Portfolio work progression

nathalye
polycounter lvl 6
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nathalye polycounter lvl 6
Hello everyone.

I've barely done any 3D work for the past 3 years but I'm trying to get back into it now. I know I'm ways off from being able to get a job in the games industry, witch is the goal here, but I've got time and intend to use it to hone my skills. That is where I'm at a bit of a loss though. I've seen my stuff so many times that I think I've become blind to both the flaws and the possible strengths. Could you please take a look at my portfolio and give me some critique? What should I focus on improving first? Anatomy, textures, details, composition? Which pieces should just be cut from the portfolio and which can stay?

http://nathalye.daportfolio.com/

Thank you for looking.

Replies

  • czepta
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    czepta vertex
    Your WIP horse shows promise. I'd say focus on anatomy first. Most of the work in your portfolio looks very squishy and undefined anatomy-wise. Since you've got the time just go hard and make as many models as you can making sure to use tonnes of reference.
  • Brian "Panda" Choi
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    Brian "Panda" Choi insane polycounter
    Whatever you're doing next as a game asset, you'll want to

    1) look into making something that is rendered in a Physically Based Renderer

    2) Have breakdown images of your textures and wireframes

    3) Use a sculpt that isn't blobby, but clean and appealing.

    4) Render the final asset in a real time game engine or renderer in proper lighting.

    I would recommend focusing on anatomy.  The strength of your foundational knowledge is not clear in a lot of the art pieces, and you'll find more long term investment out of more traditional art topics than focusing on texturing technology, etc.


  • Earthyn
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    Earthyn polycounter lvl 2
    Hey!

    Just adding to what the other two fellows have said, Anatomy first, use references! As many as you can find.

    Secondly your textures need some work for sure, they seem very blurred and do not push any details. Decide if you are going for a hand painted stylized finish or realistic.

    Again more references, even if you just find a reference for the bunny's fur for the texture it will help.

    Always post your progress here. Poly-count has been a safe place to receive criticism that we all need to hear so we can improve :)

    Good luck, you have some great possibilities here.
  • nathalye
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    nathalye polycounter lvl 6
    @czepta Thank you for your input, I'll make sure to use lots of references and practise hard.

    @Brian I didn't know something like that happened while I was away, thank you for pointing it out. Seems I have to get my hands on some new software for that though so it might have to wait. Showing textures and wireframes, that I can do at least.

    @Earthyn I hear you about the textures, at least with the game assets. They were supposed to look like watercolours but that got lost somewhere along the line of creating them I think and they ended up just looking blah.

    The WIP is coming along. I've tried to take you guys word to heart and focus on getting the anatomy right with lots of references. As you can see, I have noticed a couple of problem areas that came about because I was so focused on the smaller anatomy stuff and forgot about proportions. >.<'
    Any other input would be very much appreciated.

  • nathalye
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    nathalye polycounter lvl 6
    Some more progress has been made. Not sure about the horn design. And head needs to be slightly modified to make the horn looking less glued on.
    Got Marmoset demo for trying out and will look into Substance when it's time for texturing.

  • TomGT
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    TomGT polycounter
    I think the others have given good feedback on your work, so I'll focus on the portfolio presentation.

    You lose your audience for every click you make them do. It can take less than ten seconds for a portfolio reviewer to give his/her verdict, so you will want your work to be up in front and accessible. 

    Set your gallery page as your home page, put your best works in the immediate eyes of the reviewer. Not sure if DeviantArt's portfolio allows you to do so, but I highly recommend finding one that can like Artstation. 
  • nathalye
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    nathalye polycounter lvl 6
    @TomGT Hmm, maybe you're right. I did look through the long list of tips and things people do wrong with their portfolios and thought mine weren't all that bad, but there is definitely room for improvements.

    Horse update again. I scrapped the horn. The rest of the horse looks too much like a regular horse to be a special unicorn thing so I just let it be without.
    Did a quick paint job in Substance Painter. I'm not completely on terms with the program yet but I will be eventually I think.
    Also did a lot of planes for the mane. Had to make the transparency alpha from a ZBrush render of fibermesh because of my lack of tablet. Need to take the colour banding out of the diffuse though, don't know how that got in there. And it seems the renderer murdered the whole thing when I turned on ao anyway.


