Before starting the final composite, I tweaked the light and made some paint-over sketches in order to have the ideas in place before beginning the final composite (Fig.10).
Because I didn't have too much time to create this image, many of the problems were solved at the compositing stage, with the help of textures and digital paint. And so, I rendered some 3D elements separately and made some render passes (Fig.11), to get better control over the time of the compositing process.
As I mentioned before, I didn't have too much time to do the 3D stage, so the image was tweaked with Photoshop. It wasn't a straight forward process; I experimented with a lot of textures, colour corrections, the lighting, matte painting, visual effects, and so on. The girl's hair was hand-painted, and the alien's light effect was a photo manipulation. I used some photos and textures to retouch the image, and I think the 3D here was used just as base really, as a lot of the image was done finally in Photoshop.
The main goal of the image was to create a hot environment, at sunset, and to pull the central point of the image to the contact zone of the girl and the alien - somewhere in the girl's face and the main arm of the alien. Fig.12 shows the number of layers used, and the image before and after the final compositing work.
I hope you found this "Making Of" useful.
I want to thank the 3Dtotal team for this opportunity, and the readers for following this "Making Of". If you would like more information, please feel free to contact me. See you soon and thanks!