Stylized Character Design Study

Stylized Character Design Study

Kristina Baziuchenko did a little overview of her Dishonored-looking character.


Hello, my name is Kristina. I was born and raised in Bila Tserkva, Ukraine. I studied in Kyiv. Right after graduating from the university I took courses at Artcraft, also in Kyiv. I began with a standard course on 2D but quickly realized that I wanted more, I got interested in 3D character concept art.

About the project

The process began with a super idea for the diploma on those courses. We had about 2 days to work on it and then the teacher, Artem Gusak, was to assess our artwork with a facepalm. By the way, I’d like to say a big thanks to him and the whole team of Artcraft, they are very cheerful and just great guys. Then I had a load of silhouette drafts, a heap of references and ideas.

Link to my favorite courses.

What I really wanted to do in my work was to show what kind of character it was. My general idea was to make an evil witch with a pet.



I used “general body” from DAZ Studio to create the model of my character and then adjusted its proportions to the silhouette I chose. I did it using an overlay method, in “see-through” mode of ZBrush. This method is very helpful when you need to adjust proportions very precisely to a picture or a silhouette.

The hyena was designed using a regular dog model as a base. The “move” brush was enough to deform the model, then I went to sculpting.

Dishonored is a whole different story, I just love everything related to these wonderful games. I have the artbooks, I always look at works of such people as  Cedric Peyravernay, Cristian-Marius Buliarca, Sergey Kolesov, Nicolas Petrimaux, they are a great inspiration to me. And I’m really glad that my work at least slightly reminds you the stylistics of Dishonored, because it was my goal from the start. I hope I’ve managed to achieve it!

Most of the clothes was made in Marvelous. I mean the blouse, belt and pants, then I imported them into ZBrush, adjusted the geometry in ZRemesher and added folds and clothes details right over the clothes, by adding polygons. Some items of clothing were taken from DAZ library (gloves and boots) and then edited in ZBrush to match the character. Here is a link to the brush that proved very useful with folds of the clothes (I sculpted the hair with it too, so it’s my must have).

Link to the brush:

I modeled the hyena’s collar just with the “extract” function and then added the spikes and chain using insert brushes.

I sculpted face variants in ZBrush with the “layers” function and then painted in Photoshop. I sculpted the final result according to the sketch using “see-through” to not break the proportions and in the end added some asymmetry to the character.

The hair was the most difficult to design. My first variants of hairdos were at best so-so, and I didn’t have much luck with FiberMesh. After all I decided to go with sculpting since the character was a stylized one. I began with making a general volume of hair and using DynaMesh, then I worked with polygons and used the “Polish” and “Pinch” brushes to get the final look of the hair. Mostly I used this video by Adam Fisher as a guide.

The fur was easier to work on: I used alpha and just made a beautiful relief on top.

While painting, at first, I selected the color in Photoshop, then I used PolyPaint and there I chose what and where I wanted to make. I always kept references around. It’s very important to always look at your work from the outside and compare it with the references. After painting I posed the character in Transpose master.


There are many options for rendering, it depends on what kind of result you want to get. You can use Photoshop for complete painting, or Marmoset if you want to get beautiful glow, fog or even animation. All the options are good, you just need to choose yours. Personally, I chose Keyshot because I wanted to work with materials and textures. I began with loading the model, applying materials, setting them up. Somewhere I used textures with bump mapping, like with the hyena’s collar, then I selected the standard HDRI (you can load your own), tweaked it all a bit and came over to rendering.

Kristina Bazuichenko, 3D Artist.

Interview conducted by Kirill Tokarev.

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    Stylized Character Design Study