Tuesday, 3 January 2012


Bad Luck doesn’t begin to describe this holiday, but as always I was quite optimistic about the Christmas break especially because the summer holiday was quite a productive time for me so I was hoping for something similar this time. This all changed after the second week where all the progress I had made with my character work had corrupted and was back to square one; I say this but it was just my zbrush files that I had been working on. The file sizes for these are roughly about 800mb and this was mostly the reason why I didn’t have much iteration and also the fact that my Wacom tablet kept disconnecting after each save which made it rather annoying because I had to restart the computer each time this happened. In the end I paid the price for not taking that extra minute or so to save and restart as now I am back to the start. The character design has to be revised as I simply will not have the time to pack the same level of detail for the number of props in the time I have. I am going to have to simplify the details and this is pretty much going to be a 1 week project. I cannot believe this happened to me like 1 week before the deadline. I forgot to post screenshots of the zbrush sculpts as i went along and thought i'll do it once i finishedthe sculpt. Im definately doing it this time as i go along.

Day 1 – Quick think about character/base mesh/ start sculpting
Day 2/3 – Major sculpting and finish it (somehow)
Day 4 – Retopologising/ uving/possibly start texturing (highly optimistic I know)
Day 5 – Texturing
Day 6 – Finish texturing / start rigging and somehow finish it ..i don’t even know how to rig.
Day 7 – Do a second character (LOD)
Day 8 aka D’day – Finish everything.

ok, this is loose base mesh i put to gether but never used it because honestly I had a better base mesh that i used for my chacter but since i wont be able to pull that concept off due to the fact that the deadline is next week,I'm going for a slightly simpler one and this blockout gave me an alternative idea. It doesn't look as nice as the other one but at the moment I got to get on with the scultping so I'm going to import this over to zbrush andbuild base mesh in zbrush if necessary or use this to start sculpting.

I wish I sort of did this sort of thing with the other chacter and put progress stuff up but since i didnt I atelast want to do it this time so just incase something unfortunate happens I could atleast show progress shots.
I have been working on this character for about almost 2 days including today but the sculpting went much quicker than my last one because thers is literally no time to rethink anything and I sort of decided to focus on 3 major areas which is the jacket, trouser and a bag and of course. The sculpting WILL have to be completed by the end of tomorrow.
Looking back at the image now I can see that certain areas are looking quite flat which will need to be fixed by tomorrow and establish some weight, I think ive done that in some areas but it isnt consistent. To add to that I will need to add volume to various parts to stop it from looking flat.
The main thing I am slightly happy about is that the details are almost all asymmetrical because from speaking to the artist from creative assembly, one thing that he advised me not to do is symmetry in characters. However the overall silhouette is quite symmetrical which I hope to adress tomorrow; having said that the silhouette will not change dramatically because ideally I would like to add more props which I have decided against due to the time constraint.

update - 04/01/2012 - Face stuff and more

Face WIP - Today was one of the longest days, I spent majority fo the day sculpting, i made some significant ground on the torso which i will post tomorrow morning; I also did a majority of the face today which I need to round up soon but the face but was happy with the initial results. i will also have to reconsider the hair as i initially intented to use alpha cards for the hair but since this is turning out into a 1 week project I dont think I will have as much time so I'm thinking of just sculpting the hair. I can feel tomorrow is going to be an even longer day as I will have to try and complete the full sculpt of the jacket, trouser and bag.

update - 05/01/2012

Just woke up a while agao and pretty tired, ok not that tired. Ive been working on the jacket and trouser for the past 2 days and its been very tedious and muddy; fortunately I had taken quite a bit of reference which was very valuable but there are a few thing that I'd like to change such as the bag stap sort of drooping near the arm which will add more intrest but as things stand now I cannot take too much creative freedom as I will need to rig this model too. I am hoping to add a few more interesting detail here and there to make it fit to my brief a little more, the retopo/bake /texture is around the corner which is going to be very tough; for now im staying optimistic and hoping to finish the jacket and I will have to get onto the bag as soon as possible as that will be my major  prop and also finish the shoes. I WILL HAVE to finish the sculpting today or this character would not be finished in a week.

05/01/2012 - Updates V2

I have somehow finishedthe majority of the sculpt and it will soon be time to retopologise. There are still small areas that needs some attention but by the end of today i want to start on the retopo (fingers crossed)

07/01/2012 -
Its road to finishing the chacter is looking much steeper and i literally got 2 days left to finish and rig, at themoment I am retopologising the model and also simultaneously texturing it.Very Tired.

07/01/2012 - afternoon 14:45
Today is a crucial day, I have finally done the low poly retopo for the jacket and the trouser.

 This is the most tedious thing ever and managed to retain almost all of the sculpted detail. Now Imust finish the bag, boots and hands as soon as possible.

07/01/2012 - night -23:53

Ok, one and a half / 2 days left to finish this character ...need texturing and hands; baking done. Too tired, Need to sleep

 08/01/2012 -evening

I decided to do a quick colour idea and played around with a feeideas and decided to go for this. I wanted to try more ideas but i really need to start the texturing.

 I m thinking of using my jacket as ref for this and add some extra elements to it and i went for simple idea so it would have a good read. I decided to add a few orange highlights to compliment the colour from the jeans/trouser which is a very dark turquoise or some sort. The bag will have a slightly darker shade of grey compared to the jacket, however the jacket will also consist of dark grey/dark turquoise to add variation and interest.
I also need to pack all the maps and organise the uv in to 2 which is quite tedious so ill do that once I have done the initial blockout textures.

09/01/2012 - early morning

Finally put together some sort of texture blockout and it looks quite close to the painover i posted earlier, now down to the last day.

quickmax render - looks very blocky and there are a ton of issues with this but literally no time. Going to have to finalise this and tie up the textures as soon as I can and start on the low poly.

10/01/2012 - early morning


I have done a lot of tweaks in the past few hours and finalised most thing and its nearing completion. I will have to do an all nighterto bake this down to finish spec , a low detail mesh which I'm essentially going to bake it down from the high poly and also finish the documentation.


i guess i should sum up...Sadly i was not able to rig or finish a low level of detail mesh within the last day so i'm pretty sure that I have lost a good chunk of marks. I cant believe the one project that i was looking forward to doing half a year ended up rushed and most of all half incomplete.


I am pleased about finishing the character within a week despite the fact that the character could have been optimised especially the topology as this character could have have been a 6k character. I was concerned whether I would be able to transfer all the details from the high poly to the low poly in 1 go without going back and forwards so I had a bit geometry to ensure teh cage covers everything without having to go too far out to fit details in. The textures could have been a lot better with no doubt but I went for something simple that would give a better read and i thought it looked ok. The character falls short in relating to the mortal engines book as my character peviously had leather jacket with props inspired by steampunk, so i guess this design gives a much more contemporary and clean look. This could have been avoided by adding extra detils like dirt and such but I simply ran out of time.
Overall I think its an ok model but I know I can do a lot better, lika a lot, also making this character has given me a good indication of how much time should be spent on each area and doing this in a limited time has given me good indications on workflows too, as I know for a fact that I would have approached things differently with my previous character and although it would had looked a lot better I dont think i would have learnt as much; especially because I was doing that previous character over such a long time compared to this one.

1 comment:

  1. Nice job man, good results in a short time space.