A bunch of low poly 3d models I made for practice. I was inspired by the Animal Crossing games but wanted to make original characters in my own style. The shark is my fav of the bunch.
I’m out of town and forgot to put my still life in my Dropbox, so I won’t be able to finish the still life till Thursday. After sketching at the zoo for 5 hours I didn’t fell like painting anything from scratch. So I took a photo of a sketch in my sketchbook and on my ipad attempted to paint over it in Procreate (I forgot my Wacom tablet). I found it too frustrating for me to handle tonight. I’m too tired.It’s tough not having pressure sensitivity. I’m going to bed.
20 minutes on my ipad.
“The Complete Guide the DAZ Studio” by Paolo Ciccone was provided to me by the publisher. I was intrigued by the book, since I haven’t seen many books dedicated to learning Daz Studio. Please note: Although I am certainty not a professional critic by any means, I was willing to give my best to make a solid unbiased review.
I will discuss each chapter of the book, and what I found interesting within.
I was going to skip the first chapter, being well antiquated with DAZ. But thankfully I didn’t because it showed me how to stop DAZ from loading the genesis figure in the scene at start up. I would always have to take that extra step in deleting that stupid thing. I been using DAZ for one year and didn’t even know I could do that. I feel like an idiot. The rest of the chapter covers the basics of adding a figure, adding clothing and hair, setting up the clothing to conform with the figure. and finally how to pose a figure.
Chapter Two focuses on customizing the DAZ user interface which is in my humble option one of the worst UIs to ever grace a 3d program. The author shows you how to change the interface to get more screen space and to make the program more bearable. He also shows how to customize the shortcut keys. Although I knew most of this stuff from tinkering with the settings. I do encourage anyone who is serious about working with this program to follow this chapter and save your self some headaches.
Chapter Three is the most important chapter for a beginner. The book shows you how to take a figure and pose it both the parameters and the gismos. One important point the author made, is ALWAYS use a reference for you pose. It is very easy to distort the model and make a pose the feels entirely unrealistic and uncomfortable.
Chapter Four is all about Morphs. Morphs are the meat and potatoes of DAZ studio. The book shows you how to take the base genesis mesh and turn it into different people and creatures using built in morphs. From a woman to a monster. I doesn’t go into detail on how to make you own custom morphs with a external 3d program. That is a disappointment. The true power of genesis is the ability to export the figure and modify it in an external 3d program. This allows you to make something unique that doesn’t look like it came from out of DAZ and Poser.
Chapter Five is about setting up your cameras and lighting in your scene and how to render them into an image.
Chapter six shares some websites where you can buy pre made content and how to install you purchases into DAZ. I’m not big into buying pre-made content. I enjoy making my own, or modifying what I have. This chapter also has some useful tips on installing for those who are beginners.
Chapter sever goes into more detail on how to control the cameras in a scene. How to organize your content in the content library. Especially useful in this chapter is how to import objects from other 3d software packages into your scene and getting it scaled correctly. It also mentions setting up the textures on obj files.
Chapter Eight guides you though the process of making a full scene and addressing how to fix issues with clothing not fitting the model and goes into more depth about adding materials and Uvs. Strangely enough this short bit is all the information on materials provided on the book. It would of been nice to have a complete chapter on the subject.
Chapter Nine concerns lighting. The author makes it clear for the reader not to use lighting just as a way to illuminate an object and makes a point that you can use lighting to hide things as well. Lighting is an artist tool that can make your scene more dynamic. It would of been nice for the author to go into more detail, as the information is rather basic.
Chapter Ten is solely concerned with the author’s own rending plug-in ‘Reality’. It uses the LuxRender open source renderer. Reality allows you to render more realistic images then the crappy built in renderer. Although he said he would be objective in this chapter concerning his own plug-in, he failed to mention his competitor’s plug-in Luxus.
Chapter Elven the author shows you, step by step, how to make a custom dress in a commercial 3d app called Modo. I was impressed with the author’s ability to simplify something so complex for a beginner. It shows how export the model out of DAZ to use as a reference, polygon modeling, slicing UVs, making texture maps. For a year now, I have been making morphs and customized clothing in Cararra and Hexagon. It was interesting to see his work flow compared to mine. The author bypasses setting up any custom clothing riggs, another missed opportunity.
Chapter Twelve, the final chapter focuses on animating your characters in DAZ Studio. I personalty hate animating in DAZ as I had so many issues with it. The chapter explain basic animation concepts such as key-framing.
