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View Full Version : Uplift Universe - Image Entry: Tiziano Baracchi

03-19-2008, 08:38 PM
Tiziano Baracchi is entered in the "Uplift Universe Challenge" update: View Challenge Page (http://features.cgsociety.org/challenge/uplift_universe/view_entries.php?challenger=14316)

Latest Update: Final Image: Fatamorgana
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208987072_medium.jpg (http://forums.cgsociety.org/showthread.php?p=5107564#post5107564)

03-19-2008, 08:50 PM
Hello, everybody!

Here we go again, with another great topic to explore, best of luck to you all and, most of all, have fun!:arteest: :beer:

03-20-2008, 11:55 AM
Hey it's always great to see you in these challenges. I have no doubt you'll dazzle us with another superb entry. Good luck mate!

03-20-2008, 07:51 PM
Thank you so much for the vote of confidence and the well-wishes, my friend. :)

Please, tell me you are entering as well, it wouldn't be the same without you!

03-21-2008, 12:17 AM
Please, tell me you are entering as well, it wouldn't be the same without you!
You're very kind :)

I don't know. It depends on how much time (and also energy) I can spare. But I'll definitely be dropping by to watch

03-21-2008, 12:18 AM
*waves at Thaldir , I might have to give this one a shot

03-21-2008, 06:38 PM
Believe me, Mark I can relate fairly well, well, at the very least I'll hope for some of your always well thought advice, deal?

Waves back to Linda, Hey, just saw your thread, 'once more onto the breach, my friends!' ;)

03-21-2008, 06:39 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1206124755_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1206124755_large.jpg)

Here I am with the fisrt alien's concept sketch...

If you think she looks somewhat familiar you are right, this lady is a Zeron, and you may have seen some of her people in my 'Alien Triad'(or my avatar ;) ) .
Zeron have kept me company, in my dreams, since I was a teen, and looks like they are changing and evolving with time.

03-21-2008, 07:22 PM
And the figure is pretty expressive. I wonder what is she wearing(or is she at all). Is it just her skin tone and armored body plates growing from it? Or this is some sophisticated costume for body protection?

03-21-2008, 07:44 PM
Great start, amazing detail for a concept sketch. Look forward to seeing more :)

03-21-2008, 09:10 PM
Hey Tiziano, nice to see you again in other challenge my friend :D Great initial concept. Like a lot the gesture and pose, cool. Cheers :beer:

03-21-2008, 10:30 PM
The color and atmosphere on her is great. Looking forward to finding out what type of situation she gets herself into.

03-21-2008, 10:35 PM
Its a novel concept really, concept pieces looking like actual finished pieces..Jeez i dunno :)..very sensuous figure, awesome start Tiziano :).


03-22-2008, 12:19 AM
Too sexy... the pose, the atmosphere but the head remind me a Predator-like alien...

03-22-2008, 02:22 AM
Great start! The scribbly texture across the skin is unexpected, and very effective. Your skills in figure drawing are always impressive

03-22-2008, 02:31 AM
Great sketch! I think sexy blue alien babes are a staple in any teenage boys daydreams...or they should be. I enjoy the sort of "iridescent" marbling texture along her body.

03-22-2008, 03:13 AM
whoot, is she sexy or what? Great sketch and very nice coloring.

03-22-2008, 03:35 AM
A sketch that is out of this world, so much is expressed and implied. Beautiful work so far.

03-22-2008, 06:43 PM
Well, thank you! I'm glad she meets with such approuval. :)

organnah you got it right at the first try, all her 'clothing' (helmet included) is really part of her body.

BaronImpossible, LightSovereign LOL! I I meant to do a simpler study, really, but I found I couldn't let her go until I got to this point...happy she intrigues you.

Ferx, SFedor Thank you so much! Hope you'll like what will follow.

Markphisto Really happy you see her this way, in fact Zeron are both seductive and predatory

mdavid, ScottC thank you! The texture is the main change from my previous interpretation of the Zeron, I'm happy you find it effective, they have a physical form but are also energy beings , so I tried to have some sort of 'inner energy' showing through.

grafixsuz, JuanManuel Thank you! Hope you'll follow the developments.

03-22-2008, 06:47 PM
good stuff,ur concept sketches look almost like a finish art,nice details:)

03-23-2008, 07:02 PM
Thank you Michael! I'm looking forward to seeing what you'll come up with, hope we both will have time to finish! :)

03-23-2008, 11:27 PM
Yay, Thaldir is here! Most awesome to see you in the challenge. Your aliens are always so delightful. :twisted: I will be keeping an eye on your work as usual, O great master! Good luck!

03-24-2008, 09:01 PM
Oh my, Bronwen! The confidence vote is really, really appreciated but I think I need still quite a bit of experience (CG-wise) before daring to think of such a title. :)

Feel free to drop by at any time :) , I'm finishing a commission but in a couple of days I'll be ready for an update here.

03-25-2008, 08:49 AM
Fascinating start ! I will definitely stay tuned ! :thumbsup:

03-25-2008, 10:59 AM
very sexy! the skin textures are really cool!

03-25-2008, 11:02 PM
Thank you, Peter & Arianna !

Now that I've finished the commission I was working on, I should be able to post an update soon. Another alien concept related to the Zeron but definitely less "sexy".:twisted:

03-26-2008, 12:58 AM
While your skills are impressive, I feel like the provocative female form has been done to death in sci-fi art. It's almost a cliché. You might want to try something else. Just my two cents.

