Phoenix - BlenderGuru Characters Competition

UPDATED
Hi Blendeer heads,

It was an awesome experience…truly pushed me to my limits, breaking out of my comfort zone and finally got me to learn this amazing piece of software.

so this is my final piece. Could have done a lot more but truly no time will be enough.

So here i present to you my entry - Phoenix

In 2010, after 6 years of work in CGI, The recession in the industry had wiped me out. Left me scarred and battered in many ways.

I was left with low self confidence and esteem. Also suffered a break up in relationship.

A field that i had loved for years, Art, which had been my calling since childhood, stared back in my eyes and questioned me “Do you have it in you?”

I have been out of the CG scene for about 6 years now.

Meanwhile i was busy in entrepreneurship where i built my own Business. I built myself. Got my confidence back, Got a beautiful wife and I studied and learnt so much. Also i built enough capital to fund my future CG ventures for a long time.

Now the wheel of time has come back and i’m here again. Getting up and ready to fight it out this time even harder.

This picture represents me. As a Phoenix I rise back.

And yes, This time around, Blender is my weapon of choice.

Everything in this image represents me in some way,

Here is what was going in y mind during the creation of this image.

Phoenix Tattoo - “They burried us alive. Little did they know we were seeds.”
Represents the courage and persistence to Get up Again and Fly for my Dream.
As the Tattoo on his neck reads, “Hope rises like a phoenix from the ashes of shattered dreams”

Illuminati Tattoo - Enough of the manipulation by the system. I choose to break through the Status Quo and create my own system.

AKB - My initials.

Joint - The world of art gives me just the kick i need.

Blender logo as fire - Coz I was sick n tired of the “Professional Softwares”. Now its time to build in the free market with some real Tools. After all, how do you compete with freeware which is THIS GOOD?

Sweat - All the years of Hard work I put in

Stitches - All the Pains and Obstacles I experience as a journey. Only to heal again and continue forward.

Cheek Hole - They try to Shut me up. But I ain’t gonna stop.

Fire in the Eyes - This time I know whats in store for me.

Nasty smirk - And yes, I also know what I have in store for you

Age, White Hair - The wait for me to get back feels like a lot of years. I feel grey…but with a new Spirit!

Hi Blendeer heads,
This is my first post EVER with in the Blender community and my first attempt at using Blender.
In 2010, after 6 years of work in CGI, The recession in the industry had wiped me out. Left me scarred and battered in many ways.
I was left with low self confidence and esteem. Also suffered a break up in relationship.
A field that i had loved for years, Art, which had been my calling since childhood, stared back in my eyes and questioned me “Do you have it in you?”
I have been out of the CG scene for about 6 years now.
Meanwhile i was busy in entrepreneurship where i built my own Business. I built myself. Got my confidence back, Got a beautiful wife and I studied and learnt so much. Also i built enough capital to fund my future CG ventures for a long time.
Now the wheel of time has come back and i’m here again. Getting up and ready to fight it out this time even harder.
This picture represents me. As a Phoenix I rise back.
And yes, This time around, Blender is my weapon of choice.

Here is the concept art. Created using Blender (Head render) and PS mashup(smoke /hair/tattoo) just to get a feel of where i’m going.

Taking out and spending few hours everyday. This is what i have so far. Hope i will finish in time. This is only a s starting phase. Colours/ideas keep popping in my mind. Plz feel free to critique and comment.

Currently I’m confused about the overall colour filter.
Blue or Green guys?

stc=1

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1 Like

progress so far…

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Progress so far…

guys plz comment…its really important…I have been seeing it so much that right now I don’t know if i’m headed toward the right direction.
everything here is Blender except the Hair and Tattoo post in PS

Next need to work on hair on the head and expression.

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Your work looks really good. Nice job! My one thought is that without the cigar and smoke, the facial features seem a little too symmetrical – even with the uneven hair. A very slight tilt to the head, or some subtle asymmetry to his features may add to the personality?

Thank you for the background story too. Life can be harsh, but it’s good that you were able to bounce back.

Instead of grabbing a photo of skin and projecting it onto you model I think I would try sculpt the detail, and bake a normal map from that. The model itself while it’s probably not impossible to imagine a face to look like that, it’s hella ugly. Like not your model but the guy you’re modeling. People do prefer to look at pretty faces. For your next project I would try to replicate the face of some beautiful model or something, not use any photos for textures but create the textures myself.

Your work looks really good. Nice job! My one thought is that without the cigar and smoke, the facial features seem a little too symmetrical – even with the uneven hair. A very slight tilt to the head, or some subtle asymmetry to his features may add to the personality?
Thank you for the background story too. Life can be harsh, but it’s good that you were able to bounce back.

Thank you rjshae.
I am yet to break the symmetry for the final pose. Shall surely be adding asymmetry at that stage.
Yeah Man! Life sure is a roller coaster. But there is learning in everything. There are no accidents.

