Making Low Poly Link Fan Art
Subscribe:  iCal  |  Google Calendar
7, Mar — 12, Jun
San Francisco US   19, Mar — 24, Mar
Anaheim US   23, Mar — 26, Mar
San Jose US   26, Mar — 30, Mar
Washington US   30, Mar — 2, Apr
Latest comments

Well, small/medium intuos pro is way cheaper that iPad Pro + pencil... just saying... And it works better with ZBrush...

by some guy
12 hours ago

It might ultimately be proof of concept now, but the point of showing a low-count bounce raytracing that still looks decent especially after denoising gives us a nice roadmap on the future. Maybe given time, we will move to this as the new standard or at least a probable alternate to baked lighting.

by Nathan Ayotte
12 hours ago

Fuck you I'm stuck in some bullshit game some dickhead thought would be exciting.

Making Low Poly Link Fan Art
27 December, 2017
Character Art

Arthur Bourdot did a very nice breakdown, talking about the creation of a very cute little diorama, which was made entirely out of simple primitives.


Hi everybody. My name is Arthur Bourdot, I left the Gerges Méliès School, which was situated near Paris, two years ago. I’m working as a 3D generalist freelancer and I’m developing my own video game project. You can check some of my visual art here. Shortly after my graduation, I loved realistic and detailed renders. Today, I realize that you can tell a lot in your works with so little. I’m a huge fan of old video games like the first Tomb Raider or Half-life. The developer teams needed to focus on colors and shapes, imagination of the player did the rest.

The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker was my first game on consoles. It was incredible to a 10-years-old child to discover that huge ocean, and I think it will be my favorite game of all time. Nintendo had a good idea for the visual style and tried to make the characters and landscapes minimalistic. And for a long time, I wanted to pay homage to that approach.

The model was not built using realistic primitives, instead, I decided to have a leitmotiv of cylinders and spheres to keep this aspect of the model faithful to the game. Arms and legs were the only pipes with spheres on them. There was no complex setup, only parental links between meshes. It was easy to pose the model based on Links figurines or concept arts.


The cumuli were very simple. I used groups of two or three semi-spheres which I could scale and rotate. The clouds were placed not too far, to simulate the mock-up look. The hair is visually simple but it took half of the work on the model to make it. I focused on lines of force to keep it dynamic. At first, Link looked like Trump… so I decided to revise the hair and try to suggest movement in its design. The grass was made of duplicated triangles only.


Water is here to match the style of Link. It needs to be simple, without too much detail. I think the water texture with foam was copied into a lot of indie games, so it was better to use something else, like this circle around the character. The waves gave a sense of perspective in the original game, so I recreated the effect with simple triangle planes.

Color are simple Lambert shaders selected in Maya. Sketchfab can handle them very well when you import fbx.

As for the lighting: one directional light and one ambient. I knew I would use the “Arche Pinetree” environment to simulate reflection from the floor, so I made the circle orange. And a combination of orange and blue looks beautiful. Effects like vignette or grain are set to low intensity so as to not obstruct visibility.

Arthur Bourdot, 3D Artist

Interview conducted by Kirill Tokarev


Leave a Reply

1 Comment on "Making Low Poly Link Fan Art"


how do u get this effect using lambert shaders ?

Related articles
Character Art
Environment Design
Character Art
CGI/Static Rendering
Character Art
Character Art