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Winners Announced
September 2022

Little Traveler Challenge

36th CG Boost 3D Art Challenge

259
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The challenge ends on Wednesday, November 2nd, 2022, at 16:00 CET! The winners will be announced one week later on November 9th, 2022.

Artwork by
Alex Chiru
Overview

Little Traveler Challenge winners announced!

For our 36th challenge, we received 259 submissions (134 for the "Pro Arena" and 125 for the "Training Arena").

After each judge picked their top 10 submissions for each category, we sat together and chose the winners for the "Pro Arena" and the highlights for the "Training Arena". This was a long discussion and a hard decision, since there were so many fantastic artworks.

We also picked the random winners for the challenge raffle (Training Arena only), see the results below.

Regrading the prizes, we will contact the winners during the next few days.

Congrats to the winners, and a big “Thank You” goes to our sponsor and everyone, for taking part!

Now scroll down to see the winners.

Artwork by
Alex Chiru
How to participate

First of all, choose your side.

Description
Prizes
Rules
Deliverables
Judging Criteria
Description
Prizes
Rules
Deliverables
Judging Criteria

Further questions? Find more info in our FAQ section.

Participate Now

Submit your work.

Select your arena *

Please submit the following two files:
1. A screenshot or clay render of your 3D scene
2. Your final render
Please use the following naming convention for your files:
Final Render: Your_Name_final (e. g. "Zach_Reinhardt_final.jpg")
Screenshot/Clay Render: Your_Name_wip (e. g. "Zach_Reinhardt_wip.jpg")

Thank you!

We will review your submission and then add it to our submission folder above. If your submission is invalid or missing something, you will be informed in a timely manner.
Oops! Something went wrong. Please try again.
Jury

Get to know our jury.

Jan van den Hemel
Creator of Blender Secrets (Guest Judge)
Zach Reinhardt
Founder & Lead Instructor @ CG Boost
Masha Bazueva
Community Manager @ CG Boost
Martin Klekner
Instructor @ CG Boost
Jan Egon Preiss
Community Manager @ CG Boost
Daniel Nees
Community Manager @ CG Boost

Get feedback and improve faster with our community.

Post your work-in-progress renders in our community and get constructive feedback from the CG Boost team and other members.

FaQ

Frequently asked questions.

Where do I ask questions about the challenge?
Can I update my entry after I submitted it already, if I notice a mistake?
Can I share my artwork online before the challenge is over?
When I win the challenge, can I get cash instead of the prizes?
Can I enter both categories at the same time?
Jury

Get to know our jury.

Jan van den Hemel
Creator of Blender Secrets (Guest Judge)
Zach Reinhardt
Founder & Lead Instructor @ CG Boost
Masha Bazueva
Community Manager @ CG Boost
Martin Klekner
Instructor @ CG Boost
Jan Egon Preiss
Community Manager @ CG Boost
Daniel Nees
Community Manager @ CG Boost
Winners: Pro Arena
Winners

Let’s see who has won in the Pro Arena.

Let’s see who has won this challenge.

Finalists

No items found.

Winners

1st Place

Dylan Atkins

We’re congratulating Dylan Atkins for winning the First Place!

Dylan about his entry:

“My art work is about two old friends taking a journey together, through the dark, mystical forest. Unaware of the danger that might lurk nearby. I used Blender for the 3D, rendered in Eevee, and comped in Adobe After Effects.”

Created using Blender, After Effects.

Clay Image

What our jury says:

Zach Reinhardt: “Dylan achieved to combine great visuals with an interesting story. The two travelers going lighthearted their way, without knowing that a hungry enemy is following closely. Great attention to detail on the environment and characters (especially the snake). The composition and lighting is fitting as well. The background could be a bit darker, to separate the characters a more, and the frog skin texture could use some more details. But apart from that, I really enjoyed this artwork.”

Daniel Nees: There's so much to like about this image. The quality of the texture work, the story, the characters, the lighting… Everything works well together and the effort made and be felt in every pixel.

Martin Klekner: I love how polished and colorful this piece turned out, rich both in detail and story as well. The two main characters could use a bit of work (especially the faces), still, this is definitely one of my favorite pieces from this competition! Wonderful job.

