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Kolobok
Interview Aiwan's for the site Shakin.ru 2009г.

on 24 January 2009
by Aiwan print the content item
in Articles > This interesting!
 9.5 - 2 votes -

Aiwan, Ivan MantsurovMikhail: Hi, Ivan! Tell me please something about yourself, your work, your hobbies, about the weather in Nadim?

Aiwan: Hi. What can I tell about myself? I’m well over thirty, a man of family with a strange hobby - nightly I paint funny faces. I work in one of divisions of Gazprom, I am fire engine driver. One month I live and work at a compressor station – a place, where natural gas is stripped and treated. To be more precise, I live in a small village near to this station, with a beautiful name “Zapolyarniy” (Polar region). The village and the compressor station are placed right on the bolder of the polar circle. That’s where the name comes from. And one month I spend at home. It’s named work under a rotation system.

My free time I spend sleeping, taking sports and creating my paintings. In the evening I often play table tennis. It’s my hobby since the last spring, when I realized that I spend too much time sitting in front of a computer screen. I don’t think, I can become a great tennis player, but I enjoy the process. I have household duties of course, as well as family, friends. Just as everyone. The weather is as in every other subpolar town. Nine months we have winter, the rest is for summer. The winter is cold, the summer stuffy and hot, with a lot of mosquitoes. It’s dark the whole winter long – polar night, the whole summer is polar day. I was born in Nadim, I like frost, snow, my tows and don’t want to live anywhere else.

Mikhail: Are you professionally educated painter or a painter by birth?

Aiwan: No. I have no professional education. My best achievement is a post of a painter in the editorial board in a pioneer camp. At school I also painted funny caricatures in exercise books and then made them move combining several pictures together. Just as turning the leaves of a book. Several pictures collected together make animation. So, you can hardly call me a painter in the full sense of the word. First time I even became confused when I was called so in the interne. In my signature I often write the following phrase: “I have a funny knack for painting…”. It reflects my abilities in a full and in a figurative sense. (I imagine astonishment of my relatives and familiars, if they get to know, that I create smileys and that I’m called a painter for it)

Mikhail: Tell me please how did the idea to create a site about koloboks come to your head? This subject seems to be a little strange, but you succeed to make a popular site and to create a community of kolobok fans.

Aiwan: There was no idea, the site was created spontaneously, nearly accidentally. Firstly I painted koloboks for my forum. The life of koloboks began, when painted smileys became not enough for me. I began to paint for myself. I thought neither of sites, nor of packets, pagers or interview. I simply did what I liked and did it for myself. When I have painted a lot and there were dozens of smileys, they have outgrown a simple forum. I had to make a place to publish them as archive and to show them in a gallery. It resulted in what you can see on my site now.

A community of kolobok fans was formed also quickly. Many of them I know by name, first of all those, who comment my works or works of other painters, targeting my creative impulses. The organization of the forum became easier. Now we communicate speaking all languages of the world. But I want the site to become more popular. I work on it, I want people not only to come once a year to download archives, but also to stay by me collecting their favorite koloboks on one page for using them. It will be possible in the new version of the site, which is nearly completed. This will we a mirror version on two languages. I hope, that I’m moving in the right direction, less than half of all visitors speak Russian, you know. After having concluded the agreement with ICQ I have more foreign traffic.

Mikhail: Everybody knows your koloboks, they are in ICQ, QIP, Miranda, Mail.ru agent and many other messengers, as well as on many sites, blogs and forums. What do you think is the reason of such a big popularity?

Aiwan: It’s a difficult questions. There are a lot of things in the world, that we can’t understand. If we don’t know the answer on this or that questions, which is beyond other perception, we try to invent a wise definition using logical conclusions, scientific attitude and other drools. And I use in such cases the word “magic”. Well, the way how koloboks come to the world is magic! I don’t know hoe, but koloboks bring positive emotions, just as koloboks formerly. Everybody knows, that a laughing, cheerful and charming person has more chances to be liked than a gloomy and malicious one. We instinctively turn to good, positive people, which energize us. And all koloboks are funny, kind, cheerful and charming, express emotions and cheerfulness. It seems to be the main secret of their success.

Mikhail: How do you succeed to express emotions and movements so well? They just energize us with their optimism.

Aiwan: As I’ve already said, this question is beyond my perception. But I know some components of this process. The first one is of course good mood. My works reflect my emotional state. But I don't know how it happens. The second one is idea. Without an idea kolobok is faceless and empty, it has no soul. A good idea is like aphorism – fruity, laconic, clear. It has a deep meaning in it. And the third one is much time and assiduity. My last work was made in six versions, which I painted three days long. And I chose the last one – the seventh. So, this were three components of a good smiley: mood, idea, a lot of efforts and a little bit talent. Who is interested in it can try it. He or she has only to add it all together and the kolobok is ready! But jokes aside, I must inform those, who still don’t know it, that there are no special programs for creation of koloboks. Everything you see id painted pixel by pixel, it means point by point. You must take a new layer, open a pencil in the editor, choose color and paint a new picture pixel by pixel. From pictures I make frames, from frames – koloboks. It’s simple.

Mikhail: Ivan, what do you think, how smileys will be developed further? Have you any ideas how to create new koloboks?

Aiwan: It’s difficult to say, in which direction smileys can be developed technically, it depends on which formats will become standard in the future. I’m sure that a scale of colors will be changed. GIF uses now 256 colors in the palette. It’s not enough for the future. Many modern smileys are made in PNG and JPG. There is everything OK with color in these formats, but they don’t support animation. The thing of the future are 32-bit animated smileys. I can’t say in which format. FLASH is still too complicated to be used widely. Что бы он стал заменой GIF надо что-то предпринять или создать условия. The new version of GIF may appear (it’s high time!). I don’t know. If not taking the technical aspect into account, I’m sure, smileys won’t become static in the future, they will be animated, 3-D and positive. And everyone will call them koloboks (it’s a joke). Kolobok is actually one of development directions of a graphic smiley. May be it will be with some sounds. It seems to be real to me. Let’s wait and see.

According to my plans concerning koloboks I can't say anything interesting. I hope, that I will have more time for painting and not administrating this year, that there will be less organizational actions than in the previous year. It takes a lot of time and energy. The main target I have for today is the new version of the site, that will allow to support all codes, to place files and articles more conveniently. Now I spend half an hour a day deleting comments from foreigners written in Roman type. After this, I want to finish the whole packet of Mini koloboks and a set of Big works. These sets lack basic emotions. And I’ll try to do away with all obligations to corporations. Cooperation with big companies has brought me nothing but tiredness and disappointment. If I breathe freely from any obligations and pressure, it will be better for everyone. I understood, that it is easier and much more convenient for me to offer works, which are already one, than to dance to tune of those, who can hardly imagine how difficult it is to create a new kolobok from nothing. These are all my great plans for the future!

Mikhail: Thank you very much for your answers and for wonderful koloboks!

Aiwan: My pleasure! Visit us, we are always glad to see you!

Questions were asked by Mikhail.
Interview for the site Shakin.ru 2009г.

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