Dis­cover Cin­ema 4D’s hair sys­tem

Re-cre­ate a por­trait in­spired by Games of Thrones’ Tyrion Lan­nis­ter with a fo­cus on re­al­ism and de­tail us­ing Zbrush, Cin­ema 4D and more

3D Artist - - CONTENT -

Re-cre­ate a char­ac­ter us­ing Zbrush, Cin­ema 4D and more

For this fan art piece of tyrion Lan­nis­ter, we will break down how the im­age was cre­ated. We will cover the im­por­tance of edge flow when polyg­o­nal mod­el­ling and how each step plays a role in the fi­nal com­po­si­tion. We will also look at how cer­tain tools can be used to speed up your progress within cin­ema 4D.

We will talk about the im­por­tance of clean Uv maps, and the ex­cit­ing process of set­ting up the fi­nal scene with its ma­te­ri­als, light­ing and com­po­si­tion. We will also ex­plore which or­der to progress though the ma­te­rial setup to achieve bal­anced re­sults, and how best to use the fan­tas­tic hair sys­tem within cin­ema 4D.

Fi­nally, we will look at how we can get that fi­nal pol­ished look when work­ing with multi-pass lay­ers in Pho­to­shop. a project such as this pri­mar­ily re­quires skills in polyg­o­nal mod­el­ling and sculpt­ing – how­ever, you will also need to de­velop skills and knowl­edge in ba­sic anatomy, com­po­si­tion, tex­tur­ing and light­ing.


Gather ref­er­ences When do­ing por­trait work, the first step should al­ways be to gather plenty of good-qual­ity ref­er­ences. this is ab­so­lutely es­sen­tial as it is from these ref­er­ences that your de­ci­sions will be directed. if, like in this project, you wish to model from a back­ground ref­er­ence im­age, you’ll need ones that have a good front and left-side pro­file. i used Pho­to­shop to com­pos­ite both pic­tures to­gether, align­ing fea­tures such as the ears, eyes, nose and mouth.


Model the head i al­ways make sure that the ref­er­ences are aligned to al­low mod­el­ling in the cen­tre of the world space. i start by plac­ing down the first poly­gon for the eye­lid us­ing the Poly­gon Pen tool. this method is used for ul­ti­mate con­trol by ex­trud­ing the edges and mak­ing ad­just­ments as i utilise a tem­po­rary ref­er­ence sphere as a guide for the eye­lid cur­va­ture. i give pri­or­ity to edge loops around the eyes, mouth, jaw­line and ears. the poly­gon count is kept as low as pos­si­ble keep­ing in mind that i will sub­di­vide this model later on. the Grab tool is es­sen­tial to at­tain form fast while mod­el­ling.


Vol­ume and de­tail af­ter plac­ing the es­sen­tial edge loops down, start to fill in the gaps with quad-only poly­gons. Use the Grab brush to fur­ther tweak the vol­ume of the head. i use the iron tool to re­lax se­lected poly­gons be­fore sub­di­vid­ing the mesh once. hav­ing some anatom­i­cal knowl­edge of the skull will cer­tainly help a great deal when you are con­sid­er­ing how cer­tain land­marks align to other ar­eas of the skull, such as how the bot­tom of the nose aligns with the cheek­bone. this in­forms you as to where the vol­ume should be in 3D space.


Cre­ate the eyes i make the eyes with two parts form­ing the outer shell from a hex­a­he­dron. the stan­dard sphere has poles, which is fine for the in­ner eye forms, but the outer shell is best with no poles in the cornea area for clean reflections. the cornea bulge is achieved by us­ing the move tool with soft se­lec­tion while the iris is made from push­ing in the cen­tre poly­gons and ex­trud­ing the pupil in­wards. i add some edge loops to re­tain vol­ume and i also like to make the in­ner shell slightly smaller be­fore plac­ing it in­side the outer shell ob­ject. i then ro­tate the eye three de­grees out­wards.


Re­fine the de­tails now we start get­ting the eye­lids to fit per­fectly to the eyes and then model the tear ducts sep­a­rately. i usu­ally spend a bit more time mov­ing ver­tices around the tear duct area with the soft se­lec­tion en­abled, also us­ing the Grab brush. se­lect a row of poly­gons from the lower in­ner eye­lid to split from the ge­om­e­try and then ex­trude from the wa­ter line be­tween the eye­lid and eye – this is es­sen­tial for cre­at­ing re­al­is­tic eyes. the eyes get looked at a lot so you need to spend time and make sure to give a lot of at­ten­tion to these de­tails.


Model the cloth­ing For the clothes, i start off with a cube with two seg­ments on the x, y, z. i make it ed­itable then delete half of it. it’s then added to a sym­me­try tag, where i start to move the ver­tices us­ing the mod­el­ling Brush tool in smear mode. When i model any­thing, i al­ways make sure to shape the area i’m about to ex­trude from as best i can be­cause this will re­sult in less shap­ing work later on. Fi­nally, i sub­di­vide the mesh once and add ex­tra loops at the front be­fore se­lect­ing and delet­ing one loop for the open­ing of the jacket.