Jan Egon Preiss: You can feel the story here, careless travelers on the road, getting in danger soon. The lighting, colors and the whole scenery is believable. A little bit of crop would help balance the scene visually. Material tweaks on the frog character could be improved to blend all elements.

2nd Place

Leo Semmelmann

We’re congratulating Leo Semmelmann for winning the Second Place!

Follow Leo:

Artstation

Leo about his entry:

“I tried to make a light-scattered but mystical forest with a boy travelling alone and trying to find a way through. I focused on the lighting to make it look warm and welcoming, but also mysterious and a bit scary in the depths. I used Houdini for set-dressing, Blender for character modelling, Redshift for rendering the scene and Nuke and Davinci resolve for compositing and color grading.”

Created using Blender, Houdini, Nuke, Davinci Resolve.

Clay Image

What our jury says:

Zach Reinhardt: “What strikes most in this artwork is the great mood and atmosphere. The god rays, the floating particles, the lighting and depth of field are just perfect. You can really feel the warm sun and the cold shadows from the forest. Fantastic attention to detail with the forest and environment. Only the character looks a bit like a puppet in some areas. Overall, fantastic work.”

Daniel Nees: The atmosphere in this image is stunning, and the colours are fabulous. The only element that I feel could use a bit of work is the hair, which feels a bit too solid. I particularly appreciate the bokeh shapes in the defocus!

Martin Klekner: This render has an amazing atmosphere, especially the forest and its lighting stand out. The hair of the character could use a bit more detail, nontheless, great job overall!

Jan Egon Preiss: Very moody, very cinematic vibe. It is about the light, color grading, layout, and composition rather than the scenes' models and props. Reminds me of a stop-motion film set.

3rd Place

Yaroslav Kovalenok

We’re congratulating Yaroslav Kovalenok for winning the Third Place!

Follow Yaroslav:

Artstation

Instagram

Yaroslav about his entry:

“This is a story about my original character dinosaur named Dippa. Once in the morning, Dippa decided to leave his cave and start a little journey to explore the fantastic world around him. Software used: Blender Substance painter Color correction and composite in photoshop.”

Created using Blender, Substance Painter, Photoshop.

Clay Image

What our jury says:

Zach Reinhardt: “What a fantastic environment, with such high attention to detail, both for the fore- and background. The warm sunlight fits perfectly here, to support the happy mood of the image. The only shame is that it feels all effort went into the environment and not into the character. Although the cartoony character fits somehow, it has some wonky deformations, especially on the leg area, which are unfortunately off-putting. But apart from that, great work.”

Daniel Nees: “The environment is truly amazing, with such a great sense of style. I especially like the blue cracks in the rocks. I would love to see a bit more attention paid to the character, as that is really the only part of the image that doesn't quite meet the high standard of the rest.”

Martin Klekner: “The only thing that makes this otherwise amazing piece lack a bit is the character, more specifically, the hip area. Otherwise, I adore the colors, the environment, and the lighting! Almost like a still from a stylized game.”

Jan Egon Preiss: “Screenshot from the kids' animated series? Nope. But the format, colors and nicely executed fantasy world shows so. Almost perfect, …except for the character who would deserve the same level of love and polishing as the rest of the scene.”

Masha Bazueva: “The environment of this artwork is absolutely incredible! I love how fantastic and detailed it is! Also, the composition and the lighting is perfect. We have so many details and interesting things to discover, but none of them are distracting or feel like too much! Perfect job! My only concern is about the character that have some strange bending in some areas. Apart from that great artwork! ”

Jan van den Hemel: “The character could have used a bit more sculpting to improve it.I'm not a fan of the extreme lens color separation effect that you see in the edges of the image. I don't know what it's called...I like the runes with glowing inscriptions, very mysterious. If they made a shortfilm it could be interesting.They clearly spent a lot of time on the backgrounds.”

Honorable Mention

Steffen Knothe

We’re congratulating Steffen Knothe for the Honorable Mention!

Steffen about his entry:

“A group of Viking hamsters making their way home aboard a hamster-powered wheeled paddle boat. The scene was created in Blender 3.4 and the Botaniq-Addon (trees & grass). The materials of the following objects utilize image textures created with Stable-Diffusion: hamster viking outfits, banners, shields, wood carvings, stone bridge, cats, wood barrels, little houses in the background.”

