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Iron Horde Handpainted Banner

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Jakob Gavelli interpolator
Hi guys!
I'm trying my hand on the sculpted to handpainted workflow. I'm having lots of trouble making the workflows merge. Especially how much is composite vs handpainted over it.

I know the likes of Faf uses zbrush matcaps for use in the composite tiling textures, but I don't know how to use them in full 3d props really.

I'd love any tips. I just started painting over the composite a bit, but I think I shot myself in the foot by not doing the composite texture properly before painting.

Super quick painting over the composite texture.

m1RM6P6.jpg
XUaWTVz.jpg

Based on some great Iron Horde breakdowns by Gabe Gonzalez : https://www.artstation.com/artwork/world-of-warcraft-in-game-prop-studies

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  • Gannon
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    Gannon greentooth
    Cool start, the thing I noticed when I tried to replicate the iron horde feel is there's lots of size variation in the spikes. They use a lot of gradients as well in their base colors I think. I'll follow this one :D
  • Snafubar7
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    Snafubar7 polycounter lvl 8
    Very nice!

    Try to get the wood grain to be less even, it's a little too evenly spaced.
  • praetus
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    praetus interpolator
    Three things I noticed on it. Everything is very much the same size when it comes to spikes and they're evenly spaced. The iron horde is very chaotic but your placement feels very manufactured.

    Second, you have to much grain on your wood. Look at the concept and you'll notice there are more or less four breaks in the grain going across the main post whereas you have about seven. Because of this the detail and personality gets lost because you're trying to cram almost twice as much within the same amount of space.

    Third, where is the color? Look at other props in WoW and you'll notice that they are full of color shades. Metal will sometime have splashes of red or green in them to mix it up. Your model is very much brown, grey, and red within set areas. Get those colors splashing!

    hope that helps ^_^
  • lilymac
    Oh man I thought that banner looked familiar. Gabe is a great artist!
    I think one of the things you might want to try is to pain with more form, the way you're rendering the iron feels a little spidery. Should probably be chunkier!
    Great start! I'm excited to see this finished. : )
  • KyleJensen
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    KyleJensen polycounter lvl 9
    The downward-angled spikes on top look very non-threatening. Have them point upwards like the other spikes and rearrange them. Always think about silhouette.
  • Jakob Gavelli
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    Jakob Gavelli interpolator
    @Gannon : Thanks, I'm planning on applying a bottom-up gradient, but yeah. ^^ I'll see what I can do about the size variations for sure!

    @Snafubar7 : Thanks, I'll keep it in mind ^^

    @praetus : I've pretty much stuck to the concept really closely, I think it looks kind of haphazard but Oh well. I did a second pass and removed the small grains in the wood, it looks alot better, thanks!

    @lilymac : Yeah, awesome artist! I was a bit unstructured, thinking I'd get instant results just because I sculpted it. I was wrong :P

    @KyleJensen : Yeah, they're like that in the concept though :/ I don't know. I'll think about it.

    So I took a step back, the metal just wasn't working. So I took some time and tried to render one of the metal pieces instead of jumping all over the place.

    I don't know how much I'm supposed to get out of my sculpt really. With how much I have to paint over I'm not sure I'm saving any time sculpting first really ^^

    Let me know what you think about having the metal like this.
    Before - After
    DIN1Co2.jpg
  • Jessica Dinh
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    Jessica Dinh polycounter lvl 10
    Nice painting! Although that may end up being a biiit too contrasty if it's everywhere. Reserve some of those brightest highlights for only here and there. Instead, in some places, you can also try a little gradation of value leading up to the edge - it's not always just dark metal and then sudden bright edge. You can save this kind of treatment more for the spec map. Also try to give your highlights more color, not white all the time.

    You are wasting quite a bit of space on the UV map. You only need one spike and one bolt, then when you flip and rotate them on the model, it won't be noticeable, and everything will have more resolution :) - just something to keep in mind for future projects.
  • Jakob Gavelli
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    Jakob Gavelli interpolator
    @Jessica Dinh : HAI, JESSICA! :D Yeah, I'm having a hard time with it since it looks like stone really easily. I tried toning it down a bit and making the highlights more blueish.

