The Down and Unders
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The Down and Unders

An aspiring group of musicians purchase an old kombi van. They embark on a road trip; touring across USA. They are... The Down and Unders

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Update - 16 Jan 2021

Final submission

Here are the renders for my submission :)

After my last review session with Christina, I went back to the drawing board to make major changes. I reworked the worn paint on several sections. This proved to be challenging.  I studied my reference image (see bottom) vigorously and tried to match it as best as I could; while also adding some personal touches such as the decals, band poster and black tape on passenger door handle. The last thing I added is a subtle detail on the roof showing that there was a roof rack present long ago.

Another challenging aspect of my design was the different variations of rust found on the Kombi. Studying my reference images, I was able to understand the reason for each variation.
• Rust on windows and roof vents where water sits  VS rust on bumpers where heat is greater.
• Rust found on parts closer to ground VS rust found on roof at grooves and higher spots.

My concept of an aspiring music band from California continues to exhibit further through the decals. Previously, all of my decals were simply flat images pasted around the Kombi. This time I've reworked each and every piece to be distinct through its materials.; varying between glossy and matte decals. I thoroughly enjoyed creating these decals. I exported the colour and roughness maps separately and tweaked them with procedurals and grunge maps n Substance Painter for a more interesting look.

It has a been a great journey working on this piece. I learned a lot about the possibilities of Substance Painter. Hope to create more in the future :)

Orthographic view

Additional renders

Channels (Captured from Viewport)

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Update - 29 Dec 2020


• Added decals on rear window (Self-created)

• Added band poster. I decided on a name. They're called The Down and Unders

• Tweaked glass shaders for light bulbs and windows

• Tweaked wearing details on glass and body.

TBC: I'm yet to work on the white painted metal and rubber parts. Also, I want to apply a dust/dirt pass.

Design wise, I feel that my kombi could use a little more work on the paint and wearing. Overall, I'm happy to achieve the desired look for my poster and decals. It's as if the band quickly made up a poster and stuck it on before performing at a camping ground. 

Awaiting review :)

Hi-Res renders

Quick turntable

Update - 12 Dec 2020


• Added windshield wiper markings, tyre markings.
• Currently working on wearing details.

The goal is half a mix of worn out and new-ish parts.
Decals to come in future update.

Note: The 3D Model is flipped as compared to my reference image.

Update - 12 Dec 2020


Basic blocking of materials and colours

Update - 12 Dec 2020

Additional detail references

From left to right:

• Dust accumulation from driving off-road
• Tyre marking - Showing manufacturer
• Windshield wiper marks
• Wearing on lamps

• Rust from water collecting at base of windows.
• Rust on bumper
• Paint peel-off and scraping

• Paint fading from sun exposure
• Decals on rear window showing locations visited by band.

Update - 12 Dec 2020

The Idea

To begin with this project, I decided to write a small back story, which would go on to inspire the look and feel of my design.

The  story follows an aspiring music band who  buy an old Kombi van and embark on a summer road trip across the country and stopping at multiple camping grounds to perform.


These are screencaps from a YouTube video I came across while researching:

I love how it display various wear and tear at multiple areas. Some of which has been addressed while others have been ignored. Also, this kombi van has a hidden history to it. It's been used as a school bus.

I've noted the details I wish to replicate and further details that I wish to include.

Reference Images

Additional detail

While revolving around the theme of music, the hippie vans from the 60s has given me ideas on decals. However, I do wish to deviate from it a little by creating something a little unique.

In my story, I imagine the band using the van as a backdrop when performing at camping grounds. I want to try creating a canvas or carboard that is taped onto the van at the blank side. It will depict the band's name.