Get the per­spec­tive Be­fore you start to sculpt, you must set up the Zbrush Doc­u­ments per­spec­tive to match cin­ema 4D’s, which is set to the ref­er­ence im­age. a por­trait cam­era pre­set in cin­ema 4D is 80 mil­lime­tres and this is a good start. i get a front-on per­spec­tive screen­shot from cin­ema 4D and bring this into Zbrush as a back­drop. i then use this to aid in set­ting up the Zbrush per­spec­tive by look­ing at how much of the ears i can see, or how long the face looks. you don’t want to have a per­spec­tive mis­match be­tween cin­ema 4D and Zbrush.

i add some edge loops to re­tain vol­ume and i also like to make the in­ner shell slightly smaller be­fore plac­ing it in­side the outer shell ob­ject. i then ro­tate the eye


Achieve the like­ness the fea­tures of the face that pro­trude fur­thest into space can be seen from the side pro­file so start by get­ting this tweaked first us­ing the move brush. then it’s time to be­gin work­ing from the front by tak­ing mea­sure­ments from photo ref­er­ences. it’s im­por­tant to use the rule of thirds, which al­lows you to get the dif­fer­ences from the ideal and then ap­ply them to the sculpt. i work with lay­ers at all times and es­pe­cially when adding asym­me­try. re­mem­ber: it’s paramount to re­name the new sculpt, other­wise GOZ will over­write the cur­rent model within cin­ema 4D. it’s this new model that will get used as a Pose morph.


UV maps For Uv map­ping, i per­son­ally use Un­fold3d. i like to un­wrap with sym­me­try to speed the process up but on this oc­ca­sion, our head model is asym­met­ri­cal. as the asym­met­ri­cal sculpt­ing is in a layer within Zbrush, it can be turned off for this step. once i have done the Uv map­ping and have got it as dis­tor­tion free as pos­si­ble, i up­date the model in Zbrush with the new Uvs. then, af­ter turn­ing the asym­me­try layer back on, i run the model though Un­fold3d again to up­date the asym­met­ri­cal changes. the new Uvs are copied to cin­ema 4D.


Sculpt sec­ondary de­tails sculpt­ing de­tail is what ev­ery­one wants to do in Zbrush and this is where some of the most fun hap­pens. i add an­other layer and sub­di­vide only to what i need to be­cause right now i don’t need mil­lions of poly­gons. these are the sec­ondary de­tails where i sculpt in the big­ger forms such as deeper creases, scars and im­per­fec­tions. this will be­come the dis­place­ment map later on. i usu­ally keep the dis­place­ment and high­fre­quency de­tail maps sep­a­rate un­til i set up the v-ray ma­te­ri­als in cin­ema 4D.


Tex­ture the cloth­ing i use sub­stance Painter to tex­ture the clothes. Us­ing one of the leather smart ma­te­ri­als, ad­just ac­cord­ingly to achieve the look that you’re af­ter. i also use sub­stance Painter for the buck­les and scarf in this project. there is a nice pre­set to ex­port all sub­stance tex­tures for v-ray use and it’s very easy to set up a v-ray ma­te­rial. each Uv is­land needs to be 1:1 scale to other is­lands in or­der to get equal qual­ity and this ap­plies even more so for Udim work­flows.

sculpt­ing de­tail is what ev­ery­one wants to do in Zbrush and this is where some of the most fun hap­pens


Tex­ture the head For skin de­tail, i used XYZ tex­tures and patched down seg­ments in lay­ers over a wire Uv tem­plate within Pho­to­shop. For the colour dif­fuse, use Zbrush by first pro­ject­ing from a photo to give the tones. then colour-pick tones around the face and hand-paint it all over un­til the orig­i­nal pro­jec­tion is gone. Bring in the skin de­tail map, ap­ply­ing it as dis­place­ment to a layer, then ap­ply a cav­ity-in­verted mask. i then filled the face with a darker tone to help colour-match the skin pores.


Cin­ema 4D hair sys­tem the hair sys­tem in cin­ema 4D stu­dio has many op­tions that are well worth learn­ing in de­tail. i make mul­ti­ple hair ob­jects to get the best con­trol. the hair brush tool has mul­ti­ple modes such as move and smooth, which are the two i use most of­ten. to curl the hair, i chose the curl tool rather than adding curl in the ma­te­rial to give me bet­ter con­trol over the re­sults. you will need enough seg­ments to use this tool. i use the colour op­tion in the ba­sic tab for each layer to sep­a­rate them visu­ally in the view­port.


Scene and light­ing i use three area lights – a key, a rim and a high­light. the key is al­most front-on while the rim is used to high­light the edge of the hair and shoul­ders against the dark back­ground. the high­light is a very small light placed to en­hance spec­u­lar spots like the eyes and face. i turn on one light at a time to ad­just the bal­ance. For the best re­sults, be sure to use real-world-scale ob­jects. Light­ing and many other pre­sets are set up on this ba­sis. i use the scale Project com­mand in the edit menu to scale the fi­nal model.


Shade and ren­der i use v-ray as my ren­derer and al sur­face as my skin shader. i ap­ply dis­place­ment first with no sss. the dis­place­ment and de­tail maps are com­bined within Pho­to­shop, kept in their own lay­ers for mix­ing bal­ance. the re­flec­tion is then set up, which re­veals how well the skin de­tail is show­ing. you need more de­tail than usual as sss can re­move some of it. i use maps to con­trol the re­flec­tion strength, and then mix in the sss and dif­fuse to pro­duce the fi­nal skin ef­fect. multi-pass ren­der­ing of­fers more con­trol within Pho­to­shop.


Post-pro­duc­tion work the multi-pass setup has each light as a sep­a­rate pass and the dif­fuse is con­tained within the sss layer. i use seven passes – sss, re­flec­tion, Light­ing, Key, rim, high­light and hair. the main tools i em­ploy in Pho­to­shop are Burn to add darker ar­eas, Dodge for high­lights, colour fil­ters to add colour, con­trast, Lev­els, slight chro­matic aber­ra­tion and smart sharpen. i liken the post-pro­duc­tion process to mix­ing and mas­ter­ing mu­sic – mix­ing should be where most of the work is done while mas­ter­ing adds the pol­ish.


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