    UVs, yeah. ^^ It's true. I was thinking about having different for the top ones since they'll be lit the other way around, if that makes sense. But I could've just bent them anyways, so you're right ^^

    Here's the lastest, shows a bit of the wood. I still haven't really gotten time to sit down and really work on the metal. Should pull a bunch of new refs and maybe start over. :P It just doesn't turn out as I want. I may have overdone it so that there's too little contrast now...

    (Ignore the spike ^.- )
    5tCHhzQ.jpg
  • praetus
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    praetus interpolator
    I think that this looks better than the last update. Your old highlights had too much contrast for so dark a metal and these toned down ones look much better. Keep it up!
  • nothingtolose
    Oh wow. that looks great! I love the look and feel to it. Almost like cell shading but not cell shading lol. if that makes sense.
  • Jakob Gavelli
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    Jakob Gavelli interpolator
    @praetus : Thanks alot :)

    @nothingtolose : Thanks, I guess? xD

    Here's where it's at. I wanted to try out the Sculpt To Handpainted workflow, which worked really well on the wood I think. But the metal was a total trainwreck, so it's pretty much purely handpainted.

    I should really figure out how to composite it to look like metal. I'm just wasting time sculpting it if I just purely paint it anyways :/
    sLnxcdr.jpg
  • Torch
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    Torch interpolator
    This is looking great so far, keep going!
  • tomenjerry
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    tomenjerry polycounter lvl 6
    hey looks pretty cool! Maybe try to extraxt some lighting information from a normal map (just bake out a world space normal map and copy-paste the green channel in on top of your texture, then use some level adjustments and set to either overlay or multiply). I guess this is inspired by fanny vernges work? XD, if you don't know who she is look up her blogspot, the seige of ogrimmar art is amazing.
    nice work keep it up
  • Jakob Gavelli
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    Jakob Gavelli interpolator
    @Torch : Thanks! I will!

    @tomenjerry : Heya! She goes by the name Faf on Polycount so I mentioned her in the first post. ^^

    I used the green channel for top light, masked out the metal and did it more contrasty. Same thing for the cavity maps etc. AO. It's all there. I know Fanny uses matcaps for tiling textures but I'm not sure for props lite these?

    So here's the diffuse with only base colors under the composite stuff :
    YzpVBi3.jpg
    And here's the diffuse currently - ignore the red areas <,< :
    6sK3jZ3.jpg

    As you can see the wood has just gone through a bit of a value change and some touching up. While the metal is totally painted over :/
  • Dethling
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    Dethling polycounter lvl 9
    Really nice work, I think you hit the "dark iron" really good.
    You also get this "not straight" forms of Wow very good.
    For the wood I would take a look into the game. For me the grain looks too detailled (only the "long" lines I would do a few less and a little more tone variation).
  • Jakob Gavelli
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    Jakob Gavelli interpolator
    @Dethling : Thanks. I do realize that if I were to actually make props for a game like WoW, it would be alot more tiling textures and doing kits, than a single prop like this. I'm starting to regret working on something with just 2 materials like this. And from a black/white concept :P But hey, it's all practise!

    Started on the rings and doing more and more touching up on the metal :
    J7UUPIk.jpg
  • Jakob Gavelli
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    Jakob Gavelli interpolator
    Slow and steady wins the race, right?

    I'm keeping going downwards and at the moment I'm working on the base piece. Getting really tired of metal..

    Blocked out the banner super quickly so I'll probably redo it when I'm done with the base.

    tIMksa0.jpg
  • Dethling
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    Dethling polycounter lvl 9
    Really nice progress.
    I like the sublte rust & dirt at the top metal parts, hope you plan to add this to the lower ones too. :)

    The banner itself looks very good so far. Looking forward to see the finished work.
  • MerlinMan5
    Nice, I think the main things to improve, I think, are the grayish border around the bottom of the flag and the jagged edges. Some anti aliasing would go a long way.
  • turpedo
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    turpedo polycounter lvl 12
    Nice work so far Jakob.

    There are some things that stick out to me -

    -Flag folds are not flowing/reacting well with your alpha cutout. I would adjust the folds to make it look more natural.

    -You could benefit from getting more variety within your wood grains. They feel a bit too evenly spaced.

    -It feels like the base is receiving more light than the top of the prop. I suggest a top down lighting.
  • Jakob Gavelli
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    Jakob Gavelli interpolator
    @Dethling : Thanks!

