How Greyscalegorilla Got Its Start – An Interview with Nick Campbell

December 23, 2015 - By 

Rob Garrott of interviews Nick about his inspiration to start An in depth look at his background, how he got his start and how that morphed into what Greyscalegorilla is today.

Garrott also interviews other industry professionals in this course. Here is a summary of the series:

Rob Garrott,’s video content manager, got the chance to sit down with nine influential artists to talk about their work, their inspirations, their tools, and the industry as a whole. The series kicks off with a conversation with Kris Pearn, storyboard artist for Sony Animation, and one of the people “drawing the movement” behind movies like Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. We also include interviews with the following industry pros:

  • Nick Campbell, motion graphics artist, photographer, and entrepreneur
  • Marc Potocnik, designer and 3d artist
  • Tim Clapham, VFX artist and educator
  • Alan Torres and Stephen Morton (Cantina Creative), design and visual effects artists
  • Aaron Limonick, concept artist
  • Mike Lowes, 3D animator and technical director
  • Lorcan O’Shanahan, motion graphics artist
  • Scott Keating, 3D artist and illustrator
  • Clear Menser, visual effects artist
  • John Robson, motion graphics artist and filmmaker
  • Grant Miller, VFX supervisor
  • Tomasz Opasinski, creative director and movie poster artist

You can watch the interview here on

A special thanks to Lynda and Rob Garrott for the interview.

  • That was a great interview Nick. Didn’t even notice the 47 minutes go by.

    I started visiting this site about 5-6 years ago and I remember in some of those earlier tutorials when you used to joke about not having a logo because you were not a business yet. Instead you used Gotham to type out Greyscalegorilla. Gotham way before it started trending as much as it is today.

    Your site has helped me grow from a scrubby 3D artist wanna-be to a decent-sh 3D artist wanna-be. We love you dude, God bless you.

    Johannesburg, South Africa.

  • Takehiko Joe Saitoh December 23, 2015 at 1:20 pm

    Alll that very interesting!!! ?’cause it was the topic that I continued being interested in all the time.?Nick, you are wonderful !!!

  • Nice, man! I´m a max user, but I need C4D and you helped me a lot.

    Keep up! greetings from BRAZIL

  • I enjoyed to watching this! Thank you for such a nice interview

  • Nick, now that was very very helpful. Just to know that the “let-go-and-get-help-from-someone-else” part is such a tough task for others too, that alone is already a great relieve. I just cannot understand why everyone is so reluctant to talk about these aspects that are necessary steps in ones carrier, especially so when you’re successful. I find going from “digital nerd” to “skilled wise manager” such hard step to take, it makes me wanna rethink my whole life over. The problem is that once you face that turning point, you sometimes actually don’t have a real choice, you just have to go for it or you might even have to give up what you’ve done to get to that point, meaning that sometimes one cannot decide to keep things the way they are even if you’re satisifed with how they are. Changes around us and within us do not allow settling for that comfortable situation over which we feel we have control. So I had been waiting for you to speak about the way you delt and are dealing with these changes ever since they occured. So, since you say that the tuts you watch now are related to improving as a business man, I’d like to ask you to keep up the GSG philosophy and share the new knowledge like you’ve always done. Consider that many of us started a carrier by following you when you started so we too have eveloved and are now facing problems that have nothing to do with mograph, expresso, etc. Yeah , that stuff is always cool, but there’s plenty out there and if I may be a little critical (but honest) I think that GSG’s curve in that sense – despite having such great teachers as Chris, Eyedesyn, etc.. – has not been steady. I feel that when you were “alone” GSG had a very design-oriented approach, things at the end of your tuts always looked cool and that’s what got me and many others – I think – to follow every single tut you made. For a beginner to be able to start learning the software and have a cool looking result at the end of each session is so rare. The 7up cherry tut, the one with the glass blocks folating around the text, the glowing striped sphere, the tiles that fall and create the logo once they reach the surface…man that kind of teaching/learning is nowhere to be found and the satisfaction to nail that stuff after having opened the software just a few times is priceless…Not even Tim Clapham’s classes lead to those immediate results. So what I’m trying to say here is, man…thanks for everything you’ve done so far and please – if you can and want – keep us informed about how you solve the problems you face now.
    This interview was top-notch and I hope you’ll go deeper into that, if you think it is appropriate of course.
    Have a great one!.

