Here's my progress so far on my personal project. I kinda abandoned it while I finished up the semester but during this christmas break I got back to working on it.
I'm starting to like the results more and more as I'm learning from my mistakes which are mostly modeling.
If you aren't working on a little scene I'd highly recommend it since it forces you to learn how every step in the pipeline affects everything else. I don't know how many times I've had to remodel things in order to not only capture the envisioned look and feel but to also get shaders and lighting to work correctly.
Overall, I'd say this current result is not too shabby.