Although most of content in this book I’ve already known from struggling with the program for a year. It would of saved a lot of frustration and time if I had this book when I first started using DAZ3D. I only wished the author would of went into more detail on making customized morphs. Regardless, the author’s writing is very clear and easy to follow. My hat goes off to him for his chapter on making custom clothing , that is a complicated subject that he has explained with relative ease.
I recommend this book to any beginner who is interested in using DAZ Studio to make 3d imagery, although I wish it had a bit more information on materials, and that he wasn’t so biased about his own plug-in. However if you a expert with DAZ Studio, you probably know most of what’s in the book already.
I was given a copy of this book to review by the publisher.
If you interested in finding out more information on the book, visit the Packt website at http://www.packtpub.com/the-complete-guide-to-daz-studio-4/book or on amazon http://www.amazon.com/The-Complete-Guide-DAZ-Studio-ebook/dp/B00FWIP0T6.
Finally . The first comic from a project I been working on and of six months on. It is a 3d rendered comic /animation hybrid (the animation will be lacking for some time). The Cheetah is a little rough still. only the dragon is finished. The dragon is not Alex though, the alligator is. The dragons name is Derrick. I’m actually am still working on the alligator but will start using him in test renderings as well. I brought back the unicorn from the dead, and was able turn the old dragon model into a lizard chick, so I have most of the cast ready. We need to start making sets for the characters to live in My friend is helping out on the project but so far I have done a majority of the work so far. I’m positive he will be very helpful and this will become a co-op project. But just in case he does bale out on me, I have a backup plan.. removing the cheetah character. The only elements he has helped out with so far is the design of the cheetah character and this test panel. But he sounds serious in helping me make the comics , joke ideas, the stage sets and promoting the thing so I don’t think I have anything to worry about.
After attempting to use my 3d characters for a comic strip, I found the look to be disappointing. It just doesn’t look good to put 3d art in a 2d medium and I just couldn’t get satisfactory results from the toon shaders in Carrara. It’s almost as strange looking as 2d characters in front of photos. So I have decide to use 3d as a reference tool for things such as perspective, buildings and complicated poses.
As for the actual Character Sketch I wanted to keep Chris consistent to the 3d model in proportions and looks. However the fins didn’t look well in 2d so I changed the fins to hair which strangely enough made him look like a eastern dragon. I then gave him those silly whiskers eastern dragons have just for silliness. The rest is about the same. Next is Jed the Unicorn.
I will still be using the 3d characters for the animations. I just need to give Chris hair and whiskers, which shouldn’t be too hard.
Farley the unicorn is finally finished. I thought Farley’s face and coloring was making him resemble more of a rhino than a horse. So I remodeled the face to look like a horse. Recreated the tail and horn. changed fur color to gray and painted the textures onto him. I love the look of gray horses with the dark coloring around the muzzle so I included that in his design. Jed is much easier to creative expressions due to his mouth range being in front of the muzzle.
I can finally start ‘Dean and Jed’ (or ‘Jed and Dean’, I haven’t decided which sounds better) I’m keeping it at a two character cast for a while, later I will create a stock sheep character that I can morph into other sheep characters for extras in scenes. I start cranking out something on March 4.
But I have been putting my concept art training on the back burner so I will be working on that for a while. I still have 19 heads to draw *withers in fear*
Total time spent creating Jed: 25 hours.
Created in Carrara, Hexagon, and Daz Studio
I obsessively continue to work on my models for my web comic / animation project ‘Jed and Dean’. I exaggerated the body forms to be more cartoon like. I wanted them to look more like funny animals and less like petting zoo people, so I removed the pants from the models and made the lower portion animal like (a common design for funny animals). Made custom clothes for both characters, there is still some errors in the clothes but I will tweak them out eventually. Dean’s legs and hip need some tweaking. Jed’s collar needs minor repairs. I’ve also started two extra characters. Meho the gryphon and Maggie the dragon, they also need some more tweaking. Since realism is not what I’m aiming at, the models will mostly remain gradient shaded with few textures. Dean and Jed are are at a state where I can start making comics but I haven’t decided if I would be toon shading them (only if I can find a good shader), drawing by hand and using them as reference models, or just using them as-is. I also will do some animation experiments before event attempting a short.
Created in Carrara (figures, and accessories) , Hexagon (figures and clothing) and Daz Studio (posing and attaching clothing to figures, taking figures and morphing it into the model)
Time spent so far: Around 30+ hours.