Loaded with Code and Dangerous

“Don’t mess with EXAs” -Anonymous


This is a little fan art project for the Zachtronics game EXAPUNKS. In the game “EXA” is a visual representation a small program capable of moving between computers using networks.

Modeling and materials

I got inspired by the game art and decided to practice some boolean modeling for quick results. The modeling didn’t take long and simple un-textured principled materials were fine. After that hit a dilemma how to present the model as the basic setup looked dull.

Composition and post processing

I’m usually doing everything using Blender compositor nodes but they can get tedious with more complex setups and I wanted to try bit different workflow this time.

I decided to try Krita for the task as it supports “file layers” which are directly uneditable layers which are loaded from a external file and automatically updated. Rendering layers separately from Blender works really well and Krita is quite fast even at near 4k resolutions.

Layers can be also rendered at partial resolution as the “file layers” have scaling options and can be updated to full resolution later on.


Here’s a croppable version for mobile phone wallpaper use: Mobile Wallpaper Version


Samples of the background layers as bare renders:

Interesting background layer to make was the shining planet as it was done using volumetric materials using textures with volumetric mapping:

And this is how it came together in Krita:


How come people missed this beautiful work from sights!

Wait, did you say Krita supports .blend file or what? Or is it just like “linking” render images in Krita and therefore you said it is uneditable and “automatically updated” if you overwrite those render images?

I think I tried to cram too much information into one sentence there. Krita can’t read anything from the .blend files let alone do any blender rendering. So yes, you are right about exporting layers as images and overwriting them in updates.

Krita handles the .exr files quite nicely and the exporting can be automated within blender using the “File output” node: https://docs.blender.org/manual/en/latest/compositing/types/output/file.html

Glad to hear that you like my work, thank you.

Oh yeah, I know the output node. Just making sure of the blend file support.
The other day I didn’t know that Blender supports importing .psd with the layers, so reading your post made me thought that I missed this one too :smile: