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The Quarterly CHARACTER ART Challenge | October - December

ngon master
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Alemja ngon master

Welcome to the Quarterly Character Art Challenge!

New concepts will be chosen at the start of January 2021
Previous Challenge Thread

How it works
  • Every new challenge, 3 Character Concepts will be provided
  • Pick one concept to work on for the duration of the challenge and post your progress here!
  • Complete a 3D game res model of your chosen concept
  • Help other artists grow! When you post an update, also leave a critique for someone else. Share knowledge you have learned
  • There are no software restrictions; you're welcome to use as little, or as many different software packages as you like.
  • There are no polygon or texture restrictions, it can be a 3,000 triangle hand painted model or a 100,000 triangle current gen model. Just make sure the final result is a game model, not a sculpt!
  • You are welcome to cross post on different sites (Artstation, Facebook, Discord etc.) for additional feedback
  • Before starting your character, break down the concept and plan your work accordingly. Being able to effectively estimate how long it will take to complete a project is an important skill, especially for freelance artists.
  • Your final presentation should be posed and rendered in any real time engine. (Marmoset, UE4, Unity, etc.)
  • Don't be afraid to ask questions, but don't hesitate to find the answer on your own - chances are, the answer to your problem has already been answered within these forums
  • If you feel anything should be modified or added to these guidelines, please let me know!


Please credit and link to the artists when posting on other sites!

Prince of Darkness by Stanislav Galai

blade nare by Q - peng

Vampire Knight. by Ilya Bodaykin

How concepts are chosen:
  • Trying to keep it consistently one masculine character, one feminine and one other non-human (robot, creature, humanoid, etc)
  • Trying to keep the 3 concepts look like they are part of a theme or could fit in similar universe.
  • Concepts must be full body and clearly drawn. There shouldn't be a lot of guesswork on what the details or proportions are. Turnarounds are a good thing to have, but not required
  • Concepts shouldn't be too complex or too simple to allow people to get them done in the time-frame while also finding something interesting and giving a challenge.
  • Must be able to link back to the original source artist to they can be properly credited, places like Pinterest can lead to link rot. If I cannot find the source or original artist, the art will not be used
  • If you are a concept artist and want your concept removed or want to create a concept for a future challenge please feel free to contact me.
  • If you have any suggestions of themes you would like to see in the future, send me a message!


  • jod13
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    jod13 node
    Spooky! Very thematic 
  • TheFear
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    TheFear polycounter lvl 7
    Howdy all,

    Here's my stab at this challenge. I'm working on the Prince of Darkness concept (totally wicked looking design, nice one Stanislav!). I've roughed together a quick board of ideas/textures I want to capture in my version, thinking of taking the surfacing toward a more surreal/hyper-real look, unsure how it'll go but that's the point I guess. Starting with the face (definitely not a strong suit of mine) - feedback very welcome!

  • Alemja
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    Alemja ngon master
    @TheFear Nice mood board! I think the face is looking great so far
  • ultimategoddess
    Started quick blockin! Excited to be a part of this,  
  • TheFear
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    TheFear polycounter lvl 7
    Quick little progress update - I got the hair and facial hair just blocked in to test and made a lot of adjustments to the face. Gonna leave it there until I retopo and then adjust for the final detail sculpt (well, thats the plan thus far :P).

    Blocking the remaining bits now. Really fumbling with blocking in Zbrush (definitely more of a Maya guy), but that's the point of this for me so getting their slowly.

  • ultimategoddess
    Nice progress dude, its looking sharp so far!
  • Nixak
    Hello everyone! I wanted to try and join in the challenge. Decided to go with the cool Vampire knight concept!

    I gathered some starting materials as instructed. (used TheFears post as reference).
    I will be working mainly in Blender and texture in Substance. Have not decided game engine where i will import it, yet.
  • franky993
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    franky993 polycounter lvl 8
    Hello everyone,
    I will also be joining this contest and I'm going to give the Ancient vampire knight a try :).
    This is my reference so far.

    I will try to create and finish the blockout this week and detail it piece by piece in the coming weeks.
    The creation of the mesh will be in ZBrush and texturing will probably be done in either substance or quixel. I have not decided on the engine yet, but I'm thinking it might be UE4.

    Good luck and have fun everyone, I'm curious to see what everyones creations will look like :).
  • JosephIV
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    JosephIV triangle
    Hi everyone, here are my super fast (?) low-poly (?) modeling, texturing and rigging game character rendered in Unity:


    My original idea is to try all the challenge's characters. The first, the fastest I can do it, the second (the vampire knight) in a more worked way and a more standard game quality; and the last, the "Blade Nare" girl, in the more realistic and AAAAA quality that I can...

    Well, The first model, the Prince of Darkness", I think I fail, too work time and too poor quality:
    3526 triangles and 1768 faces for the character and 392 tris for the sword. Modeled and painted in Blender from a cube in the old poly-mesh way.
    All the project take me about 9 hours and a half from scratch to Unity play recording. Its take me more of half of the total time to hand paint the diffuse texture and it's too far away from an acceptable paint work. Normal map, metal and emission texture from diffuse with Gimp work. Rigged and extracted animation from Mixamo. The more simple presentation in Unity (Universal render...  what?).
    I think the modeling could has been more defined and optimized but anyway it's done.
    I'll try the next level.

    Some screenshots:

    Critics are welcome.

  • DPete3D
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    DPete3D polycounter lvl 3
    Started some progress on her. Just trying to block everything out without going into too much detail.

  • Nixak
    Progress update. 

    Next i will work on the wing hand. i will refine 2 claw fingers and wing "fingers" like it has already. 
    Left arm that is armored i will leave pretty simple just making major masses so i can model armor on top of it. 
    Same with the legs.
    i will leave the head for last it needs more roughness and sharpness.
    Feedback is Welcome! :)
  • Nico0307
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    Nico0307 polycounter lvl 4
    Oh  man I always wanted to participate in one of these so badly.. So here it goes.

    I will be doing feedback starting with my next post. I hope that's ok!

    I picked the second concept "blade nare" by Q -peng.
    First I made notes on whatever stood out to me when I looked at the concept.
    I also made a list of steps so I wouldn't try to do everything and nothing at the same time.
    Of course I won't be finishing this part by part though but always doing the blockouts first, highpoly second, painting baking third
    I will have specific reference sheets for every part that I tackle which I might share with the specific parts progress.
    My hopes are that I can finetune my process and learn so much, while being inspired by the rest of you guys

    .....and actually show my work instead of only sculpting for myself

    My next update will show a general blockout of the anatomy and face

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