Saturday, February 5, 2011

Bryce, fantasy, science fiction ... Sunday miscellany

Just a grab-bag today, to show what I've been tinkering with -- the warrior girl with the katana and the Bryce landscape -- plus an extra render of the cyborg character from a few days ago, which was forgotten in the upload. This one was sitting on the desktop, where it shouldn't have been ... easy to overlook.

The small-scale images Blogger pastes into these pages really don't do justice to these pictures, so I'm adding a couple of "detail" shots right here, because I know few people click on a pic to see it at large(r) size...

The warrior girl was a long project, done in Bryce 7 Pro, DAZ and GIMP. The terrain she's kneeling on is, believe it or not, the same terrain that was used in the Bryce landscape here, only rescaled and with fresh mapping! I created this one from scratch, with a hand-painted "terrain map." The textures added for the distance shots are from the Seriously Real set of textures (the Pack 1 & 2 combo, grass, sand and mud). If you're doing Bryce, and like me, you're sweating through trying to learn the Materials Lab and getting nowhere fast even with the instructions (!) you can save a bit of time by buying a pack of pre-set materials. These are $10 from DAZ, and worth twice that much or more. They really make the difference between getting beautiful results and so-so results. One day I'll have that Materials Lab mastered, but it could take a looooong time.

Anyway, I was happy enough with this one mountain to export is as an OBJ, and having done that, you can then import it right into DAZ. In the warrior girl picture it's used at 1% of its original size, and the textures were changed to rock, with a displacement map made from the hand-painted rock map, so it actually looks pretty darned good.

Then it was all about lights (there are four set on this shot -- one dark brown, one dark green, one blue, one white; and two are casting shadows), and textures on the costume, and reflections and gloss on the sword -- which, incidentally, is Merlin's Katana, a beautiful prop from Renderosity. Then the final render was shipped out to be finished in GIMP with the moon showing through a break in the clouds, a flight of birds, and a gleam off the tip of the sword.

So this one was...

Victoria 4.2 wearing the Yaana skinmap and the Mon Chevalier hair, with a third-party texture added on, "Brass." She's wearing the Chaos Seed boots, the bikini bottom from the Horizon Redux set, and the LM Shadow Dancer shirt ... but I dropped all the original textures and replaced them with a hand-painted one of my own, and then added a leather displacement map made from a digital image of some beat up, uh, old leather! I also changed the eyeballs for the light brown eyes from The Eyes Have it. Then, there's a whole bunch of gnarly old trees from the Gnarly Old Trees set, all positioned in, on and behind my bit of terrain. The background is a blurry, evocative bit of digital airbrushing that I did a long time ago for a couple of renders called The Horse and his Boy. (I also used it as the smoggy alien planet backdrop for the Neil Travers renders! Very versatile bit of airbrushing, that.) The .abr Photoshop brushes were Ron's Birds, and Design Fera's Energy Spheres, and Ron's Bokeh Lightsabre.

So ... Sunday miscellany!

Once again I'm having another rough time with my health, so the inspiration to do anything specific, or big and grand, is evading me, but these are nice.

Jade, 6 February
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