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The Bi-Monthly ENVIRONMENT ART Challenge | January - February (64)

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  • zachagreg
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    zachagreg sublime tool
    @jntucson the shelf looks like an award or a shadow box of some kind. I don't think its a useful item but more of one placed for decoration. Alchemy award maybe? The lower pots might be alchemical still heads, they're usually configured with alembics to act as a refining container that takes in the steam generated.
  • Klawd
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    Klawd polycounter lvl 3
    PastyPict said:
    Also, does anyone know what this thing is on top of the book shelf?
    Also the thing on the table where the pots are? It looks kind of like the handles of an old fireplace bellow, but I can't tell.
    Top I think are both clear cast resin items (the circled one could be a butterfly):
    Image result for butterfly clear cast resin

     while the thing on the table could be alambic style container with some yellowish powder, and it is resting on a piece of paper:

  • zachagreg
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    zachagreg sublime tool
    WIP of Zbrush work, going through each piece on a base pass right now then going to start refining after everything looks cohesive.


  • pixelpatron
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    pixelpatron greentooth
    Some awesome stuff happening in here! Keep going!
  • pixelit_studio
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    pixelit_studio polycounter lvl 3

    Quick update about the project :)

  • zachagreg
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    zachagreg sublime tool
    @blot12345 Thanks! I use a combination of both Alphas and hand sculpting. I beat up the corners a lot with TrimSmoothBorder and then I hatch in ClayTubes with a square alpha with strokes that follow the length of the wood. Sometimes I'll start with a bigger brush and lower intensity if I want rougher wood but for these I just started smaller and did the hatches. I'll then go over them with TrimSmoothBorder again alternating Alt randomly on strokes to create different planes. Drag out some alphas for big damage and then cut in some of the bigger grooves with DamStandard. As well as pop edges by tracing with DamStandard set to Add.
  • GabrielGray
    Update for today: Made the chest on the corner table and one of the candles

  • engelmanna
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    engelmanna polycounter lvl 12
    Got a few more kitchen assets in: radiator, trash can and the table. The table, cabinets, and sink top all use the same material and use vertex color to control dirt patches and paint chipping. It's working fairly well, so I'll probably re-purpose it for the wall panels as well.

  • icegodofhungary
    I changed my approach to doing trims. Instead of making the trim first, guessing what I needed, I roughly blocked out the model and just used different color strips to get an idea of what I needed and how big the strips needed to be. This way helps a lot with texel density too as you're making it for a 1:1 size with the environment. I'm going to try to knock out some of the environment items with trims instead of unique sculpts. Trim made in Substance Designer.






    Looks really good. You're moving at a good pace as well.

    @laurens.tjong 
    Nice idea using the illustrative style to set your scene apart. Looking forward to more.

    No critiques so far. Sculpting looks good.

    I think the thing on the book shelf is the lower jaw bone and part of the skull of some exotic creature. I've stared at it a few times and that's the closest thing I can think of for the shape and volume. It kind of reminds me of Dishonored 2 where they have little taxidermy props around the environments. There's also 3 different types of stills in the scene. One by the window, one on a chest, and one on the table. Like others have said, it's probably meant for alchemy. You could replace some of them with beakers or antique chemistry sets if you wanted more variety.



  • BananaManyana

    Super quick high poly block out of the van I started tonight :)

  • kohg
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    kohg polycounter lvl 5
    @BananaManyana

    gotta love those wheels man...Looking forward to see your progress.
  • BananaManyana

    Some more details :)
  • kelly_caroline
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    kelly_caroline polycounter lvl 2
    Wow, everyone's work is coming along quite nicely!

    @zachagreg I love the base pass for the wood, and am looking forward to see what your final sculpt turns out like! I've noticed that on some of the solid wheels on the left hand side halfway up, the rivets come across quite square looking

    @kohg I think the red stripe at the top of the truck's bottom border could use a little refining, and also a gleam on the solar panels would be cool. Love how it's looking so far!

    I've started the base pass on the wood elements of the machine in zbrush. I think I've been staring at them for too long, are they starting to  look like aged wood planks? Are the edges too soft?

  • zachagreg
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    zachagreg sublime tool
    @kelly_caroline Im actually glad you noticed that. It's the difference between a rivet and a bolt on those. Portions that are plated and rivets do so with the integrity of the wood to hold them together where as the square ones are actually bolt heads with a nut ( not a threaded nut as you usually see it but one that has been joined with a piece of heated metal and flattened) these bolt heads sink straight through the wood as a means of holding. With some of them having metal plate washers to hold like the main vertical beam. I harped a bit on structural integrity on my piece and so far as its pet peeve of mine which is why I have some extraneous details.

    For your piece I'm loving the break up of form on your beams and wood. Definitely reading as wood throughout. A couple of areas I might suggest edit is the cross beam, the left vertical beam and the cross beam on the wheel cage on the right hand side. In the center of the main cross beam there is quite a heavy dip towards the center suggesting some wear there or a flaw in the wood. I would suggest either exemplifying that wear and tear there with increased damage or doing away with the downward bowing. Same with the verticals and right hand side one mentioned. There are a couple of areas where the wear is a bit exaggerated and comes across as wavy. Don't eliminate it just tone it down a tad.

