The Soul of Atlantis
The Soul of Atlantis - Final Composite

The Soul of Atlantis - Final Composite

Final Raw Render out of Blender - No Color Correction

Final Raw Render out of Blender - No Color Correction

This is the original concept sketch that started it all.

This is the original concept sketch that started it all.

The amulet was a labor of love spanning three years from initial sketch to completion as you see here.

The amulet was a labor of love spanning three years from initial sketch to completion as you see here.

I began with quick ideas from my sketchbook on the left and then created a model sheet for the focal point of the illustration.

I began with quick ideas from my sketchbook on the left and then created a model sheet for the focal point of the illustration.

I also knew that I wanted to go for an Art Deco theme so I started designing props that would compliment each other.

I also knew that I wanted to go for an Art Deco theme so I started designing props that would compliment each other.

I'd always wanted to do a meerschaum pipe and as the desk needed to be somewhat cluttered this was a perfect trophy for our unseen collector.

I'd always wanted to do a meerschaum pipe and as the desk needed to be somewhat cluttered this was a perfect trophy for our unseen collector.

After working through the design process, I settled on a 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea concept for the meerschaum pipe. I wanted to create a new take on the Nautilus.

After working through the design process, I settled on a 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea concept for the meerschaum pipe. I wanted to create a new take on the Nautilus.

It was important that each element got the right amount of attention. I didn't want to rush through and lose control of the process. This project taught me a lot about patience.

It was important that each element got the right amount of attention. I didn't want to rush through and lose control of the process. This project taught me a lot about patience.

I spent a lot of time blocking in the base form of the pipe in Blender before moving on to the details. Maintaining discipline was key here as it's always tempting to start detailing too early in the process.

I spent a lot of time blocking in the base form of the pipe in Blender before moving on to the details. Maintaining discipline was key here as it's always tempting to start detailing too early in the process.

Once the main forms are in place, I start focusing on bringing the detail up with several passes building layer on top of layer as I sculpt.

Once the main forms are in place, I start focusing on bringing the detail up with several passes building layer on top of layer as I sculpt.

Using polygonal modeling I made sure to get things in place for the extra elements on the pipe before jumping in and sculpting on top. Approaching things modularly is essential to save valuable time.

Using polygonal modeling I made sure to get things in place for the extra elements on the pipe before jumping in and sculpting on top. Approaching things modularly is essential to save valuable time.

I thought it would be fun to put a small figure on the pipe fending off the large octopus. Tiny details like these are rarely noticed, but they add so much authenticity to an object. I'm constantly looking for ways to embed more layers to the story.

I thought it would be fun to put a small figure on the pipe fending off the large octopus. Tiny details like these are rarely noticed, but they add so much authenticity to an object. I'm constantly looking for ways to embed more layers to the story.

I love how this pipe turned out, from the barnacles to the ship's engine and the octopus, it was so much fun to work on.

I love how this pipe turned out, from the barnacles to the ship's engine and the octopus, it was so much fun to work on.

I spent a lot of time trying to give a lived in look to all the objects in this scene. So, small details like dust and fingerprints were essential.

I spent a lot of time trying to give a lived in look to all the objects in this scene. So, small details like dust and fingerprints were essential.

Sometimes the simplest objects take the most creativity to complete. I had never designed a doily before, but the intricate pattern was an interesting topic to learn about.

Sometimes the simplest objects take the most creativity to complete. I had never designed a doily before, but the intricate pattern was an interesting topic to learn about.

Substance Painter was a great help for most of the key objects in the scene. A combination of carefully crafted PBR textures combined with procedural textures generated in Blender was key.

Substance Painter was a great help for most of the key objects in the scene. A combination of carefully crafted PBR textures combined with procedural textures generated in Blender was key.

The sapphire in the center of the amulet relic was the focal point inside the focal point so I spent quite a bit of time engineering the gemstone material to reflect the richness of the hero object for this scene.

The sapphire in the center of the amulet relic was the focal point inside the focal point so I spent quite a bit of time engineering the gemstone material to reflect the richness of the hero object for this scene.

For the longest time I couldn't decide what type of material I wanted to use for the body of the amulet. It was important to give myself time to really think through this crucial decision as it would impact the final vibe of the illustration greatly.

For the longest time I couldn't decide what type of material I wanted to use for the body of the amulet. It was important to give myself time to really think through this crucial decision as it would impact the final vibe of the illustration greatly.

I spent months playing with various forms of moody lighting. I found myself alternating between a high key daylight lighting scenario vs. a dim lit scene. With the deco motif, the darker noir lighting scheme seemed a better fit.

I spent months playing with various forms of moody lighting. I found myself alternating between a high key daylight lighting scenario vs. a dim lit scene. With the deco motif, the darker noir lighting scheme seemed a better fit.

The Soul of Atlantis

I wanted to create an illustration that told the story of a person's lifelong quest to find their embodiment of the holy grail. The cluttered desktop shows the life of our world traveler and hints at what must have unfolded on his epic journey.

The definitive inspiration for this piece came from a childhood fascination with Indiana Jones. This piece and its focal point were specifically inspired by an old game I used to play called Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis.

A labor of love developed in pieces over a few years, the primary idea stemmed from creating the Atlantean relic which holds a sacred sapphire in its heart. From there, the concept for the rest of the piece developed over time into what you see in the final illustration.

Created in Blender 2.8, 2.79b, partially textured in Substance Painter, rendered in Cycles, and composited in Photoshop.
99%+ of the assets were generated from scratch for this project -- hence the odyssey it took to finish.

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Brandon hix umi no haBrandon hix christmas 2016 final