    I respect your explanation as to why you do not use your motto any longer…that too I think you should have explained before, it’s a good example of a good manager’s way of thinking, thus a great tip.

  • You’re passion is addictive Nick, learning and building your like around what you love – respect.


  • Great Nick! just great!
    I loved the part you say “I love learning” and that’s the answer I usually give every time anybody ask me “who are you and what do you do?”….learning and putting together what I learn.
    thanks again Nick and thanks to Rob Garrott, which I followed his tutorials on

  • Nick, Thank you for posting this… As a small business owner myself trying to build a career around doing things I love vs. what might simply pay the bills, I find myself thinking about all of these things you touched on in this interview. You seem to be doing it right and as I have been for many years, I’m taking notes!

    That need for “constant-learning” struck a chord with me too and it’s one I try to instill in everyone who works for me. Don’t be a sheep…

    Thank you Nick. Huge fan and student of all you are doing.


  • Nick – you and Rob are two of my favorite people in this world we live in. That interview was fantastic and absolutely inspiring. I can’t thank you enough for being so open. We’ve never met, but you’ve been a “mentor” to me for years, as has Rob. Congrats on your continued success!


  • This was a fantastic Interview. When I saw how long the video was I never thought I’d actually watch it all, but I found myself completely engaged and even smiling at the screen. This was useful and honest information all around! Great stuff, really – Thanks for sharing.

  • Great interview. Between Nick and Andrew Kramer I got enough education in AE and C4D to finally become good enough to start doing bigger and better gigs.

    I now work for Subway HQ creating videos for the eLearning Team.

    Thanks for doing this great interview, actually Nick and I have a lot in common, right down to the D-70 I brought when I had my first kid in 2000, I think I paid close to 2k for the whole set up.

    Keep up the great work and never stop learning, one thing I love about design it is always changing, if you take your eye off the ball for a second… your toast.

  • This was a great interview. I’ve always felt like we were a lot alike, and I always felt like one day I’d like to do what you were doing. By that point I was watching tutorials on things to see how people worked and what tricks I could glean from how other people did things. I also loved the 5SP competitions and I think I got honorable mention once, haha.

    I remember there was a time back in the day where you offered up your live stream to others. I was working on something at the time and couldn’t. But now, while I’ve gone on and started my own business doing client work, my push for 2016 is to put out all of the helpful scripts, tips and tricks (and maybe even a plugin) I’ve come up with to give back to the community, help others work faster and focus on animating instead of repetitive tasks, and to hopefully make additional income so I can work more on my own projects and bring more to the community.

    So this interview really helped to solidify that I’m going in the right direction, and it couldn’t have come at a more perfect time. Thanks for everything Nick!

  • Nick,

    Enjoyed the interview. Did not know you were an old 4-track guy. I had a Tascam Portastudio that I just passed on to my nephew. Analog is big with the kids these days. I liked what you said at the end about doing what you love may not necessarily be your full-time gig. I’m in health care and spend my free time in Cinema and other programs diligently learning new things. My son asked me the other day why I was learning about procedural textures. “Are you trying to get a better job?” I told him I just love learning new things.

    I met you at SIGGRAPH in Vancouver and you were informative and your enthusiasm was palpable. Thanks for keeping me inspired. Who knows, maybe I’ll end up on the “World’s Oldest Game Developer Path”. Thanks Nick!

  • Great interview! Such a nice, modest and honest guy you are Nick. Keep up the good work.



  • OMG… this is awesome….It really made me feel like i wasn’t the only one going through that shit. you are very modest and down to earth man…Thank you for this interview

  • thank you for such an open and honest account. Very inspiring!

  • You are the Champion!!!


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