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Art Spotlight: Spaceship Vigilant A-620

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About me

Hi Sketchfab! My name is Vincent Fondevila-Vidal. I’m a 3D Artist at Atomic Digital Design in Paris. I’m passionate about 3D modeling, rendering and I’m proud to have made it my job.

Why a spaceship?

I have always been passionate about the universe of Space Operas, particularly Star Wars. I love video games that take place in space: such as No Man’s Sky, Star Citizen, the X series, Elite Dangerous, etc. And what I like even more in science fiction is when it’s a little apocalyptic. The choice was quickly made: I had to model a spaceship that looked both futuristic and at the same time a little worn by time or by space wars.

Creation process

The first thing to do was to find as many references as possible to create my spaceship. For that, there’s nothing like a little research on Pinterest or ArtStation to be inundated with references of all kinds. The second step was to do some drawn research to determine the overall shape of the spaceship (unfortunately, I no longer have this work as I modeled this spaceship quite long ago).

spaceship moodboard

Modeling and UVs

I modeled this spaceship during my transition period between 3ds Max and Blender; I started to model it in 3ds Max and then I finished it in Blender. I divided the spaceship into multiple parts: the body of the spaceship, the wings, the engine, the cannons, and the cockpit are the main parts. The concept was clear, so it was mostly about following the plan piece-by-piece until the ship was finished. For the cockpit, I got inspired by the Star Wars X-Wing cockpit and I added some personal details.

Then I unwrapped each part of the spaceship in such a way as to maintain, as much as possible, the overall quality of each part. In particular, I divided the cockpit into four distinct parts to keep a balance between the exterior and the interior in terms of quality. I manually packed the UVs so that I could easily find my way around and place the various writings on the ship.

Texturing and rendering

For the texturing part, I used Substance Painter and Photoshop. I started by creating different alpha maps in Photoshop with the name of the spaceship and the different writings on the wings; I added them into the cockpit and onto the body of the spaceship. In Substance Painter, I mainly used fill layers with masks and generators for the overall look of the spaceship’s body. I added an emissive map for the jet engine and some of the buttons both inside and outside the cockpit. The most important thing was to keep an overall consistency between the style of the modeling and the texturing.

spaceship texture

Then I did some renders with Blender EEVEE to see how my spaceship looked:

Sketchfab setup

Before exporting my ship, I made a plane with an alpha map for the ground to customize the shadows, metallic, and roughness. I imported my spaceship into Sketchfab and applied the textures.

In my opinion, there are three essential elements to obtain a quality 3D model:

  • The lighting: I first opted for the “Industrial Room” environment map to keep a Sci-Fi aspect. Then I added two spot lights into the ship’s reactors to give a molten metal look.
  • The post-processing:
  • An adapted background color:

Thank you for reading

You can also find me on ArtStation and Instagram.

About the author

Vincent Fondevila-Vidal

3D Artist



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