Saturday, February 13, 2010

DAZ Elite textures: Lee in review

One of the new products from DAZ 3D is the Elite textures range, which are super high-rez skin maps for Michael 4 and Victoria 4. I guess, like anyone else in these tough economic times, DAZ is feeling the pinch, so they have rolling sales: scores or maybe even hundreds of products are on sale from their catalog at any one time. Which means savvy people (like self) are always on the lookout for a bargain. Anything 50% off is one heck of a bargain!



Last week, the Elite textures were on a 50% off sale, and the one that would add the most to my own library was "Lee" ... a real, realistic Asian guy at last! This, for $14.95 instead of thirty bucks, I couldn't resist. I've been working like mad for the last couple of weeks, and I haven't had the chance to install him and explore the possibilities, but this being Sunday --!

This is how Lee unpacks -- except that he arrives in your viewport bald. I put the GQ Event hair on him, which seems to suit him. You need to be sure to set the Light Model for the whole Michael 4 model to matte, not skin, to get rid of the white spots, but once you do this, the result is very realistic even without setting point lights or anything more.



The next thing I wanted to do was see what he looked like with a physique! So I loaded up the Morphs++ and gave him some very nice muscles ... I also added two lights -- a red, and a teal, both distant lights from almost opposite angles. This creates a really dramatic image, and it does it simply, which is important when your art time can be counted in minutes....

Then, some interesting poses to "put the character through his paces" just a little bit. This one above just happened, and it really made me think, "The sorcerer's apprentice." And a couple extra renders occurred to me -- the ones at the top of this post. He's ... sneaking into somewhere, maybe with the help of a "familiar," might be a bat or a bird, or something clockwork (like the clockwork hornets in The Golden Compass) or an homonculus (like the cute little demon in The Golden Voyage of Sinbad).

And then the last render -- I put it up first because it's also the best! -- I think he got caught, and hauled onto the carpet to account for himself! He sneaked in to take a peek at the master magician's Book, and the master wasn't as asleep as he thought! Wonder if he manages to talk his way out of this? Maybe atone for his sins with a lot more work and study?

Anyway -- Lee is an excellent skin map. Terrific realism. I did do some work on the face to soften it up before I posed the model. The cheeks are very hollow and the jaw very square, and I just reversed that a bit, nothing major. Five out of five for this model: I like it a lot!

Jade, 14 February (Valentine's Day!)
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