Creating Stylized Females in Maya

Learn a production workflow to creating stylized female characters, working with art direction, and several time-saving techniques for modeling, UV layout, texturing, and material and shader setup. Software required: Maya 2008 and up.
Course info
Level
Intermediate
Updated
Feb 5, 2008
Duration
6h 34m
Table of contents
Description
Course info
Level
Intermediate
Updated
Feb 5, 2008
Duration
6h 34m
Description

Learn a production workflow to creating stylized female characters, working with art direction, and several time-saving techniques for modeling, UV layout, texturing, and material and shader setup. Contains over 6.5 hours of project-based training for artists learning the artistic processes of creating stylized females as seen in animated feature films. Popular highlights include: Proportion and Scale; Modeling from Reference; Understanding Art Direction; Finding Focal Points; Modeling Smooth Shapes; Various Smoothing Methods; Creating Useful Topology; Rerouting Edge Flow; Attaching Geometry; Modeling with Deformers; Adding Detail Strategically; Procedural Textures; Creating UV Layouts; Texturing with 3D Paint Tool; Painting Texture Guides; UV Snapshots; Creating Textures in Photoshop; Shader and Material Setup. Software required: Maya 2008 and up.

About the author
About the author

Justin thrives as a lead modeling author at Pluralsight. Growing up, Justin found a deep interest for the computer graphics industry after watching movies like Jurassic Park, Toy Story and The Abyss. His ambition would lead him to work at Sony Imageworks in Los Angeles on movies like Monster House and Surf's Up. Justin has also had numerous articles, tutorials and images published in 3D World and 3D Artist.

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Section Introduction Transcripts
Section Introduction Transcripts

Introduction and Project Overview
[Autogenerated] hi and welcome to creating stylist females in Maya, presented by digital tutors and auto desk authorized publisher. My name is Justin and I'll be your instructor as we go through the process of modeling and texture in a stylized female character in Maya when building stylized characters, there are a few things that we need to consider now, assuming that we're building from artwork, our goal should be to match that art as best we can, whether it's self generated or provided by the art department, Essence will be modeling and texture in our model. We also need to create a visually pleasing balance between the styles of the model and the textures. In addition to the visual considerations, we also need to build clean geometry with the proper resolution that will lend itself well to rigging an animation. Never this project will begin by examining the reference artwork from which will be working. How we can best match those drawings. Then, using a variety of modelling tools available in Maya, will go through the process of building our character from start to finish. We'll cover some of the more technical aspects of our character, including creating useful topology and EJ flow. In addition, we'll explore the visual aspects of the character like proportion and appeal will also prepare portions of our model to receive texture maps by laying out the U. V s. Now, once the UV layout is complete, we'll take a look at some of the ways that we can generate textures and materials for the model until we end up with a Finnish female character ready to be rigged and animated. Now let's get started by taking a look at the artwork that we're going to be using on this project. So I'm gonna go ahead and pull up artwork here, and I want to think Danielle here, a digital tutors for providing the artwork of this female waitress character that we're gonna be using. Now we're gonna be using this artwork. If you'd like to create your own artwork, that's perfectly fine. You can do that and use the same techniques that we're gonna be using just to using your own artwork. She's provided these four turnarounds, as well as some expressions that are very nice for us to be able to use. Using artwork in general is very important because you want to avoid in production environments. At least you want to avoid kind of getting in the computer and playing around and trying to create something and trying to make it look good. Working things out in the in, the in this stage, in the artwork stage is gonna be a lot cheaper. Gonna be able to do revisions a lot easier. People are gonna be able to look at it and decide what they like, what they don't like. And you're gonna avoid having to do that in the computer so that when you actually get to the computer, you've got everything figured out. All you need to do is actually go in and build. So the artwork that we have here is you see, we've got turnarounds you might be tempted to think, Well, I can use these as image planes, but if we take a look at this, he's not really created for that purpose. Take a look at the front, for instance. You can see Well, that's pretty straight on. I'll just build it to that. But if you look at her head can see their faces turned slightly to her left, so that if I come in here and start to build this head in a straightforward way. The head's gonna be distorted. For instance, if I build this side and mirrored over face is gonna be much too wide because her face is turned. So these aren't really meant for to be used as image planes, but just as to be able to tell what's going on. For instance, back here, you can see we're trying to build this boat. You can see from different angles what's going on back here, her hair, same way and kind of see the different different areas in production. I mean, it depends on the studio, but in many cases, in my experience, you're just given maybe a single piece of artwork for characters. You're gonna get more artwork than four things that props and some pieces of sets and things like that. But in a lot of cases, you're gonna have a few pieces of artwork that you're gonna want to match. There's good things and bad things to having less and more artwork. On the good side of having less artwork is the fact that you're able to use your artistic judgment, make up things that are on the back and because you can't really see what's going on back there, Obviously, that's a disadvantage because you don't know what's going on back there. So, um, the on the other side having multiple pieces of artwork. The thing is, they might not match up completely. So once you start getting into three D, you're gonna find things that you'll have to make compromises on. Things aren't gonna match up completely in the to the world in many cases, so that you'll have to eventually make a compromise because on one view you may model something to match, and then it doesn't match any other view, and then you'll go back and forth. You have to eventually get a compromise there, so they're good and bad things. But it's definitely good to have artwork to work from in the beginning, because that's going to save you a lot of time. It's going to save the expense of the employees getting on the computer or or working on the on the design in the computer, rather than actually just following the artwork. Okay, so it's a good idea to work that up if you're able. If you don't want to create your own artwork. Definitely feel free to you to use the R word that's been provided here. It will be in your source images directory in the project files. Okay, so we're not gonna be using image planes. We're just gonna try to visually match this girl. Okay, so we have these four drawings, and then we have sort of expression drawings right here, so that'll be our goal. Now, let's talk a little bit about the proportions of her. Um, I can see that we're gonna We're gonna measure the proportions here by basically unit. That is her head. Right. So we'll say she's so many heads high now. The average of a real person is maybe six and 1/2 7 heads. And if we drew that out in it, it might look a little bit short and squat for something that we want to be stylized for. An ideal drawing might be a little bit taller, maybe more like eight heads. And for a comic comic book character that is more heroic talking, maybe more like 99 and 1/2 heads. Something like that for our model. Actually, it's only about six heads, so we've got kind of a short, petite model, and also she's got kind of an oversized head here and oversized head, and it gives her a little bit more of a cute nous. Maura Peel. She's still got a slender neck. She still got very slender, exaggerated waist, and then her hips and her dress kind of flares out. So she's very exaggerated. Sort of idealized, I guess, but very in acute sort of way. And so her head is actual little bit oversized making her about. I think she's about six heads tall. Okay, so that's kind of the look that we're going for. And so we'll go ahead and get started. Enough talking about the artwork. Let's go ahead in the next lesson. Let's start blocking in the geometry for the head, Okay? We'll start up here in the head and work on the body a little bit the leg and attached the leg and, well, actually, model the body underneath the clothing. One of the things that you could do if you knew that she was gonna be wearing a specific piece of clothing solely she wasn't gonna be wearing anything else that was actually part of her character. Then you could, you know, dispense with the geometry. That's the body geometry that's gonna be underneath the for instance, up here on the blouse. You could not just not model the body that's underneath here. You just have the blouse, be that part of the body. But we're gonna go ahead and model the body first and then add the clothing over over the top. And then maybe later we can. So you can actually create different pieces of clothing and things like that. Okay. And then the shoes as well. We'll go ahead and build the feet, things like that. So all right, let's go ahead and get started in the next lesson by blocking in the geometry for the head of our female character.