Sketchbook: Stanislav Dudas

Hello there!

I'm currently working as SQA Lead, but every day after work I'm learning to be 3D artist, as painting & art was always my passion. I decided to create this sketchbook to keep track of my progress.

Any comments are welcome :)

To start with something fun, I finished famous Blender Guru "Donuts" tutorial, but I thought what it would be like to live on a donuts... decided to create my own low poly island.


  • Dust117
    Day 4:  I finished  "Anvil" tutorial by Blender Guru, amazing stuff.

    I decided that for each finished tutorial I will try apply it and create something new.

    Yesterday I started working on a sword. Made just quick sketch in PS. Based on that I started working on a Model, Unwrap & did some basic sculpting.

    Notes: Will have to check some sketching tutorials later on. I messed up a bit with sculpting, so baking Normal map didn't work out the best, next time need to be more careful around the gem area.

  • Dust117
    Day 7: I had to re-do the basic model a bit as I couldn't bake Normal map. Now Normal map seems ok. Started working on the Materials, looks fine. Handle needs some fixing. For that I need to learn Loop modifier, but for now in this version I will leave like this.

    To Do: Principal shader and I need to check more about PBR. Later on also Loop Modifier.

    Note for myself: Next time you learn something ... pick something easy, like a dice, or toothpick. Same as with Java, you start with "Hello World" but not with inheriting abstract classes....moron.

  • Dust117
    Day 14: Finished basic PBR tutorials & articles from Polycount, amazing stuff. Finished Blender Guru's "Principal shader tutorial".

    To Do: Blender Guru's Mars scene, I need to learn basics of rocks and grass, later on trees as well.

    Note to myself: Substance Painter, looks amazing. So much stuff to learn. Focus is on Environments & Props.
  • Dust117
    Day 18: Well for Blender Guru's Mars scene I need some Rocks, so I had to check some tutorials how to make rocks. It's a whole science. But with those tutorials I learned to Sculpt Rocks, Retopo - Squads (the hard and proper way) or triangles (automatic using Meshlab), combine Normal maps, Hide Seams with Clone brush (Texture Painting), Surface imperfections & import to blender from another file (Append). It's definitely not perfect but now as I can easily make some rocks hopefully I can work on the Mars rocky scene.

    To Do: Blender Guru's Mars scene. Micro-displacement, Blender 2.8.

    Note: 250 Triangles. It's a masterpiece rock.

  • Dust117
    Day 26: Finished Blender guru's Mars Scene tutorial. Modified it a bit so it looks like desert, let's call it "Artist who fell in love with CG rocks". Took a while but I learned so much. Whole scene is made up with 3 rocks, smallest rocks 250 triangles, medium 2500 and few bigger ones with 5000, no texture, just normal map. Render time was quite good, about 5 min.

    To Do: I really need to learn Substance painter, painting in Blender is quite painful. But for now postponing as first I want to improve sketching a bit.

    Note: Still so much to learn.

  • Dust117
    Day 35: During week I made a quick draft of a Runestone, during weekend I made a draft of that rune in PS and tried multiple different ways how to sculpt it. I learned how to create and learn custom brushes for sculpting, dynamic topology etc. For render I used high poly mesh and post processing done in PS. Finally I found a way how to change colors on edges, one way is to use ambient occlusion with backward faces, other way to use Pointless attribute. 

    To Do: Grass, Trees. 

    Note: Substance painter will have to wait a bit, quite a long tutorial, hard to focus on it after work. Sketching all the time to improve as well.

  • Dust117
    Day 41: Last week I spent most of the time exploring more about creating CG nature, mostly working on creating Grass using particles, Trees using Blender modular add-on, Procedural rocks & rock generators. Also updated PS to have symmetry tool, it's so cool.

    To Do: Substance Painter Introduction.

    Note: Prepared kind of learning schedule + backlog, determined that for whatever else I want to do, proper way to texture objects is essential. After finishing Substance Painter Introduction will try to create some concept weapon from scratch.

  • Dust117
    Day 55: Last few weeks I was mostly learning basic workflow in Substance Painter & implementing it to my workflow together with Blender. Did a couple of very good tutorials and as a result to apply what I learned I created a basic Military knife from a picture.

    Next to do: Hammer. I have an idea of a cool battle hammer for quite a while, it's time to make a basic sketch & start working on it.

    Note: I need to buy better tablet, sketching on one place and looking somewhere else is kinda messy.

  • Dust117
    Day 62: Made a quick sketch of a two-hand battle hammer. I had to use paper because doing it on that **** tablet would take like 4x more time. There will be green energy gem in the middle. The hammer has special skills of bringing nature back to life, so I will prepare a small environment in a final render. Managed to make basic low poly model up to 5k triangles, prepared High poly meshes & separated them by groups & materials so it's ready to be exported to SP. Maybe I will sculpt the hammer head a bit as it's supposed to be made of stone, the rest is hard Iron. 

    Next To Do: Sculpt more details & paint the hammer. 

    Note: Spent whole weekend figuring out the structure for the project & meshes so I can export it to Substance, but luckily it's ready. I can play with details now. I will probably buy Wacom Cintiq 16, reviews looks OK. 

  • Dust117
    Day 65: Finished Texturing in PS and SP.

    Next to do: Flowers, Grass for environment.

    Notes: Few lessons learned:
    - Poor design - poor result (found myself struggling as I didn't add details to sketch & colors)
    - Stone - sculpt, then retopo (next time)
    - Low poly mesh - Bevel - there are some hard sharp edges which could be avoided
    - Texturing - use more details next time also prepare alphas in Inkscape f.e.
    Result looks not as bad as expected, but can be improved. I will add small environment to improve the final render.

  • Dust117
    Day 70: Learned how to make procedural flowers.

    Next to do: Sketching. Office Scene. New & Broken.

    Note: Following weeks I will be traveling a lot, then I want to divide my focus on 2D and 3D. Daily Sketches & meanwhile working on some environment scene in 3D.

  • Dust117
    Day 108: I took a small detour - bought Wacom Cintiq, so currently investing time to learn basics of digital painting, concept art, stylized art. I will post some better results here, then continue on 3d, creating my own designs.

    Also meanwhile learning Houdini, interesting approach for modelling.
  • Dust117
    Day 121: Later on I will return to concept art, it's fun but takes too much time. I will create some concepts because I want to have some pieces in portfolio which are my own ideas, but for now I will probably focus more on Houdini procedural modeling.

    Meanwhile I have finished Sci-fi rifle in Houdini, looks pretty good in my opinion, and I like the procedural approach. Then I exported .obj to substance, finished there and rendered in Blender Cycles.
    Modeled: Houdini
    Textured: Substance Painter
    Rendered: Blender (Cycles)
    Post processing: Photoshop
    Poly-count: 3252

    Note: I quit my job to have a bit more time on 3d modeling, but in couple months I will have to find something back in Slovakia. So for next 2 months I need to focus as much as possible on Modeling, by the end of September start building portfolio.

    Next To Do: Houdini Tutorials.

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