I would never be able to make anything.
So I got back to playing guitars in a rock band, filming video, drinking beer and doing other stuff that teenagers do in a post-soviet country. But I was dreaming about 3D nevertheless. The games like Myst and Half-Life were reminding me, that I should get back to teapots.
It was back-and-forth of taking a few steps forward, then losing interest, then moving again.
Luckily, after a couple of years of working the shitty jobs not related to CG, I made it. I got a job in a gamedev studio. It was fun and it was relevant. I was learning like crazy, because I was surrounded by people who knew their stuff. I thought “That’s the ticket!”.
But still, something didn’t felt right. I wanted to do my own stuff. My head was buzzing with the crazy ideas. I started to use the Friday evenings, then Saturday and Sunday evenings, then all other evenings to make my renders. Incidentally, I also started to watch Blender tutorials. This bunch of nerd friends seemed like a great company.
It all exploded at once.
I met my wife Lena at the office. A month later, we were laid off from the job.
We didn’t have any income for some time, and that was driving me and Lena nuts. But somehow I knew that I do the right thing. I was free to do it my way, without the gate keepers and bosses. The money pressure made me drink lots of coffee, to the point of extreme anxiety. Imagine Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.
The real shift took place when I downloaded Blender. One of the first renders won us the first place in the big CG competition. Yes, Gleb, we can! Then I started a blog to tell the world about it. I was so inspired that some days after, the Youtube channel was brought to life as well.
Imagine my surprise, when I saw 10, 20, 50 views under the tutorial that I uploaded to Youtube. And there were comments! And they were positive! That’s how it started.
Now I feel lucky to run the Creative Shrimp blog which is becoming more and more popular. It allows us to do what we love. Without you, guys, I wouldn’t make it.