Project Overview: Zygosis - Anatomical Architecture
The sculpture Mechanical Head was created c. 1920 by Raoul Hausmann, an Austrian artist. I was attracted to this strange head as it symbolizes the Berlin Dada, part of the Dadaism movement that emerged in Europe in the early 20th century as a direct response to World War I. I liked the combination of architectural elements and anatomical modeling in this mechanical piece, and decide to recreate it in a dramatic steampunk style. The name I gave my image, Zygosis, means "biological junction" (Fig.01).
In Fig.01 you can see Hausmann's original sculpture, along with the areas I pinpointed where I wanted to add steampunk elements. I modeled the basic head in ZBrush and then added most of the mechanical parts using spline models in Shade, which is a great Japanese 3D application that I've been using for many years now. During the modeling process I added the various parts to the model gradually, as if I was constructing a building. By doing this, the details were gradually realized (Fig.02 - 03).
I wasn't sure about the composition of the lower part of the image and as a result, I made some variations there. I put some sample textures on those variations and then compared the original with the variations. It was like a study in traditional painting (Fig.04).
The final model can be seen in Fig.05. The image was rendered in Callisto, which is Shade's renderer, and the only light source I used was a skylight. I also used a soft shadow, and applied further contrast and tweaked the color tones in Photoshop.
I divided the modeling data into groups and then rendered the mapping images. I then piled those mapping images up on the basic image using Photoshop layers. The way I blended the textures with the basic images resembles a traditional painting technique. It is just like the feeling of recoating paints on a canvas. Although this work was created using primarily 3D software, it could be said that its creation process had a lot in common with a traditional painting process (Fig.06 - 07).
The final image can be seen in Fig.08.