Completion Date: 2017.11

Time: 168 hours

PNP Link with full photo set


This was one of my three entries for Crystal Brush 2018. I wrote some more broad Crystal Brush thoughts in a Facebook post here. I will be posting WIP articles about my three CB pieces.




I started on this project in April 2017 after seeing the results of the Crystal Brush come in. I was inspired by Kat Martin’s gold winning piece, and decided that I wanted to attend the following year and definitely bring something for the sci-fi single figure category. I already had a short list of 28mm scale miniatures that I thought had potential for a big project. I knew I wanted a massive space background, and Yvraine seemed to fit, so I started gathering reference material, arranged it all in Photoshop, and ended up with this:



Working in Cinema 4D, I got started designing a base. The concept for the platform part of the base evolved quite a bit into the cubes idea that made it into the final version. The grid of cubes were procedurally generated into a guide shape, which was fun. My first pass had issues:

Besides looking wonky, another issue I found based on a 3D test print was that there was no way I was fitting her cat on the base with her while still staying within the legal 50mm diameter restriction. So cuts and adjustments were made, and two test prints later, I had the final design. I ended up having to print the arches in FUD material because Shapeways didn’t like the arches in HDA (writing this months later, I forget why):

The only non-3D printed sculpting element I got into was the ripple effect on the portal as she passes through. I did a battery of tests:


…and ended up settling on using Water FX as a basis for the volume (because it holds rigid shape so well), and then using liberal coats of Mod Podge to smooth the whole thing over.



I did my usual pigment test to try and translate the concept art into pigmented colors:

I would usually want to mix that darker red from primaries, but I wanted to keep my shadow colors super consistent, so I went with the premixed dark red to keep it anchored to a single hue/value/saturation point that I couldn’t accidentally drift away from with poor mixes.

As I began to sketch everything in, I started with a gold brocade on the side of the dress:


But I felt that it had too much contrast and was distracting from the face. So, I mocked up some potential ideas for more subtle freehand in Photoshop:

…which I thought worked, and tried to replicate as closely as possible, although in both cases, I had to simplify volumes based on the amount of area I had to work with.



Nothing new this time around.



Good: I think this project was a big step for me as far as lighting and atmosphere. The project was also well received at Adepticon / Crystal Brush, and won its category.

Bad: Due to a superglue accident, I had to cannibalize two different Yvraine miniatures together in order to produce the one piece.

Ugly: For maybe the first time, I don’t think there is anything super ugly that happened or resulted.



Shoutouts to Aaron Lovejoy and Ben Komets for their critiques of my work.