Life of the Artist

Fundaments of Visual Arts


Making of Joy

Making of Joy


Posted By on May 15, 2018

Ivan Beoulve 3D artist

Making of Joy

3D model in photorealism

This model took a huge amount of time and effort to make, and as it is now is the result of various atempts to make a reusable 3D model that looks realistic and is also low poly enough for easy animation and posing, even though I personally am not interested in animation, the model in itself is a strong platform to start female characters easy and realistic.

 

This is actually the third iteration in terms of topology, but I settled for Manuel Bastioni’s base mesh topology I believe it’s great, but I modified the UVs to accomodate all skin in just one texture (8k).

 

I did this because in terms of texturing, having 2 or 3 textures for arms, body and face becomes a mess when you add REF, GLOSS BUMP, NORMAL, SSS etc. so I packed it all in just one sking texture set, and like so V-ray responds better and loads faster.

 

for riging I went for a modified rigify, which I believe is the BEST for animation by far, I’ve tried rigging in Maya and honestly it feels prehistoric, rigify is great for the animator and since I’ve studied it since the times of Sintel I feel like I’m in home when I’m using it, I added eye controls, jaws, supporting muscles just like Bastioni’s but they are not enough to get realistic results.

I also use two diferent Armature modifiers, one with dual quaternion an another without it to control volume a bit better aswell as a smooth modifier that works wonderfully, I can’t wait for Implicit skinning to be on blender to enhance this model without the insane amount of hacks needed to deform properly.

 

 

 

Ivan Beoulve 3D artist

 

 

 

 

Joy has evolved with my other 3D skills such as shader creation, lookdev, architecture, clothing creation, photogrammetry, all to further make the realism credible. below are some examples of my work.

 

 

Ivan Beoulve 3D artistIvan Beoulve 3D artist

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ivan Beoulve 3D artist


 

The Build

 

Shoulders

 

I started working on a muscle system for the whole model, but I found it to be an extreme overkill, so I went for a fairly simple setup, Shoulder muscles & pecs for believable deformations under extreme poses, also for the glutes as you can see in the graphics below, the skeleton was used to have a better anatomical reference of where the muscles should join and I believe is of great help.

 

Ivan Beoulve 3D artist

 

Knee and Hips

 

Ivan Beoulve 3D artistboth knee and hips, also elbows, work with standard corrective shape keys, which im honestly against, since the can take up a lot of space in the little menu and that annoys me deeply, also, there is new technology available like implicit skinning that solves weird deformations in these kind of areas, Blender won the Google Summer of Code funding of 2017, and the project is under development by Natalevish Mikail, but I haven’t heard any news since the anouncement and it appears to have been abandoned.

 

 

 

 

 

Eye MovementIvan Beoulve 3D artist

 

this took a bit of weight painting to get it to work correctly, specially the lashes, the rig was pretty simple track to modifiers to a target, and the tear line has a shrink wrap modifier to compensate for the iris shape when looking down makes it a lot easier and faster to animate the eyes by just moving the target.

 

 

Ivan Beoulve 3D artist

 

 

Back Muscles

 

the main idea behind this was to save myself some time, because muscles in the back where a bit confusing for me, so I built a series of sculpts of the back muscles under diferent movements and tensions, i turned those into high resolution shape keys with a separate object and applied drives depending on the arm movements, then I shrink wrap my main model to the high res back and let it work just like the muscle system.

 

Ivan Beoulve 3D artist

Hands

 

Z-brush will pay a great role in making the hands, honestly I haven’t put a lot attention to them neither in sculpting or in texturing, only a bit, just to make it look believable from a distance, you can tell by the image that, upclose they are not ideal or believable. finger nails are part of the main mesh, so the blending between them and the fingers is seamless, unlike most builds I’ve seen where the fingernals look insanely unreal because it is a different mesh, Also I did manage to solve believable deformations from the rig with a little trick I learned from Stefan Ehrenhaus.

 

Ivan Beoulve 3D artist

 

 

 


Ivan Beoulve 3D artist

Ivan Beoulve 3D artist

Ivan Beoulve 3D artist

 

Ivan Beoulve 3D artist

 

Ivan Beoulve 3D artist Ivan Beoulve 3D artist

 


Room for Improvement

 

There are several changes I would like to make to the model ASAP, but for the moment those will have to wait, work on improving things is never ending so i’ll try and keep improvement focus on adding new features to make the model more realistic, specially hair, I havent found a good way to make body hair, peachfuzz and such, and end up making it on the fly, and waste a lot of time making the shader, I would like hair to provide a bit of bump to the actual skin shader, but I dont know how that would work yet, I want to add dynamic skin folding via a plugin that detects geometry stretching and applying a texture on those areas to simulate skin shrinking and folding, but havent tried that yet.

 

Also in terms of sculpting I believe I can make a lot of improvements in Z-brush, but I’m afraid to break the speed at which my PC works and end up with a mess, so I just need more practice sculpting; I want to add cellulite to the character’s legs, and even striae (strecth marks) on the chest and hip areas, and face blemishes, I believe these “flaws” in a female body will add huge amounts of realism, even if those are considered unaesthetic. and talking about that I want to also add shaved armpits to the textures, and this has a lot more to give Joy more character personality and this includes of course piercings, tattoos and outfit style.

