Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Single Elf Female, Part 2

Having made a naked base model of a female elf as mentioned in my previous blog post, I set about to gearing up the elf model. There are many ways to design the armor and weapons of humanoid creatures, so I wasn’t sure at first on which direction to take my design. I turned to Google to see how other artists made their own renditions of elf women. Inspired by pictures of scantily clad blood elves, I initially thought of dressing my model in a bra, miniskirt, and boots. The design turned out to be rather bland, so I abandoned it and drew something that I should have done earlier – a silhouette of the elf.

The elf whose silhouette I drew is the type that an evil wizard would try to summon. This elf is of the Unseelie Court, whose members are feared for their malevolence. She is a veteran of the Wild Hunt, when unseelie folk would ride across the sky and kick up dark storm clouds that often heralded catastrophe or death. Her horned helm reflects her wild nature, and the layers of her black leather armor are like the protective plates of some draconic beast. Nevertheless, the elf is as beautiful as she is cruel, more akin to the creatures of Guillermo del Torro than J.R.R. Tolkien.

Instead of filling in the details of my 2D drawing, I went straight to modeling the armor in 3D. The final result is shown below. I decided to do away with the armor on the upper arms and thighs because I liked the effect of more skin showing.

Now that that’s done, it’s time for me to model the bow. From there, I will go straight to animating the elf.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Single Elf Female

I’ve been trying to make an elven female model since last month by working on a high-polygon mesh that I generated using Make Human. I thought that with the body already made, it would be a simple matter for me to make the hair and costume. This turned out to be a bad approach as I was spending way too much time working on details instead of starting with the big shapes first. I soon realized that at the level of detail I was working with, I wasn’t seeing the forest for the trees. What I needed was a low-poly base over which I could later design costumes and hair. I proceeded to create such a model about a week and a half ago.

The model shown above started life as a cylinder with six sides along its length. I morphed the cylinder to form the model’s right leg, which eventually grew into the rest of the body. I couldn’t figure out how to grow the head out of the neck, so I formed the head separately and attached it to the body later. As can be seen from the picture on the right, I was making an anime-style character. All told, the model weighs in at 2,064 triangles, which is fairly low poly, although it still has over four times the polygons of a Team Fortress character.

Now that the base mesh is complete, I can create the hair and costume of this character. I’ll post an update on my blog when I’m done.