With all the stages presented before being done, I exported the objects as OBJs and sent them to Maya. I decided to use Mudbox
as my main texturing software because of the ease of transitioning between Maya and Mudbox. In Mudbox, for the bear texture, I used the bw_bistrol2 stamp to paint some of the fur, changing the color constantly to create variation. This variation would help in the future with the V-Ray
fur. For the props, I normally paint a lot of my textures by hand and at the very end overlay various images to amplify the effect.
Adding the texture to the models
This is the shader connection I normally use for cloth materials. Some types of cloth have a fuzzy matte feeling, and to get that effect in Maya I usually use this method.
Basically, you take a shader and instead of putting the texture on the diffuse color you plug a ramp node. From the ramp node you connect a sampler info node as shown in the image below. The idea is to have 2 colors on the diffuse and with the sampler info node you get the facing ratio, meaning that the top color will be facing the camera and the bottom color facing away. This, along with a rough specular and reflection, will give you the fuzzy feeling most of the time. Basically, we are cheating the physically based material attributes to behave the way we want.
Fuzzy material shader connection
For the fur I wanted to get a simple and very cartoony feel. I experimented with some Maya fur but couldn't get it to work the way I wanted and ended up deciding to use V-Ray fur. The V-Ray fur has very little control, which was a good thing for me because I was running out of time to finish the piece and needed something fast and simple.
To get a bit of complexity in the fur I decided to create several pieces of mesh, each of them with a different V-Ray fur assigned so I could control the randomness and direction of the patch. Also, I created some different fur in the same mesh, some with less fur but thicker and some with more fur but thinner. I used the V-Ray hair shader for it and plugged the texture painted in Mudbox to create the color variation mentioned in the texturing part. The fur's color is dictated by the diffuse of the underlying mesh that it references.
Fur direction and render with texture applied