First project completed for 2020! I’m excited to finally get this one wrapped up and done. This piece originally started back in December of 2018 as a last minute project to end the year on but 14 months later it has been through a lot of changes.
Two years ago I was still developing and working on my 3D skills so at the time I decided to recreate this wonderful concept piece by James McDonald. Which was subsequently used as concept art for Z2Live’s mobile game, Battle Nations.
This project was intended to be a quick build, focusing on practicing proportions and scale. So like with every project, the first thing I did was gather lots of reference. At first I wanted to go with realistic PBR materials with stylized proportions.
However that experiment lead me to the overall project looking off. I can’t put my finger on what exactly was causing it but I knew I had to go back to the drawing board.
No matter how many times I adjusted the roughness or materials it just didn’t feel right. But by this time it had roughly been 5 months of development, with just an hour or two over the course of a weekend to work on this. So by August, I scrapped what I had and decided to create a small platform and a texture sample first. Which after a while of experimenting it got me pointing in the right general direction.
Then between the months of August and November I UV’d and experimented with roughness and metal values. Eventually I ended up dropping them all together and just kept to a Diffuse and Normal Map. During this time I was still only working a few hours on the weekend. So I think the five day break from it and continuously coming back to it on the weekend with fresh eyes helped a little bit with its direction.
By the beginning of January 2020 I had a little more accomplished and was almost done. But it needed a little more “umph” to finally wrap it up.
So the rest of January was dedicated to polish and knocking out a few extra props. Which was well worth the effort and gave this project the final push it needed. I ended up adjusting the color values and bumping up the shadows to really make the highlights and darks pop. Then on a whim, I went ahead a created a play-blast out of Marmoset Toolbag 3 to share on twitter for feedback. Which people seemed to love!
By far the highest interaction I have ever gotten with a piece and I am quite proud of that. Getting almost 2,000 views! What a concept! I was probably lucky and likely just timed my post very well but I’m still grateful for the love and support I got from this piece.
I’m very happy with this project and how it turned out and am more than ecstatic to finally cross it off my “To-Do List”. You can check out even more renders on my portfolio at https://www.artstation.com/austenseeberg. Thank you for reading this far, hoped you liked it!