Thursday, October 30, 2014

Resident Evil Jill Valentine Update

Doing more work on Jill Valentine from Resident Evil. This is a Zbrush model for a collector friend that will eventually be 3D printed. I like her current state in terms of how young she looks although I'm not sure if the client will want her a little older. We shall see. I'm going for a more realistic look but I don't mind if she comes out a little bit stylized as well.

She is divided into several subtools for ease of sculpting and to try to get a lot of detail since you can subdivide subtools in Zbrush up to several million polygons without compromising speed and making my computer sluggish. I'm also taking into account how she eventually will be put together. There are quite a few engineering considerations to take into account because she will have to be printed and assembled and finally painted.

The above photo is the pose reference the client wants. In this photo she is not wearing her holster but she will be in the actual model. This is a characteristic prop for the character so it will help her read better but also will allow me to hide part seams under it so not to have to fill in gaps with putty when the time comes to assemble her. I always try to find ways of hiding seems in areas that look natural.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Undead Knight ZBrush Speed Sketch

I created this guy just as an exercise in ZBrush with and "Undead Knight" concept in mind. I  started from a sphere and used Dynamesh to push and pull forms. I used the move brush and clay build-up brush to and masking with transpose to make the large primary forms.

I refined the sculpt in symmetry mode using mostly the clay build-up while sketching in details with the damian standard brush and slash 3 brush. Overall this sketch took my 1 hour 29 minutes clock time to get it to this point.

Not sure if I will take it beyond this point or not but I'm thinking about doing a daily sketch if I can manage it to see if I can become faster... I'm also adding the timelapse of the process below.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

"ZBrush Dynamesh Basics: Designing a Creature Maquette" FREE Video Tutorial Series

"ZBrush Dynamesh Basics: Designing a Creature Maquette" Video Tutorial Series

This easy-to-follow in-depth beginner's guide to ZBrush's extremely powerful Dynamesh functionality is all you need to get you up and running in very little time! ZBrush is an incredible program and one I'm firmly in love with. It can also be rather complex at first.

I've spent over 500 hours making this package so that it was very easy to understand. Having had a very difficult time learning ZBrush myself, especially coming from a traditional background: I really wanted to make learning this powerful program simple.

Sample Video Lesson 21: Reinforcing Established Forms

This video series features:
  • 26 easy-to-follow short lessons on everything from basic aspects of "setting up your mesh" to digging deeper into Dynamesh's more advanced functions.
  • Taught with the beginner student in mind: No skipped steps!
  • Fully edited and in HD.
  • Each video is no longer than ~20min and in most cases just under ~10 min segmented into easy to digest concepts.
  • Over ~1 hour 50 minutes of content!
  • Includes the design, in real time, from start to finish of a simple alien creature bust. You can follow along to get yourself better acquainted with Dynamesh in a real-world practical example.
  • You also get the Final ZTool model of the alien used in the example project as a study guide.

"Thanks for the great tutorials! Wish they were around when I was first starting in beginning 2014 pulling my hair out. Lol!" - MonkatoPaints

Topics Covered:
  • What is Dynamesh?
  • Setting Up Our Mesh
  • Using Appropriate Resolution
  • Scale and Resolution
  • The "Project" Function
  • The "Polish" Function
  • The "Groups" Function
  • The "Blur" Function
  • Using Insert Mesh Brushes
  • Subtracting Meshes
  • Combining Meshes


  • Gathering Reference
  • Setting Up Our Mesh
  • Establishing Basic Forms
  • Silhouette and Feature Placement
  • Refining the Silhouette
  • Beginning Secondary Forms
  • Shape Language
  • Adding Eyes
  • Refining Forms
  • Reinforcing Established Forms
  • Adding Details
  • Pore and Surface Detail
  • Posing with "Transpose Master"
  • Mesh Clean Up
  • Moving Forward*
  • *Alien Grey Demo ZTool Included

Do I need any previous knowledge?

Not really. As long as you know how to navigate around ZBrush and move your model around you are good to go :)

How much is it?

Typically a video package like this sells for $59 -$69 USD. In the interest of democratizing art instruction and giving back to the game development community I am currently offering this video series on a "Pay What You Want" basis.

What the heck is "Pay what You Want" or "PWYW"?

I’m glad you asked!

Well simply put it is exactly that: I make content and put a price tag of zero on it (AKA no risk!) and you can decide to pay what ever you feel like… that’s it!

Are you CRAZY!??


But hey let’s not get into name calling!

Hear me out first…

The reason I’m doing this is because I believe in the generosity of others. Especially in the art and gaming communities people are VERY generous and I’d like to give back to the community that has helped me grow. As artists most of us aren't exactly swimming in gold (I do however have a pair of shiny GOLD swim trunks but I will never admit to wearing them). 

I'm also not happy with the number of workshops and tutorials out there that are charging such high fees like $400 - $700 a pop especially when they are geared towards students:

To me this is just nuts!!

Having been in that situation myself, just struggling to make ends meat, I know how it feels not to be able to afford quality educational material because let's face it putting food on the table becomes the priority. So with this in mind I decided to use the “Pay What You Want” model to keep it very accessible...

