Art Spotlight: Noel from "Sora no Method"

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In Art Spotlight, we invite Sketchfab artists to talk about one of their designs.

Hello. My name’s Vorachai Wijitwongcharoen (a.k.a X-Kung Work) or X. I’m a 3D artist freelance from Thailand and I’m really thankful for the follow-up on my 3D art work.

I’m a co-founder of LM Studio, a commission-based graphic design studio, where we get customer commissions and make their dreams come to life! My speciality is in 3D character creation, specifically replicating the look of cel-shaded Anime, stylistically speaking.

Today, I will talk about my Sora No Method fan art and share the steps of how to achieve this look.

This is Noel. She’s a character from the anime Sora No Method from Studio 3Hz. The original character design is from the illustrator, QP:Flapper, on the left and my 3D Model is on the right.

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I’m a fan of this anime style so I decided to try working off a 2D model and replicate the style in terms of shape, color, and line pattern.

Modeling Part

Note: In my workflow, I  adjusted  the coloring mode to Consistent Color and removed the shadow so I could set the color direct to the original.

At first, I created a model made up of guidelines around the face in 3ds Max.

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Based on the reference picture, I focused on the hair, seeing how that was the most animated and complicated aspect of the model. In general, you have to check the original character to determine whether the hair pieces have to be separate for your model or not. Then, composed from all the hair pieces you’ve created, you build the entire model up from that.

Naturally, I modeled the pose after the original picture.

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Shading Part

Note: I did the UV mapping in pieces at first and separated them in their own separate “plate” so I could use the biggest plate for texture efficiently. The difficult part was going to be how I do the UV mapping  directly based off the 2D model.

This is one example for UV mapping in hair pieces by separated polygons in each hair plate. Here, I painted the texture on them in Paint Tools SAI.

Here’s another example of UV mapping for the eyes. I did the same as hair but the difference was I separated them to sheets and painted the texture as you see in the picture.

These are examples of UV mapping for the clothing!

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These are examples of all textures and UV mapping for the rest of her outfit.

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Line Art

Let’s look at some specifics in terms of the rest of the model’s setting. In this example, I created new guide lines to choose the shape of model and duplicated them for precision.

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As you see in this picture, I adjusted the polygon to be transparent so I could see it. Then, I used the command in Modify List: Push to prevent the polygons from being obscured by thick lines.

Then, I clicked right at the duplicate model and chose the command Object Properties > Backface Cull to check if the polygon flipped or not.

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I converted to Polygon Mode and used the command Modify List: Edit Poly for the additive tool. At this point if you want to adjust the thickness of the lines in this particular area, you’ll have to do it in this step. I chose all polygons and then clicked flip, as pictured below. 

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And this is an example of texture that added one more for the line of model that I used it all model part.

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Added the texture to the line art based on this model-color scheme but it didn’t translate exactly the way I wanted it to so I had some adjustments to make.

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I did the UV mapping on the duplicate model, chose the polygons in each subsection, then dragged them to the color space. It depends on what color do you want. At this point if you want more color variation, you’ll need to customize your texture color palette.

In this example picture, I chose the polygon hands on the skin color.

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Here is an example of UV mapping where each of the models are dragged onto color textures because I wanted the line in each model to be different. It depends on which color you want for the line so you have to separate them to each model and drag them on the color area.

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The first model doesn’t have distinct lines but when combined with the second polygon-model created in the process of showing how to do line art, the result is the third model has different lines.

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This whole process has taken about 100 hours!

Sketchfab’s Role

Some of you may be familiar with the post-production filters Sketchfab has in its uploading process. Here, you have to set the material to be the same as the original reference.

In the Camera Field of View Setting

At first, Camera Field of View starts at 45 but I adjusted it to 10-20 because I don’t want the face of model be rounded out in that FoV setting.

Lastly, I set the cel-shade here as well. Pictured are what I have them set at, which is the “Shadeless” option.

And this was the 3D model finished!

Thanks, Sketchfab!

I would like to say I’m thankful to Sketchfab that you gave me the opportunity to showcase my 3D model artwork and have it blow up in popularity. 

If you have any questions or contract, feel free to contact me at my Sketchfab page, Facebook pageor Twitter.

Thanks, Vorachai!

About the author

Seori Sachs

Community Person!


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  • Darkminaz says:

    Very nice spotlight, thanks for that.
    especially your tricks in sketchfab to make it look more “anime 2d” .
    I still have to get slightly better at painting to really do it this way but it’s bookmarked for then 🙂

  • MrRik says:

    Awesome spotlight. I really like the pictures you added to make it even more understandable!

  • found this pretty useful.. been planning a anime model for a while.. now am that much closer

  • Wow that’s insanely close to the concept! :O
    Thx for giving so much insight on the development of one of the most viewed models on Sketchfab ever! A friend of mine is looking to do a similar anime-style character in 3D, gonna redirect her to this post 🙂

  • migero says:

    i just can’t grasp that u painted texture in paint tool sai not knowing how it will go out or u paint > save > check how it looks in 3d …

    in blender / 3dcoat u can paint on 3d model …

  • Deathly says:

    ahm how can i make line art on maya? i want to know that trick. but you’re using 3Ds max. can someone teace me how to do it? Please!. 🙁
    by the way, im just a beginner

  • Jelle says:

    Thanks for posting this!

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