I needed to brush up on my female anatomy before jumping into the 3D portion of my Red Riding Hood piece. So I took the whole weekend to do nothing but draw and observe from reference all that is female. I wanted to post this compilation of a few sketches here, mainly because of a neat little trick that I stumbled upon. If you look at the sketch in the lower left I have a colored coded step by step area that really helps out when drawing this part of the body. I start off with the basic box shape of the hips. Divide that in half vertically, and horizontally about half to two thirds of the way down. That cross hair is approximately where the back starts to transition into the butt. If you draw an X from corner to corner you get another approximate area for the hip socket, where the femur goes into the hips. Lastly is just drawing the form that surrounds that understructure. The third image in that step by step is a duplicate of the second that is mirrored. You can see where the inner thigh areas overlap and creates a nice gap (not perfect but that works). You could also draw just a small semicircle on the bottom of your original trapezoid hip box for that same space.
I’m always trying to simplify anatomy into shapes that are easier to remember and faster to get down and be right. So while the above insight may not be perfect (or even correct) it’s an important part of the process to me. There’s no doubt that I’ll refine that as time goes on just as I have done to many other tricks of laying out the body.
So I finally decided to throw my hat into the ring for CGHubs Fairy Tales Re-Imagined contest. This is extremely early on so you’re going to see a lot of my process going from bad to (usually) better in both 2D and 3D progression.
I was really trying to avoid re-imagining Little Red Riding Hood because it has been done so many times in the past and most of those times are amazingly successful re-interpretations. So I read a dozen other fairy tales that I haven’t read since I was a child which really brought back some memories. I had some strong ideas towards a couple other stories but overall the original concepts were pretty powerful as is. Since this is a re-imagining I had to force the issue on the concept. The story of Baba Yaga and the beautiful Vasilisa with her wooden doll that comes to life really attracted me on so many levels. Working out those concepts seem to me would take much longer than what I initially had for Red Riding Hood so I made the call and started my push forward.
So my idea is that Red Riding Hood is a drug runner in the not too distant alternate fairy tale land future. She rides the countryside on a sexy futuristic motorcycle of some design I still need to piece together. There’s a pack of wolves that are on her trail and I kind of envision them more as comedic relief instead of a single dark menace. Grandma isn’t a relative of Red, in fact “Grandma” is the nickname of the grower that Red gets her supply from. He has a house or facility(ies) in the forest. I have a couple ideas on why he is nicknamed “Grandma” but will wait to reveal those. I guess that’s pretty much it as far as the idea goes for right now. There’s a lot more imagery in my head but it has to be sorted out, adjectives properly put to things as well as everything being put on paper.
As I mentioned earlier I’m just showing my process from ugliest to best with the focus on improving the concept more and more.
There’s a really cool contest over at cghub.com (http://cghub.com/blog/view/cghub-presents-warriors-an-autodesk-mudbox-challenge/). It’s a Mudbox “only” competition and is a good chance to broaden anyones software skills as well as a good opportunity to create a kick ass piece and show it off to the community. I have a pretty good grasp of ZBrush and am curious to see what I can pull off in Mudbox. The contest started back in October with a three month deadline, so if you’re coming across it now you’re going to have to hunker down and make the best use of your time. My Warrior character is a concept I created for a comic book idea many years ago. Now that I’m able to create in 3D this gives me a chance to convert 2D projects and works into the 3D realm.
Already I have come across translation issues where something works perfectly fine in 2D but breaks down when made in 3D (when trying to exactly match reference). When working between the two mediums things really have to be thought out and spelled out much more; and when they’re not, a aesthetic (and sometimes functional) look must still be created. These are older drawings that show the original concepts that came to mind. I have more revised and refined versions that I may post later but for now this is pretty much the core concept. I have a very clear mental picture of what my final piece is going to look like and that is what I’m shooting for. I think it’s always a good idea to have that vision in your head, you don’t always get there but having such a bad ass target in your sites surely makes for a better piece in the end. I started on the sword already but haven’t had a chance to get a decent render. More to come…
While I’m still working on projects to post here I’ll be uploading these quick sketches often. Just found this app called Sketcher for android. Will be testing other apps as well when I come across any.
A quick composite of my Jeep in an image that I thought I would share. It’s not perfect but it looks pretty cool for the time I put into it.
Here’s a project I just started working on this past evening. I’m just a few (or so) hours in at this point. This piece is for something that I can’t reveal just yet, but I am able to show it in its current state. Also working in ZBrush 4 for the first time. A lot of cool new things in this update as well as some 3.5 features that don’t seem to work (at least just yet). Lately I’ve been making a conscious effort to make sure my silhouettes are looking good. It’s so easy to get hypnotized into the details of sculpting, all the while blinded to incorrect proportions or shapes/oddities.
Just to give a quick run down of the process so far. Once I got my idea I started a ZSphere rig. Created an Adaptive Skin and pretty much exclusively used FormSoft for most of this work with a little bit of Move/MoveElastic here and there. It’s pretty amazing how much work can get done with just a few brushes. I’ll be finishing this project up shortly and getting back to my Darkness model. The upper body is mostly all I need for what I’m creating and that was where most of the focus went. I haven’t been able to get my hands in this program in quite some time, but every time I do I seem to be getting better.