Domes Of Hope

Tuesday, August 4th, 2015



Domes Of Hope

Here we have another collaboration piece. My second in a short period of time. After not doing collabs for a very very long time. Now I do enjoy the outcome of these projects and may do more in the future.

This time I had the pleasure to work with GTGraphics’s very own Tobias Roetsch. He’s also a pretty well known Scifi and Fantasy artist that enjoys some vast and grandiose environment vistas. He explained me his idea and I started to do work in Vue to created a serviceable plate. That includes the landscape and the design of the domes. While working in Vue we both talked about how to bring in a good composition. Then I rendered the material in several passes and combined it in Photoshop. After adding some detail, fx and textures I sent the Photoshop file over to Tobias.

Tobias did his magic with adding the city, additional landscape details and a very neat sunset atmosphere. Then it was my turn again with adding some more little details like the ships and some fine tuning. After that… we pretty much had it. I tried to play a little more with the overall colours but always ended up throwing my adjustments away. The atmosphere Tobias created works pretty much perfect.

Vue, Worldmachine, C4D, Photoshop – 6500px wide

Please check out more of Tobias’s work here:

GTGraphics.de
Artstation
Deviantart
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Regards

signed

Fallen Sanctuary

Thursday, July 2nd, 2015



Fallen Sanctuary

The best description for this one would be just two words: happy accident. I had a nice conversation with a fellow artist about 3d stuff, modeling and sculpting. We came to our current projects and I saw a screenshot of a model she worked on for an exercise. She had no further use for it and I asked if she could send me the model so I could play a little with it. I immediately had some fun with that model playing in Vue, which made clear that we got something nice there. So then we decided to do a collaboration piece.

I’m not a big collab artist since I have a very specific set of tools I work with. And combining that with the workflow of a fellow artist can get messy fast. Nonetheless we agreed to try it. I was able to find a good composition and a working scene very fast. It even surprised me how fast I had something that really worked. We decided to keep that and I started render out my usual load of plate material for Photoshop.

I started and combined the different plates, began with adding effects and details. Then I sent it over to my friend and she added her creative magic. She sent it back to me and I did finalizing touches. The result works really well and we’re both pretty happy how it turned out. What does it show? Well, not sure. But it could be some giant ancient mysterious alien ruins of sorts.

Vue, Worldmachine, ZBrush, Photoshop, 3500px wide

Find my colleague here…
Nora Nirvaluce on Behance
Nora Nirvaluce on Artstation

3d model fun render #1 // 3d model fun render #2

Quick Concept

Plate

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signed

Hunting Season

Tuesday, June 9th, 2015



Hunting Season

This scene doesn’t have a big backstory. I imagine it shows a military training exercise for fighter pilots on a desolate moon surface. A cat and mouse game between groups of fighters. Red vs Blue. Something like it. But ultimately I leave the interpretation the viewer. =)

This one is created for The Luminarium Art Collective for an exhibit release with the topic ‘depth’. Check it out HERE – While I admit that there are far more interesting interpretations of the topic than what I did for it, I still enjoy my work. I used the topic to play with a couple of things. First of all a slight depth of field effect. Secondly… planets! I always wanted to try myself on a picture that (even if unrealistic) has a lot of planets or moons in it. In this picture I wanted to use them to create the depth the topic demanded. And I think it works good enough to give a nice impression of a vast space and distance in general.

Created with Vue, C4D and Photoshop. For the terrain I used a worldmachine terrain that worked really nice when I played around with it. Often enough pictures come together while playing with some elements in 3d. Suddenly it clicks and you have a starting point. If you’re lucky then everything starts to fall into place as if it’s magic.

Vue, Worldmachine, C4D, Photoshop, 6000px wide

Plate

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Regards

signed

Come A Little Closer

Thursday, April 16th, 2015



Come A Little Closer (if you like)

Here we have a pic that is near and dear to my heart. Sometimes you work on a project and it’s your one and only baby for that time. When the project is done it’s time to move on and you kinda lose a bit of that passion you originally had for it. For this particular one that’s not the case. I still enjoy this one a lot. It’s certainly not perfect and has its flaws. But it has so many elements that I really enjoy when it comes to pictures.

The original idea for it came (like many ideas) in a sleepless night. You know, these nights where your brain can’t turn off and can’t stop think about stuff. The first spark and image I had in mind where simple shapes and these two specific walls on the left and right. Basic but interesting architecture. The rest fell into place as soon as I started the creation process. Some very extensive extra time went into the scifi complex in the background. The hero building in the far back spawned the idea to play with it and ultimately resulted in the creation of my (earlier released) “The Eternals” artwork. Yes, “Come A Little Closer” actually pre-dates “The Eternals“. So now it’s seriously about time to really go public with it.

Technically it’s Vue again. Basic vector modeling to create details for the front room and some specifics in the background. For the two rocks that are implemented in the walls I used a Worldmachine created terrain. Worldmachine added a lot of fantastic detail to make that part look petty awesome and realistic. The lady was done with DAZ Studio and refined in Photoshop. The outside complex contains heavily modified models I previously used and the far mountain background are photos.