Instead of grabbing a photo of skin and projecting it onto you model I think I would try sculpt the detail, and bake a normal map from that. The model itself while it’s probably not impossible to imagine a face to look like that, it’s hella ugly. Like not your model but the guy you’re modeling. People do prefer to look at pretty faces. For your next project I would try to replicate the face of some beautiful model or something, not use any photos for textures but create the textures myself.

Thanks Leinadien for the feedback.
I tried the basic sculpt to normal and displacement method but wasn’t pleased with the result. you see this is my first time using blender. Nad after wasting days on it I decided to do it the old school way. Its a mix of projection and HOURS +DAYS of hand painting.
But thats mostly on the bump. The rest of the textures are mostly hand painted.
The concept and the model is 100% self imagination and not from a photo reference if i get your point correctly.
yeah…i can feel you when you say about those pretty faces…shall surely give it a shot. Thanks a ton.

Here is a little update.

update with hair first pass…still gotta lot to do.
All Cycles Render except Tattoo And Post Process in PS.
Plz comment guys, I need constructive criticism…or even destructive would do at this stage!

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So, when you say that this picture represents you, are we to assume that this is supposed to closely resemble in likeness or that it merely is symbolic in your reinvention? The only reason I ask is because I’m trying to see what you are going for. If it’s likeness we could use a reference pic to see how you’re getting on, otherwise I’d say the image is looking great as far as mood and composition. There’s something about the skin that is throwing me off a bit and I really can’t put my finger on it… maybe the specularity is too high? In any case you’re blowing my skills out of the water at this point so any crits from me need to be taken with a grain of salt!

So, when you say that this picture represents you, are we to assume that this is supposed to closely resemble in likeness or that it merely is symbolic in your reinvention? The only reason I ask is because I’m trying to see what you are going for. If it’s likeness we could use a reference pic to see how you’re getting on, otherwise I’d say the image is looking great as far as mood and composition. There’s something about the skin that is throwing me off a bit and I really can’t put my finger on it… maybe the specularity is too high? In any case you’re blowing my skills out of the water at this point so any crits from me need to be taken with a grain of salt!

thanks a lot mate.
No this guy doesn’t resemble me. He is a creation of my imagination and depiction of my memory. Depiction of certain feelings I have carried. Hence there was no reference used to make this model.
I agree with the spec issue you mentioned. I’m waiting to put in some sweat if I get the time. Else shall pull the spec down.
Thanks a ton for your feedback.

update with the Hair…

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Sorry but I’m going to have to disagree with you here. People may enjoy looking at pretty faces, but to me that isn’t necessarily what art is about. A facial portrait of a beautiful model doesn’t necessarily tell you a story; I think it’s a cookie-cutter look with no depth. However, a worn face with unique character and an interesting expression can speak volumes. It’s all about the emotional impact.

Hi guys…
Updates…
testing with new mid tone lighting with complete hair.

Any critics or comments are welcome…

next up is expression…



I think the hair strands look a bit too wide in diameter.

As for the lighting I think the light fall off is too strong. I’d try a stronger light from a bigger distance to avoid that extreme hightight in the hair, while still nog getting the rest of the image as dark as in the last image.

I think the chest area around the tatoo looks a bit weird texturewise (two tatoos of different sorts partly overlapping).

Thanks for the comments…
This is just a test light for pulling information for mid tones. Been wrestling with the lights for some time now. Shall look into your theory. Might help.
The underlying image is a texture and the overlap is in photoshop. Will be fixing it in the final scene.

This is looking really good, maybe tone the eyes down a bit and fix the tattoos as you already said, but IMHO the hair is spot on.

Shaun

Thanks Shaun…still a long way to go…

meanwhile…expression…


yup…thats me!

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Did you remove the tatoos ?? I think it’s better like this I think. The luminescent tatoos were too distractnig. Now the attention is focused on the face (which by the way is much better than before). Great teeth, greath hair and great join, very well done. Does it gives you better skills at Blender when you smoke it ?

Great use of reference at then end, and I also agree that it looks much better now the tattoos have been removed. In fact it’s looking infinitely better now.

One thing I would point out (i’m not a character artist so don’t quote me on this) is that the mouth looks a little odd at the corners? Hard to explain what I mean but there seems to be no lip, are at least transition into the lip. Kinda looks like someone has just punched a hole into his face. Is this just me and am I making sense?

in Need for some serious critics and comments…

a low res render

Cant do away with the Tattoo as it would destroy the theme…Will give it another pass…how is this guys?

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Ueeiii, I can’t give you serious advice, just the opinion of someone who will probably never have your artistic skills. Well, imho, the tatoos as well as the eyes catch way too much attention. I think the eyes looked better in the image you posted before, the tatoo on the other hand was barely visible there, so maybe tweak it to somewhere in-between…? Besides of that, your character rocks! Way more interesting to look at than examining a pretty face :wink:
Good luck, I think you might win!

Thank you much…The Tattoo are an essential part to the character…but will be working on this later and do something about it for sure…
Been Smokn the Blender Joint for the past few days now…and yes…its Awesome!