Character artist and CG supervisor Mohamed Abdelfatah reveals the inspirations and software behind his latest photoreal project, Faris...
3dtotal: Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you, what do you do, and where are you located?
My name is Mohamed Abdelfatah and I'm a character artist. I have been working in animation, TV commercials, films, and games in Egypt for about 5 years, plus some freelance work internationally. I have also worked as a CG supervisor on some projects. I have a Bachelor's degree in Art Education which is actually useless as the education level in Egypt is too low, so I'm a self-taught or internet-taught artist.
3dt: Tell us the story behind your recent gallery entry: What inspired you to create it?
My recent artwork (Faris
) is a character I designed for a personal short film project that I hope I will be able to finish one day. It's an oriental fantasy project. I live in Cairo, Egypt and I'm influenced by much of our history.
Head shot of Faris cinematic character made for his personal short film project showing the details of the face
I started working on the project's sketches and concept art over one-and-a-half years ago, but then I stopped due to my unexpected 13 months that I had to spend in the Egyptian army. It messed up my life and I had to quit everything I was doing until I got out last June, then I went back to freelancing and created Faris (the main character of the project). I'm not sure if I will be able to finish the whole project or not, but Faris was a good start and it got everybody's attention, so I'll be creating stuff for that project even if I won't be able to finish it soon. At least it'll fill up my portfolio with some good pieces and I will learn a lot of techniques from it.
3dt: What software did you use and do you have any tips for using this software, or any other software that you use to create your art in general?
I usually use 3ds Max
for modeling/sculpting. 3ds Max has very smart modeling and retopologizing tools. I used its graphite modeling tools for retopology, and ZBrush's ZRemesher is also a great tool.
He made this character for his personal short film project
For texturing I used MARI
. MARI is very easy to use – it's pretty much like Photoshop, so if you have been using Photoshop for years like myself you would be familiar with how layers and adjustment layers work in MARI – it's a great tool.
Shading and rendering was done using V-Ray
. V-Ray's FastSSS2 shader was perfect for achieving realistic skin. If your maps are clean and ready, setting up the FastSSS2 shader is not really difficult.
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