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Behind the Scenes: Sunset at Casa Vermelha


The Good News First

This artwork is available as an ultrawide 5k desktop wallpaper:

The Artist

Marko Por, 30 years old, Slovenia. illustrator, animator, surfer, nomad.

I was never a "3D guy." In fact, this is my first artwork made with 3D software. And I like it, it's a powerful tool! I have a background in digital painting, illustration and graphic design. 3D always seemed a bit too technical to me. But lately, I've gotten a bit bored with 2D artwork. I wanted to create something stunning, with sharp details, clean lines and accurate shadows. Something imaginary, but believable. So, I've stumbled upon Blender.

I tend to keep my personal creative work (such as this one) and my creative business separated. This gives me immense creative freedom. I'm using Blender these days. It was painting last year. And it might be pottery the next. Or maybe I'll mix it all together. At the end of the day, it's about extracting images from my head and showing them around - look, here, this is how I see the world.

The Inspiration

It all started with a sketch. I've previously done several other house drawings, so I started to visualize this one in 3D. I knew I wanted to keep the "organic," artsy feel to it, so the materials would have to look natural.

I keep a folder on my drive called "Art Worth Saving", where I've kept an image of a 3D-Daft Punk-characters themed image, where the materials are clay/rubberish. I've also always liked lowpoly aesthetics and overall visually stylized worlds.

Oh, and a word about the title - “Casa Vermelha” means Red House in Portuguese. I'm a frequent visitor to and a big fan of Portugal.

The Process


Blender 2.79
Adobe Photoshop CS6

Blender - 3D

This being my first 3D piece, I had to start from scratch - "Make a Donut in Blender" with the Bob Ross of Blender - Andrew from BlenderGuru. 🙂 I followed the whole 9 series tutorial and figured out the basics.

If I had to put the whole process in a few words: "It's a bunch of deformed cubes with ClayDoh material."

But let's break it down a bit.


The House:
Deforming objects to achieve a clay-like material appearance: I mostly got away with applying "Displace" and "Subdivision Surface" modifiers. Some objects needed additional deforming in Sculpt mode. Here are a few images:

The Trees:
I downloaded the free "LowPoly Trees & Carrot & Crystal 3D model" and gave it a similar treatment - displace and solidify modifiers.

The Hill:
I subdivided the surface and randomly moved the individual vertices with proportional editing turned on.

Texturing, shading

Now this was the easy part. This image of my nodes explains it well:

You can purchase the ClayDoh shader here.

Photoshop - Post

This is really where the magic happens.

I made two versions of this artwork. One’s dimensions ratio is a square to fit a variety of screens, including mobile. And the other one is ultrawide, intended to be used as a desktop wallpaper (download here).

The post production process was a bit different for each one, but in both cases it involved:

  • painting dots on cubes
  • color and contrast adjustments
  • vignetting
  • texturing (canvas texture, watercolor painting texture)
  • inserting background images

Final Images

Final Thoughts

This was a long journey for me, but acquiring new skills takes time. I’ve learned a lot and I hope you’ve found a few interesting takeaways as well. I hope the new wallpaper will serve you well on your adventurous path. Looking forward to your comments below!

About the Author

Marko Por, Illustrator | Animator | Surfer | Nomad



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