In this tutorial I will explain how I created the image "Dante Alighieri", starting from the modelling which was done in Softimage|XSI, unwrapping with Modo, detailing in Zbrush and some post production with Photoshop.
The modelling of the base mesh was done starting from the shape of the eye.
In XSI, get a polygonal sphere. Rotate it 90° on the X axis so that we have a pole facing us.
Delete half of the sphere. Now you have the mesh you will need to be able to model the eyelids for one of the eyes. After eliminating the first crown of polygons (the crown closest to the pole), to obtain the aperture between the eyelids, put another sphere behind this half sphere. You will use this new sphere as a guide to model the shape of the eyelids as adherent as possible to the eyeball.
Now we can start modelling the eyelids. To obtain the eyelid thickness, extrude the edges of the aperture inwards 2 or 3 times, making sure to leave 1 crown of edges as close as possible to the external one.