    @MerlinMan5 : Heya, yeah the banner is really WIP at the moment. Thinking about redoing it a bit closer to the concept

    @Turpedo : Heya! Yeah, the flag isn't close to there yet, but I'll keep that in mind! I'll go over the grain and did some quick value/gradient changes as I saw your post.

    Does these values look better?

    0RMwG1i.jpg
    nB35i7z.jpg
  • Jakob Gavelli
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    Jakob Gavelli interpolator
    This will start looking good at some point. I promise.

    zCtwfFU.jpg
  • beefaroni
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    beefaroni sublime tool
    Ah yea the gradient map from bottom to top helps a lot. I don't have much crit but keep going!
  • Jakob Gavelli
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    Jakob Gavelli interpolator
    @beefaroni : Thanks, yeah, it helped alot.

    I'm just making sloooow progress. So little time to spend on it.. :(

    2OMB6Xj.jpg
  • samwoodart
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    samwoodart vertex
    Gorgeous diffuse dude!
  • Jakob Gavelli
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    Jakob Gavelli interpolator
    Must progress fastah!
    74u6DHT.jpg
  • lotet
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    lotet hero character
    looking good! I think you should ad some big AO gradients, pushing the primary shapes more. you have great detail, but dont forget the big picture.
  • KiwiHead
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    KiwiHead vertex
    cool progress :) subbed
  • Jakob Gavelli
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    Jakob Gavelli interpolator
    @lotet : Thanks :) Yeah, it's still lacking, got to start thinking about presentation aswell :S

    @KiwiHead : Thanks man :)
  • Jakob Gavelli
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    Jakob Gavelli interpolator
    So I just picked up 3dCoat. Something I should've done alot sooner. ^^

    TMov7of.jpg
  • Jakob Gavelli
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    Jakob Gavelli interpolator
    Well, I've basically been polishing a turd. ^^ I'd probably have to go back and redo it, I went pretty wrong from the start.

    What I've learned : Don't jump into detailing too soon or it will come back biting you in the ass later!!! I should've spent more time on value separation and planar definition before jumping into detailing.

    As a test to go from sculpting into handpainting the test kind of failed. As I had to do sooo much painting over the base that it was a huge waste of time to sculpt it in the first place.

    I should really go back and play around with the bakes to try and get a look similar to this one, but I'm just so burned out on this prop at the moment ^^

    The metal started out as muted iron and the more I worked on it I just kept adding highlights like a total noob and it ended up a mess.

    YDWRRk2.jpg
  • noosence
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    noosence polycounter lvl 5
    So have you ever seen Piors Spirit of the Howling Wolf Breakdown ? He uses the Zbrush to hand painted pipeline pretty effectively. I figured that might point you in the right direction, but I think yours still looks pretty sweet. =]
  • praetus
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    praetus interpolator
    Well, I've basically been polishing a turd. ^^ I'd probably have to go back and redo it, I went pretty wrong from the start.

    What I've learned : Don't jump into detailing too soon or it will come back biting you in the ass later!!! I should've spent more time on value separation and planar definition before jumping into detailing.


    I don't think it's a failure. I think it turned our pretty well in the end. You learned more about workflow, what works and what doesn't and I imagine it will make you a better and more efficient artist on future projects.

    As a test to go from sculpting into handpainting the test kind of failed. As I had to do sooo much painting over the base that it was a huge waste of time to sculpt it in the first place.

    I should really go back and play around with the bakes to try and get a look similar to this one, but I'm just so burned out on this prop at the moment ^^

    The metal started out as muted iron and the more I worked on it I just kept adding highlights like a total noob and it ended up a mess.
    High poly bakes can be helpful even if you don't plan on using them much for the final product. When I made my Glaive Launcher and the Fennic Warrior, I started off with a sculpt in ZBrush so I could quickly block out forms and geta basic AO pass created. It made for a quick value and detail test. By the end of the texture pass, I had painted over almost all of the AO to the point that you could hardly see it, but it served the purpose of blocking out major forms and also giving me correct seams in the UVs.

    Don't be so hard on yourself. I think you've grown as an artist from this project and I look forward to seeing what else you can make in the future.
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