Featured image of post The Neon Graveyard - 03 - Mausoleums

The Neon Graveyard - 03 - Mausoleums

Progress on more buildings

Week Three:

Little path leading to the neon cathedral. To the left of the path there are now a bunch of mausoleums with neon signs attached to them.

I’ve been blocking out more shapes and changing the lay-out quite a bit. I’ll be honest and say that I liked the idea of having bare land to the left of the camera, and filling it with just squarish, ordinary looking gravestones. Exactly like the cover of the short-story I mentioned in the first post. Then in the distance, I would have spooky, aggressive treeline. And although trees are nowhere to be seen yet, I was worried that they wont fill the scene up enough when I create them. I was bothered that there would be this huge patch of sky to the left, and it would distract the viewers eye out of the canvas, instead guiding it towards the inside of it.

Crypts and Mausoleums

That’s when I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to introduce some crypts, instead of having only gravestones. And even better, their prolonged silhouettes and roofs would give me more space to put on some neon signs. I had the intent to have lots of those lights from the very start. At some point I started wondering where I am going to put them, and this kind of fits.

Screenshot from Maya showcasing two crypts and mausoleums. One has a triangular roof. The other one is flat and more modern and brutalist looking.

They need quite a bit more detail and work, but at least their block-out shows me where I am going with it. With the neon billboards I want to suggest a story. Thus the “Personal Eternity” and “Cheap Cloud”. The place doesn’t look very techno heavy a part from the lights right now, but I plan on scattering some cable and wire details through some Unreal spline systems. They could go out of the cathedral and go towards each grave. Maybe those graves actually serve a purpose? Is there something in them? Servers? Storage space?

Haven’t figured out all of it yet, but just asking those questions and suggesting those ideas help me build the place up.

Ah, by the way, that “Personal Eternity” text font to the right looks maybe a bit too Art Deco, and might really be calling for a change.

2D Sketch:

Quick and rough paint over image. There are symbols and neon texts attached everywhere. The cathedral in the distance has a strong red, glass surface of its windows, indicating an intricate stained glass appearance.

I really wanna have a go in Substance Designer at making the emissive, colored, stained glass on the windows at the distance, but that will have to be for later as there is much more to do before that. Also I settled down on the idea that it might be cool to have a tower in the middle of the canvas. That needs to be blocked out next.

Gif Progress:

Time for a GIF!

Animated gif progress showcasing the place going from barren and lacking mausoleums to more populated with those props.

I was really unsure whether to keep the graves face the camera like I had them initially. I think it was not that bad but certainly feels a bit banal at times. Like, lets have every cool thing look straight into the eyes of the viewer. What I’ve settled down on right now, I believe looks more dynamic. Might still not be the final, as I feel like their placements lacks structure. Even though I am trying to convey the idea that its an old place and the soil started shifting and thus moving/distorting everything.

That’s for this time. Hope you like where its heading.

Until next time,


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