Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Three HER Interactive Characters + Rig + Lip Sync + Body Poses & Animation

I also rigged and animated these two characters for HER Interactive. I have to make a very loud shout-out to Mark Dygert (aka Vig), the Animation Lead over at HER. He taught me more about rigging, lip sync and Motion Builder in three months than I've ever been able to accumulate on my own. He's a one-man 3D orchestra. If you're ever up on, he's the senior dawg and he goes by Vig.

Each of these characters were modeled, zbrushed, and textured in two business weeks....80 hours. Another week to rig and create morph targets and about a week and a half to two weeks to lip sync, body pose, and animate. It was an extremely aggressive schedule but it worked out and I hear from those that matter that they're happy.

Next Gen Workflow

I'm most comfortable with a Max->Zbrush->Max workflow. I am very fluent with Maya as well, but really like modeling in Max much better. The new Graphite toolset leapfrogs Maya in a variety of significant ways. The character seen here will be released later this month by HER Interactive ( It's called Secrets Can Kill Remastered.

Modern Soldier

This is a character that I originally started way back in early 2009...but when I took a directed study class with Ann Sidenblad ( as my advisor, I completely overhauled it. Well.....I redid it actually. She taught me how to model with clean quads and how to make fabric...the net result was that I came away feeling much stronger about how quickly I can make a high quality model.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Low res version finished...on to zBrush...

When I say "low res", I kind of mean low res that has all the edges needed to maintain volume when a smooth is applied. So, it's more like medium res. I'll bring that into zbrush, subdivide to level 3, 4, 5, and eventually 7....all the while sculpting detail at each level.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Assyrian / Egyptian / Akkadian / Sumerian?

Not sure what to call this, but it fits in that genre of style. A friend of mine is a phenomenal concept artist...check his stuff out at We're putting some things together.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Orrian progress...

Helmet is finished except for the leather straps in the rear and the fangs. Currently working on the large teeth attached to piece of armor on her shoulders. The concept art has described enough to do the job, but there are bits where I just make it up in order to avoid being bogged down for lack of clarity.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Academy of Art University, Class of 2010

Imagine a room the size of a soccer field crammed with graduates poking each other in the eye with sharp cornered hats. The invite said the commencement ceremonies were supposed to start at 9:30am SHARP! We stood there like lemmings for 2.5 hours:

Here's the main event setting:

The MFA banner I walked in behind:

Doin' the perp walk:

Monday, May 24, 2010

About a third of the armor...

Created this armor with high res methods today....I'm doing it this way so the edges stay tight in zbrush and I won't lose any volume when I subdivide.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

ART TEST!!! It's's sooo on...

I was given an art test last week by a local game company. I'm working on it at night from roughly 8pm to logging on to the Academy and seeing what my students are up to. I usually get around 3 or 4 questions a day so I answer those and then get busy with this character.

This is the female base form that goes underneath the armor. The game company in question would probably not appreciate me posting the concept art so WHAT I'm doing will have to remain under wraps. I'll describe the HOW instead.

About four evenings x four hours = 16 hours = two business days to model this. It's far too high poly right now...but I'm going to finish the modeling/sculpting and then dial down the triangles once I'm done with zbrush.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Caucasian sculpt

This is a sculpt for a garden variety, Caucasian, sporto-type. I sculpted the head in less than a day...about six hours. The pants and shirt took a full day.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Combat Flight Simulator IV

This is about one year of work completely consolidated into one picture. Each plane was meticulously modeled down to the pitch of the propeller blade. There were three sources for these planes: a vendor out of Salt Lake City called Zygote, older versions from CFS3, and myself. I remodeled many of the details on the planes from the vendor and older versions to bring them up to the quality we were trying to achieve...about 40% on each plane. A couple planes required entire overhauls like the JU-88. Man, those were fun objects to model...loved that project.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Blast from the past...

I scoured through some old project hard drives and found all the directories of the outsourced vendor work I managed when I was at Microsoft. There are THOUSANDS of buildings...this is a small fraction cobbled together in a collage. Mostly Beijing, Taipei, Hong Kong and a few randoms. These are all in-game screenshots proving that the specular and normal maps are working..that's why there's a hotspot on most of the images.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Latest improvements...

I showed this to a mentor of mine, Scott Wells. He's a Sr. Character Artist working on the latest and greatest Call of Duty characters. He had all sorts of suggestions to improve the quality and realism...things I hadn't even thought of. I'm feeling extremely grateful to have people like Scott willing to help me's a great feeling.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Japanese sculpt

I used to work with a guy named Woonam Kim.....he was from S. Korea and is a true Renaissance man. Former special forces officer in the ROK Army. Asian Literature scholar as well as a marathon runner. Did I mention black belt in numerous martial arts disciplines? Finished his Master of Fine Arts in Animation at Cal Arts in the early 'oughts and now has eight or nine Hollywood movie credits to his name.
We were talking about the Asian face one day and the differences between Malaysians and Phillipinos and Koreans. I asked him what he thought about the differences between Caucasians and he famously retorted "I don't know...all white people look the same to me anyways..." I laughed and have always remembered that comment...what a perfect counter statement to the usual western perspective.

Just thought I'd tell you about Woonam because he has nothing to do with this Japanese character I'm making. I'm only one day into this so level 5 on the face. I modeled it in Max which took about three days for the head and whole body. I went a little nuts on the shoes and pants...but hey, why not....there's good detail in there.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Bomb Disposal Officer

This is a character I started late last year. I did the helmet and some equipment on top of a head I created for the soldier. I'm now working through the body and equipment/radios getting it quad-modeled and edged for porting to zbrush.