When I used to play Minecraft, I came across a texture pack that made all the blocks in the game appear more realistic and 3-dimensional. I fell in love with the texture pack, and ever since then, I've always wanted to know how to design texture packs and blocks like that myself. I decided that I wanted to recreate a bookshelf block because of the depth that could be achieved with manually creating the block myself. I found a good reference photo which had the shelf empty from books which I found to be interesting because I'm surprised that it doesn't exist as a block in the game already.
To recreate the block, I decided to split it into 4 sections, which were all just copies of one smaller shelf unit. This was necessary because making a singular shelf unit was quite the time consuming and painstaking process. I decided to assign materials to each individual cube that comprised the shelf unit. This allowed me to get pixel-perfect color accuracy! Part of the reason why I chose to model a bookshelf is because I couldn't just texture a large section of it. The concave shelving makes it difficult to apply the appropriate texture, so with my method I was able to truly make my own version of a Minecraft block from scratch.
To create the books, I simply stretched cubes into the proper shapes using "Edit" mode to pull the faces and the incremental snaps to keep everything aligned. Each of the books are separate objects from the bookshelves which means the books can be rearranged and recolored in any way to create more interesting bookshelves if I wanted to expand on this mini-project further in the future.
For the renderings, I played around with a couple different orientations and layouts for the bookshelves that would be visually interesting without the aid of other Minecraft blocks. The first layout is what might be traditionally seen within the game, while the second layout is impossible to achieve in the vanilla game. The slightly overlapping bookshelves have more visual interest to them, and in my opinion, would be an incredible addition to the game if blocks like these were allowed to be placed slightly offset from each other.