Saturday, December 20, 2008

More Zbrush Hilarity

Man, with the way updates are going, it seems like all I do is sit on Zbrush...

Actually, I am gonna be uploading a sneak peek soon of what has kept me busy, but that probably won't happen till tomorrow. In the meantime, here's a fun glimpse at another go at Zbrush...

I decided to try and do a mock-up of Ahab. The face itself was pretty quick to rough in, since most of the stuff like his head, neck and such wouldn't be seen. I started to do a rough of the armor, then quit. I might pick this one back up to flesh out the armor again...

Then again, with how quickly it is to set up something in this, I might just start over and do an ever better representation. Anyone out there do armor before in Zbrush? I got a good base by masking the part I wanted in armor and extracting it to a new subtool, but I wonder how well it would work for segmented stuff...hmmm...

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Zbrush Hilarity

I took another day to sit down and fool around in Zbrush more, and after watching one or two videos, I can now roughly block in a head in about 1-2 hours. Not too shabby on my second try! The head was done without reference, so there's probably oodles of problems just permeating on the surface, but for a quick glance, I think it works pretty well...

Of course, I didn't stop there, so I added some horns and weird decoration onto it, then used my beloved alpha channels to make him scaly...

Monday, December 15, 2008

Photoshop Palette

Here's a fun tip for you! I recently came across a new blog called Art and Influence (Link over to the right.) It's a wonderful blog run by two oil painters who are sharing their wealth of knowledge to the world. Anyway, I came across this Pic they have of a palette they recommend using, one that's devoid of secondary and tertiary colors:

This got me thinking, since I'm not a traditional painter (or even a painter to begin with, Hah!) Could this be replicated in Photoshop to achieve the same effects? So, I booted CS3, and pulled up my winsor newton swatches, and matched the colors best I could. Here's the result:

As you can see, I think it might work pretty well. The background for the palette is a neutral gray, and the brush I used was a simple round, no shape dynamics, opacity set to pen pressure, and the spacing on it set to 1% (The trick is to get a smooth even brush where you see no stamping. Anywhere between 1-10% will show this pretty well, just make sure you computer can handle it.) For the curious, here are the colors, and their respective color slider combos, in CMYK and RGB.

Titanium White: C: 0 M: 0 Y: 0 K: 0/ R:255 G:255 B:255

Cadmium Yellow (Pale or Lemon): C: 4 M: 0 Y: 89 K: 0/ R: 255 G: 243 B: 40

Cadmium Yellow (Medium): C: 0 M:31 Y: 88 K: 0/R: 253 G: 183 B: 57

Cadmium Red: C: 0 M: 94 Y: 98 K: 0/ R: 238 G: 49 B:36

Alzarin Crimson: C: 26 M: 97 Y: 91 K: 23 /R: 153 G: 35 B: 38

Winsor Blue: C: 100 M: 99 Y: 31 K: 21/ R: 41 G: 39 B: 98

Cobalt Blue: C: 95 M: 69 Y: 1 K:0 / R: 0 G: 91 B: 170

To actually mix these colors, you lay out one of the two colors you want, then start to lightly lay down the next color ontop of the previous one in the middle of the palette. When you start to see the color you're after, eyedrop it and cover that little mix you made with it, then take another primary color and work it some more, and so on and so forth. The trick is you mix the colors only with the colors you start with, not with any in the mix palette (though like with any rule, it's meant to be broken.) The reasoning is because you want to limit your choices to your starting colors, which should help unify your colors. For all the people that feel overwhelmed by photoshop's insanity of color, this should be a boon to have only 7 colors to work from.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Warm-up and Paint study

I know I said I'd show off my Nintendo DS treat, but I've been lazy in taking photos of it. So instead, here's a warm-up done today before I finish coloring the pitch today. I tried painting without any opacity change and only having flow on, and I gotta say, I kinda liked it. I'll be trying out this further, since I think this'll get me to start using colors smartly to define forms. This was done only with the hard round with flow and shape on, and opacity off.

But what do I know? I'd be curious to hear some other people's approaches to digitally painting.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Random Fun with Nonexistant Clay

Here's something I did last night. I decided to start learning 3D modeling about a week ago, and was able to get a hold of Maya and Zbrush3. Maya, while initially was daunting to me, actually got pretty easy to figure out quickly, which is always a nice thing with a program since it makes my brain start to work furiously to think what I can do with this newfound power.

I had actually tried Zbrush before, but it was Zbrush2 and the experience was...less than fun. Like grating your teeth along a chalkboard fun. I'll admit, it was mostly due to the fact that I wanted to keep approaching it as a super-special 3D modeler when in reality I guess it is designed for 2.5D work (I've yet to figure out what that actually means besides making me believe I'm messing with 3D when I'm really fooling around with 2D stuff gussied up to look like such.) So, I was a bit leary of the new Zbrush, since my memories of Zbrush2 were of abuse and torment.

Happily, that's changed! Zbrush3 is a huge improvement over its predecessor (at least to me,) and despite knowing nothing again, I was somehow able to dive in and start throwing clay (for lack of a better descriptive word) onto a ball and form a random creature. I'm going to start looking at some tutorial videos now to actually figure out the ins and outs of the program so I know what I can and can't do, but the potential it seems to have is pretty exciting...

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Holiday Aftermath...

Hope everyone out there in Internet land had a good Thanksgiving, or if you're from out of the States, a good week regardless.

I thought I'd give a treat and show off some pages from the pitch I'm working on right now. I'll be starting the coloring process tomorrow, and if I keep my nose to it, it'll be done by the week's end and ready for pitching!

I also celebrated my birthday recently, I got a neat little toy for my Nintendo DS that I'll share in my next post.