 

 

3D Model by Ivan Beoulve

Ivan Beoulve

Photographer, Illustrator, Adventurer, Rogue Scientist.

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Sarah Machan aka. Sentient Meat CGI Portrait

 

 the making of this model was pretty straight forward, I made use of a lot of assets I’ve made in the past, I started out modifying my Joy Model which is a female character I modeled last year that is pretty awesome and flexible, I made it thinking of the kind of flexibility that allowed me to make Sentient fast, eve though it took a LOT of time, I’ll make a post about it in the future.

 

there is a lot of reference research involved, and took advantage of Sarah’s Instagram account where she uploads tons of head shots.

my main motivation for doing these portraits is the very unique qualities of her face, which admitedly makes the artistic replication a lot easier and identifiable, or at least that’s the impression I got from doing this.

 

I start the whole process with the standard front and profile photos, and roughly, very roughly modify a low poly basemesh to the aproximate dimensions of the Sarah, after that I begind the true process of sculpting Sarah’s face realisticly in Z-brush, the hardest part ofcourse is to make an accurate estimation between her face’s dimensions and the distortions in the photographs due to the high angle lens used in whatever phone she uses. the closer the selfie the more exagerated her facial features become, there is a lot of artistic guessing involved.

 

once the high resolution scultp is done I bake displacement maps to the low resolution model, and the model is now ready for texturing, the second step is to texture the sculpt with photo references, I used about 3 or 4, which combined and color corrected complete the whole face and a bit of hairline, i make most of the texturing in Blender and photoshop, but sometimes I have to turn to Z-brush, In the future I plan to make use of Z-brush more.

 

After texturing is all done, the skin shader I made for the Joy model works non destructible to build SSS maps, spec, gloss and normals, but I have to admit it’s not 100% perfect.

 

Next Step is to make the hair, and by far I think this is the hardest process, HOWEVER I cheat at this, I have a new process that I feel it’s better, but for this project I just photoshopped real hair into my renders, not ideal but gets the job done, quick and good. I’ll explain my new process on a diferent project, I think it’s better.

 

 

Ivan Beoulve

Photographer, Illustrator, Adventurer, Rogue Scientist.

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Making of Siren III

Making of Siren III


Posted By on Mar 23, 2018


 

Siren III

 

This is the third time I attempt to make a siren, and it’s the first I’m actually happy about how it turned out.

 

I started with a rough sketch on a post it note, and gathered a few references for the hair aswell, the project really began with a photo I took of myself, to have a strong reference of the skin, hands and muscles.

 

The next step was to buid the tail, and instead of going for the regular scaled type i went for a more shark type of look, with a sober payne gray and soft reflections.

 

the siren is supposed to be outside of water but the hair does behave as if it was inside of it, weightless and reflectionless.

 

to make the hair I used Blender’s Hair System, and to be honest, it’s far from being my favorite tool for making hair, the interpolated children system is great, but the main curves of the hair are really hard to control and you need a really really good reference and a lot of time and patience to make it work realistic.

 

Rendering was done in V-Ray

 

Ivan Beoulve

Photographer, Illustrator, Adventurer, Rogue Scientist.

 

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Libertad para Amar y Sentir

 

    In the year 2002, I used to own a t-shirt that said “Libertad para Amar y Sentir” with a print of two persons kissing eachother, (the assumption is they were both the same sex, but their hair was all shaved and they looked so androgynously similar that it wasn’t really clear). the message though, translates to “Freedom to love and feel” and this would mean; among all preferences, after all that is what freedom means.

“one of the pieces im most proud of both visually a technically”

  Back then this was a very frowned upon shirt to wear and 16 years later I named one of the pieces im most proud of both visually a technically, the same.

  The piece is again about two persons kissing eachother, this time a male and female, since I took the visual reference from @de_moral_distraida ‘s illustration, I knew right away what it would mean to me, the flesh behind our skin is the same no matter who we are, and sexual preference is not mandated by physiology but by biology.

“the flesh behind our skin is the same no matter who we are”

  Beyond the visual impact I hope the message comes across as positive

The technique used on this project was experimental at best, but since this is not the first anatomy oriented image I’ve made, there’s been a learning curve, the process is complex:

 

– Photogrammetry of the subjects
– Photographs of the composition
– Detailed photographs on the teeth and toungue for reference
– Anatomy study of the disection
– Artistic sculpting of the dissection
– Artistic texturing of the sculpted model
– Hyperrealistic lookdev of the Shading and final rendering
– Photographic composition and color grading

 

The whole process took about 8-10 hours, while the first try of similar images took about 10-15 days, using a diferent approach that was more complex even, but a lot more anatomically correct.

 

 

 

Ivan Beoulve

Photographer, Illustrator, Adventurer, Rogue Scientist.

 

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