Created using Blender.

Clay

What our jury says:

Zach Reinhardt: “I really like the fun little story, with the hamsters bringing the crops into a safe haven, and the cats waiting for their next meal. Technical also very well executed, especially on the hamsters, and boat details. The environment fits, but especially the water could need some more tweaks. Also, the image feels a bit flat overall, so some brighter spots could help to focus on what's important.”

Daniel Nees: “SO CUTE! I love the characters and the subtle but menacing cats in the background. I think if the lighting were tweaked a bit to focus more on the boat, this would be a truly outstanding piece of work.”

Martin Klekner: “With a bit of improvement when it comes to the water shader, better lighting or added haze to distinguish the characters from the background, and an improved far background - this has the potential to turn out as a clear winner of this competition for me. As it is, it still definitely deserves a place among the top 5. I love the little story and the characters!”

Jan Egon Preiss: “It is about the small details. The main characters, nice story, and good use of materials are plus points here. Different framing, the scene layout, and the clever use of light to put more focus on the main characters would give it the extra touch to prevail.”

Masha Bazueva: “Aaaw look at that cute hamster warriors! . Very delightful artwork with good composition, atmosphere and a nice story! Maybe I would try to give a bit more attention to the hamsters by maybe increasing the lighting in that area. Apart from that, well done!”

Jan van den Hemel: “It's very cute. I love the details on the shields, and the banners. The wood texture and material of the boat also looks nice. Better water and maybe a bit more of a "wake" at the front of the boat would help. Water doesn't scale like that, that's why when they use miniature ships in movies like Pirates of the Caribbean they have to actually be quite large. And better light, so direct the eye to the subject, would improve it a lot. Increase the contrast a bit, and add some foreground stuff like out of focus plants.”

Honorable Mention

Yeremey Moskalev

We’re congratulating Yeremey Moskalev for the Honorable Mention!

Follow Yeremey:

Artstation

Yeremey about his entry:

“I really wanted to make a character, looking at which it will immediately be clear that he is small. After I realized that a neural network can draw as well as I can, I didn't even want to finish it a little, but I finished it. That's what I got Made in Blender gimp and photoshop. As always, I post at the last moment.”

Created using Blender, Gimp, Photoshop.

Clay Image

What our jury says:

Zach Reinhardt: “Technical wise, this artwork is almost perfect. I really love the high attention to detail in the cloths, which are made out of leaves and such. Also, the lighting and environment fits very well, and has a high quality. Only the head and hands of the character could use some more work, and some elements could be placed in the scene to make it story wise a bit more interesting.”

Daniel Nees: “The attention given to the clothing of the character is excellent, the lighting is really well done, and I love the quality of the moss on the ground. I just feel that it's missing a bit of story. Where is he going and why?”

Martin Klekner: “Great detail on the character, especially the costume. I find the skin shader a bit artificial, but that's a minor flaw on an otherwise well polished piece!”

Jan Egon Preiss: “Technically awesome. Great use of materials and an incredible level of detail. The colors and light are also fine, ..yet I miss the story and some dynamics in the scene.”

Masha Bazueva: “Impressive work with the cloth details in this image! The moss also looks very cool and the vibe in general is great! Would love to see a bit more story, but apart from this, well done!”

Jan van den Hemel: “I like the detail like the safety pin, and the cloth materials really look like they're correct for that scale. Reminds me of movies like "Arriety" or the "Borrowers". The face and hands look a bit plasticy, and the expression is not so interesting. Other than the fact that it's really a little traveler, there's not much going on. The moss looks nice. Again that effect of the colors being separated at the edges, which I'm not a fan of, but at least in this case it makes sense as it could be shot with something like a macro lens, which is more likely to have this issue.”

Highlights: Training Arena

Let’s see how our newcomers have performed.

Highlights

Highlight

Belal Nagah

We’re congratulating Belal Nagah for the Highlight!

Follow Belal:

Instagram

Belal about his entry:

“So this art is a turning of a 2d drawing into 3d, I used a drawing made by the artist Goro Fujita, who I really like his style. I used mainly and only blender for this project.”

