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GHarris

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About GHarris

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  1. GHarris

    Character Design Blue Caterpillar

    Ah, that will do it too! Is she looking to upgrade her computer in the near future?
  2. GHarris

    Character Design Blue Caterpillar

    I saw you mentioning ZBrush crashing. Do you keep an eye on your free memory? It's all the way at the top near the left side. It fills up fast when your are doing a lot of merging or if you have been sculpting for a while. I got into the habit of stopping, saving, and closing/reopening my project when the free memory starts hitting about a half GB. You may also start getting messages about the system wanting to start deleting older parts of your undo history around that time. I found out the hard way that ignoring how much free memory I have left will eventually cause my whole computer to choke and freeze up, requiring a hard restart. Hopefully you aren't as foolish as I am! Add +1 vote for the new pose and the robe on the right! I have found that ZBrush is much faster for coming up with a quick concept or pose idea. I can have a rough pose done in about an hour in ZBrush, if I was doing it by hand I might spend an hour just getting an armature made and set in a handle of some sort! That being said I don't seem to actually finish a sculpt faster in ZBrush than I do by hand, a lot of texturing/detailing is far easier to do by hand and there is no merging/processing/sizing for printing.
  3. Can we just take a moment and appreciate how many classic models are in that NIC, er, catalog? It was like a trip down memory lane for me!
  4. GHarris

    Adventuring Alice

    She looks like a cute little gummy bear! Alice in Gummyland! Looking forward to seeing her primed.
  5. GHarris

    Mori Tries Making Fancy Bases

    The baking soda looks like it is working well! Way back when I needed to texture some walls on a wizard's tower I was building. We were out of fine sand so I tried using powdered Nestea. It worked! It was just enough texture to catch a very light drybrush without making the tower walls look all bumpy, like someone glued sand all over them or something... I bet your bases are going to turn out great!
  6. GHarris

    Adventuring Alice

    She came out great! I'm looking forwards to seeing her printed! If I may offer a bit of criticism, I think the ends of the ribbon around her neck and some of the detailing at the bottom of her apron may be a bit too subtle. Ditto with the ruffling around the end of her sleeves, her left eyebrow and her eyelids. I think they may disappear on you when you print her, you can already kinda see them vanishing on the Meshmixer picture. You may want to raise those details a bit more, it would be a shame to lose them! Getting a model ready for printing seems like one of those "this is more complicated than it should be" things. Luckily Gene is The Man! It probably took me about three tries to get it down, but then again I am working with a monkey brain. You'll do much better I'm sure!
  7. GHarris

    Doctor Banjo, or Even Further Hubris

    Are you sculpting the head separately on a piece of armature wire? If it helps I used to hold the end of the armature wire for heads and other bits in a pin vice. I bought the metal ones and stashed the drill bits that came with them in my Tube O' Drill Bits (darn things always want to get dull on you!). The advantage of the metal ones was you could bake them in the oven without any worries. For actually hand drilling I have one that has a large wood bulb grip.
  8. GHarris

    Doctor Banjo, or Even Further Hubris

    Yes, this needs to happen!
  9. GHarris

    Adventuring Alice

    Were you Dynameshing and getting that result? Is that whole figure one subtool? I find that when I am working with low poly or primitive subtools I often need to divide a couple of times to get the poly count up, then Dynamesh to avoid what you got. If necessary I may throw in a crease or two first if there are hard edges that I want to preserve. Your Alice already looks better than the first figure that I did in ZBrush! I also find that the process of sculpting a lot of model parts is much faster than doing it by hand, but then I lose all of that time waiting for the computer to finish doing what I want it to do when it comes time to process. Merging and remeshing subtools, fixing holes, sizing, and preparing a file for printing eats up a lot of time! I wish there were easier (and faster) ways to do these things, if you figure any out please let me know! I swear I can feel myself getting older while dividing, merging and Dynameshing a few subtools at a time. Very tedious but what often happens if I try to do too much at once is I end up with that "shattered glass" look to my newly meshed subtool, or even end up with a piece missing. This seems to get worse if I am merging multiple subtools of very different poly counts.
  10. GHarris

    Catfolk feet?