That means that if you don’t have any money to spare you can get great content for free - no questions asked or judgments made. If you have some money to spare you can contribute a donation and help support me in creating more content or buying me a coffee. That’s the beauty of it!!

I’ts pretty much the whole concept of Good Causes = Good Karma :)

What you GIVE eventually COMES BACK to you!

Free Updates for Life!

Once you purchase this video any additional updates or add-ons are FREE for EVER! (yahoo!). That means that as I update this series you will be notified and be able to download the updates and add-ons at NO additional charge.

Currently I'm planning to add a more complex full figure Alien character to delve even further in the process of creating a full character model. These new concept will build upon the concepts of the first project:

Topics will include:
  • Full figure modelling
  • Creating the concept mesh
  • Hard surface modelling
  • Insert mesh brushes
  • And more..

Wait... look at all this work!! Maybe I am crazy!???

er... moving on!

Ok! I'm sold but: How much should I donate?

Well if you want some suggestions on average people have generously donated around $0 – $30+ for videos and $0- $15+ for the ZTools. Of course these are just averages: anything you donate is always truly appreciated and goes towards making more great content!!

And... if you can't donate now - that's ok too - take it for free! When you do have the means then feel free to donate on another product that tickles your fancy. That is the whole point:

Good Karma :)

This sounds waaay to good to be true...

What's the catch??

Well... there isn't one because you decide what you want to pay for it (PWYW) if anything at all... meaning its really up to you.


If you are still worried about giving I will offer you a 100% money back guarantee (just like a silly informational *groan* lol) no questions asked if you are not happy with it. Its that simple.
I may however pass judgment on you ;) JK

Well... not really... I will pass judgment on you - for shame!! Hahaha.

I'm kidding...

...or am I!? Muahahaha :D

What others have said about my videos:

"As usual Claudio, this is a great tutorial, thank you! :)" - Geoff G.
"hi I'm from Brazil and I'm your fan, excuse the writing, the translator had to use google translate >.<'. It's easy to understand his explanation in the videos. I have slight idea about forms and modeling, about the program zbrush know just how to use the basic tool to add mass. Since the first video I learned a lot about Dynamesh !! Thank you very much !! Keep up the good work! Your models are amazing! You make it sound easy to model! = D" - Catarina C. 
"this is gem! Thanks for the vid mate. I learned a lot about the workflow :)" - Q.T.
"you are doing a great job! very helpful series of character modeling, one of the bests so far i have seen.. already subscribed, thank you sir" -MrSelant
"I don't want to repeat the general concensus in the comment section but these tutorials are extremely well done. Thumbs up!" - SiOTheCaveman
"one of the best free online tutorial I've seen so far! Thanks a lot Claudio for taking time to explain in a very clear way how it works!" - geoffgivry
"This video is fantastic, has helped alot. thanks" - Maverick 

Where can I get a copy of this AWESOME video series???

You can get it on Gumroad

Friday, October 24, 2014 Image Of The Day!

Oh wow! I made's "Image Of the Day"!! For those that may not know: Its a very cool friendly contest where community members vote on screenshots they like posted under the twitter hashtag #screenshotsaturday. I cannot tell what an honor it is that the game dev community voted for my piece! THANK YOU SO MUCH! A big thank you to for the opportunity If you haven't yet please visit this fantastic game development community! You can read more about the screen shot showdown here

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Zombie Concept

I think I'm going to walk away from this one and move on. Not sure how successful this piece is but it was a learning experience in any case. I believe it gets the idea across but I don't think the design is that interesting to begin with which may be the problem in the first place ;)

Made some tweaks - I think it works better now overall...

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Zombie Color Scheme

I think I figured out how to create this zombie's color scheme. I used a skin texture for poly-painting in Zbrush using spotlight. I changed the skin texture's hue with the spotlight dial to make if more "dead-like" and towards cold colors like greens and blues. I also played around with the saturation and intensity levels often varying these as I worked along the mesh to give it more color variation. I also used the standard brush with the spray stroke and a low RGB intensity to be able to layer the color...

I also used "mask by cavity" and blurred the mask a little to keep the ares of recess a little darker adding a bit more contrast to the skin texture I had laid down previously with the Damian standard brush. While I was spraying the texture in spotlight I also kept ZSub on but to a very low intensity (6-8) to get a bit of sculpted texture while I paint... Overall I'm starting to like the direction he is going at least in terms of skin quality/ color scheme.

Friday, October 10, 2014

More Zombie yeah!

Did some tweaking to my Zombie character. In retrospect I should have done some more preliminary studies to get a better feel for the direction I wanted to go. Overall I'm happy(ish) with the direction he's going... kind of has an old school Resident Evil vibe to me which is cool 'cause I'm a big fan! lol

This is just a Zbrush BPR render with some minor photoshop tweaks mostly to the colour. I was inspired by the portraits in The Art of Wolfenstein: The New Order I highly  recommend if you are a fan of game art. Really fantastic work machine games created for that game.