`Meet Mat` is Back - The 3D Digital Painting Contest


Seong Mi Kim
by seongmoosae on 2 Apr 2022 for Rookie Awards 2022

An apocalyptic city after 2100. What would it be like if our earth became a huge desert after the severe effect of climate change?

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The warmer our cities become, the more people will lose their living places. Do we have an alternative place to call our home? 

Being conscious sometimes means more responsibilities. Especially this time, we need more responsibilities for our nature and our city getting warmer by climate change.

Through my project, I thought it was a good chance to bring more awareness about global warming to the world as a 3D environment artist.

Here is a brief summary of the process.


To make the office scene I wanted, I had to search for some office photos that were packed with computers and stuff, also that looked old and rusty that no one visits anymore.

Modeling & Layout

As you saw from the breakdown, It could be overwhelmed to build up the entire environment scene from the scratch. In my case, I, first, planned out the objects I need to model and where to put them. After modeling, I stacked the objects in a similar flow that they were stacked in the real world.  

Also, when I picked up the objects to model out, I chose things that I could see from my daily life to refer to the shape and texture from them.  This way, It helped me a lot to have my key objects done much faster.

Texturing & Look dev

During the process, I happened to run into a problem. The problem was that I couldn't find a proper texture source for my object. My Kermit doll. So I had a go for photographing it by myself and learned the texturing process from Youtube tutorials and Gumroad. 

I took some source images from the doll I have with my camera, A7M2. And adjusted contrast and brightness with photoshop.  And textured with Mari and Substance Painter.

Through the texturing stage, I became more getting into look-development. So I decided to take another shot for a different object. 

With a little bit of fur work, I could embody the worn strap of the abandoned watch and could capture the look.


When I pictured the images before working on my portfolio, I wanted them to make people feel a kind of Nostalgia for the old days. The old days that anybody can't go back.

So I thought it would be better to have the warmth of the sunlight from a glorious sunset by using Vray-Sun and Sky.

In this scene, It was a little bit hard to fix the lighting setup. So I tried out some different variants in black and white mode.

 For a dramatic effect of the fog, I chose the strong sunlight coming from the front-right side of the room by adding Vray Plain Light near the windows.

Rendering & Compositing

With 22 rendered passes including cryptomatte, there is nothing impossible to composite an image. 

Especially, in an environment scene, Z-depth and Cryptomatte are super important to control unwanted results or to make a more foggy, natural atmosphere. 

To make that happen, I had to be careful not to make mistakes while adjusting the rendering setup.

By separating the render layers and overriding material to cover everything except a specific object, It was possible to shorten the render time.


The programs used: Maya, Vray, Blender, Zbrush, Mari, Substance Painter, World Creator, Marvelous Designer, Nuke, Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and After Effects. 

Thank you :D

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