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Linda Panda: a making of

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Date Added: 9th June 2016
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Digital artist, William Vaughan, walks us through the creation of his adorable character Linda Panda in MODO...


While the majority of the characters I create come from my imagination, I?m always inspired by the thousands of amazing artists whose work can be seen online. Last year I was introduced to an artist by the name of Linda Hong aka Linda Panda and I wanted to create a character based on her work. Below is a short making of that will walk you through my workflow for creating this piece.

Modeling the head

In most cases I jump right into modeling without creating any backdrop images for reference. I prefer to ?find the shape? while I model and have found that I can finish the model by the time I would have generated character turn-a-rounds.

To create the character?s head, I used the box modeling method, starting with a primitive Cube in MODO. I subdivided the cube and then used my go-to modeling tools which include: Bevel, Element Move and Spin Edge.

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Using the box modeling method, the character?s head was quickly created using Bevel, Element Move and Spin Edge

Modeling and posing the character

To complete the character I continued box modeling each part playing with the proportions of each component until I was happy with the overall appearance. I used primitive Spheres for the eyes, beveling in the detail of the iris and pupils. I skipped the rigging stage and simply posed the character using the standard Move and Rotate tools. I choose to make the character pigeon toed which I believe added to the cute, child-like feel of the character.

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The Character was posed using the standard Move and Rotate tools in MODO

Texturing

I wanted to keep the look of the character clean so each surface received a basic Diffuse Color, Specular Amount, and Roughness. A hand painted image map was used for the character?s irises to add tertiary details and bring the character to life.

To add color to the face I created a custom Weight Map and used it to mask a Constant. I use this technique on 90% of my character work as it is an extremely quick way to control details on the surface of a mesh and doesn?t require external maps.

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A WeightMap was used as a Mask to add additional color to the face

Lighting

To light the scene, I started with one of the presets included in the Flipped Normals? lighting kit and adjusted each light?s placement and attributes until I was happy with the final result. MODO?s render engine took care of the rest and I was able to produce an image that required zero post work.

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Basic 3-Point Light Setup was used to light the scene

3D printing

I was happy with the final results and decided to create a 3D printed version of the character using a 3D Systems Project 660pro, which supports color. Although I have been using 3D printers for over ten years, it never gets old holding something you created on a computer in your hands! If you haven?t tried 3D printing yet, I?d highly recommend it. But be forewarned? It?s easy to get addicted.

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3D printed version of the character

I hope you found this making of informative and I look forward to being inspired by one of your creations in the near future!

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The finished render

Related links

Have a look at more of William?s work on his website
Don?t forget to check out Tofu the Vegan Zombie
Click here for more MODO tutorials


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