Created using Blender.

Wip Image

What our jury says:

Zach Reinhardt: “Cute and fun little traveler, with a very clean image quality. Great color choice and lighting, plus a solid composition. The materials of the character and backpack could use a few more details. Overall, great work!”

Daniel Nees: “What an adorable scene! It's simple but effective with excellent lighting and beautiful colouring. I would love a bit more story context, but it's very well done even without it.”

Martin Klekner: “A very cute entry, especially the character stands out for me - simple, yet lovable. I really like the overall stylization and lighting!”

Jan Egon Preiss: “A very clean and nicely balanced piece. The color palette is subtle yet defines the objects in the scene well. Composition and light work fine.”

Masha Bazueva: “I love the style of this submission, the author interpreted greatly the artwork from Goro Fujita! This is a great example of how one can create an amazing artwork with quite simple subjects. Lighting and composition is perfect, maybe I would work a bit more on the bending of the backpack straps and try to add more subdivisions to legs and feet. Also, the image is quite noisy, so it would be a good idea to increase the render samples or use some denoising.”

Jan van den Hemel: “Very nice character design.Good colours, light. Honestly, I can't say much about this one. It's great.”

Highlights

Florian Fuhrmann

We’re congratulating Fuhrmann Florian for the Highlight!

Follow Florian:

Deviantart

Florian about his entry:

“Look what I just found! A small little blender project. Rendered in Cycles. Suitcase base model from JonasDichelle blendswap.com/blend/18313 shaders and textures replaced by custom ones. Everything else was done by me using textures from polygon and textures.com.”

Created using Blender.

Clay Image

What our jury says:

Zach Reinhardt: “I imagine this little snail is waving goodbye to its parents and starting a big journey. I love the somehow painterly and cartoony look of the image. Great texture details and overall nice composition. Only the shell could use a bit stronger creases in my opinion. Fantastic work!”

Daniel Nees: “The texture work here is excellent. It all feels very realistic, despite the bizarre situation and stylised feel of the character. The image doesn't have big sections of empty space, and the lighting is great. Well done!”

Martin Klekner: “Great stylization in this piece. I love the snail and its little backpack, though the shell could use some more work when it comes to sculpting.”

Jan Egon Preiss: “Love the colors and the materials. The central composition draws attention to the right place. The snailshell could be more detailed but that is a small thing here.”

Masha Bazueva: “very original style in this artwork! The lighting looks great, and the materials are perfect! Maybe some more details to the snail’s shell would make this artwork even better.”

Jan van den Hemel: “The texture on the shell doesn't really work with how subtle the shape of the shell is, it could use more pronounced creases.The material of the snail is good. Kind of subsurface mixed with dirt which increases towards the bottom, as it would.I like the idea of the stickers, but they are very tiny. Would be fun to have two or three that we could actually read, instead of so many of them. But I suppose it does indicate that he's traveled to a lot of places.I'm not sure what the white lines are, maybe they're spiderwebs? And are they in front or behind the snail?”

Highlight

Mark Simonella

We’re congratulating Mark Simonella for the Highlight!

Follow Mark:

Artstation

Mark about his entry:

“Ready to go: a young boy has just packed his suitcase for a trip with his little friend. To achieve realism I modeled and textured the suitcase, the toy-car and the teddy bear having in front of me the actual objects as reference. Since I always use the classic "rule of thirds", this time I wanted to do something different and I "dared" with a 1:1 aspect ratio combined with a triangular composition scheme. It was all made with Blender and Gimp”

Created using Blender, Gimp.

Wip Image

What our jury says:

Zach Reinhardt: “Great attention to detail here, especially on the suitcase, with all the stickers and little scratches and surface imperfections. The scene feels very realistic. You can imagine a kid packing is luggage and toys for their next vacation. Overall, great work, only the bear feels a bit stiff for my taste, and the fur might be a bit short.”

Daniel Nees: “With the possible exception of the slightly strange fur material, everything in this scene feels very realistic, and I love the subtle story it tells. I appreciate the simplicity of the scene and the attention to detail in the texture work.”

