Sculpt Anatomy Practice - Skull

Hi. I got a plastic skull model and I am using it to sculpt from to practice anatomy. It’s been real helpful being able to hold the skull for reference. This is what I have so far.

I also have an anatomy model and plan on sculpting from that as well. My video card is only 256 mb so I don’t think I could do the whole model at once. Doing the skull has been fun so I may upgrade my card to be able to handle it. The skull model starts to chug around multires level 9-10, but the base mesh was only the default cube. Any C&C of what I have so far?

Looks pretty good from that angle. the human skull is certainly a great subject for practice since it is what everything else head related is built upon. Also it is a great reminder that we all have one of those in our heads. In case you haven’t seen it :Sculpt, Model and Texture a Low-Poly Skull in Blender - Cgtuts+
there is a nice tutorial on integrating a normal map, and AO map into a low rez version of a skull model.
I think the results would be much better if they are mapped onto a retopoed version of the high rez sculpt instead of using the level 4 multi rez model like he shows. I learned a lot though

Do you really need that high multires levels? Look at how Endi works, with no higher resolution than absolutely necessary:

The skull looks fine. Could use some teeth though. :slight_smile:

@Mazui you do need higher resolutions espically when you start working on higher details and with alpha textures skin pores veins etc.

@linux pimp you should be able to get to at least 1 000 000 poly I have pushed a machine with no card past 1 000 000 poly you couldn’t really sculpt all at once but I could hide parts of it and than sculpt. When the clay brush came out Nicholas Bishop made a post that explained a bit why Blender sculpting can’t do high poly counts its less to do with graphics cards and more to do with how it handles updates if I remember correctly if you make a stroke it cycles through every vert/edge even if they weren’t affected.

I think 2 million polys should be enough for a human, the hulk in my signature is around 400 000 polys from the way things are I judge one more subdivision should be enough.

What I meant is that you shouldn’t use a higher resolution than you need at any given stage. Sqeeze all detail you can from one level, then raise it and repeat. In the end you might discover that you didn’t need more than level 6 or 7.

Hi guys. Thanks for the replies. Sorry for the late response - been a busy holiday weekend. Anyways I haven’t done a whole lot more. I fixed the jaw a little. I started the teeth, but they are kind of tedius. I wonder if it would be easier to make a texture of a tooth and use that to draw with.

@jcode - That tutorial kind of got the ball rolling, but having the model has been very helpful as well.

@Mazui - I’ve seen that video before. Endi is really good and hopefully I will be able to get to that point as well. This is my first serious sculpting project so I am learning how the tools can be used to get he effects I want.

Thanks again for reading and thanks for the C&C.

Looks like a good start on the teeth,thats where I really ran into limitations of the low res models, this is definitely a good project to learn what to define at what rez

perharps you should do a little divide and conquer here, seperate the mesh into three different objects teeth, jawbone and the rest of the skull would you mind providing a side view of the skull there is something that I feel is a bit off with regard to the major angles. what type of race skull are you doing eupropean, asian or african man or woman the are subtle difference for each enough to allow forensic experts for example to indentify if a skeleton is male or female or what race it belongs to. good work thus far for a first sculpt.

@mazui I am going with the assumptation here that you have done little sculpting, I will use my hulk as an example here my base mesh started out at around 1818 all quad polys at a level 5 subdivision I am already at 465 408 polys which is good enough to define the big bulky muscles but to get in detail I would need level 6 or level 7 subdivision which is 1 861 632 and 7 446 528 polys respectively. If I wanted to do a pro quality normal map than the level 7 sudivision would be the one I would need I have baked maps at around the 1 000 000 poly mark but the tend not to hold up when doing HD quality renders.

Well I did a little more tweaking so I will also include that image as well as the side view as requested. I am not sure what nationality I am doing. I am using the “budget skull” from here. If I had to guess I’d guess it is European male.

I pinched the nose too much and have to fix that. The teeth I ended up using the draw brush to add volume then used a big pinch brush to squeeze them together. I may start on another part of the body because I think I’ve been looking at this too long and getting too comfortable with it’s flaws.

I would suggest, the thing to do now, would be to retopo him, to optimize the topography for the form that it represents, and then to continue sculpting from the new mesh.

That is a good suggestion. I’ve never used retopo so it is a good reason to try it. I’ve read the tutorial on CG Cookie by Mr. Bomb and I think it is also covered in Mastering Blender. I was kin of hitting a brick wall with the teeth so the retopo will help I am sure.

there are a few things to keep in mind when doing retopoing: 1 is that the button with the cube on it on the main header: ’ occlude background geometry ’ should not be pressed. If it is pressed, it will be difficult to see what you are doing. If you have any problems at all, just inquire in the modelling subforum, and I will give you the full run down.

I’d fix the proportions before you retopologize. He has an ape face right now. He jaw is jutting forward a lot more than most humans. The jaw should actually be receding under the nasal bone. Also when you get to retopologizing the lower jaw I think should be a seperate mesh. Its quite difficult to get the area around the ear correct with just one mesh. It can be done, but its easier, and you learn more from working how it is in reality.

For teeth just add 23ish (I forget the number exactly) cubes and sculpt them into teeth. Than the area that you place them under you can simply draw a slightly raised area so it looks like its rooted in the skull.

Thanks for the help. It was looking kind of apish but I didn’t know how to make the model transparent in sculpt mode to see the reference behind it. I dropped down a few mulitres levels and went into edit mode so I could see through the model and adjusted it with proportional editing that way. I read the tutorial on CG Cookie by Mr. Bomb on retopo and in Mastering Blender. Now that I have evolved him to modern man I am going tackle retopoing him.

This is what I have so far. Not much, but I had a question. I am not sure what mygoals re in making my topology flow. It isn’t going to be animated so am I just shooting for a low poly count? Should I still avoid triangles?

if it is going to be subsurfaced, then you should avoid making triangles, but one or two little ones won’t hurt.
(edit) and I wouldn’t worry too much about the ones in the eye socket.

Thanks for the reply. Should I make it denser where there will be more detail or try to make the whole mess equally dense? I am guessing the over arching goal is to end up with fewer polygons then the multires level one, but by having the overall shape intact to build up from there. Is it common in sculpting work flow to retopo to get more detail in or just because I probably went to high on the levels then needed?

Yes, increase the density on an as needed basis, so the high detail areas should be more dense, and the low detail areas less dense.

Looks good so far, I would agree with womball though about making the jaw a separate object and the teeth as well. I think this would also make it easier to sculpt.

Well I worked on this a touch more. I finished retopoing it. I probably will rework it a little before sculpting again. I am going to split the jaw off to rework it like people have suggested. Should I make the jaw a separate mesh or still keep it as part of the rest of the skull but just disconnected? I am guessing you can’t have two meshes in sculpt mode at once.

Also I tried doing a turn around to show the topology. C & C always welcomed.