    Still left to do is the tail, eye texture and a new paint job for the body. Then I want to rig it and such but no one wants to see that. ^^
  • nathalye
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    nathalye polycounter lvl 6
    Haven't been on Polycount in a LONG time. I've gotten a new portfolio since last time: https://nathalye.artstation.com/
    Would love some feedback on both the portfolio itself and also the works in it.

    This is how the horse eventually ended up. I was so happy about it back then and I hate it now. ^^'

    Will keep posting in this thread as I work on new things.
  • jose.fuentes
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    jose.fuentes greentooth
    I agree with TomGT, the very first thing you should see on any portfolio is your work.  So make that the home page.  As far as pieces, remember Quality over quantity, your portfolio will always be judged by your weakest piece 
  • nathalye
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    nathalye polycounter lvl 6
    My latest work is finally rigged and ready for animation.
  • nathalye
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    nathalye polycounter lvl 6
    This lady is finished but I'd love any feedback to take with me to the next project. It could be pointers on anatomy, presentation or anything else that comes to mind.
  • nathalye
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    nathalye polycounter lvl 6
    Starting on a new project, a sturmbeest from Avatar. Never done anything this complex before so we'll see how this goes.


  • nathalye
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    nathalye polycounter lvl 6
    The sturmbeest is getting more refined now. Still a long way to got but it's starting to look decent.
  • nathalye
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    nathalye polycounter lvl 6
    I just finished the sturmbeest. Not too happy with it but still better then I thought it would be.


  • nathalye
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    nathalye polycounter lvl 6
    Next project to finish for my portfolio is a little mushroom man. I'm really happy with how the textures came out on this guy.
    He has a super basic rig so that I can pose him. I'm going to try making him a pair of pants in Marvelous Designer soon. And give him a little bit of environment too.

  • slosh
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    slosh ngon master
    While I see improvement, I think you need to aim for a higher quality bar.  The horse definitely improved but I still wouldn't consider it very folio worthy.  The last 2 pieces you posted are both quite mediocre and need a lot of work to be in a folio.  Anatomy needs to be be pushed much further, texturing, presentation...everything needs more work.  Keep pushing...
  • Ashervisalis
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    Ashervisalis polycount lvl 666
    Would have liked to see more polygons on the mushroom man, as well as increased subsurface intensity. The hands also bother me as they don't really make sense anatomically. The texturing says realism but the overall form says cartoony, which is an odd mix. I think you should also pay more attention to the texturing and interest of the eyes! Keep going!!!
  • nathalye
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    nathalye polycounter lvl 6
    @Ashervisalis Thank you for the feedback. I agree with pretty much everything.

    Went back to texturing and bumped up the saturation and contrast as well ass adding more life to the face. Also doubled the poly count and finished up his rig. I'm currently sick so will wait a few days to to the pants and environment for him.
  • kmacneil91
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    kmacneil91 polycounter lvl 3
    I like your creativity!  I think I would have to agree with the comments about focus on anatomy. I would recommend trying practice on realistic characters as opposed to stylized ones to really understand how the body works.  Figure drawing is a big help too, you can use resources like Croque Cafe on Vimeo.  

    I would also recommend trying some sculpts with a focus on planar structure to help avoid that 'blobby' feel that people mentioned. Stuff like this, for example: https://www.pinterest.com/kmacneil91/planar-studies/ 
    (But doesn't have to be pushed quite that far) 
  • nathalye
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    nathalye polycounter lvl 6
    Final version of the little mushroom man.
    His arms are quite wonky, especially the shoulders. I'm not used to making bodies this thick and it presented some unexpected issues with rigging and skinning. But I've learnt from it and am now moving on to the next thing, whatever that might be.

  • nathalye
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    nathalye polycounter lvl 6
    Another piece added to the portfolio. It's based on a concept by Piper Thibodeau.
    Had a lot of fun doing this one. Had to figure out a decent way to make beer foam in Unreal. It was also nice to make something really cute.

    Original

    Material experiment


    Final piece


  • JamesBrisnehan
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    JamesBrisnehan polycounter lvl 7
    Nailed it. That looks great. How did you get the foam material to look that good?
  • nathalye
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    nathalye polycounter lvl 6
    Nailed it. That looks great. How did you get the foam material to look that good?
    Thank you!
    I set it to subsurface mode, or whatever it's called, and then used 3 different fresnel layers on top of the diffuse to give a highlight and outline.
  • JamesBrisnehan
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    JamesBrisnehan polycounter lvl 7
    Very clever, I'll have to remember that one.
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