Grand Space Opera 3D Entry: Shaun Lupton


Shaun Lupton has entered the Grand Space Opera 3D.

Challenge Page

Latest Update: Final Image: My final final image!

Hi everyone, I will respond to your kind comments and suggestions on my next post, but I wanted to say this was a great and very challenging challenge. I did my best with work and everyday life, and a move taking much of my time. I had a lot of fun putting this image together. I love these challenges as they allow me to explore my mind and create something I normally would not, plus all the great comments, suggestions, and friendly encounters help me get better as an artist. The final image was put togther through about 10 layers. City, characters, smoke, background, etc. all had their own layer. Finally composited in photoshop where the color was matched so everything looks like its from the same picture. Enjoy!! Until Next time…



Count me in!

I have a great idea with the 3d part of this challenge. Basically a war scene, closeup of humanoid characters going at it. Under a structure of signifigance. Background will show a more broader perspective of whats going on, with tons of detail and effects. I promise to finish this one this time, 90 days is a lot of days, so off I go. Concept sketches and Story of the depicted scene coming shortly!



Hi Shaun…Nice to see you in.I think the theme is just too too sweet to pass on.The potential and upside are of a very high level.I expect to see eye candy city here,so all the best to you,and I will follow your progress to the finishline,…Good luck,and may all your visions come out perfectly in 3D…Now bring on those concepts…:arteest: Until later…:cool:


Hey Michael , tnx for the quick reply, this is going to be a sweet challenge. Its good to see you in as well this time around also! Im going to keep primarilly in the 3d challenge as my idea is going to take a lot of time. Ill be sure to stop by your thread to say hi and see how things are going over there throughout the comp! So with all that said, here is my concept…



Here is my black and white concept sketch of what I will be creating. The scenerio will be like the Lost city of Atlantis except in a futuristic backdrop. I will depict a scene which will show the final days and hours before its fall. Atlantis has stories of being a rome type of empire. Beautiful architect, advanced technology, and beautiful scenery, that is why I am going with that type of scenerio with the whole scene. I will put a futuristic attitude towards everything. There will be tons of elements showing my vision. I will be creating the scene with a romanesque / renaissance feeling. Characters, Colors, and scenery by the end will hopefully have the same feel as a Michaelangelo painting. The picture shows a battle brewing between two cultures in the foreground, the background shows the end of an empire. More to come shortly…



I always had a thing for “historic” sci-fi.

Very nice comp. This bleeds of the “FALL OF CONSTANTINOPLE”!!

I believe that you should investigate some of the artwork related to that one of MOST EPIC battles ever in the history of humanity.

I would recommend a possible rearrangement of the firgures now, the two opposing forces seem to symeterically balanced, as if the whole thing as a standoff instead of one side bringing froce onto another. In other words I think that the prespective of this work should be in a more dymanic and dramatic pose. Also this concept is missing one every important element to any epic comp… LARGE numbers. For such a large city the 4 or 5 defending it seems like hardly any obstacle!

Hope Ive been helpful.


The action is really nice up close and personal. I think you’re on the right path because action is whats going to score highly in my book. The only thing I could recommend is that you could make the action come towards camera a little bit to get that depth in space. This sketch reminds me of something you find in an old book that shows history of some grand event. Looking good! I’ll be checking on this one!


Hey thanks tons WazaR,

The picture above is just a concept sketch is all, I didnt want to spend countless hours drawing out exactly what im hoping it will look like as most my time will be going with the 3d. The final picture will have many more characters in more dynamic and dramatic poses you described. The foreground will show more of a closeup of the overall scene. Like a charge up stairs. Ill have better perspective once I start the 3d. I will look into finding more about the fall of constantinople as it sounds interesting and will help in the overall piece. Thanks again, for your feedback and suggestions.



hi Shaun… your idea sounds very interesting and promising… especially where you are planning to give it a look of a Michaelangelo painting… and your concept sketch is expressive enough… but are you sure this is a space thematic? more exactly Grand Space Opera…
cheers and best of luck to you!