    Edit:
    BIG CAVEAT to what I said, it whole-heartedly depends upon your vision for this. My intention for this is an in use, but used version of this crane thingy. If yours would be a version that is less in maintenance than your damage and wear would fit for that.
  • zachagreg
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    zachagreg sublime tool
    Double post sorry about that wanted to post a progress pic before heading to bed. :)

  • engelmanna
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    engelmanna polycounter lvl 12
    @kohg & @BananaManyana both of your trucks are looking great!

    @Alahyla are you doing the edges as the texture or is it a post process thing? You may want to try and see if you can't get some variation to the line work you have in your image.

    I've got some chairs and blinds in. So many assets, so little time. Given the amount of time remaining, I'm aiming to just get the kitchen area complete by the end of the challenge time, and then focus on the living room area afterwards.


  • saritarara
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    saritarara polycounter lvl 2
    Hello! This is my first time posting on the forum, so I apologize in advance if I goof something!

    So I started by blocking everything out and trying to get the bigger shapes and curves in there. I'm now going to start fine tuning the individual assets before I get into the weeds with details. I've never tackled something this intricate before, so this will definitely be a challenge for me. Any and all critique welcome!

  • Raybees
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    Raybees polycounter lvl 7

    Here Is My progress so far on the study, having lots of fun and still so much to do. Trying to keep it relatively low poly, still under 6000 right now so feeling pretty good.



    Was wondering if anyone knew what the sciencey tub thing in the back is? Also what did the spilled pot fall off of?  I can't make that guy out either.

    I'm loving everyone else's progress, we are kicking 2020's Butt!
  • MagicTurtle
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    MagicTurtle triangle
    Great stuff from everybody so far! Here's my update, I worked mainly on the walls and floor textures and the biggest props.
                                            Floor Texture                                                                                            Walls Texture

    @Raybees I made some research about alchemy tools to figure out what the thing near the windows is, but I could not find anything similar.
    I guess it could be some sort of stove to heat the big alembic on top?

    @Taas @kelly_caroline @zachagreg love your sculpting! can't wait to see some texturing!


  • FauntailJabuti
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    FauntailJabuti polycounter lvl 2
    Wow, super cool, great work guys!
  • Raybees
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    Raybees polycounter lvl 7
    @MagicTurtle Wow, those textures are looking great!!!! Really dig the bird skull lock on the crate also adds alot of flare can't wait to see the rest. Yea I'm thinking just some heating apparatus.

    @kohg and @pixelit_studio Great work!!! If any of you feel like modeling the interior of those badboys I would love to see that, very tiny space for a hotdog line, plus with the solar panel you can really design some cool looking stuff. XD
  • ScottHoneycutt
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    ScottHoneycutt polycounter lvl 10
    Jumping into this about ... 25 days late lol! But yeah, here's my quick blockout in Blender. I haven't done a full Unreal game environment in 5 years so this will be a refresher course for sure. 


  • Raybees
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    Raybees polycounter lvl 7
    @ScottHoneycutt I'm right there with you, haven't done a whole lot of modeling in the past few years. Welcome Back! Your proportions are looking pretty good although I'm thinking the table could be a bit wider and the boxes closest to our view should be less tall, they are pretty much perfect cubes in the reference. Can't wait to see this fleshed out, keep going!
  • engelmanna
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    engelmanna polycounter lvl 12
    @pixelit_studio wow, your work almost perfectly matches the concept. Amazing!
    @ScottHoneycutt welcome to the challenge, it's never too late to start. Block out is looking solid already.
    @MagicTurtle Your textures are coming along nicely. I especially like your wall texture. Is that all in substance designer?

    Worked on a few props in the boat environment. I only have a few more props left in the kitchen before the first pass is complete, and I can go back and refine some stuff.

  • PastyPict
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    PastyPict triangle
    Made this substance material for ground last week, but forgot to upload it. I imagine based on the floor, it's probably not very clean, maybe a bit muddy, but not fully settled on it. I spent probably too much time working on this instead of other assets, plus I'm Substance designer is not my strong suit, but if there is time, I might redo this material.
    Got some time this next couple days, so I hope to buckle down and crank out a higher output.


  • jntucson
    I’m probably going about this the hard way but I couldn’t think of another way but to model a modular stencil, boolean the difference into a plane then duplicate it to make up the window. 
  • wirrexx
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    wirrexx interpolator
    jntucson said:
    I’m probably going about this the hard way but I couldn’t think of another way but to model a modular stencil, boolean the difference into a plane then duplicate it to make up the window. 

    flat plane and use alpha on it.
  • Raybees
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    Raybees polycounter lvl 7
    @jntucson Alpha my friend, or you may find urself tearing your hair out.

    Update, Got a big chunk modeled, UVed and in engine, slapped some very fast textures on. The large weird heating thing I believe is a distiller going in to what I can only guess is a cooling tube, I changed the top of it to a bronze distiller piece, felt like it reads a little better.

