Making Of 'Carnival'
The sad boy on the stairs, sitting beside the new toys that he won today and enjoying his last drink, is actually a descendent of a Leprechaun. He is sad and almost crying because the fun day at the fair has finished. The small winged creatures are descendents of pixies; their wings are translucent so their blood makes their wings shine, and little sparks fly from them. They are friendly but tireless in their pursuit of fun and a trickster who loves to play pranks on the humans they meet. This image shows us a bit of their life; like us, they have fun, jobs, dreams and feelings...
In fact, this image appeared in my mind when I was falling asleep ... At that very moment I made the first sketch - the rest were improvements of the original idea (Fig.01).
The hardest part was undoubtedly the colour palette; the flash of inspiration that I had was very quick and I could not retain the colours of the whole picture. A bad colour choice could ruin the scene, so I carefully took care of every detail. The main objective was to focus attention on the sad look in the eyes of the boy ... That was the starting point!
For the Irish origin of the Leprechaun, I gave him green eyes. It was a difficult task to make everything that surrounds him highlight his eye colour and achieve the goal - those big, sad eyes. Large, black pupils show introspection, sadness and fear.
The large, pink environment stains the scene - in contrast with the green eyes - which conveys tenderness, softness, and at the same time a certain amount of fragility, delicacy and compassion. Small notes of violet are spiritual inspiration for these magical creatures!
The green pixie represents nature's power, whilst the blue evokes a sense of tranquillity and wisdom.
Yellow is often associated with food; this decided the colour of the fruit in the scene. The reason I put this yellow fruit on the right side of the character is because the area has more light, and shows joy and optimism. To counterbalance the bright yellow, in the darker area on the opposite side, is a dark blue mushroom.
Gold was used to symbolise the wealth associated with the leprechaun, and this idea was also worked into the fairground ride where I designed the carriages to be pots rather than tea cups.
All details were meticulously designed; their shapes, sizes, positions (everything points towards the direction of the eyes), colours, lighting and shadows.
Leprechaun & Pixies - The pixies' bodies were modelled from the leprechaun's body, previously modelled (Fig.02 - 04).
Soft Toys - The toys were box modelled and the seams were lines (Fig.05).
Fairground Ride (Fig.06 - 10)
An interesting way to model the big "arms" of the fairground ride was to use a line to give the basic shape, while a circle gave the volume, and Create > Geometry > Compound Objects > Loft > Deformation > Scale gave the fade-in and fade-out effect to the shape (Fig.09).
For the neon lights around the column I found a curious way to adjust them - with a Spring and Displace modifier! For the map slot I used a gradient ramp map to simulate the column curves.
Mushrooms, Fruit & Plants (Fig.12 - 14)
Leprechaun's Hat (Fig.15)
Leprechaun's Braces (Fig.16)
Cup & Straw (Fig.17)
Leprechaun's Shoes - The shoes were modelled from the preview foot model - ZBrush sculpt (Fig.18).
Leprechaun's Bag (Fig.19)
A biped helped with the posing (Fig.20).
After the leprechaun had been posed in his final position, the shorts were modelled from a part of his legs - ZBrush sculpt (Fig.21).
The same method was used to pose both pixies (Fig.22)
And the same was done for their clothes; the base poly was extracted from the bodies and sculpted in ZBrush (Fig.23)
Texturing & Shaders
With a young skin, provided on 3DTotal Textures DVD Vol. 4 - Human & Creatures, the skin's base was created in high resolution. I then started to distribute the pieces onto the model. The hands were created with finger textures and nails, which were also provided on the same Total Textures volume, as well as nipples, lips, forehead wrinkles and ears, which were added with some veins. With a small brush I added some freckles, and finally, the hair was a photo reference. This is the diffuse map for the Leprechaun skin (Fig.24 - 27).
The eye texture was also from the 3DTotal Textures DVD Vol. 4 - Human & Creatures collection (Fig.28). And guess what? I even found zebra and giraffe textures (Fig.29) - they have everything!! These textures were of course used on the soft toys
Here is the texture I used for the pots - a layer with a pink colour, and several dirty textures blended together to achieve the desired effect (Fig.30). This method was used for all of the carrousel's textures (Fig.31 - 32).
Here is the texture used for the steps (Fig.33).
This is a curious texture! After observing a reference picture I came to the conclusion that the texture was similar to one of the eye textures on the 3DTotal Textures collection (3DTotal Textures DVD Vol. 4 - Human & Creatures). The pupil and hue were removed (Fig.34).
This is the light texture of that strange plant to the left side of the stairs (Fig.35). With a cantaloupe melon texture I created a Diffuse and Opacity Map, and to the smaller ball inside it I applied a VrayMtlWrapper Material. The base material was a Standard material with Falloff Self Illumination.
For the bag texture I used a leather texture, hue to find the desired tone, and then blended some random stars (Fig.38).
This is the texture used for the leprechaun's socks; I cropped a small part of a fabric texture and repeated it many times to cover the required area (Fig.39).
To fake the worn, old and ripped pixie dresses I used dirty textures to create the Opacity Map, and used a Gradient Map to Blue/Green Light Brown to simulate the dirty colours (Fig.40).
The same process was used for the wings (Fig.41).
Hair & Fur
For the Leprechaun hair and toys fur was applied with the Hair and Fur modifier (Style > Recomb). The Pixies' hair and the toys' manes were created from drawn lines, also with the Hair and Fur modifier, too (Fig 42 - 43).
Lighting Setup & Rendering Settings
The lighting was setup with a VRaySun and a GI Environment; two Target Spot were placed only to affect the Hair and Fur (Fig.44).
Take a look at 3Dtotal Textures - I'm sure you'll find something that fits you from these amazing collections! And that's all for this tutorial! Thank you for reading and I hope you've learned something.