Realistic Stylized Crow in Blender 2.8 Eevee

Here is a little project I am currently working on. Its a crow, trying to make it as realistic as I can within blender 2.8 Eevee. So far It goes rather well. I still have to fix some of the feathers, also sculpt details on the talons as well as texture them. I am happy with how this turned out so far :smile:
Thumbnail:







Spot for the latest version:

Animated GIFs:
Crow_FeathersGIF_03

Here are some of the Progress images:


!

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Softened the feathers a lot and added tinted sheen to them, makes it look better in various lighting. Matches more my references :slight_smile: Still much to do, but its heading the right way :slight_smile:

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That’s pretty cool! Great job, especially on the feathers! :slightly_smiling_face:

Thanks @ArtAvenue :slight_smile:
Feathers are hard, but using Eevee makes it easier since what you see is what you get. I am not 100% there yet, but I am well on my way. Still need to further edit the wings, overall feathers and fur, as well as finishing to sculpt and paint the talons detail.
Crow_BaseModel_Thumb_02

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very nice little crow here! Good job.

A little idea that comes to mind:
You can make a secondary UV map containing all the feathers in a projection so you can give it a bit of secondary texture to reduce the repetitivity of the feathers.

Thanks @P3rtan

I actually already added a layer or procedural in there, but very very subtle, maybe too subtle, I should bring it up a notch :slight_smile: Thanks for the feedback! Much appreciated :slight_smile:

Let there be wind! Got the body feathers where I am happy with them, looks much like my references of a crow (not a raven). Next finishing detailing the talons and texture them and then onto rigging :slight_smile:

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Well, had to bring it in ZBrush to finish detailing and texturing, Blender 2.8 kept freezing on me as soon as I got back in sculpt more on multires modifier. So, ZBrush ended up finishing the job again! Default ZBrush normal map export works in 2.8 ! :slight_smile:

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Well, I think I am ready to rig my crow!!! All the anatomical ingredients are there. I can always tweak the materials and textures some more as needed, but as far as being ready to rig, I do think it is ready! Blender 2.8 Eevee freaking ROCKS!!!

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Gorgeous! :slight_smile: Maybe the roughness needs to be just a dab higher, but I’m loving the coloring

@P3rtan Thanks! :slight_smile:
Noted :slight_smile:
I am actually thinking of controlling parts of the materials with the rig and Npanel. I find some stuff needs to be tweaked slightly when the lighting change.
Maybe giving direct control from the rig is a good idea?

Finished the base Crow rig with most of the controls. Wtill need to make the flight feathers bendable. Its currently already very easy to pose. I’ll continue tomorrow! Here is a pose for y’all! ! :slight_smile:

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Wow, That looks really good for an Eevee render! Thanks for showing the progress, I thought of making a bird once but had no idea how to do the feathers and your method makes sense :slight_smile:. I always wonder where people learn to rig, can you recommend any tutorial paid or free that goes further than a simple rig and is still up to date?

Thanks for sharing!

@BlenderRens Thanks!
Its actually only screenshots so far, its not even a render yet :stuck_out_tongue:
In terms of rigging course, no I don’t know any good rigging course, paid or free that is up to date.

I’ve been rigging for nearly 18 years now, started in Maya and when I switched to blender it was a lot of trial and error really. But I always create my own rig. I don’t like using things like rigify and the like. I did try them, but in the end, a good custom rig is always best.

Things to consider learning to be good at rigging, skeletal anatomy and muscle anatomy. If you understand where things bend and how they bend, then rigging becomes fairly easy. Its definitely tedious and time consuming but its easy non the less. Blender really has good solid rigging tools!

I am thinking of creating a few courses to sell on the market, but its hard with two noisy kids. I’ll try my best to come up with a few good courses to sell on there, hopefully before summer :stuck_out_tongue: .

Don’t forget the blue speculars… as a lots of crow have.

@skuax
A yes, that ever so famous blue spec… Well, based on my research before creating this crow, there are around 40 different species of crows and ravens (they are all part of the same family). But the bluish on crows depend on the lighting, on ravens its on their plumage. Some even have white feathers on either their neck or on their wings.
But to do something more realistic I would need to use many different textures of feathers and about 20 different particle system, which I ain’t really inclined to do because I want it to be Eevee.

So that is all made of 1 feather texture and there are only 2 particle system on my setup. Its not 100% realtime, posing this with body feathers on is laggy. That is around 12000 feathers.

Thanks for the reply! The bones are not really my problem haha. I often find it hard to filter what functions are most usefull and used for 90% of the work and what is clutter for my skill level and only used in the other 10% of cases. But I should definitely try more because I often only make some bones weight paint and then have some basic control. But the constraints etc are really the way to go :stuck_out_tongue:

Ha Eevee fooled me!

@BlenderRens You are welcome!
As a rigger and also animator, having a rig that is hard to control is bad. I like rigs that are easy to pose, and that only has very controls as much as possible. Having too much control is just like having not enough. Tests are always a good idea, try poses, try to break the rig and figure out what would be the easiest possible way to control something complex. FOr example, the wings on this crow has only 5 controls to make all the poses needed :wink:

Here is another interesting pose

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Here is another pose

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Very cool! Would you consider making a tutorial about rigging a bird’s wings, with feathers and all? Not just for flying but a rig that actually allows wings folding like on your last picture. I’ve tried several times to come up with something like that in the past and always failed miserably…