Sunday, July 31, 2011

CG art: Poseidon rising

At last, I'm back with a post! Just in time, before July expires -- we're a day ahead of you guys in the US and Canada, UK and Europe ... the international dateline and so forth. Huge apologies for not posting in days. I've been so busy, I haven't had time to think, much less post. A lot of it has been about artwork, but not art I'd be posting here. So --

Only one today, because this is your actual, genuine painting, not "just" a 3D render. A 3D render is where you hit "go," and the software does everything, and you come back in a few minutes and say, "Oh, isn't that pretty, let's call it done!" The difference is, this one was painted under, and on top of, the figure.

Start with a sky I photographed back in March 2008. Tweak the color, gamma, contrast ... add a sea-green strip across the bottom to represent the ocean. Then "fog up" the horizon with, uh, fog brushes. Then paint in the ocean with ocean brushes (a lovely set of brushes called Elements of Nature - Ocean Waves, which you can get from Renderosity for about $5 or so. Take a tip: don't use free brushes. It's nice to download things for free, and often free things can be great quality, but "free" brushes tend to come with an awful lot of strings attached, and when you're starting to sell your work, you're going to get tangled up in all that red tape).

So, with the background painted, ship it into DAZ Studio as the background. Import Michael 4 and pose him. Add skinmap (this is JS Alexandre, hairy chest, hairy forearms, beard line and all). Create a new face with the Morphs++ pack. Add a hairdo (this is Danyel by Neftis Salon). Add costume (that's the Euros overskirt with a kind of seasnake pattern, hue and transparency set be me -- they're not part of the model kit, but I can tell you how...).

Now, lights! Set up shadows ... raytrace. Come back in 15 minutes to see the results (just time for a cup of tea). Ship the render into Photoshop for the OVER-painting to start. What's painted over? The waves in the foreround; the splashes; all the water streaming off and exploding off him; the birds. This was done with Ron's Hydroexplosion, Ron's Splashes, and Ron's Birds -- all of which are brush sets you can get from DAZ ... maybe $10 or so per set, I think.

So, what went into this? A digital image of a pretty neat sky, taken in Noarlunga in 2008; three 3D models (guy, hair, skirt); and a heck of a lot of painting ... so much, in fact, I have to call this a painting, not a render. It also took a good hour to do this, maybe a tad longer, so -- just the one image today.

Um ... be back in August!

Jade, 31 July
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