    I'm not sure if the world needs more cat pictures.....but let's do it anyways! Here we have Chairman Meow. Of course when you want him to lay down and stretch out his paw he won't do it...because he is a cat. But I did find a rather "flattering" picture of him with his back legs straight and his paw mostly splayed. Just to get into cat anatomy for a moment cats actually walk on their toes, with their "ankle" being the first bend in the leg above the feet. I likened it to us walking and fighting while standing on the balls of our feet all the time, and I know I would like a bit of extra side to side stability if I was doing that! But of course this is a pretend species that doesn't exactly have hard and fast rules anywhere concerning feet, other interpretations are perfectly valid! Chairman is also fond of hanging out under my chair while I sculpt, and took an active role when determining what class I should play when we did our all-Tabaxi run through Storm King's Thunder. Thus was born Mephistofleas Hellkitty, Fiend Warlock 2/ Lore Bard 16(ish). The running joke was that he sold his soul for rock and roll but luckily as a cat he still has 8 more. "Mephistofleas Hellkitty" is also his stage name, his real name is far more mundane but I have been sworn to silence what it actually is. I have seen some of the Dark Sword cats. I kinda like them!
  11. GHarris

    Catfolk feet?

    Hello! I did indeed sculpt some of the new Catfolk. I did them digitally in ZBrush, if you were at Reapercon last year you may have seen me working on them. Hopefully you stopped by and said hello! I'm sorry if anyone didn't care for my Catfolk, all I can do it try to do my best and hope people will like what I make. Maybe you will like my next sculpts better? But good or bad I do appreciate any feedback about what I am doing, constructive criticism helps you grow as an artist. It's ok, we can still be friends! I do have to point out that I didn't sculpt the upcoming Catfolk barbarian, Ben Siens did and he did an excellent job! Regarding the heads, the first question you have to ask about making Catfolk is "well, what kind of cat?". These were made as housecats, wherein I think Julie's fine Catfolk are more Lynx-like and Ben's upcoming barbarian is more lion or tigerish. People may prefer cheetahs or panthers too, that's cool, but mine were humble housecats. I went a bit easier on the fur and left parts smooth simply because the fur on many of the short haired housecats I've seen over the years (I was a vet tech for ten years, I have seen a lot of cats!) looks smooth. For what it is worth I bought Julie's Catfolk and am planning on buying Ben's, they are great sculpts! Regarding size, that's a tough one. I get that some people like smaller anime cat people or imagine Catfolk being shorter, that's fine. In the RPGs I've been playing lately the cat people are about as tall as or a smidge taller than humans, so I made them about 2mm taller than a current human figure. I don't think either approach is necessarily right or wrong, just a matter of opinion. Personally I am of the old school approach to D&D, where elves are shorter and much frailer than humans, so elf figures that are the same size as humans look out of scale to me in D&D, but I totally get why people may disagree and want them bigger. Regarding the feet, I made them wide for stability and because I wanted to make sure the claws showed up. I also remembered back to cats often splaying their toes when their hind legs were straightened or if increased pressure was applied to the rear feet. My cat does it all the time when his rear legs straighten out. For what it is worth I also like how Julie sculpted her Catfolk feet. Julie is awesome. Regarding Mistveil's arms, those are sleeves. Overall I am quite proud of how my Catfolk came out. That's not to say that I wouldn't be adverse to trying a different approach if I made more in the future, I don't see a problem with multiple styles of Catfolk!
  12. GHarris

    Mori Learns Sculpting Part 2!

    Rainbow Sculptor's method works really well! I used to use either the rounded end of my wax #5 or a pointed but blunt wax carver to press in two eye sockets. I'd press inwards from the sides towards the middle, which raises a brow ridge and cheek bone on each side, but as you are also pressing towards the middle you also raise some putty in the middle that is excellent for drawing out a nose. The downside is it is a bit trickier to get even, I'd have to press in the model's left side then flip the model upside down to do the right due to being right handed. I knew of a few UK sculptors that would lightly press in to make the brows/cheeks/nose then carefully cut in two ovals for the eyes. After cutting in the ovals they would press pins into the corners of each eye to raise and round the eyes. It took a few years before I could actually do that (I would try periodically just to see if I could) but I thought it was more trouble than it was worth. I used to add small balls of putty for the eyes before eventually just using tiny ball bearings (totally stole this from Talespinner!) Speaking of art practice, I used to practice making faces or different textures by putting a little bit of putty on my left thumbnail, smoothing it out, then sculpting in whatever I was trying to make. If I messed up I'd rub it smooth again with my other thumb and try again. Worked well if I had like an hour to practice something but I didn't want to possibly mess up an armature I was working on.
  13. GHarris

    Adventuring Alice

    The redone hair is much better! You're right, the redone hair probably wouldn't have shown up. What size is she going to be when you print her? I find that redoing the mouth is probably the hardest part of the face. Eyes I do fairly early on to use as a reference for the rest of the head, noses are just kinda there, eyebrows and eyelids are pretty straightforward, but mouths move all over the place! Getting the muscles/fat in the face to match the mouth while still keeping that exaggerated look is a challenge. Depending on how big she will be in the end and whether they are going to be draped against the neck/shoulders/collarbones the strands of hair hanging down may be a bit too small.... Did you use the Orb Cracks brush on the hair?
  14. GHarris

