Artist in Residence wrap-up: Jonah Gilbert

Back to overview

The incredibly talented digital sculptor Jonah Gilbert has just wrapped his “Mermaid Queen” project as part of our Artist in Residence program. Jonah’s weapon of choice is ZBrush for sculpting and poly-painting to vertex color. He is also a fan of “paint-over” renders so using Sketchfab presented a new way of working, and I think you’ll agree, he came up with a fantastic final sculpt:

After a busy four weeks sharing his workflow with our Sketchfab forum members, Johah had a chance to take a quick break so I could ask him about his experience.

Paul (Sketchfab): This was your first time using Sketchfab. What have been your impressions? How did you integrate it into your workflow?

Jonah: Using Sketchfab for the first time was super easy and intuitive! All the tools were straightforward and there are many great ways to enhance your project.  I think it’s great that Sketchfab gives users the opportunity to view the art in 3D. It is such a beneficial teaching tool because you can view textures, models in much more depth, and play with lighting to see forms clearly. I really enjoyed Sketchfab because it gives the observer more control in viewing 3D art and exploring models in much more creative ways.

For someone like myself who is working in toys and figures something like this is a dream come true as an artist and observer of art to be able to check out models real time. Being locked down to a 2D image is limiting in that you cant just enjoy a model from every angle. Integrating Sketchfab into my workflow gives me the opportunity to have people check out my model more thorough for critiques and suggestions past 2D screenshots. The fact that you can make your model private for temporary use for WIPs until you are done is awesome for me until I can update it with my final model to show. Just that extra layer will add an extra amount of critiques to gain more knowledge from. For toy and figure production I would like to use Sketchfab or even the VR option to recreate the same feeling when I buy or hold a toy or figure in person. The first thing I do is look all around the model so this is great to be able to do the same thing with Sketchfab.

Jonah's monitor set up with reference images during the sculpting phase.

Jonah’s monitor set up with reference images during the sculpting phase.

Paul: What’s next for you Jonah? Any big plans of projects coming up?

Jonah: My full time job at the moment is a Character Artist for Kingdom Death and we just had a successful Kickstarter that ended not too long ago. We have a ton of work to fulfill the promises to the Kickstarter backers so that is what I will be focusing on for the next couple years. I will be hard at work with the incredible Kingdom Death team working on more amazing characters and monsters for year to come so please keep an eye out! Besides that I plan on making more personal art on my downtime and filling up my Sketchfab gallery!

Jonah shares his

Jonah shares his “Spotlight” technique in ZBrush.

Paul: How do you foresee using Sketchfab in the future?

Jonah: I would like to put my Kingdom Death work and personal work in the galleries and I would like to possibly use Sketchfab in the future to showcase figures I would sell. This way people can have a better look at the figure before buying it. This is something I wish more people/websites would do because sometimes I will see just an image of the figure from a good angle, but when I receive it, it doesn’t look as good from other angles. I personally like to display my toys and would like them to look good from all angles on display. I could see Sketchfab being a very powerful tool for the general community in many ways. For me, it will be exciting to use it for my own figures and toys for people to see.

Paul: Thank you so much for your time Jonah and for sharing your fantastic work and some insider tips as part of your residency!

We wish Jonah the very best with his upcoming schedule. We’re not surprised to hear that he’ll be busy and we’re grateful for his time spent with us. Don’t forget to check out more of Jonah’s work here at Sketchfab.


About the author

Paul Chambers

Paul Chambers

Artist Evangelist & Community outreach at Sketchfab, freelance CG Generalist, render-farm tinkerer. Zelda worshipper.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    Related articles