Hope you enjoy this one as much as I do.

Vue – Worldmachine – Photoshop – 7000×5053

Creative Process Video Breakdown

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signed

Galactic Civilizations 3 Artwork – Pt 1

Monday, March 16th, 2015

Late 2014 I began to create a couple of event-screen images for Galactic Civilizations 3. A great game if you’re a fan of scifi exploration and strategy. Every now and then you encounter random events that force you to make a decision that will have a certain impact on your empire. These events needed some background images that sorta set the mood for the event. So I created 4 pictures for four of these events. Some of them were interesting tasks that forced me to go different routes than usual. Beside the usual Vue & Photoshop route I had to try myself a little with 3d modeling (which isn’t something I’m too firm with). It definitely paid off and I’m fairly happy with the results.

Example Event – ‘Worms’

“The location of our colony on this planet is apparently the prime hunting grounds for a species of massive, building sized worms. This is by far the most fertile land on the planet, so we don’t want to move if we don’t have to. But on the other hand, massive building sized worms. What are your orders?”

Galactic Civilizations 3 - Eventscreen 4

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Example Event – ‘Swamped’

“Upon landing on this world, you quickly realize that it has been inhabited before. Beneath the northern ice, explorers have found an ancient starship. They believe they can free the ship from the ice, but the resulting melt will flood much of the arable land on the planet, and the climate change will kill most of the unique native species.”

Galactic Civilizations 3 - Eventscreen 3

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Example Event – ‘Powerful Drug’

“The flowers of a specific plant on this planet are a powerful intoxicant when ground up or smoked or inserted various places. The drug provides an intense feeling of contentment to all those who consume it, although in a few cases people have been content to walk directly into powerful machinery.”

Galactic Civilizations 3 - Eventscreen 2

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Example Event – ‘Beautiful Sunsets’

“The atmosphere of this planet, thick with poisonous particulates, does have the side effect of causing beautiful, even spectacular sunsets, and word had spread through the galaxy of their beauty. A burgeoning tourist industry has developed, resulting in many coughing tourists, ignorant of the dangers of this planet. Your colonists are getting tired of stepping over their bodies.”

Galactic Civilizations 3 - Eventscreen 1

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These are the 4 projects I did in late 2014. It was a nice, productive and successful experience. I had to work out a couple of things in order to get my ideas done. New techniques and approaches. Luckily it all worked out and I hope the pics will help to build a neat world within the game.

Regards

signed

Memories Of Ascalon

Thursday, March 5th, 2015



Memories Of Ascalon

I don’t exactly remember when I started working on this one but I was big into playing Guild Wars 2 at the time. Hence the title and the inspiration for this one. Great game and exceptionally detailed world.

When I started this a long time ago (almost 2 years ago), I haven’t had done any big Fantasy projects in a while and focussed entirely on Scifi. So it was about time to expand a little and try something different. The outcome looks fine I guess. Played with terrains and a colourful daytime atmosphere. I’m actually very tempted to rework the colours to be a little more reduced but that’s the mood I’m in these days. Back then I found them to be right and therefor I will keep them.

Technically it’s business as usual. Vue to create a plate and Photoshop to refine, composite, overpaint and fix things.

Vue – Worldmachine – Photoshop – 6000×2553

Plate 1

Plate 2

Plate 3

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signed

The Eternals

Tuesday, October 7th, 2014



The Eternals

The original plates I rendered months before I finished this project. As usual I was playing around with some stuff in Vue when it suddenly clicked. I knew I had something that deserved a shot. I also haven’t done any bigger scifi cityscape pics in a while. So this was a motivation to start and detail out the scene in Vue. Due to my mashing together of all kinds of models I crossed some limitations in filesizes Vue was able to correctly save. So I had to work with two scene files for different parts of the picture. Mainly splitted between foreground and hero object detail and less important stuff to flesh out the scene along with background elements. So in the initial stage of composition and setting up the scene I created a lot of junk data to keep alive all alternatives I had in mind for the scene. I wanted this one to be big. Much like “Phoenix Rising” or “Gates To Elysium”. Scale and detail was important for this one. Once I got my atmosphere, composition and scene ready… rendering time! Then… silence.

I had the renders done and when I looked at them I realized how much time I would need to get this to a point I would be happy with. I instantly saw a lot of parts that needed a lot of attention. Plus the fact that, while I worked on the pic, new ideas popped up on how to refine certain details even more. So I left the renders for a couple of weeks. Of course I couldn’t leave these renders alone. I already invested some serious time! I had to do something with it. The Photoshop stage then had a lot of overpainting, atmosphere and lighting tuning. I also got back into Vue and added new stuff to the scene. Ships, buildings and additional detail. I didn’t want to overload the image with stuff but I fear I lost that battle (again!). At least there is a lot to discover, wouldn’t you agree?

