Rei Ayanami Fanart

(Update: There is now a follow up to this project with another pose and tutorial)
Rei Ayanami from Neon Genesis Evangelion

(ArtStation Link)

My latest work in 2.81 using primarily Eevee, but also some Cycles for Indirect light and reflections.
I built a custom pass setup in Eevee so that I could do things like render out my shadows as a black and white mask, take them into a paint program, fix them up, and then bring the image back into my nodes and use it instead of the previous shading nodes. So effectively I can paint into the render, not just over it after.

I’ve made a tutorial covering the shader group theory and setup, and there’s a download for the nodes in the youtube description.

Raw Eevee render without bounce light, line art, or hand painted fixes:

The Line Art is a mix of negative rimlight for the silhouette, and Bevel Node based lines for the internal lines. It had to be almost entirely re-drawn by hand for the hair because Bevel does not interact well with the topology. The material is Cycles running on its own layer with its own lights to control it, and set as an override material. The silhouette thickness is enhanced a bit in the compositor with Dilate/Erode on the character’s Alpha mask.

The Nodes for the Line Art material (also needs a strong backlight like a sun set to negative strength.)!

The Cycles Indirect Light:
Eevee Screen Space Reflections do not work with Shader to RGB node, and are not particularly accurate anyway. For a still image, its not a big deal to render Cycles as well to get the bounce light.

EDIT: Wireframe because someone asked

Other aspects of the project, such as the modeling and rigging, are pretty much the same as my previous project:


This is amazing. Can you animate that effect or is it too complex of a composite workflow?

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Currently there are limitations in toon shading in Eevee that would make it difficult to animate. This is because Eevee does not have a proper toon shader, so the light interacts oddly with the size of the toon area. So it would animate fine, but if you have the character moving relative to the light source, your shading will look whacky.

See this part of the node breakdown to understand the issue:

If Eevee can get a real toon shader like Cycles, then yeah it should be fine to animate it all.

I don’t understand why it’s still not featured? Complex beautiful char + VERY good NPR setup + breakdown + tutorial + great renders - what’s more needed?

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I believe they only feature things that are already getting a bunch of attention/responses, otherwise it could be seen as favoritism by the mods or something. The community needs to have expressed a decent amount of interest. Thanks though! :slight_smile:

@Oscalon Wow! This is super impressive! I absolutely love Neon Genesis Evangelion and she’s one of my favorite characters in the series! This recreation of Rei Ayanami is incredible! You killed it! :slight_smile:


@TimothyHern, I totally agree. NGE is amazing and this is a wonderful rendition of Rei Ayanami. I’ll definitely be following you from now on!


Amazing work Oscalon! I am so glad I found this. I have been struggling to fix some color shading issues in Eevee (Trying to make a render look like a ilustration) And your tutorial + work is a life saver, although a complex one haha. Thanks so much!

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Thank you! Glad it helped. Feel free to message me here or any of my social media if you have more questions! And let’s all hope that as Eevee development continues, things become less complicated.

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Thanks! I certainly will

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