Without borders 3D Challenge Winners Announcement!

We are very happy to announce the winners of the Without borders Challenge.

Participants were to create a 3D work with a famous building from their country, that would be the best place to visit by a traveler. Environment in the work should be made in 3D. You can see the rules here.

the First place

First place is Aspire Tower (Doha, Qatar) by Ramees Muhammed

Aspire Tower (Doha, Qatar) by Ramees Muhammed

Made with using 3ds Max and Corona Renderer.

Also Ramees gets a Special prize from Corona Renderer team for the best work made with using Corona and a Special prize from Nevercenter team for the Best sky in a work.

Special prize from Corona TeamSpecial prize from Nevercenter team

Nevercenter team: “The sky in this render is full of a mood, and illuminated nighttime clouds like this are a sky worth taking time to pause, look at, and escape into”.

Corona renderer team: “This work nails everything, from mood and atmosphere, composition (we love how the tower “reaches beyond the moon”), to rendering quality”.

Comments from the Jury:

Yurii Lebediev: “Symmetrical composition is boring in most cases (for me personally). But Moon and all other elements that break this symmetry make this render special. I love the night lighting and the position of clouds in the background too”.

Martin Krasemann: “Lot of work on this one, creating a nice night scene is a complex task and the tower is really well lightened. Composition works also very well. The reflection on the water looks nice also”.

Alessandro Maniscalco: “Great architectural rendering with amazing modelled and detailed structure. I was shocked about environment crispy details. Great night atmosphere”.

Agnieszka Klich: “Realistic image, nice composition, interesting lighting setup! A great way of using the contrast between cold and warm lights to balance composition and focus interest on the main subject of the image – the tower”.

Kenny Zou: “Excellent rendering and mood-setting, especially with the moon so big, nice work!”.

Calvin Bacon: “The lighting, composition, and mood that this render portrays are fantastic. The incredibly high level of detail and realism make this my top pick”.

Jonathan Holmes: “Eye-catching design with beautiful lighting and a very melancholy atmosphere. Loving it!”.

Jacob Norris: “Fantastic mood and the minimal use of colors really helps to highlight the shapes of this beautiful architecture”.

Emanuele Serra: “This work attracted my attention, simple in its composition, but very interesting in the use of night lights, expressing the intense strength of the structure. I like how the colors and contrasts of the composition have been balanced”.

Paul Roberts: “The main building is very well modelled with an atmospheric mood and detailed context. The composition is strong with the form defined by using a predominantly dark building defined against the lighter sky. Modelling is to a good standard with a good amount of information communicated in the surrounding site without it distracting from the main focus”.

Nicolas Wirrmann: “I particularly liked the mood, the lighting work and subtle post processing. The result is an elegant photorealistic render. (The moon might be a bit too much though 😉)”.

Quick interview with Ramees:
– How long have you been into 3D modeling? Please, tell us about yourself.

I have been in the industry for the past 10 years. For the most part, I’ve produced Forensic 3D Animations and Technical Graphics used in construction disputes and tenders.

In recent years I’ve also produced architectural visualizations as well as being involved in commercial projects.

I did a Bachelor of Science in Visual Communication and an Advanced Diploma in Multimedia.

– How much time did it take you to create your work? Did you face any difficulties?

The project took me around a week to complete as I worked on this during my time aside from my dayjob. Most time was taken to plan the scene composition and also spent a bit of time on tower modeling.

The key challenge was to make the scene a bit dramatic and to add as much detail on the building model and the nearby landmarks (Stadium, Arena). Other than these, the process was straightforward
as well as interesting and I have enjoyed every bit of it.

– Do you have any advice for future participants in the competition?

As we all are always learning and striving for perfection in this arena, the best thing I could advise is to keep participating without a fear of losing.

Competing will always give us the chance to learn from others and it’s always a win-win situation, and one day it will be our turn to inspire others.

The Second place

Second place is Mode Gakuen Cocoon Tower (Tokyo) by Todor Vladev

Mode Gakuen Cocoon Tower (Tokyo) by Todor Vladev

Made with using 3ds Max, V-ray, Megascans and Photoshop.

Also Todor gets Special prize from Exlevel team for the “Best Environment”.

Special prize from Exlevel Team

Exlevel team: “Very realistic image. Render looks like a photo!”

Comments from the Jury:

Lynette Clee: “The composition of this piece is wonderful, using the pathway to draw our eye into the frame and up to explore the details of the tower. The balance of architecture and nature seems very thoughtful, and the lighting and reflections help to bring this scene to life with great photorealism”.

Martin Krasemann: “The only reason this one didn’t end up in the 1st place is because the walkway in front of the camera feels really empty, I would have loved to see people and bicycles”.

Alessandro Maniscalco: “Amazing dusk environment render with amazing modern architecture. Very good composition”.

Fabio Allamandri: “Very nice shot. I like the composition of the image”.

Maciej Ptaszynski:” Very cool image! I love the lighting and the materials. One of my favourites. Congrats!”

Calvin Bacon: “The composition does a great job of drawing the eye to what should be in focus, which is clearly the powerful skyscraper. The final result is a render that is executed beautifully and to a very high technical level”.

Tom Grimes: “Have to admit it was the wet ground and blurred lighting that rounded out this image for me, giving a sense of early morning perhaps, or after some light rainfall. The sharp detail of the tower then contrasts nicely”.

Jonathan Holmes: “Nearly a photograph” render that really impressed me. Fantastic lighting and composition skills here!”.

Jacob Norris: “A great choice for a very interesting building and presented in such a beautiful way in this simple, yet exciting piece”.

Paul Roberts: “A strong architectural render with some excellent modelling of the main building and texturing of the surrounding environment. Good use of light to create some interesting reflections”.

Arseniy Korablev: “Professional and realistic artwork. I like the city feeling here”.

Stephanie Schenck: “Great photo-realistic render of the scene; we especially like the reflection of the sky textures and surrounding elements on the curved parts of the tower, and the feel of the sidewalk tile. You can feel the slight-slipperiness, the gentle imperfections within the uniformity, the transition to rougher textures for the raised bumps. Well done”.

Quick interview with Todor:
– How long have you been into 3D modeling? Please, tell us about yourself.

I have been doing 3d modelling and visualization since 2015. I have a big passion for 3d and visualization. In my spare time I usually work on personal projects which are more of an artistic approach. I always try and find better and more efficient ways of doing things and keep on top of the latest techniques in 3d visualization.

– How much time did it take you to create your work? Did you face any difficulties?

The image took about a month from start to finish. There were a few modelling challenges with the Mode Gacuen Cocoon Tower. The tower is made up of 3 main sections and the roof as another section. Each floor slab then had to be modeled separately to match the curvature of the tower with the interior walls. Everything had to precise and match to the millimeter while modelling. The tower turned out quite accurate at the end.

– Do you have any advice for future participants in the competition?

My only advice for future participants would be – Always work from a reference image, for modelling, materials and lighting.

The Third place

Third place is Ottoman Legacy – Dolmabahce Palace by Kay John Yim

Ottoman Legacy – Dolmabahce Palace by Kay John Yim

Made with using Redshift, Cinema4D, Rhino, Speedtree and ZBrush.

Comments from the Jury:

Yurii Lebediev: “I adore pictures with soul. And this is the case. Not just hyper-realistic render but great attention to the mood and vibe of the moment”.

Martin Krasemann: “Love the poetic atmosphere that is getting out of this image”.

Alessandro Maniscalco: “We love the happiness and colors of this picture. The beautiful atmosphere is everywhere and the compositing is very good. Great compositing and environment objects…”.

