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Character Production in 3ds Max - Chapter 01

By Rodrigue Pralier
Web: Open Site
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Date Added: 22nd August 2014
Software used:
3ds Max

As I model the eye I add more definition to the lacrimal caruncle, which is the pink part on the inside of the eye (you can see this in the corner of the eye). Two things that are very important to keep in mind when modeling an eye are that the eyelids are very thick and the pink part has to follow the eye movement. A common mistake that we all make is to make the eyelid very thin when in fact they are quite thick. Even if your model is the best model ever, if the eyelids are too thin there will always be something weird about the eyes of your character. Having them thick will help the overall appearance and will give more space for the specular/reflection etc.

Once the base of my eye is done I start connecting it to the nose, while trying to keep the flow of the face muscles. For the mouth, I again start modeling it from the inside (Fig.04).


For the ear I do things a little differently. I start by using a plane, but instead of expanding it from the external auditory canal (hole), I instead create a rough shape for the antihelix and, as I did previously, I extrude edges by holding Shift and pushing the vertices in and out (Fig.05).


Since all the wrinkles and other skin marks on the face are the result of the face muscles deforming the skin, you want to have edge loops that will give you a nice topology for when you sculpt. Even if this will end up being a still picture, I still want to have a model that I could animate or apply different expressions to, and I want the edge loops to provide me with this possibility (Fig.06).


The final result is a very simple and basic head model with no particular expression, and that is exactly what I want since I can now bring it into ZBrush and start shaping it the way I want (Fig.07).


So I export my model (with no UVs) as an OBJ into ZBrush (Fig.08).


In ZBrush I don't add any divisions to my model; I just use the base model I just created and start moving it around using the Move brush and the Move Topological brush. The Move Topological is a very useful brush that allows you to move the lower lip without affecting the upper lip, for example, and all that without having to create groups or masks (Fig.09).


The main reason why I don't want to add divisions at this point is because I want to make sure that I won't need to change my topology to support the new deformations. By doing it this way I don't need to add or move cuts, and I am able to move on to the next part without too much hassle (Fig.10).


Now I'm all set and ready to start sculpting in ZBrush. See you next time.

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