Now Live
Winners Announced
July 2020

Samurai Challenge

17th CG Boost Art Challenge for 3D Artists - Improve your 3D Skills!

Submissions received
Artwork by
Raphael Lacoste

Samurai Challenge winners announced!

For our 17th challenge, we received 136 submissions, with many awesome Samurai characters and Samurai-themed scenarios.

Our jury had a good but also hard time judging all the great accepted submissions. Each judge voted for their own top 5 artworks. We also picked three random winners for the challenge raffle, see all the winners below.

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

Congrats to the winners and honorable mentions, and a big THANK YOU to our sponsor and everyone for taking part!

Now scroll down to see the winners.

Artwork by
Raphael Lacoste
How to participate

First of all, choose your side.

Judging Criteria
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:
e. g. "22-01-31_Mythology-Challenge_Zach-Reinhardt_01"

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.

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.


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?
Winners: Pro Arena

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

Let’s see who has won this challenge.


No items found.


1st Place

Lukas Kutschera

We’re congratulating Lukas Kutschera for winning the first place!

Follow Lukas

Lukas about his entry:

“I’ve actually started out doing a mecha Samurai but it was going nowhere, so I started over and after looking up Samurai armor reference I was fascinated by the huge Variety and their interesting designs, so my main focus was on trying to make a somewhat authentic samurai armor.

I don’t know how I got the idea with the skull, but eventually I thought about a cursed samurai as a theme and the Tarantula was a nice fit I thought. As someone with arachnophobia I did not enjoy the reference gathering for that as much, but due to time running out I spent on the armor I was looking for a free obj, which I found. It’s not supposed to be the focus of the image but I thought it to be a nice detail.

Another focus was to improve my shading and although I am happy with the result, I think there are some materials I couldn’t capture as much as I’d like to, but to sum it up I really enjoyed the challenge. It’s always great to have a deadline to push yourself and as I expected I need every minute, so as I write this maybe 15 minute before deadline a rim light render is still going, so I fill this out now and hope I make it lol.“

Created using ZBrush, Substance Painter, Maya (Arnold) and Krita.

Clay Render

What our jury says:

Lukas Walzer: “The amount of well researched detail and richness of texture in this piece is beyond amazing and incredible regarding the time it took. Overall awesome!”

Gregory Smith: “A strong render with subtle lighting that helps to sell the mood. The detail is very well crafted.”

Chris Plush: “Ah the original samurai all those masks are modeled after, cool! Awesome take on the samurai, and great work on every detail of it.”

Darko Vucenik: “Mummified remains of this samurai indicate masks they wore were closer to their actual appearance than commonly taught. This model is so rich in detail and the texturing is spot on, from wrinkles on mummified scull to patina on various amour pieces.”

Christoph Werner: “Very nice work and a great attention for details.”

Ken Liang: “This is my favorite samurai of all. Where do I even begin? The details are so overwhelming and I really like the mummified look of the head. The unusual set of teeth adds another layer to the character development, aside from the really arcane color palette that was chosen for the armor. Great lighting overall but personally I would have used purple and green/cyan lights to play with a more stylized arcane feel. Spiders are a great touch as well. Could’ve done away with the artifacts which is visible all around the edges of the models.”

Marius Iatan: “A very clean render, with sharp details based on traditional samurai armor. Well done!”

Ebrahim Umar-Khitab: “Lukas delivers a tremendous level of detail in his work. The interplay of his material work and sculpting skills are fantastic.”

Andrew Probert: “THIS one simply blew me away, in it’s absolutely jaw-dropping material realism.”

Joseph Nickson: “The attention to detail and material work across this piece is astounding, held back only by some readily resolvable rendering issues. Fantastic work across the board, I’d love to see it re-rendered in all its glory.”

2nd Place

David Fitzgerald

We’re congratulating David Fitzgerald for winning the second place!

David about his entry:

“The concept is a samurai leaving a dark forest towards a temple out of view.”

Created using Blender & Cycles.

Clay Render

What our jury says:

Lukas Walzer: “I really like the photographic feel in this image, it looks like straight out of an old magazine, including the washed out colors. There’s a nice look of gritty realism in the abundance of foliage, which I really like!”

Marius Iatan: “An apparently simple scene, which hints to a background story. Nice style and composition.”

Ebrahim Umar-Khitab: “David’s work stands out by making the environment the central focus, with attention paid to every element in the scene.

Christoph Werner: “I love the filmic mood and nice camera direction.”

Andrew Probert: “I liked this because it creates a sense of guarded anticipation, protecting a temple or shrine.”

Ken Liang: “Am I looking at a photograph?! Amazing render! Great shaders in the foliage. Composition and lighting is also spot on. The shaded wip render shows the samurai facing the opposite direction, but I think you made the right decision to go with this version as it tells a better story as a whole (it helps with the composition because the samurai is facing the point of interest in the picture.) Well done.”

3rd Place

Jesse Amiel Gayanilo

We’re congratulating Jesse Amiel Gayanilo for receiving the third place!