Martin Klekner: “Fun piece, where especially the materials, shaders and lighting stand out with its realism. Still, it doesn't lose its cute magic.”

Jan Egon Preiss: “Despite omitting character in this scene, you can feel a strong story here. A little kid is about to embark on a "big" journey. I enjoy all the tiny details and the well-done materials.”

Masha Bazueva: “This is a great example of how to tell a story about a subject without even showing the subject itself. Very nice execution with well done textures and good lighting. Maybe the bear is missing some details like seams. Apart from that, well done!”

Jan van den Hemel: “The materials are very good, except for the bear itself. It could use some creases or seams as would realistically be the case, instead of it being all one piece. And the fur could I think be a bit longer. If I didn't know the context with the theme of little traveler, I'd think it was just a picture of a toy bear on top of a suitcase. I don't get the impression that the bear is a traveler, or something. It just looks like a child's suitcase with some toys on top of it, which perhaps was the intention?”

Highlight

Michał Bielecki

We’re congratulating Michał Bielecki for the Highlight!

Follow Michał:

Artstation

Michał about his entry:

“I created little cat the astronaut. Our brave hero flew on an important mission to Mars. I used Blender. I hope you will like the artwork. We all believe in the success of the mission!”

Created using Blender.

Clay Render

What our jury says:

Zach Reinhardt: “The Mars look is perfect here, with the hazy environment, red sand and stones lying around. Very moody! The "catstronout" is discovering the place in the funny designed suite. Would love to see the face of the cat through the visor a bit. Some parts of the suit look a bit low-res, and some hidden elements in the environment would make it a bit more interesting to look discover. All in all, good job!”

Daniel Nees: “While perhaps not the most detailed scene, the environment is extremely well done, and I like the amusing story it tells. The atmosphere and lighting are great, and the reflection in the helmet really shows an attention to detail that is to be commended.”

Martin Klekner: “I kept returning to this piece, which, though simple, is real fun to look at. The cat's suit could maybe use some sculpting work, but overall, the image works nicely :-)”

Jan Egon Preiss: “Little travelers can go far ;-) Nice cinematic look and feel. Composition, color grading, and materials work well together.”

Masha Bazueva: “Very nice scene! It makes me immediately think about some Love Death Robots series episodes. Very enjoyable ambient and lighting. Maybe adding more details to the cat’s suit would make the scene even more believable.”

Jan van den Hemel: “The cat looks a bit too "sculpted", I mean the backpack for example and the tube. If it was a short film, I'd like to watch it.”

Highlight

Phillip Diaz

We’re congratulating Phillip Diaz for the Highlight!

Follow Phillip:

Artstation

Phillip about his entry:

“About my artwork: Chosen by the mysterious ghost flame the pumpkin scholar rises once again, with a new chance for adventure the scholar embarks into a new campaing, thrilled by curiosity and the sense of discovery a newfound friend joins the party…
About the tools: My main tool was Blender, I did 98% of the work in there and some photoshop in the green glow details.”

Created using Blender, Photoshop.

Clay Image

What our jury says:

Zach Reinhardt: “Phillip nailed the look here. Great art style with the cartoony and colorful look. The composition and lighting is almost perfect here. Only the two characters could be moved a tiny bit to the left, to see the open grave in the background a bit better, which would make the story more readable. This could easily be a "Pro Arena" artwork, congrats!”

Daniel Nees: What superb style! I love the character design and colours. I only wish that the background weren't so distracting, as it takes my attention away from the subject of the scene and makes the scene feel a bit noisy. A glowing scythe will always be cool, though!

Martin Klekner: Absolutely wonderful coloration on this one. Pushing both characters slightly to the left and giving them more of a rim light could improve the composition, but otherwise, my favorite piece from the Training arena!

Jan Egon Preiss: I like its story, stylized look, and color palette. Some composition improvements, as well as cleaning the noise, and separating the main character from the background, would help the readability of the scene.

Masha Bazueva: “I like this artwork very much! The style is very cool, and the vibes make me think about some kind of mix between Nigthmare Before Christmas and Coco. Great work!”

Jan van den Hemel: “Quite nice lighting, maybe the rim lights could have been a bit more pronounced. It's a bit dark.”

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