When it comes to a story then there is none. The only thing is the title. I can imagine, that the citizens of that city look at these huge structures, as if they would still be there, even after they are long gone. So they started to call them ‘The Eternals’. What they do? I have no idea. But maybe it fires up the imagination of the viewers and you people come up with great ideas. =D

This picture is part of The Luminarium’s latest Exhibit: Illuminate VI. A fantastic source of inspiration that can be found here. It also features a neat interview with me, about myself and how I approach my work.

Quick shout out to Nicolas Bramke who helped with some pointers and ideas. Your input is always appreciated.

Vue – Photoshop – 6000x2553px

Photoshop Stage

Testrenders

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signed

Worlds We Know

Tuesday, September 9th, 2014



Worlds We Know

This one was actually finished a couple of months ago. I started it late 2013 I think and I don’t really know anymore why. I guess there was no specific reason other than experimenting with Vue. As usual a sudden, unexpected creative spark fired up and I continued to work on it.

As usual I started with a simple setup in mind and ended up with more detail than I actually wanted. Even though it’s still pretty reduced to the basics. I guess I also wanted to play more with what DAZ characters can do. For the pose of our lady I started with a preset and invested quite some extra time to work on smaller details. Also wanted to streamline the process of using DAZ characters in my work. So it’s ultimately a learning piece I guess. In between testrenders I even had one atmosphere that was much darker but still kind of cool looking. I stepped away from it because the darker atmosphere and the highlights it created didn’t point to the spots in the pic that I wanted the viewer to see. That’s when I decided to stay daytime with some popping colours.

Technically it’s Vue, DAZ Studio and Photoshop for this one. Business as usual, I worked out a plate in Vue for later detail work in Photoshop. A lot of fixing of elements, overpainting and creating mood. I also worked with some displacement mapping in Vue, to get some waves into the pool to suggest that our lovely lady is walking, instead of just standing there. That process turned out to be a little tricky, but again… learning by doing. The result works I think. I definitely wanted this to be colourful and popping. The result certainly is colourful and I’m not sure if it’s really my taste because I usually enjoy a more balanced colourpalette. That’s ok though. Trying new stuff and playing around can’t be wrong if something a little decent comes from it.

Vue – DAZ Studio – Photoshop – 5000x2283px

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signed

Nok Tiris

Monday, July 21st, 2014



Nok Tiris

In 2011 Jason Huls contacted me to create a picture for a shortfilm (Citizen In The Temple) he’s doing. He sent me the script and when I finished reading it I found it really good. So I picked out the descriptions for the scene and started something. As it normally turns out shortfilms, especially when worked on in spare time, take a while to get done. Everyone working on it has a real job to take care of as well and so it comes that often things get delayed a lot. Earlier this year I was organizing my harddrives and stumbled over the folder with the painting I did for the film. I still liked how it turned out but couldn’t stop myself from adding a little more detail. I contacted Jason asking if the project was still alive and sent him the refined version. The film is in its final production stages but still… good work needs time. =) I also saw that other artists did backgrounds as well… so the film should have some eyecandy for sure.

What we have here is sort of an establishing shot that reveals where most of the story is taking place. The megacity of Nok Tiris. Eolan, the Planet itself, is pretty much dead and deserted. The fundament for the picture was again created with Vue and refined/detailed/overpainted with Photoshop.

5000×2283 – Vue – Photoshop

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Regards

signed

Escape

Wednesday, June 11th, 2014



Escape

This one started out as a commission. I just had done and finished up another one for that client but with my attempts on a second one I didn’t manage to hit the right look that they wanted. We decided to leave it be and I asked if I could use one of my attempts for a personal approach. We agreed, parted ways and I carried on working on my idea since I felt that I was on to something with that picture.

It surely paid off when I look at the final version now. I always wanted to try myself on some kind of park area. A bright, peaceful and not too stressy picture setup with some nice depth. Not sure if I succeeded with the ‘stressy’ part but the depth works really well I think. Again there’s not much of a story behind it but I sorta imagine this huge park area as some sort of point of escape for all the people living in the city that is lurking in the background. It must be a great place to relax your mind and body a bit. The lady we see even got out of her shoes and walks around barefoot. So I’m sure it’s a great place to find peace of mind and such.

Technically it’s my usual Vue & Photoshop combo. The terrains were done with Worldmachine and the big rocks with Sculptris. Sculptris is a neat tool by the zBrush people. It’s basically a reduced version of zBrush and ideal for 3d sculpting beginners. It was more than sufficient for what I needed it for in this project. I also worked with a lot of masks to align the trees for the park. There went a lot of fine tuning into it. Mainly to get the positions, order and number right. In Photoshop the usual fixing, overpainting and additional texturing happened. Ultimately the overall result is satisfying. It’s not perfect but at some point you have to stop working on a picture. I, in fact, stopped working on it an hour ago. After a longer break where I considered the picture final. But you can always find something to tune and fix. I basically force myself to stop working on it by releasing it to the public. =D

Enough babble… I hope you like this one and enjoy the view!

6000×2550 – Vue – Worldmachine – Sculptris – Photoshop

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