Making Of 'Antonio'

Hi all, this is kind of a "Making Of" for my character Antonio but it's more a bunch of renders I took while making it, and a few screenshots, plus a video and boring text.

This character was created using Blender 2.36, in May 2005. The textures are mouse-made using Photoshop (shame on me). When I was making Antonio I didn't know that I would be doing a making of (this is my first time at doing this kind of article), so some parts have been re-modelled.

Oh! and his name is Antonio because I was listening to Vivaldi a lot when making it.

So, let's start!

I started with a default cube, then used "Subdivide Smooth", and extruding to make the shape of the head, when the general shape was done, I started with the eyes, for me, the eyes are one of the most important things to giving personality to a model, so they are the first things I do when making a character. Note that I have enabled SubSurf at level 2 constantly from the beginning and didn't use a Mirror neither.

Also, a Knife tool was used to cut the head twice in the middle, adding vertices to give more detail to the whole head. The eyebrows are simple, just erase the two first faces that we had, select and extrude the edges to the inside, scaling down a bit, and extruding again. You can do this as many times as you like, depending on how much detail you want in there. In this video you can see this technique.

Now, lets put the eyes in! Those eyes are from one of my other characters, in the image below shows a brief way to how they have been made.

To make the mouth, I started cutting the head horizontally, twice, then extruding inside, resizing, and finally erasing
the selected faces, then I select the border edges and extruded again to make the lips. Now you can keep cutting,
and tweaking the head's shape, because it still doesn't looks like a horse.. but more like a duck!

Tip: try cutting more around the mouth, so that it will have more thickness and it will be easier to move and make some expressions with later. Also it will help to give the model more personality (big eyes and different size for each one, the ears, big nose and small mouth, or vice-versa). Either you could make the jaw smaller if you want to make it look really stupid (like Antonio), because you can see the teeth more. Different eyes, weird looking. Now is when this takes count.

To finish the head, I added some simple ears which modelling is explained in the image below (yes I like images :D less boring than my text).

A work in progress render, to show how far this little fella is looking at this stage.

The teeth are just a couple of duplicated (linked) teeth put together by hand, rotating over its own centre with "RR" (means R twice..).

Modeling the body was as simple as pressing the "E" button while following the picture in the background, nothing really complex. A few minor tweaks (and extrudes) for the tail and legs, once I had the loops right I started on the legs, once again, extruding.

As you can see in the wire view, the legs follow the same loops that come from the upper body. Just one leg was modelled and later duplicated/tweaked for avoiding the symmetrical look, and shape (rear legs are quite different from the front ones).

In the screenshot you can also see the UV mapping for the leg and hoof, at that time Blender didn't have the ability to make MultiUV's, today the texturing task would be so much easier!

Another WIP render, head and body are finally done. Let's put some clothing on this naked animal

Making the cloth was as easy as selecting a couple of vertices from the body, duplicating with Shift + D, scaling a little along the normals (with Alt + S), and "P" to separate into a new object, extruding down the borders and some tweaking on the edges. In the image below you can see the different steps before duplicating, when extruding, and how the final model looks.

Clean model, no textures.

There's not much to talk about texturing here, just one colour map, and a Blend texture for the FallOff effect (which is explained in this tutorial ( Always using Oren-Nayar as shader. Remember, Oren-Nayar is your friend! =)

Once the whole model and cloth textures were done, it was time to add hair. Won't explain here because the system I used in this guy is not used anymore, it was replaced with a *totally* new system, more info here:

Textures for the horse, bump and colour map, I know they are awful, it was years ago!, oh, and mouse-painted =/

And that's it! for posing the character I needed to do a quick-simple rig for it, which you can see in this YouTube video: (download the video in higher resolution)

Again, nowadays it could be so much easier (and better) to make, in this rig I used Lattices for the cloth, and a couple of hooks (empty) at the bottom for fixing the shape, yes.. I know... it's UGLY!, but well.. it worked! The lighting was a simple cube made of Spot type lamps, using Shadows buffer, and Ambient Occlusion was used (it was kinda new when I made this character so I used it everywhere), now we could use the new great Approximate Ambient Occlusion

which is really fast!

However this character rendered (in higher resolution) in half an hour, on a AMD Duron 750Mhz, 320mb RAM. Well.. that's all folks! I thought adding a couple of .blend files here but this character needs a *lot* of fixing with new versions, since it was made in 2005, hair and rigging didn't survive the time.

Hope you like it!

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