Making of 'Zequinha'
3D modeler Adriana Bosco shares how she made the very festive Zequinha using ZBrush
My goal for this personal work was to study and learn as much as possible. It took some months to complete because I only had my free time to devote to it. I enjoyed making this piece, because I had the chance to work with fur, hair and more detailed textures. In this making of I'm going to show the process involved in this creation.
Concept and References
I chose a Jeff Turley concept because it was an opportunity to improve my skills with textures (skin and clothing), and use tools I hadn't used before for the fur and hair; not to mention the charismatic character and story it transmits. For every project, once I have the concept sorted, I search for a lot of references that can help me build the character and all related elements. They are also useful to have on hand for modeling, texture and lighting etc.
I modeled the character and his clothes in ZBrush, but the camera, glasses, button and background (the inorganic forms) were done in Maya. I used a standard T-pose while blocking and change his pose once he was finished.
UVs and maps
Once my modeling was finished I used ZRemesher to do the general topology, and then straightened the loops in Maya with the Quad Draw Tool. I also did the UVs in Maya.
I find that spending some time working on textures can make a huge difference to the final outcome. On the pajamas I used a cross texture that resembled real fabric in displacement and added a little fur. For the skin I used several different types of ZBrush brushes to simulate pores and irregularities. As the character was a child I didn't want to exaggerate the skin marks, but still needed the effect of some textures to get a better result when applied to the shader. For the grooves of the teeth I used the DamStandard brush.
I used V-Ray fur for the first time and I found it very easy and instinctive to work with. You just have to select the geometry and then apply the fur. Despite not having much control, if you want something fast and simple you can get good results with it. I used it on the hat, clothes, Christmas tree and carpet.
Fibermesh and hair
For the eyebrows and hair I started in ZBrush with Fibermesh. I made a mask where I wanted it and applied the fiber (I used fibers 142). Then I adjusted the parameters until I got a satisfying result. Once I was happy with the hair, I transformed it into curves to export to Maya and finally turn the curves in hair.
Creating the scene
Even though the original concept does not have a scene or background, I decided to make one for two reasons. Firstly, because none of my previous characters had one and secondly, I thought that would help to tell the story that the character delivers, to set the Christmas mood. Again I researched suitable reference images for creating a convincing scene.
After the final render, I like to separately render some passes, so I can have more control in post production that I do in Photoshop.
With the render passes done and all post production sorted I finally had the look I was going for. I hope you enjoyed this making of and that it may have helped in some way. Any questions, do not hesitate to ask. Thank you!