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  1. 3D & Motion Graphics
  2. ZBrush

Creating a Super Girl Character: Part 3

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Difficulty:IntermediateLength:ShortLanguages:
Final product image
What You'll Be Creating

1. Sculpting Hands

Step 1

Start Z Brush and open the file which was saved in the last part of the tutorial. Insert a cube from Subtool > Insert, and place and scale to the palm’s position as shown in the following image.

Step 2

Hold Shift key to smooth the edges.

Step 3

Go to Geometry and click on DynaMesh with Resolution as 64 to fix the uneven topology.

Step 4

Insert another cube as the index finger as shown in the following image.

Step 5

Repeat Step 4 for middle, ring and pinky finger.

Step 6

Back to index finger and press Ctrl-D to subdivide. Then hold Ctrl button, draw a box to mask the distal phalanx (fingertip segment) as shown in the following image.

Step 7

Hold Ctrl and click on the canvas out of the model to reverse the mask.

Step 8

Press E for rotate tool. Hold Alt button and move the pivot to finger’s joint position, then rotate a little downward at Z axis. This step is to help you to determine the finger’s segments more clearly.

Step 9

Repeat Step 6-8 for middle phalanx.

Step 10

Delete lower subdivision from Geometry > Del Lower. Go to Geometry and click on DynaMesh at Resolution as 128.

Step 11

Use Move brush (B-M-V) and Pinch brush (B-P-i) to shape the finger.

Step 12

Duplicate the index finger, then place and scale to middle, ring and pinky finger.

Step 13

Insert a cube, place and scale to thumb’s position.

Step 14

Go to Geometry and click on DynaMesh at Resolution as 128, then hold Shift button to smooth the edges.

Step 15

Use Move brush (B-M-V) and Pinch brush (B-P-i) to shape the thumb.

Step 16

Merge all hand meshes into one.

Step 17

Go to Geometry and click on DynaMesh at Resolution as 176.

Step 18

Go to PolyGroups > Auto Groups.

Step 19

Hold Shift button to smooth the surface.

Step 20

Continue shaping the hand with Move brush (B-M-V) and ClayBuildUp brush (B-C-B).

Step 21

Use DamStandard brush (B-D-S) to sculpt out the joint line, ClayBuildUp brush (B-C-B) to sculpt the structure of palm.

Step 22

Duplicate and mirror the hand to the opposite side then merge them together. That completes the sculpting.

2. Setting Up in Maya

Step 1

Before moving to Maya, you need to export the meshes for re-topology. You should have four meshes which are body, ears, eyeballs and hands. You may rename the meshes by clicking Rename.

Step 2

Check all the meshes, if they have subdivision level, reduce to the lowest subdivision by pressing Shift-D. This is to prevent laggy when you import the meshes to Maya.

Step 3

From the right hand side, export your model one by one in Obj file format by clicking the Export.

Step 4

Before getting start, you'll need to set a project. Open Maya > File > Project Window.

Step 5

Create a New_Project file as shown in the following image.

Step 6

Go to Windows menu and click on Outliner to open it. Alternatively, you can click on its icon as shown in the following image.

Step 7

Go to Display > Heads Up Display > Poly Count. This is to show the poly count of your objects, by default, it will appear on left in your scene.

Step 8

Go to File > Import to import all the obj files which you exported from Z Brush just now. (You can only import one by one in Maya).

Step 9

If you found the model is not one object, select the body parts and go to Mesh > Combine. Repeat this step for the head as well.

Step 10

Double-click the object in Outliner to rename it.

Step 11

With all meshes selected, go to Edit > Group to group them together. Alternatively, press Ctrl-G.

Step 12

When you move closer, you'll see that the model is not smooth but jagged.

Step 13

With the model selected, go to Mesh Display > Soften Edge. Do the same for other meshes too.

Step 14

For more convenient, create a shortcut by clicking the small icon from Shelf Tabs > New Shelf.

Step 15

Enter the shelf’s name, then press OK.

Step 16

Now you'll have an empty shelf tab.

Step 17

By holding Shift-Ctrl, click on the tool that you want to add as shortcut. (E.g.: soften edge, combine, smooth…)

Step 18

Turn on anti-aliasing for smoother view.

Step 19

Since the model is not on top of the grid, press W for move tool, select the group and move upward at Y-axis. Ensure the feet are on the grid.

Step 20

Select the perspective camera from Outliner (named persp), set the focal length to 88, this number is the closest focal length to human eyes.

Step 21

What you imported from Z Brush are very small. You need to scale the model to 1:1 ratio compare to the real life ratio. Let say, this character is 165cm, create a cube as a guide from Create > Polygon Primitives > Cube.

Step 22

Expand polyCube1, change the Height number to 165. (In Maya, 1 = 1cm by default)

Step 23

Select the cube, hold D (for changing pivot) and V (for snapping to vertex), move the pivot to the bottom of the cube.

Step 24

Move the cube upward and snap it to the grid by holding X.

Step 25

Select the model’s group, move the pivot to the centre of the grid, press R (for scale tool) then scale bigger as the cube’s height.

Step 26

Delete the cube. With the group selected, go to Modify > Freeze Transformations.

Conclusion

In this tutorial you have completed the setting up in Maya. In the next tutorial, I'll be working on the head re-topology.

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