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Making of Futuristic Batman

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Date Added: 7th December 2017
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Colombian concept artist Santiago Betancur takes us through the ZBrush and Photoshop workflow for his futuristic-style Batman...


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In this making of I will talk about the creation of a keyframe illustration and some tips for character design, in this case I did my own interpretation of Batman wearing a futuristic suit.

Step 1: Sketching

In this stage I explore different poses and compositions that could work for the keyframe illustration. I choose one of the sketches and I start to work on the character design.

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Sketches and compositions

Step 2: Character design

After I have my sketches done I jump into the design process, and this time I start directly in ZBrush, using a Base mesh for the body and using dynamesh to block out some parts of the armor and Kitbashing using IMM Brushes.

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Step 3: Posing and Export

When I have completed the design I start with the posing process. I use Transpose master for this part, sometimes I use a zspheres rig too. In this process some elements can be damaged, so after the pose is done I adjust the mesh or correct the elements individually in the right place. After this process I use Decimation master to optimize the mesh for the rendering process.

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Pose and decimated mesh

Step 4: Render settings

For this part I use Keyshot. I use one of the default HDRI environments and I add a sphere with a light material applied to give a little more of dramatic lighting to the scene, and for the render settings I use the standard. I don?t like to mess around too much with those settings.

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Step 5: Render passes

Here I show you some of the most common render passes that I use for my renders. Also, I use this method to apply material separation on his costume elements, rendering the regions that I need in different materials, then I use masks In Photoshop to paint the maps into the costume, which saves a lot of time too.

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Step 6: Improving the render

In this part I use several textures to improve the materials in the renders, add the rain drops over the surface, decals, imperfections and so on. This kind of details gives a new level to the renders in my opinion and the result is a little more realistic.

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Step 7: Color correction

This is the final part of the project when I try to give a cinematic look to the image, and for this purpose I use adjustment layers, solid layers with flat colors in different fusion modes, and the Magic Bullet plugin for Photoshop.

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Color correction

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Related links

Santiago on LinkedIn
Santiago on ArtStation
Santiago on Facebook
Santiago on Instagram

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