Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Today's theme is: GREEN

Today's theme is GREEN. And when I say I green, I mean ... green. I've wanted to do this for ages. Have known how to do it for  years, but never had a reason (read: excuse) to do something thoroughly exotic. But lately art has all been about work, and I'm starting to wonder where the fun went in all this, so -- need an excuse? Find the fun. Put the fun back in art.

Green hunk with pointed ears and red hair. Exotic enough?! I'll come back to this character, we'll see how he looks in formal, scenes and so forth. I, uh, like it. (If you need to know how to get this effect, scroll down. I'll tell how at the end of the post ... no, it's not a special skin map. You can apply this effect to any old skin map ... and when you remember that I'm still using DAZ Studio 3, you know how generic the technique is!)

Sticking with the green theme, though -- let me share a painting I did last year. The title is Woodland Morning:

(Yes, before you hiccup, I signed my own name to this. Mainstream art, I sign it for myself, rather than as my evil twin, he he he...) This began life as two photos of a hillside at Joseph Fisher, a pavilion at Belair National Park. It made for a beautiful painting. Am quite proud of this.

And staying on the green theme, let me go back to Amberlight and share something absolutely surreal  and just as beautiful --

Isn't that gloriously alien? Looks like a life form that drifts among the stars. I do like Amberlight, which is from a company called Escape Motions. The new version of Amberlight is out now, but I don't have it yet. (Money? What's money?!)

And that's quite enough green for today, so let's liven this up with some other colors:

Ahhh, a little red. That's better! More from Amberlight as we go along. I've done loads of art, and will share the best ones a few at a time.

Lastly, a word for those artists who'd like to be able to turn Michael (or whomever) green without investing in a special skin map (if indeed any such thing exists; which I'm not sure it does). Relax: it's easy. You can turn anything and anyone green with a few judicious clicks and an artist's eye.

Remember, I can't give you instructions for the Studio 4 interface: I don't use DAZ 4, probably never will ... Studio 5 is right around the corner now, and I'll probably skip 4 entirely and, in a year or two, hop right into Studio 5, with the newest Lux, Genesis figures, and so forth. All that belongs to the future, though, and for now, let's just turn our characters into Martians!

Load up your figure; apply whatever skinmap you need. This technique will work with swarthy complexions too, but you'll notice the greatest effects in the paler skin maps. Go into your Surfaces tab and select whichever character you're using -- doesn't matter: in the Surfaces tab, the playing field is level. With the character selected, you want to adjust the COLOR in the DIFFUSE value. The interface will give you the names of the skinmaps being used (for example, it might be JM_FalconHead.jpg), but it also gives you a field when you can pick the color on the coordinate system. Click inside that field (in Studio 3 it looks like a cross-hatched rectangle; dunno what it'll look like in your interface ... look for something offering you "diffuse color." You'll find it). Pick a shade of green and apply it to ALL of the figure at one time. The shade I used on this guy, above, was 161,243,131. You might have to pick the shade several times, test render, before you get exactly what you want; but when you have it, save your work.

The first thing you'll notice is that even the whites of his/her eyes have gone green ... so have the teeth. We don't want this. So --

The way to revert the eyes and teeth to normal is to open the Michael (or whomever) list in the Surfaces list/pane, scoll down till you see sclera, iris, pupil, and deliberately revert the diffuse color to white. Do the same with the teeth. And you're done. Render a test shot, and the only thing you may choose to do now is change the nipple color so something like a blue-green.

Red-blooded creatures have rosy nipples, but creatures with blood based on copper or whatever won't. Same process: select "nipple" and use the color picker to get somewhere between blue and green. Apply, and render a test. Happy rendering! (Oh, those pointed ears are done using Morphs++ in my antiquated system. Don't know how you'd do this with the Genesis figures, but I know you can.)

More soon ... I'll come back to this character, also share some more paintings, and some more Amberlight pictures.
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