Shifting focus to CGI 3D art

I’m one of those artists that’s always trying new things- it’s both an advantage and a disadvantage. The advantage is that I always have new ideas to add to my art, the disadvantage is it’s hard to stay focused.  The puppets have been fun and I plan to continue taking them out but they have their limits. I may go into that in more detail sometime but right now I’m changing focus to CG art.

Why 3D art?

A bit of history first- I have been tinkering with 3D animation and art long before it became a popular.  The first 3D program I used was called True Space which is no longer being produced.  After that I moved to Lightwave then Cinema 4D and now finally Blender and ZBrush.  Along the way I learned the basics of CG software- it’s a very steep learning curve but worth the effort.

So, why 3D CG?  Mostly I like the look; the crisp details, cool lighting effects and the ability to create animations.  Also it’s a geeky thing- 3D software is interesting to play with lots of buttons to push.

It’s interesting that there’s not  much independent 3D work I’ve found in the furry community and I’ve already stated the reason;  very steep learning curve! To give an idea of what it takes to create one 3D model here’s a basic pipeline:

-Modeling (including clothing and extras like swords or backpacks and other props)

-Texturing (including mapping and coloring usually with something like Photoshop)

-Adding fur (this step is often skipped on very toony characters)

-Rigging (needed if the character will be animated)

-Posing if creating static image or full out animation

-Rendering

-Compositing

This is only a very basic list; there can be many smaller steps within each category.  In large animation studios each one of these categories is assigned to teams devoted to just that one aspect. If doing this independently- you own the whole pipeline.

Oh yeah there’s also hardware-  I have workstation with a 6 core AMD processor and 32G of RAM, doing 3D art takes a lot of processing horsepower.  You can get away with less but creating characters with fur is not going to happen.

Work in progress updates

I’ll periodically be posting updates on progress with character builds.  Since I’m still learning this stuff I’ll let you know which tutorials I’m using.  To start with here’s a few I’ve found useful.

If you have any questions then let me know.  Don’t be shy- really I don’t bite! No question is too basic.

 

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