  • jntucson
    I was never properly taught Alphas’s in school and it’s hard to find tutorials especially with a phrase of Alpha that means so many possibilities 
    Raybees said:
    @jntucson Alpha my friend, or you may find urself tearing your hair out.

    Update, Got a big chunk modeled, UVed and in engine, slapped some very fast textures on. The large weird heating thing I believe is a distiller going in to what I can only guess is a cooling tube, I changed the top of it to a bronze distiller piece, felt like it reads a little better.


  • Raybees
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    Raybees polycounter lvl 7
    @jntucson Here's a great tutorial, he goes over alphas when making the leaves.
  • Raybees
  • Raybees
  • zachagreg
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    zachagreg sublime tool
    So @jntucson an Alpha in any context is always going to refer back to the base component. That is a grayscale map/texture/image, whatever you want to call it, that is used to control the opacity of something. As long as you grasp that the rest comes easily it will always refer to that map. An alpha in Zbrush is just a grayscale map that controls the opacity, and thereby strength, of a brush. An alpha in unreal or any material is going to refer the opacity of that material, basically what is and is not masked out. Same thing in photoshop think of a clipping mask.

    So for search terms in the future use the software you need in your query as well as the specific job your are trying to do. Examples being Zbrush alpha brush creation, photoshop alpha channel creation, ue4 alpha masked material
  • ScottHoneycutt
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    ScottHoneycutt polycounter lvl 10
    @blot12345 - Thanks.
    @Raybees  - Thanks.

    Like others have mentioned, this scale of this one is tough. I decided to moved the table back down to the concept height after originally placing it at the height of the Unreal player. I'm guessing a shorter character works here. The reason I did is because it  felt super cramped in once I played it in Unreal. I want to make sure it feels like a game room, yet I want to preserve the nice layout of the concept. To compensate, I'm moving the candles off to the left side (with no symbol in the ground) and simplifying the pot tipped over on the bottom right next to the desk. just want it to feel more like you can walk through it.







  • Gustavo_Elliott
    Hello everyone! I apologize as I haven't posted yet but I have been working on this since January 5th. Nothing seen here is really final, it's all subject to much more iteration but I have been working diligently to bring this scene to where I want it to be. I hope you all like, everyone is doing a fantastic job & I am absolutely blown away by all of your work so far.

    - I would be happy to give advice & general tips for creating the window & center table patterns in Substance designer if anyone is having an especially hard time with it,  shoot me a pm. The center-table does'nt match ref perfectly but it's close enough for me honestly, I've put hella time into that so far & I still have to put some artsy engravings inside the inset shapes on the tabletop.

    - Today I am working on the bottles on the smaller bookshelf - modeling & texturing the bottles, then I will add the labels using a trim/decal sheet in a different material.
    @MagicTurtle & @Taas Your projects are looking really awesome in particular, super excited to see where you take this!

    @jntucson- I recommend using Substance designer or Photoshop to make the pattern if you can. I'm not good at Ps at all so I used Designer.





  • pixelit_studio
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    pixelit_studio polycounter lvl 3
    @blot12345 thanks :)  your project is going amazing too
  • tystnad
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    tystnad polycounter lvl 5

    @MagicTurtle May I ask you how you made the wall texture? Was it sculpted in Zbrush first? How did you manage to achieve such natural colour? Looking great, by the way.  :)


  • MagicTurtle
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    MagicTurtle triangle
    Did a few assets more. The geometric patterns on the tables gave me a hard time so I improvised a bit, I might change that later though, maybe by modeling the pattern and baking it to the plane instead of doing it in photoshop.

    @Raybees @blot12345 @Gustavo_Elliott @tystnad Thank you, and I apologize for the late reply. The material is made in substance designer.

    @Gustavo_Elliott I really like the texture of that table, reminds me of World of Warcraft for whatever reason! The pattern of the window is great too!

    @tystnad I  used a lot of references and worked on it until I was satisfied with the result, and I guess the lighting also help a lot.
    I can share the .sbs file if you are interested to look closely!
  • zachagreg
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    zachagreg sublime tool
    Finally getting to UVs on this thing. How are others planning on laying this guy out? I was just going to do a normal bake on the first UV set then layout everything assembled and do an AO and masked materials on the second that way I don't have to worry about texel density when throwing it into Unreal.

  • Raybees
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    Raybees polycounter lvl 7
    @Gustavo_Elliott Those windows are perfect dude!!! Except way too blue imo, I'd desaturate them a bit. That table is super clean also Great work my friend.

    @MagicTurtle Love your designs really ties everything together and adds story to this place.



    I am now leaving Modeling Metropolis and entering Texture Town. Happy to be where I am and super excited to start polishing everything up. Y'all have inspired the hell out of me. Keep it up.
  • icegodofhungary
    I started a new job so I haven't had much time to work on this. I made a chest though. I looked up medieval chests and noticed they have a lot of iron hardware on them. So I took some liberties with the concept. It's textured with its own trim. Not sure if the wood is reading well, it may be too dark and saturated.
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