During the World Tour, he also talked about using his pencil to remember things as well as his admiration for Dutch Masters. Quite fascinating was also his positioning towards the use of references. If for commissioned work related to fantasy and concept art, he uses real life animals as references. However, every time he works on a personal project, he feels that the used references should come directly from him (photos made by him or by his friends). In this in-depth interview Ruan also talked about his plans to develop a story around the same female characters, which is also why they appear so often in his works.
Ruan Jia is originally from China and started working for an online game studio in China in 2001. He then moved to Canada in 2011. In 2013 he joined the ArenaNet team in Washington, USA and started working for 343 Industries on the Halo project in 2015.