Click Here to view all the amazing entries to Rookie Awards 2024
Sam Spicher - 2022 & 2023 Characters

Sam Spicher - 2022 & 2023 Characters

Sam Spicher
by SamS on 1 Jun 2023 for Rookie Awards 2023

I am an aspiring character artist for games finishing up my time at Gnomon - School of Visual Effects, Games, and Animation. These are some characters and creatures I've made over the past year!

22 694 6
Round of applause for our sponsors

Turtle Warrior

This Turtle Warrior is based on a 2D concept by artist Roman Lychkov. This character was my first character created as a student at Gnomon and first finished character in general!

In its current state this character is a high-poly sculpt which I created in Zbrush. I am responsible for all 3D aspects of this character including sculpting and texturing. Texturing was done with a combination of Zbrush poly-paint as well as some work in Substance Painter. The final render was done with Redshift for Maya.

Concept by Roman Lychov:

Other Renders:

Character pre-pose and texture:

I posed this character in Zbrush by masking and transforming sections of the body in the Transpose Master tool. I applied base colors as well as softer gradient colors using poly-paint. I find poly-paint great for getting soft transitions between colors before moving into Substance Painter.

Raven Sorceress

This character is based on a 2D concept by artist 魏琦 on ArtStation. She is the first character I've brought through the game pipeline and I had a ton of fun doing so!

I am responsible for all 3D aspects of this character. The Raven Sorceress was brought through a game-ready pipeline. I started by sculpting her in Zbrush. In this phase I also blocked in color using poly-paint as a start for when I would later texture in Substance Painter. She was retopoed using a combination of Zremesher in Zbrush and Quad Draw in Maya. Marmoset Toolbag was used to bake the high-poly sculpt onto the low-poly mesh and the baked maps were brought into Substance Painter, where I would complete the texturing process. The final renders for this character were done in Marmoset Toolbag.

Concept by 魏琦:

Other Renders:

High-poly sculpt:

Minor proportional differences are present between the high and low poly models. I saw fit that her feathers be larger and legs slightly longer once the process was complete, so these changes were made to the low-poly model. This was done after the baking and texturing process to ensure baking would go smoothly.

Breakdown Views:

Candle Man

This creature was quite a change of pace for me, but yet again, it was so much fun to work on. The candle man is an original concept, sculpted as well as poly-painted in Zbrush. The eyes and other texture detail were done in Substance Painter. The final render was done in Marmoset Toolbag.


After being given the prompt "Tortured Souls" by my Creature Sculpting teacher Jared Krichevsky, I searched the internet for reference and inspiration in order to come up with a horror themed character. My biggest inspiration for this creature ended up being the melting scene from Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Other Renders:

Sculpt and Poly-paint:

Mountaineer and His Messenger Owl

These characters are based on a 2D concept by artist Antoine LOÏER on ArtStation. Both have been created to be game-ready.

I am responsible for all 3D aspects of these characters. They went through the same game-ready pipeline as the Raven Sorceress, although, final renders for these were done in Unreal Engine 5 rather than Marmoset Toolbag. So, I did material setup in Unreal Engine as well.

Concept by Antoine LOÏER:

High-poly sculpts:

Breakdown Views:

Comments (6)