My name is Jonathan Xiaoran Wu, a 3D artist from San Francisco, United States. In 2014 I quit my job at a high tech company in Silicon Valley and began my Master of Fine Art program in Game Development. At the Academy of Art University, I studied level design and environment modeling for 3 years.
I am currently working for PUBG Corporation as an Environment Artist and helping them build photo-realistic environments for a new game in the PUBG Universe.
The concept of the model came from “Dragalia Lost.” It is a mobile game developed by Cygames and published by Nintendo. The 2D illustration of the game looks fantastic, while the 3D models in actual gameplay are relatively low-polyed. Therefore, I had this idea of modeling a 3D character according to the original illustration.
There are over 150+ characters in this game, and I picked Nefaria, an archer with an ancient Egyptian-style outfit. The silhouette and the outstanding “Cleopatra” outfits are the reason I chose her.
As an environment artist, I do not have much experience in characters. This project was a good chance for me to get familiar with the workflow of 3D character modeling.
I used Maya for modeling. The rigging and posing took me a long time to figure out (I only learned a little bit of rigging and animation at school).
The rest of the model is hundreds of small decoration pieces. I did not realize the amount of detail on the illustration from the beginning. It took me about 3 nights to finish modeling.
I usually prefer to use 3D-Coat for hand-painted textures. However, since I left the school I do not have a license for that, and Substance Painter has become my only option. Honestly, making hand-painted textures in Substance Painter is not easy at all. I had to turn off the lighting and show the albedo map only when I was working. All of the highlights and shadows were painted by hand.
I have been using Sketchfab since 2016, and this is the first project I ever uploaded to this website. Sketchfab is a powerful tool, and easy to get started with. This project only has the albedo maps, and the shading setting is “Shadeless.”
Sketchfab does not have an outline effect, so I used Justin T Philips’ method to create the outlines.
Thank you for reading and thanks to the Sketchfab team. It is a very good platform and community for 3D artists, and I will try to make more characters in the future.