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Behind the Scenes: Fortress of Soldier's Peak



Hi, my name is Thayana Molinaro and I am from Brazil. I’m a 3D Environment Artist and Interior Designer. I started my journey in 3D three years ago when I was seeking a career change.


I wanted to create something different and challenging. So, while talking with my husband (who is a RPG geek), we had the amazing idea of recreating the Ancient Fortress of Soldier's Peak from Dragon Age Origins, my favorite game ever, and I thought it would be impossible, but why not?! It would be a great challenge and I really love it!

I modeled each part of the scene and everything was made exclusive for the fortress. It took me a long time and patience, but it was worth it.


For the terrain, I used a sculpted rock, while the vegetation was created with a mix of alpha textures and PBR materials for the bark.

The mountains were the only thing I didn’t create. I used the landscape add-on inside Blender which saved a lot of time.


All the pieces of the fortress are low poly that I modeled, sculpted, UV mapped, baked their normal and roughtness maps, and created their textures with texture painting technique. Everything was made in Blender 3.2.

For the practical lights of the windows, I created a texture for the emission using texture paint and increased the emission strength.

I used some of the techniques I learned from Professor Grant Abbitt at GameDev to create this scene. I acquired a lot of knowledge with his courses; he’s one of the best teachers I know.


I used two types of fog, a volume scatter covering the whole scene and some scattered fog created with the combination of noise texture and gradient texture.

Below is the Plane Fog Configuration.

For the lights on the scene, I used three different HDRI, each one with a particular kind of light to compose the time of day I needed, and for the backgrounds, I used three pictures from the site, Pexels.

For one of the scenes, I used the Sky Texture node, but I played with the values to create a time of day known between the architects as “Blue Hour.” It is an amazing light effect and really transformed the composition.

Below is the Blue Hour Configuration.


For the final part, I painted the birds and the snowflakes using Krita and MediBang Paint. The combination of these two software was really amazing.

Ancient Fortress of Soldier's Peak

That’s it! I hope you enjoyed the article. You can find more of my work on Artstation and Behance. Thanks for your time!

About the Artist

Thayana Molinaro, a 3D Environment Artist and Interior Designer from Brazil, creating artworks with a passion for art.



About the Author

Alina Khan

A self taught 3d artist, who seeks to excel in the computer graphics field. Currently a freelancer and the editor for the 'Behind the Scenes' at Blender Nation.

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