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Making Of 'Close-up Portrait'

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(Score 4.69 out of 5 after 80 Votes)
Date Added: 15th August 2011
Software used:

When ready, the final PSD had to have this layer configuration (the original) in order to be Bodypaint compatible (Fig.06).

Fig. 06

Back in Bodypaint, I merged the texture with the new one and disable "Freeze3Dview". This baked the projection in the texture. I then saved that texture (Fig.07).

Fig. 07


As you can see, this projection was only good for a part of the face. I repeated this process several times to cover the whole face with projections. I made five (two laterals, two quarters and one front) and some extras to add details to the lips and nose.

Once I'd done all the projections, I merged them all in a PSD, chose the best pixels for each one and matched the colors between all so I couldn't see any differences between them (Fig.08).

Fig. 08

Detailing in ZBrush

I already had the base geometry and the texture. I subdivided in ZBrush and added details using the information of the texture (Fig.09).

Fig. 09

I created a black and white version of the color texture and used it as intensity masking. I created a first layer of detail (Fig.10).

Fig. 10

Then, without the masking, I added some grains and bumps. I also added bumps with a brush with spray to give a less uniform skin; the original was too much smooth and "perfect".

Once I had the final detail, I chose a level of subdivision to use in Maya for the render, deleted the lower subdivisions and calculated the normal and cavity maps for that level using Zmapper (Fig.11).

Fig. 11

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Readers Comments (Newest on Top)
Mouslim on Fri, 09 November 2012 7:13pm
David, Please make a dvd of it. Everybody will buy it
Alix on Sat, 11 February 2012 9:28am
I think adding noise to the final image was unnecessary. Awesome tutorial none the less, I learnt something!
Jeremy Schichtel on Wed, 19 October 2011 8:50pm
I was so glad to see this tutorial. My coworkers and I marveled at these images. You had lots of us second guessing if it was cg
Khanh Pham on Wed, 24 August 2011 2:49am
great tutorial. Thanks
Thomas on Fri, 19 August 2011 1:06pm
Incredible work man, just amazing. I would kill to see a video tutorial for something like this.
Mohammadyashar on Thu, 18 August 2011 5:33pm
stunning!! working with max's hair and fur is so painful. but you did it in the best way. I don't know what to do with a frizzle hair.
Nico on Thu, 18 August 2011 12:49pm
Nice work, but will have one problem with the teeth, they are not oriented in relation to the lips, I think. Bye Nico
David on Wed, 17 August 2011 11:02pm
Thank you very much, guys!
Esteban on Wed, 17 August 2011 5:15pm
Never mind my previous question about the cavity map... I just noticed that you used it as a specular map :)
Esteban on Wed, 17 August 2011 5:12pm
Thanks for the tutorial! I just have one question about it: how are you using the cavity map? As a bump map? I've always wondered how to get a nice bump map out of ZBrush...
MoteOne on Mon, 15 August 2011 7:38pm
Hey there, one of the most realistic renders i had ever seen in my live :D very nice
Munkybutt's Avatar
Pak3dark (Forums) on Mon, 15 August 2011 7:15pm
The boos The work is incredible, modeling, texturing, lighting and postpro ...... is total, I particularly liked the effect of facial hair and the detail of the eye, David is a work of 10, congratulations ...........and go to work ....jiji....
Vince on Mon, 15 August 2011 5:50pm
Love the images and tutorial...! Great inspiration for many artists out there no doubt! Keep it up ! Love your site too !
Luis F�bregas on Mon, 15 August 2011 1:06pm
Nice tutorial David, thanks for sharing.
Munkybutt's Avatar
Perversonality (Forums) on Mon, 15 August 2011 12:55pm
Love the attention to detail on this one, especially the facial hairs. Nice write-up too :)
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