Here is the start of the modeling process. At helmet, not a lot of work, but im going to try to do a little each day. I havent started on the extra designs or texturing for it as you can see, but its a start…

Hi ymonkato,
thanks for the kind words and suggestions, Ill take your camera idea into account once I have some 3d to work with. Thanks again for the reply.

Hey greentek,

I do feel this idea fits under the guidelines stated here with parenthasis:

The subject could be an individual or group, a space ship or fleet, a “city or city-world”. Whatever it is, it should capture a pivotal moment that is part of a vast galactic civilisation or conflict.

The last thing I want to do is follow the crowd, I believe originality is a must and so Ill do my best to follow the guidelines and stick with my initial vision. For the sky, I will have many planets and a vast universe as part of the one im trying to depict. I hope to create a world that feels real, yet is not and interacts with the galactic space opera theme. As I have more things finished, I will look to yours and other opinions and what looks best, and where I should take this. Thank you very much for your sincere comments and suggestions.



hey man, i really like your idea, i was gonna go with somthing along the lines of Bosch or Bruegel then sci-fi it, i went with somthing else : ) you prety much have the same idea the way i see it. the helmet looks great also, good luck with it man.


That helmet design is great! I think your sketch is very well layed out and I really look forward to seeing how you will give it a futuristic feel.

Interesting connection MrCrowpsey made, it does remind me of Bruegel. One thing I’ve learned from this contest is that if I had flipped through my art history book before starting my sketches I would have been much further along by now!

Keep up the good work.



Art history is crucial in the creation of any kind of impactfull illustration.

As far as the theme is concerned, I wouldnt be in such a hurry to put in “spacy” elements,… after all does your image need them???

If it dosnt fit in, it is better not to force a space style on to something that just isnt spacelike. It would lessen the image to do otherwise. I think a better idea is to try to focus in on futurism, which is not the same as space…


Hola, I promise an update tonight, more coming!!

MrCrowpsey, hey thanks for the kind comments!

Crusty_Butt, hey there, gald you like, more coming!!

WazaR, that totally makes sense! I was thinking of even adding a flying pirates of the carabeann ship or something which can show what you described, futuristic yet old style. More to come…



Here is the next update, I worked on the body armor last night and this morning. Here is a quick render of where im at. I still havent added the extra details to it, but I will when all the armor is complete. More to come hopefully soon.



Here is a head ive been working on the last couple days. I plan on having at least 12 human characters in a battle scene. This head will be used as the default head to create the others once its totally finished. I will show the other heads when I begin on them.



Hi Shaun…very nice start on the modeling of the armor,head gear and head models…Your plan is a very interesting one.I like your armor style,it has a classic style and appearance…Possibly with this being a space opera I was thinking you could give the armor a more out there look,something like in the recent Riddick movie?Seems more appropiate for this theme…Ok thinking out loud here.I expect lots of very nice work here,and so far you are delivering as expected,keep it up,you are off to a classy start,and I will be checking up on you with each update,Until later ol" friend…:arteest:


Hey Michael,

Thanks for the reply, it made me rethink a lot of things for this challenge. I will keep with the whole Atlantis theme, but only as a theme to create a galactic world, meaning it wont be earth that the scenerios I create will be from. I just liked the idea of a waterworld/futurama idea, so armor will go along those lines. I plan on creating hyper detailed armor once I get around to it, I sometimes get bored at one thing so I begin something new, as you will see with the new update, I created a character for the race that is attacking. So it is now human against alien species. It should make for an even better backdrop now. I will provide a few more concept sketches down the line when I get motivated to do them. This has been fun thus far. more to come…



This is the new race of species that the humanoids will be fighting against. I will have 3 types of alien type creatures that will be seen. This is one of them. It was created with the same head from the human character I finished a couple days back. I now have another 10 heads to go. THis is a texture color test of the model, it may change by the end. Enjoy!




cool sketch, gives of a sense of struggle and mad panic to me.
modelling is great, I like the human heads you posted.

my thoughts on the alien head texture, I think it’s a little too close to human skin, and he looks a little sun burnt at the moment, but i know it’s a prelimenary draft ;p