Nintendo switch console resting on top of a pizza box

Of Friends

It's Friday night, and you're excited to hang out with your friends and play video games. You head over to your friend's house, and they're already there, setting up the consoles and TVs. You grab some snacks and drinks, and you're ready to start playing. The latest Smash Bros released and it's the first time you've gotten together with friends to face off in a mini tournament.

Lately I've been focusing on creating stories and environments that evoke a sense of nostalgia without needing specific imagery to drive those feelings. When I was tasked with designing the graphics for the sermon series "Church of Friends," I instantly wanted to call back to those late night gaming sessions of playing Mario 64 trying to beat Bowser at a friend's house. However, I wanted to update the setting so that the graphics didn't feel dated or overused.

Creating these story prompts also help drive the cad models, textures, environment, and lighting for each scene. It can be easy to face decision fatigue trying to figure out what fits best in a scene, but a prompt can establish several of those details. The setting was a late night gaming session where most of the people had passed out on the couch or taken a quick break to grab more snacks.

Software Used

  • Cinema 4d
  • Adobe Illustrator
  • Substance Designer
  • Substance Painter
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Redshift
  • Rizom UV

The magazine layout is one of my favorite parts. I've always loved type and layout and I try to squeeze it into most of my projects. Each semester my church hosts several small groups that range in activity and focus. Some are hobbies while others go deep into a book or Bible study. To bring in the sense of community I brought the small groups from that season into a magazine format - almost like a video game guide. The journey of life is difficult so don't go alone.

Since I didn't have a lot of time to work on the project, I refreshed several old assets that I previously used, but I updated their textures and models to better reflect my current skill level. I've been messing around with anisotropic and specular maps to get some fun and more realistic results.