Sunday, 28 April 2013

Manny Puppet: Balsa underwear

I noticed that when I started to work on something on the computer, doing a 3D model a a computer graphic, I gradually become shy of returning into the "real thing": working with my hands on concrete, material stuff becomes daunting. It's like walking into cold water... it takes time to get used to a less forgiving world without any "undo's", and also it takes time for the mind to settle for a more pragmatic (and somewhat less perfectionist) decision making process.

So let's put aside z-Brush and 3D modeling and return to what we came here for: playing with puppets. What goes below is largely inspired by the blog of Joshua Flynn.

The idea is to block out the volume of Manny around this mechanical metal armature. Most of his boddy will be blocked out with soft material, but in order to be able to grab and manipulate the puppet, it is important that some parts stay reasonably hard: The torso, and the pelvis.

Balsa wood is easy to shape and to adjust around the armature.

Then these wooden parts are glued around the armature and some soft moss are added to legs, and above the shoulder. I have left some wholes in place where I need to access the screw to tighten the ball-joint of the armature.

In order to provide a smooth support for the Reaper's tunic, I have cut one extra layer of foam from a flat sheet in order to do some sort of t-shirt.

Next we will have to learn so sew. I purchased some nice black fabric but have little idea on what to do with it.

Probably with have to enroll some help on the next part...

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Celso Mouth Set

Carrying on with the Celso Skull, I have reduced his eye size a bit, as advised by my followers' comments, added some "hairs", and started scultpting mouth shape that will be eventually 3D printed just like for Manny.

As mentioned earlier I am using zBrush and I am still at the beginning of the learning curve. Lessons learned: it is much easier with a Wacom tablet, and Layers are an awesome way to store and mix shapes in zBrush. Challenges still unresolved: When starting from a rest-open shape (like the upper left skull in the strip below), remodeling the mouth to a narrow "O" is really a pain as the geometry gets really stretched.

(For those experts in zBrush out there, I am sculpting in Dynamesh, but the Layer feature prevents me from re-meshing... leaving me in a quandary... either not using layer or not re-meshing)

Celso Mouth Set strip

Sunday, 14 April 2013

I am back!

My exam and few other annoying things now well behind me, I have no more excuse and need to get back at this project. Thanks for all of you who have sent me emails and comments to encourage me to pursue a project which has been sleeping for about a year.

To re-enter gently into the GF atmosphere I have decided to review Celso's head. Chay did a great design, but once 3D printed, its upper skull turned out to be too spherical for a character who is meant to have a long sad, somehow frightened face.

It was also the perfect opportunity for me to learn more about zBrush by revisiting an existing and relatively easy concept.
 Here is the result: on the right, Chay's original design and on the left my revisit. Tell me what you think...