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Behind the Scenes: Mole Monster


I am Balázs Gräff, 41 years old and I currently live in Budapest. I have 20 years of experience in design. I have been working as a DTP Operator for magazines, did design for an Advertising Agency, the Hungarian Airlines Studio, Online Gaming companies, etc. I also did numerous freelance designs, interiors for restaurants and shops, packaging, logos, labels, etc. I love to do tattoos as well, mainly with fine lines and minimalistic designs.

Photo manipulation and 3D have always been my passion and I started this when I was 14. My first 3D software was 3D Studio R4 and my first picture was a sphere with a spotlight. I was so proud I remember calling my mom to show her. After 3D Studio R4 I believe I used all of the versions of 3D Studio Max.

Last year I wanted to use 3D software on my Mac and Blender sparked my interest. I love doing the sculpting and creating parts in one software. Blender is incredibly powerful with lots of possibilities and I am amazed by how this software has evolved.

I gained all of my knowledge from books, tutorials, and by practicing.

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Inspiration and motivation

I created Mole Monster while practicing and learning about sculpting. I really love to create something different and new that doesn’t exist because it gives me so much freedom. The monster in my mind lives under the ground and is not the prettiest of the animal kingdom. :)

His length is around 2 meters and he eats like a vulture if he cannot catch fresh prey.


I started to make it from only one sphere but when I was almost ready with the base model I realised that it had too many polygons. So then I did a retopology of the model and I started to work on the details such as the scars, the skin, and textures on the body. I didn’t start with a specific creature in my mind and I didn’t make a sketch on paper. I only had a vague idea of what I wanted to create. I just added details step by step and made changes while I was sculpting. Mainly I used basic brushes from Blender or Blender Kit, except for the skin tones.

Normal maps

The normal map was baked from Multires and all of the skin and teeth textures were painted in Substance Painter. The next step was mixing the two normal maps in Blender.


I rendered passes from Blender to control the shadows, lights, and reflections. I used 3 Areas and 3 Point Lights around the monster showing smaller parts from the darker area. To show this is a night scene I added different colours of light such as yellow and blue.

After I was satisfied with the modeling and rendering I used Photoshop for color and light correction.

I look forward to continuing to create my ideas and improve my skills with Blender.

About the Author

Balázs Gräff, 3D Artist



About Author

Abby Crawford

I've been a part of the BlenderNation team since 2018, producing Behind the Scenes and Meet the Artist features that highlight Blender artists and their work.

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