Low Poly Resistance Fighter - Feedback / Improvement

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MAATT vertex
Hii, I want to start posting my progress here and ask questions so I can improve my artwork. 

Sketchfab: Updated 2/18
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This is my first character, inspired by the Polish resistance movement in Europe during WWII - I'm not following any specific design / character sheet, but I have been looking a lot of low poly reference here on the forums, and searching through historic photos to get a feel for the style of that era.. I'd say it's a mixture of civilian / paramilitary / gangster..

 Here's a good example:


.. and one more:


And here are some more shots of the character.. I'm looking for general C&C regarding proportions / topology / bone placement, and anything else you can think of that stands out, or looks funny.







Thank you!

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  • Olingova
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    Olingova polycounter lvl 3
    Looks pretty good, altho really low poly but i guess it's a choice :) you plan to use a normal map on this guy or go full oldschool with a diffuse only?
  • MAATT
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    MAATT vertex
    @Olingova - Thanks bud. I want just enough geometry so it deforms nicely and has an interesting silhouette.. Not planning to do normals/sculpting for this guy, maybe just a low-res diffuse map with some chunky details and soft lighting.

    Okay, made a lot of minor adjustments to the knees/forearms/collar etc..

  • Olingova
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    Olingova polycounter lvl 3
    Ok then :) Nice adjustments, looks better! Maybe You ll'need more edges on the knee/elbow, i feel like juste doubling it won't be enough to avoid a visible deformation. But it's difficult to judge since you chose to make a super low poly version of the mesh. You nailed it tho!
  • Brian "Panda" Choi
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    Brian "Panda" Choi sublime tool
    Do you have a paintover of what you're hoping to achieve texturally, especially since you're not playing with a ton of polys.
  • MAATT
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    MAATT vertex
  • MAATT
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    MAATT vertex
    Hey guys, I have a small update on the character.. Here are some of the improvements:

    1. Decided to give him a tucked-in shirt instead of the really short jacket - so he looks more like the fighter in the first reference photo. I tried modeling an army jacket with flaps that hang down, but the additional rigging  / animation required was tedious..
    2. Realized the shoulders had bad weights, so I fixed 'em, adjusted the topology a bit and made them less bulky.
    3. The knees were very pointed when compressed all the way, so I gave them some extra geometry and adjusted the weights so they maintain volume better.



    Next I'm going to fix up the upper arms.. I want my character to be able to reach behind his back, and take some piece of equipment from his belt. But at the moment the biceps can only rotate one way, due to the topology. Otherwise the arm collapses like this:



     I probably just need to add another edge loop around, or a twist bone between the clavicle and upper arm. Any ideas?

    @Olingova - Sweeet.. Thanks, dude. I really appreciate your feedback. Yeah, you're right about the deformations.. I added some geometry to the knees but it'll never be perfect! I'm hoping that with unlit, low-res textures, the clipping won't be as noticeable.

    Do you have a paintover of what you're hoping to achieve texturally, especially since you're not playing with a ton of polys.

    No I haven't done any painting yet.. but I've given it some thought. Tom Tallian's low poly TF2 characters are a huge inspiration to me.. I really like the low-res, pixelated game character look: minimal detail/folds in the clothing, soft shadows and highlights.. so something along those lines. I've just playing around with ideas, trying to nail the basic proportions / anatomy, testing poses and making sure the rig works properly. With this last pass of improvements I think I've settled on the clothing, so It's probably time to bust out the old Intuos pen and flesh out some ideas.. ;)
  • MAATT
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    MAATT vertex
    *diarrhea post*
  • MAATT
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    MAATT vertex
    **diarrhea post**
  • MAATT
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    MAATT vertex
    My bad.. I had some difficulties posting over the weekend.. Very sorry about the spam.  :#  

    Fixed the upper arm by adding geometry and a twist bone.



    And here's another pose I've been using to test the rig:

  • MAATT
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    MAATT vertex
    What's up guys. Progress has been slow, and realize I'm gonna have to practice painting a bit before I can finish this character. My painting skills are shit at the moment, lol. Should probably start a smaller project.. oh well..

     I have a small update on the model, and UV's:

    1) I made some more changes to the head - gave him a more defined jaw, and adjusted some of the other forms.. cheekbones, hair, etc..
    2) Made the chest longer / lower..
    3) Added some geometry to the shirt so it overlaps a bit.
    4) Crotch imrovements =)



    Okay, now the UV's. I want to do a 128x128 texture, and noticed most of the low-res examples out there had very straight UV's.. so I went ahead and straightened out the islands as best as I could. Spent far too much time adjusting them, and worrying that I'm adjusting them too much - so feedback would be greatly appreciated. ^-^ I also should note the hands and head are scaled up a bit compared to the rest of the model, since I want them to have adequate detail, and stand out more than the other less important areas of the model.. This is pretty standard practice, right?



    Thanks!
  • MAATT
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    MAATT vertex
    Hii, haven't done much these past couple months. :S After a few attempts at painting some details / trying out color schemes, I saw some things bugging me about the model, so I decided to take a step back and fix them. Just beating him to death I now, I guess hah..

    Sketchfab link updated. 1126 triangles.



    Feedback/Criticism always appreciated.
  • Eepox
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    Eepox polycounter lvl 2
    Looks pretty good to me :) About the last UVs you posted, not sure if you've edited it since November but what made me wonder is the padding between UV isles on a couple of spots where they're closest to each other, if you're going for a 128x128 texture. For bigger textures the padding would be fine, but did you check there's no pixels bleeding from one UV isle to another when the texture is downsized? So that there won't be odd seams or spots on the model when the small texture is applied.

    Keep going!
  • MAATT
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    MAATT vertex
    Thank you @Eepox, you have a good point. I wanted more room to work with so I've already started laying the uv's out on a 128x256 grid, and I can space out my islands a bit more.. When I was testing things out - I tried baking an AO map with 0 padding, and disabled mipmaps - the seams were okay, but there was still some unexpected pixel bleeding. And although I wasn't considering having different sized textures / LOD's - I will definitely keep that in mind.
  • MAATT
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    MAATT vertex
    Still trying to get my head straight.. lol. Please let me know what you think. Is everything in the right place?

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  • Wendy de Boer
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    Wendy de Boer polycounter lvl 13
    Nice job with the deformations on the body!

    It's hard to judge from a lowpoly head only whether or not it looks right. Here are some ways to get around this:

    Model sheet approach:
    If you have a straight front and side view reference you can use, put the reference on planes in your 3D scene and align your mesh to it.

    Test texture approach:
    Unwrap your mesh and draw a blockout texture for the face. If proportions are different from what you were looking for, adjust the mesh with the test texture on it until it looks right. Be sure to fix unwrap distortions afterwards, then paint final texture.

    Reference approach:
    Project photo reference or concept art to your head model as a texture. Tweak the unwrap until features are aligned correctly, then tweak mesh until likeness with the reference is achieved. After that, create a final undistorted version of your UV. You could bake over the reference if you want to get a start with your texture (provided you have the rights to use the image in that way), or you could just paint your texture from scratch knowing that features will line up correctly.

    Sculpting approach:
    Create a rough sculpt in Zbrush to establish the face you are looking for. Since a sculpt is more detailed, you can get a much better impression of whether it looks right or not. After that, build your lowpoly on top of the sculpt, or take an existing lowpoly topology and resurface it to match the sculpt. After that, you can bake over the details from the sculpt to get a start on your texture.
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