Agnieszka Klich: “The image of the palace drew my attention instantly. It tells a story about the place – thanks to this the author added extra value to the visualization. The building not only has a monumental look but the composition of the image also gives an impression of some mystery behind it (by giving us – the viewers – the possibility to be unseen observers) which we are willing to uncover. The soft color palette gives the place the ‘inviting to visit’ look. Great framing, nice color balance, and story included… all the aspects that make the image successful”.

Fabio Allamandri: “This image is a little bit over exposed for my tastes but I like the easter feeling very much. Lots of details! Very good job!”.

Maciej Ptaszynski: “Great mood and very nice composition. Beautiful render!”

Jacob Norris: “Fantastic work on the architecture and atmosphere in this piece. The flower petals floating in the air and the strong glow from the lighting help to make the artwork feel magical”.

Emanuele Serra: “This work is immediately caught my eye, I did not know Dolmabahce Palace, but as soon as you look at this work, you can feel the history and magic of that place. I like how the author reinterprets that place, using a very poetic light, increasing this feeling even more by using petals that rest on the water, while a sailing ship plows the sea towards the palace”.

Arseniy Korablev: “Festive and solemn artwork. And besides, beautiful and very detailed!”

Nicolas Wirrmann: “The amount of modelling work is impressive”.

Stephanie Schenck: “This render is more like a painting, effectively capturing the *feel* of visiting the space, with all of the dreams, immersion, swept-away-ness of the scene”.

Ralph Huchtemann: “This one has a very special composition with the boat at the bottom and the tree branches coming from above, which give the palace a frame. Another special thing about this one are all the falling leaves. Very unique composition”.

Quick interview with John:
– How long have you been into 3D modeling? Please, tell us about yourself.

As both a Chartered Architect and a CGI Artist, I have been into 3D modeling for about 8 years.

My journey into 3D began with CAD softwares while I was studying architecture in University – Rhino being my primary 3D tool for its unique capabilities in handling freeform curves and NURBS surfaces.

A couple of years into learning 3D, I struggled with the limitations of rendering packages available for CAD softwares. That was when I started to look into DCCs like Cinema4D and Houdini – which led me to a whole new world of possibilities in CG rendering. I spent all my waking hours outside work learning and practicing rendering as a hobby.

When I officially passed my exam to become a RIBA Chartered Architect in the UK, I made the decision to specialize in architectural visualization, with just the bare minimum knowledge of rendering that I learned and practiced in my free time.

I have since worked at the forefront of concept design at SPINK Partners – a British architectural design practice based in London – delivering CG renderings for marketing, design development discussions and eventually construction.

When COVID lock-down dawned upon London, I treated the extra time as an R&D opportunity to learn new CG software and publish CG art regularly on social media, with the goal of honing my CG skills and connecting with like-minded people online.

– How much time did it take you to create your work? Did you face any difficulties?

It took me about 2 months to complete my rendering for final submission, of which around 80% of the time was spent on lighting and rendering, and 20% on modeling and texturing.

I have faced a lot of difficulties – one of which being long rendering times.

“Ottoman Legacy” was one of the most detailed projects I have ever worked on – the main building alone consisted of over 1 trillion polys. Previously I would have created a low poly version of the scene, but I took the challenge as an opportunity to see how far I could push the boundaries of rendering in Redshift, for the sake of retaining as much detail as possible.

Needless to say my workstation crashed countless times during look-dev, and a 2-week project ended up taking me 2 months to complete – but it was worth every second.

– Do you have any advice for future participants in the competition?

I think that practicing consistently is the most important habit that I have formed over the past year, and I would advise every 3D artist to do the same; for me personally I practice and learn a little 3D consistently every day as opposed to scheduling a whole weekend of work, when I am most likely to be distracted.

In addition to consistent practice, I think that studying photography and cinematography rather than focusing on the technicality of 3D can definitely go a long way – 3D software are evolving so quickly these days anything could easily become obsolete tomorrow.

We congratulate the winners!

