Sketchtalk: Patrix' Amazing Minecraft Buildings

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When Patrix posted his Minecraft models on Sketchfab, he made our jaws drop. So, it’s time to learn a little more about him!

Cathedral by patrix on Sketchfab

Could you introduce yourself to our readers: Who are you and where are you from?

I am a student from Taiwan studying 3D animation and modeling.

Can you tell us about what aspects of 3D you specialize in?

I never “specialize” in any aspect, I just learn whatever needed. However I’m better at modeling and texturing comparing to other things.

How did you first get started? What was that ‘I want to do this’ moment?

There are a lot of Minecraft animations and builds on the internet, but I never saw anyone showcasing their creations by uploading the exported model onto a 3D model browsing website with baked textures before, so I just gave it a try using my own buildings.

Do you have any academic training or are you self-taught?

I had some basic academic training, but they are more like an introduction and the spark of my interest in 3D. Most of these skills are self-taught.

Tell us a little bit more about your workflow/process?

I tend to switch between different softwares because I was never fluent in any. First I cleaned up the Minecraft map using MCEdit, fill up caves and delete unnecessary blocks. I split the map into two versions, one with all the opaque blocks and one without. Then export them separately into 3d models using Mineways. Re-unwrapped the UV’s in Zbrush (less likely to crash when handling such high poly count), giving each polygon a unique UV essential for texture baking. Then baked diffuse texture from the original textured models onto the newly unwrapped models. Setup some basic lighting and baked AO, gradient(for fake fog effect), normal(for water waves), and various lightmaps. Finally, composite all the textures in Photoshop. I’m experimenting and perfecting the workflow with each project, so it’s subject to change.

Mayan Temple by patrix on Sketchfab

What project(s) are you working on right now?

I’m currently working on a personal project for sculpting practice. I might start another Minecraft build once it’s finished.

Talk a little bit in detail about your favorite model you currently have posted on Sketchfab?

Although the Cathedral model is the most famous one, my favorite model was actually the Mayan Temple. The Mayan/Aztec style is not only my favorite, but is also filled with rectangular patterns, which suits Minecraft very well. A lot of afford and thought went into both aesthetic and functionality of the build, even more than the Cathedral! Spending hours googling reference photos of various Mayan/Aztec style architectures, adding fantasy elements while staying true to the style, incorporating various redstone mechanism into the build, bugfixing while players tested the build. The Mayan-calendar-esque arena floor alone is hours of work, putting stairs together into a aesthetically pleasing maze-like pattern while making sure there are no holes that players will accidentally fall into. Although the model export was flawed due to inexperience, it is still my favorite one.

What would be your personal advice to someone getting started in 3D?

Internet is your best tutor, passion is your best motivation.

Minecraft Castle by patrix on Sketchfab

What are your thoughts on 3D printing, Are/Do you plan to work with it?

I’ve already done several modeling cases for 3D printing. It is a magical medium for artists to bring their imagination into real life!

How did you come across Sketchfab and how does it helped with your project(s)?

There are several websites that offers 3D model browsing, but Sketchfab is more user-friendly in my opinion. It is a more interactive and immersive way to showcase your works than pictures, videos or prerendered 360 turntable.

What inspires you?

Other people’s creations on the internet, or just random thoughts.

Thanks Patrix!

– Bart

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