Follow Jesse:

Jesse about the entry:

“My idea is basically a Geisha who got her hands on one of the infamous Muramasa cursed swords to defend herself from maybe an intruder, but I try to focus not on the blade, but on the burning blood-lust fueled by anger the Geisha is experiencing, in the intruder’s point of view.

It was a great exercise for sculpting stylized characters, keeping the scene on the non-photorealistic side, and sculpting Japanese style flames and clouds.“

Created using Blender, Krita and MakeHuman.

Clay Render

What our jury says:

Lukas Walzer: “I just love the illustrative quality in this one! Details like the clothing folds may not be exactly accurate, but the overall look is just stunning, it forms a powerful image that leaves a lasting impact!”

Gregory Smith: “I really like the energy and movement in this image. The colour work is striking and paired with a dramatic composition, whilst details like the cloth’s pattern bring it to life.”

Chris Plush: “Points for the highly believable facial expressions alone, then everything else is well done too. Plus the backdrop perfectly blends and accentuates the fury, well done!”

Ebrahim Umar-Khitab: “I like how Jesse was able to execute on a specific mood and translate that into every element of the piece.”

Darko Vucenik: “Great stylized interpretation of the theme. I love the over the top expression, messed up hair and wonderful demon in the background.”

Christoph Werner: “I like the character acting. Jesse’s work stands out from other characters in this challenge.”

Ken Liang: “Really awesome stylized render that feels like I am looking at a book cover for a samurai themed manga. I like that the background is very detailed but still adds to the composition and doesn’t overwhelm the character. I like the facial expression as well and the red color palette really helps with letting the audience feel what the character is going through. Personally, I would add a light flare/glint at the end of the sword as the cherry on the cake.”

Honorable Mention

Sebastian Beltramini

We’re congratulating Sebastian Beltramini for receiving an honorable mention!

Follow Sebastian:

Sebastian about his entry:

“The Guardian.

What is this massive, frightening Samurai protecting? Would you venture into the cave?

When I heard of the Samurai challenge, I immediately thought of combining two ideas:

– The terracotta army protecting the emperor Qin Shi Huang burial site

– I was always in awe with the statues shown in the LOTR movies.

So I decided I wanted a Samurai statue guarding something. After discarding a few ideas, I settled for a cave lost amidst mountains.

Then I thought of adding someone peeking into the cave, someone we can identify with, something that would add questions to those already posed by the massive statue.“

Created using Blender and Substance Painter.

Clay Render

What our jury says:

Lukas Walzer: “Ahh, this dreamy nice rim light coming through this gently composed scene with its effectfully placed grass blades and clover, just amazing!”

Chris Plush: “Really well-made in all aspects. Every detail carefully considered, including foreground elements and the lighting especially.”

Darko Vucenik: “There is so much well executed detail in this image. From cool looking house with suspended bridge, wonderful foliage, particles in the air to menacing ants. I really like the low sun angle. It creates nice rim light on the mushroom, emphasizes the sub surface scatting on the plants and gives nice highlights on shiny ants.”

Ken Liang: “I really like the story element in this render. The ants can’t get to the mushroom house, thanks to the moat. Great lighting and realistic foliage. The dust particles in the air is a great idea. My only comment would be that the composition in the background could use some improvisation.”

Honorable Mention

Davy Li

We’re congratulating Davy Li for receiving an honorable mention!

Follow Davy:

Davy about his entry:

“I’ve been learning Blender for a while now, but never use it to do some real work. This time the theme draw my interested.

When I was a kid, I used to play around in my grandparents house alone, and I liked to watch anime a lot. I liked to make those weapons from the TV shows using sticks or useless wood. That’s how this idea come to be.

With this experience of using Blender, I find it is a pretty good tool for modeling. But with shading and texturing, I still need to improve. i.e. UDIMs are confusing to use.“

Created using Blender and Substance Painter.

Clay Render

What our jury says:

Lukas Walzer: “A fully-fledged character that could be straight out of a big-budget animation movie! It comes with an appealing design, lovely details, an indicated story and great lighting.”

Gregory Smith: “This is a really fun entry, with a great concept and narrative. The lighting in particular was what stood out to me.”

Chris Plush: “An all around awesome work of art and story. Fun art style and great composition..”

Andrew Probert: “I voted for this simply because I’m kind of a sucker for kid-pretending scenarios. The depth of field and falling leaves add to the composition more realism and the Blender logo is a fun Easter Egg.”

Highlights: Training Arena

Let’s see how our newcomers have performed.



Jury Comment

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Aenean commodo ligula eget dolor. Aenean massa. Cum sociis natoque penatibus et magnis dis parturient montes, nascetur ridiculus mus. Donec quam felis, ultricies nec, pellentesque eu, pretium quis, sem. Nulla consequat massa quis enim. Donec pede justo, fringilla vel, aliquet nec, vulputate eget, arcu.

Raffle Winners

Learn who’s won our raffle.


  • Gamer Noob
  • Carlos Lee
  • Sam D
  • Funso Dorgu
  • Hakeem Siddique
  • Pedro Bomfim

The sponsors and supporters of this challenge.