Hello, my name is Lucas Nazato and I’m a 3D artist from Brazil working in the game industry, with a focus on props and environments.
I also like to do some gamedev in my spare time, especially in Unreal Engine.
I had the idea for this piece when I was thinking about what I could do for the Ko-fi July Challenge, and the theme was, unsurprisingly, Summer Vacation.
One of the fun parts of any vacation is the trip itself, and that is where I had the idea to make a simple animation of a car going down a road.
As this was supposed to be a quick project, I decided that I would do everything inside Blender, with a focus on high-poly modeling and using shaders, keeping a stylized look to everything. Rendering was done in the Eevee engine.
The first step was to decide how I would frame the animation, so I decided to start by modeling a tileable piece of the road that I could then use in conjunction with the array and curve modifiers.
In the end, I decided to go with a straight road as I wanted to keep the focus on the moving car, and it would be simpler to make the surrounding environment. These are the only models I used in this scene:
As I mentioned this would be high-poly only and very stylized, so I used the subdivision modifier with support loops and the bevel modifier in all the models to create round shapes, not caring too much about topology but just the final look.
I was getting a bit stumped with the tree design, until I found this tree made by Jonathan Gagnon, and used that as the inspiration:
I used the same shader for all the objects, and it was created by following the Lightning Boy Studio tutorials for cartoon shaders:
I highly recommend taking a look at those videos if you have any interest in cartoon shaders, as they explain how to create a very versatile shader step-by-step.
This shader uses the lights you setup in your scene to create the cartoon look, letting you customize a variety of options, that you can see in this image:
The outline in all the objects was done using the solidify modifier with inverted normals and the material offset to create the outline material, which is an emissive material set to black.
Most of the final look depends on the compositing. I wanted to have a very soft and warm look, and I achieved that by using the glare node to slightly blur the image and then overlay an orange color. The final touch was adding a vignette.
Below is the difference between the raw render and the composited render.
The animation was very simple and consisted of animating the background, and leaving the camera and car in the same place. In order to loop properly, I duplicated the background a few times.
RENDER - Summer Vacation
Below is the animation:
Thank you for reading the article and if you have any questions, feel free to reach out on any of my social media accounts. Have a great day!
Lucas Nazato is a 3D artist from Brazil, working in the games industry with a focus on stylized props and environments.