Special prize from Otoy Team

Special prize from Otoy team for the “Best render that made with using OctaneRender” gets “Christ The Redeemer” by Marcus Rizzo.

Christ The Redeemer by Marcus Rizzo

Otoy Team: “We selected Christ the Redeemer by Marcus Rizzo because of the mood that the artist managed to capture – the scale, detail and general balance was nicely executed. Overall it’s uplifting and at the same time well composed”.

Special prize from Rebusfarm team

Special prize from Rebusfarm team gets “The Luz Station” by Phillip Schmidt.

The Luz Station by Phillip Schmidt

RebusFarm team: “This place is a starting point to cross borders. It shines in the grey city and gives a cozy feeling with all the lights on the platform and also a feeling of excitement as one train is already leaving. Very nice composition”.

Special prize from Teya Conceptor team

Special prize from Teya Conceptor developer for the “Most detailed modeling” gets “Golden Temple” by Praveen Nayak.

Golden Temple by Praveen Nayak

Teya Conceptor developer: “We love how the golden temple is made. It looks very detailed, the ornament’ bump complements this feeling without getting out of the big picture”.

Special prize from InstaLOD team

Special prize from InstaLOD team for the “Most detailed 3D model” gets “Malaga Cathedral Gardens (Andalucia, Spain)” by Simon Streater.

Malaga Cathedral Gardens (Andalucia, Spain) by Simon Streater

InstaLOD team: “This render is packed with beautiful and well-implemented details. The variation in plants, the different building structures that break up the repetitiveness, and the stained-glass pictures in the windows make this render an exploration with new findings popping up every time you look at it”.

Special prize from iToo Software team

Special prize from iToo Software team gets “New Philharmonic (Szczecin, Poland)” by Adam Siuchninski.

New Philharmonic (Szczecin, Poland) by Adam Siuchninski

iToo Software team: “This standout feature of this building is its illuminated facade, and that’s exactly what the artist has convincingly communicated. Sometimes reigning in the temptation to overpopulate a scene with details can be the hardest thing, and here the artist has managed to remain true to the central message of the image”.

Special prize from Fox Renderfarm

Special prize from Fox Renderfarm team gets “Siegessäule” by Achim Schröder.

Siegessäule by Achim Schröder

Fox RenderFarm: “Who does not want to see a live musical event while travelling! Especially we are WFH for so long, a live concert is exactly what we want! The crowd is massive in this piece, the lights are good but can have a lot more like those virtual EDM concerts, sunset is excellent to start the concert!”

Special prize from Marmoset

Special prize from Marmoset team gets “NGV International – Great Hall” by David Greco.

NGV International – Great Hall by David Greco

Marmoset team: “Our team really enjoyed the stained glass reflections on this one. The artist also kept the texturing tiling in the proper scale”.

In addition, we’d like to point out the works which were chosen by Hum3D team.

Hum3d team choice

“Alexander Palace” by Alireza Seifi.

Alexander Palace by Alireza Seifi

“Ponte 25 de Abril (Lisbon)” by Antonio D’avolio.

Ponte 25 de Abril (Lisbon) by Antonio D'avolio

“Ancient Ruins in Greece” by Adrian Kulawik.

Ancient Ruins in Greece by Adrian Kulawik

“Skytree Tower (Tokyo)” by Alessio Pitto.

kytree Tower (Tokyo) by Alessio Pitto

“Walt Disney Concert Hall” by Dorin Jannotta.

Walt Disney Concert Hall by Dorin Jannotta

For those who like statistics:

42 artists took part in the competition. 33 members of jury chose twenty seven renders to the short list. You can see votes here (each place in top-five gives special amount of points: first place – five points, fifth place – one point. All points/votes are sumup).

Special thanks to the sponsors who support our event and help 3D artists to create their masterpieces. Each of them is the best in their field. You can always count on their quality service, and so we are happy to recommend you their products.

Would be great to see your comments and thank you all for amazing challenge.

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