Reading Room: A static scene for fun

I've slowly been gearing up to try to replace my current regular income doing freelance web work, with my original passion, 3D art. Here's a little partial scene I did yesterday and today. It should in theory run on very low spec hardware.

View in browser here:

Enjoy! I'll be posting some character work and animation soon too.


  • edited
    What sort of textures were you baking?

    It obviously depends on the game, but if I were trying to show off art for getting freelance jobs, I'd be aiming for the best-looking art that I could get while maintaining somewhat realistic real-time constraints. In that vein, for a lit environment piece, I'd quite strongly consider baking your light (or at least your ambient light to get some of the ao). It's so common that it absolutely wouldn't be "cheating", and having good, clean bakes that don't bleed in awkward spots can be tricky to get right. And it's pretty much a necessity if you're using fairly realistic textures and proportions elsewhere imo. (Obviously if a game had to use realtime, moving lights or environments, those are additional constraints per title; but as an art piece, I think the focus should always be on the visuals first, and that if you're working around specific constraints, to show creativity in how those are solved.)

    I find your materials look quite "plasticky", as if just about everything had a very similar roughness/metalness value. There are charts for looking up the reference values for real-world materials, though I'm not enough of an environment artist to recommend a specific one. :P (edit: I'm told this one's pretty good:

    I'd generally try to find ways to make your textures "your own". I find that there are many, many people who claim to be able to texture, and really just take textures from texture libraries and slap them in. This would be fine if it were a difficult or rare skill, but it isn't (and is extremely common in student work). I try to show more attention than that, by trying to pay attention to whether texel detail matches up between materials/objects, that dirt and decals appear in places that make sense and tell the story of the environment, and that the lighting conveys the mood of the narrative too.

    The way the camera currently moves with the mouse gave me motion-sickness, in case that's a concern. :P

    These are portfolios of two environment art buddies of mine, in case they're helpful (to see what they do well, and who some of your competition might be): (<-- South African, posted on MGSA earlier this year)
    Thanked by 1mattbenic
  • edited
    The way the camera currently moves with the mouse gave me motion-sickness, in case that's a concern.
    Haha, yeah :P ... I was trying to hide the fact that there's nothing going on beyond the edges.

    But yus, thanks for the feedback. I'm not quite at the nit-squishing point yet, still focusing nailing down workflows and getting a sense of things like GPU memory usage in game, and for my current test project, working with occlusion zones.

    What you can't tell from the posted example is that there's also a lot of wasted geometry in there, some that use way too many polygons, and some things that look quite terrible if you could see their back sides - i.e. with a free camera. Oh, and this is more apparent, but my UV map on the chairs got messed up.

    Re the textures/ao/lighting - it's all baked, and the materials are all unshaded, except for the floor (so that my blueberry dude can cast a shadow). Aaaand if I recall, maybe also the books and shelves and the staircase - I didn't bake those yet. Probably won't either - I'm moving on. I've attached the original non-baked non-Unity static render also if you wish to compare.

    I think the plastickiness you mention is probably just In Unity (and maybe pronounced in books and shelves). The original mats all have dedicated maps for roughness, normals, different specular setups etc.
    1920 x 1080 - 4M
    960 x 960 - 757K
Sign In or Register to comment.