    Adventuring Alice

    I think we all can agree that Gene is awesome! One of the things that has helped me is looking at finished sculpts that I know have printed out well. Not the production figures, the ZBrush pictures. It will help with getting the proportions down, knowing how far you have to make things project out from their surroundings to print out, and how uncluttered you have to make the model. You have to make details "bigger", i.e. make sure they stand out, but you also have to let a model "breathe". You can see all kinds of videos of guys making video game models where they are layering details all over the model but in our little niche of the ZBrush world we have to keep in mind that all of those details won't show up. I think this is what makes things like chainmail and fur so difficult. We want the texture to be small and tight together but you need to make it big and spread out. Doing them by hand wasn't a problem- my poking tools were only so small for doing chainmail and my wax carvers were only so small for doing fur tufts! But in ZBrush you can lose yourself in the tiny details. I find that knowing how much detail needs to actually be put in has made me a faster sculptor- I'm not wasting my time making things that won't print. Well not as often at least! Gene also recommended downloading Falloff brushes for longer hair. I haven't used them a lot but you can't argue with Gene's results! But that's ok, there are many ways to do the same thing so use what works for you. At Reapercon last year I think it was Jason that was saying that you could have given all of us something basic to make in ZBrush and we would have all done it differently. Jason also said that you have to exaggerate in ZBrush, instead of putting seven stitches on something put three big ones. I think we can all also agree that Jason is awesome! I know I'm not a Gene or Bobby or Jason or Kevin or Chris but if there is anything that I can help you with just ask!
  15. GHarris

    Adventuring Alice

    That looks really good! I firmly think that learning to sculpt by hand first gives you an advantage in learning how to sculpt miniatures digitally. Having a little help from Gene is nice too, Gene is awesome! I didn't start with ZSperes for armatures, I actually dragged out spheres and cylinders to make one. Then again that was two updates ago and since then I learned a few new tricks and they added the ability to Move multiple subtools at the same time with the Gizmo. Now I have been taking old armatures that have been merged together and using the Mask Lasso and the Gizmo to move the parts into place. I've also started experimenting with using cylinders that have spheres at the joints- you can perfectly center the Gizmo in a sphere and use the move multiple subtools function to selectively move parts of a limb. When it comes down to it though it's what works for you, and this is definitely working for you! There are so many ways to do what you want to do in ZBrush, and what you are doing today may not be what you are doing a year from now. I don't find that feet need to be too exaggerated, it's ankles that need to be exaggerated. That's why you see a lot of cankles! It does throw you off a bit when you are trying to sculpt shapely supermodel legs, but if you don't exaggerate the ankles it makes the model bendy and breakable. You don't have to get too crazy but in ZBRush you have to keep it in mind. Do you keep calipers or a scale by your computer screen? I find that helps. I also keep example models with my measuring devices. I periodically shrink my model down to its "true size" on my screen and look at it to see if it looks right. I also learned a quick and dirty trick from Kevin when I complained that I'd use my magnifier to look at the details on anything that small- he recommended holding another model that is about the same size as what you are sculpting at the distance where you would normally be looking at it (for me about 10 inches from my nose) then shrink the model down to that size. True, not as perfect of an assessment but I am getting into those vintage, aka middle aged years and I just can't see details on a lot of models without magnification! Hands do get huge. A lot of that comes from having to hold weapons that are also huge by necessity. Then again, what is steel compared to the hand that wields it? Oh and don't hit the Alt button to smooth, hit the Shift button! Alt reverses brushes, Shift smooths. You can access more smooth brushes in the brushes folder in your lightbox, I like the Smooth Stronger brush if I am smoothing something that has a lot of polys. ZBrush is awesome, if buggy. Save often. In the past two years I have only picked up my traditional sculpting tools once, and that was to customize a friend's miniature over a convention weekend. I still enjoy sculpting by hand but you really learn to appreciate being able to sit with good posture without visors hanging off of your face for multiple hours when you get older. That doesn't keep four partially finished armatures from looking at me funny every time I pass the Shelf of Abandoned Armatures! If you haven't done it already doing a search for and downloading Orb's Crack Brushes will be very helpful. I just dropped them into my brushes startup folder. The basic Orb Crack brush works like the Damian Standard brush except without the "pinching"- very handy!
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