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Diana Davydiants presents a detailed breakdown of how to create this set of Dendies. They are old, worn-out, and appear exactly as those from your childhood.


My name is Diana Davidyants, I'm 22 years old and I live in Kyiv, Ukraine. I am a Culturologist by education.

My journey into 3D design began completely randomly more than a year ago when I decided to take a relevant course where I learned basic but important skills and the necessary software for a 3D Artist. Since finishing the course until now I've been improving my skills and learning new software on my own. At the moment, I have no commercial experience as an artist, but I'm really looking forward to taking part in AAA projects.


Dendy was chosen for the interesting shapes and many included details that allowed me to practice texturing. It’s been a long time trying to find references.

First, there was a search for Dendy on platforms for selling stuff in order to properly explore the shapes and features of wear. Next, I looked for references specifically for materials in order to better convey them in textures. This was my first experience with plastic, which was the main material in this project to practice accurately. The types of physical damage, chipping, and peeling off films, all of which are important to learn.

Blockout and texturing 

Usually, for the blockout/high poly or low poly, I use Maya and ZBrush to detail high poly. At this stage, the main thing was to adhere to the proportionality of all elements of the model and to impart physical damage to individual parts in order to successfully finish it during the texturing stage. In ZBrush, I tried to convey the texture of the plastic in the area where the button was broken. The cables were made by using curves and a plugin.

For unwrapping I usually use RizomUV. Generally, I often pack large shells manually and do the rest with the software. I bake all the maps in Marmoset; if there are any bugs that cannot be removed, I use Photoshop to remove them correctly.

For the texturing stage, I use Adobe Substance 3D Painter and, of course, Adobe Photoshop (to create alphas). The whole texturing stage was very challenging for me. The result you see now did not come from the first try. This step took up more than 60% of the entire work since at this time, I was constantly watching tutorials and artists’ streams in order to better understand the tools and their methods of use. 

The key to good-looking models is having many variations. For every single element of the model, variations were applied. And the final step — fix layers — Color Correct filter with Passthrough blending mode, I adjusted all the parameters to give more expressiveness to the model.

To give the model a “history”, I used many techniques, but the important ones were anchor points and drawing every detail with alphas by stencil. All dirt is hand-painted and has different color variations in order to achieve uniqueness.

Personally, my favorite detail on the model is the peeled wrapping on the gamepads. I did it by using anchor points and added a lot by alphas, but I really like the result.

The workflow is PBR Specular Glossiness and previously I only worked in PBR Metal-Roughness. All inscriptions were added via text generator. For stickers, I discovered a usable Decal Aging Tool a long time ago that can help create different degrees of use and detail for your sticker.

Before starting rendering, I created compositions adjusted the camera positions for each shot, and grouped them. Then, for each shot, I have separately created light sources. I mainly use the Omni — it gives a good light that perfectly fills the space and illuminates the model. To add volume to the model, I used directional light with an eyedropper to highlight the desired areas of the prop and create flares. This process is a little painstaking, but it really helps the model look better. Each shot camera has different settings; these are the averages that vary.


Big thanks to the 80 Level team for having an opportunity to tell about the latest project. I'm just starting my journey in 3D design and I can say that one of the most important stages is reference-searching. It is literally the basis of your work and its modeling and texture. Don’t be lazy to study the characteristics of materials and their specific damages in order to make your work unique. I spent a lot of time searching for all my references, but this is what helped me make the work the way you see it.

Focus on uniqueness, avoid the generic kind of things in your work, and mask it by adding alphas. And be very careful with the height. A huge number of beginners (including me) make the mistake of using too much height which spoils the overall kind of work. It is important to understand that this card is additional, it can highlight scratches at very low values, but no more.

Diana Davydiants, 3D artist

Interview conducted by Theodore McKenzie

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