Texturing the main character. Workflow notes. Skin.

My new super-beast-spec laptop has arrived! That is awesome news because my old laptop couldn’t handle the extent of details I was putting onto my models! So, while the hard drive is squeaking and screeching, installing all them Windows 10 updates I will BRAG blog about the texturing process because the last time we stopped at UVing.

In my humble opinion texturing can take forever, especially if you’re trying to give your character realistic look. When I was texturing the skin I was trying to maintain the anatomical structure of that organ. Generally, we have like 3 layers of skin (derma) that are actually visible really well in different lighting conditions.

So I textured all the skin parts in Zbrush using poly painting method. I applied a SkinShade4 material to my model and was mixing three colours that represent different layers of our skin which are: Epidermis, Dermis, Hypodermis or basically fat, blood vessels, veins and these layers can be represented with red, yellow and blue colours.

This is the result of the texturing process of skin parts of my model:

Texturing4.jpgTexturing3.jpg

So the middle part of the face is a little bit red-ish (as a lot of blood is actually being collected there and this is why we blush and you can see that in good lighting conditions), the top is yellow/brown (forehead, the area where we have a layer of fat, not a lot of blood vessels and that stuff is yellow-ish), the lower part is a little bit blue-ish as we have a lot of veins going up from the neck really close to the outer layers of the skin.

The same three colour technique can be applied to other parts of the model that includes skin:

Texturing5.jpg Texturing6.jpg

All those dents, wrinkles, veins, pores are added in Zbrush. I increase the polygon count number by dividing the geometry and then used sculpting tools provided by that magnificent software. I use a lot of alpha maps (textures that allow you to modify the shape of your sculpting brush strokes) as they save a lot of time, I wouldn’t recommend overusing them, though. Once I’m okay with all the details, I export texture map and normal map (it’s a map that will emulate the lighting conditions of all wrinkles and small details on the lower polygonal model, emulating volume of the object, making it really crisp and pleasant to watch).
I’ve made a giant database of my own with alpha maps for different materials like wood, metal, skin, animal skin and etc. Here’s a screenshot:

Alphas.jpg

I think that’s it. Enough of bragging blogging for today.

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