Retopologizing and Final Mesh
There are a lot of ways to retopologize. While I was working on the alien, I was searching for the best tool. I used ZBrush for retopologizing the head, but I wasn't satisfied with its workflow. So for the body I tried TopoGun, which has a great user interface and was very quick. It was the best topology tool for me until modo 601 was released. Nowadays I'm using modo for both base meshes and retopology.
Here is the final mesh I used for the render, compared to the original meshes (Fig.05), and the extracted cloth and its retopology (Fig.06).
After the alien model was finished, I started to think about the scene. In the beginning I just wanted to render him untextured with a simple background. Then my friends convinced me to make a serious image with him in it, so I started to think about a more complex scene.
I wanted to show the audience why he is so sad and so I can up with the idea that he was an action figure, missing some part - an arm, in the final image. I wanted him to look semi-realistic and for the viewer to not be sure if he's alive or not.
I decided to place him on my desk, so I started modeling a bunch of equipment (Fig.07). At that time I was moving from Softimage to modo, so some stuff has been modeled in modo and some in Softimage. I have to say that modo is a paradise for modelers. It has much more complex tools and the modeling workflow is much faster than other applications.
You can see the whole scene in Fig.08.
In this phase I was also looking for the right composition and scene orientation. I tried about five camera angles and different object placement combinations. The time between the different versions of the scene was sometimes very long. As you know when you come back to a WIP after a few weeks or months, everything seems wrong and so you start reworking it. This is what happened in my case. I spent a lot of time changing the scene and also the lighting, but I'll talk more about that later in the lighting chapter.