03-26-2008, 04:25 AM
Looking forward to what you are going to show us next. :scream:

03-26-2008, 04:32 AM
looking very cool...love the colours and the textures...

03-26-2008, 11:50 AM
vmulligan thanks for the compliment, you are right, of course, about the babes (although I see them more as a 'classical' subject, like the hunky, loin-cloth clad barbarian), but keep in mind that this was just a body study with a pose I like. The mood won't be necessarily the same ( in fact it won't be the same at all).

Nekomouse, thank you! Just a bit more of patience...I'm working on it. :)

Cyberone Thank you! The texture was the main development from my previous Zeron version, looks like it's here to stay. ;).

03-26-2008, 08:03 PM
It looks great,looking forward to see more.

03-26-2008, 09:52 PM
wooohoooooooooooo! :eek: :bounce: hey bro!! :love: rockin, sexy, cool concept!! :love: me waiting to see this one evolve!! great to see you here bro! missed ya a lot! :cry:

03-29-2008, 02:07 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1206799650_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1206799650_large.jpg)

And here comes the first sketch, a bit later than expected but RL has started intruding already.

As you can see I went for one of the 'classical' human-alien interactions of golden age SF. The two human maquis seems to be in for a nasty surprise...

...I did tell you that Zeron are shape-shifters, didn't I? ;)

I'd really appreciate your input, particularly composition-wise

03-29-2008, 02:11 PM
Nevs, pal, I'm sorry! I posted on your thread, then the forum started getting reaaallly slow and I didn't answer here... :(

Very, very happy to see you in the Challenge, you have been sorely missed. :)

03-29-2008, 02:22 PM
The composition's pretty good - the main focus on the left and the clustered secondary focus on the right. The main alien is just a bit close to the border left and top.

Slight problem with the pattern on the floor - wouldn't the tiles be square on to the column base?

03-29-2008, 02:40 PM
Whoa! This is getting really cool! She's shapeshifting on the sketch, right? Looks nice!

03-29-2008, 03:14 PM
BY witch software is this great sketch made?

I realy like this style of drawing.

03-29-2008, 03:28 PM
That is looking awesome! My only beef with the composition at the moment is that the standing man is very dark and that was the very first thing my eyes were drawn to, rather than the Zeron girl. If this is your intent that is cool. I don't know what colour scheme you are going for, but perhaps if the Zeron girl is in a warm colour it would draw attention to her first?

03-29-2008, 08:13 PM
a winning formula, Tiz :D bloody great a;ready, very photorealistic


03-29-2008, 08:26 PM
ya man i agree. this ls looking like it will be one of the top images in this contest.
I have to agree with Neko as well about the man in black being way too dark and
a bit distracting at the moment.
Im really digging that Female though :p hehe......
speaking of which i think i might make the boobs on my female character bigger now lol

03-29-2008, 09:19 PM
amazing concept and love the composition, can't wait to see the final

03-29-2008, 10:02 PM
This is looking fantastic. There's a real sense of story and intrigue about this image which draws the viewer into the scene. Oh yeah, and it's done beautifully too! I agree with Simon about the floor tiles being at an unusual angle against the bases of the columns. By the way, I really like your use of lighting, especially making use of the dark shaded bits for contrast - that adds a lot to the drama of the scene and perfectly matches that golden age sci fi look you describe. Bravo!

03-30-2008, 07:32 AM
Hey Tisiano you seems to be really inspired , the Zeron lady got beautiful colors and you already got your image . Good lusk my friend .

03-30-2008, 10:22 AM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1206872564_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1206872564_large.jpg)

Thank you very very much for all your comments, suggestions and wonderful encouragement !

Here is the, slightly revised, sketch:

Baron, Mark I've given a bit more space to the main Zeron and changed the pattern on the floor.

Nekomouse and Dragot: I've toned down the standing maquis, hopefully he fits better (and yes, the Zeron will be warm, she's a red one).

Pegahoul, yes, she is 'shifting on the spot, I'm glad it reads right.

DonRallo thank you! It's Painter with a bit of detailing in Photoshop.

LightSovereign, Jupy, scala, thank you so much, happy you like!

03-30-2008, 11:42 AM
Wonderful stuff. The little changes are excellent. This is already a really cool illustration. By the way, I love the way you've done that little bit of shine on the foreground column :thumbsup:

03-30-2008, 12:10 PM
Definite improvement, looking really good so far :thumbsup:

03-30-2008, 04:33 PM
now thats neat:)nicely toned overall,i
* will fit in time to finish this for sure:)

03-30-2008, 05:44 PM
Actually... hmm. I think the guy was better shaded in #33. I think the reason he looked too dark was because the pillar beside him is too bright. He's meant to be secretive, merging into the shadows, and now it looks like he's standing out in the sunlight.

Just my thoughts, it's still coming on excellent :thumbsup:

03-30-2008, 07:03 PM
Thank you Michael. :)

Baron, thank you so much, that's extremely helpful. :)

03-30-2008, 07:13 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1206904400_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1206904400_large.jpg)

Here comes the very first color study, nothing is set in stone right now color-wise, even though I do think that the Zeron girl will do well in red.

According to the Baron's suggestion I darkened a bit the central pillar (and the standing maquis with it) opinions?

03-30-2008, 09:16 PM
Looking like a photo there, Thaldir :O..loving the shading on the right pillar! yea..its a nice refreshing ambience from all the hyper colours of my work and others..

Great effort!


03-31-2008, 10:29 AM
Quite an interesting setting, great work on the shading, keep it up.

03-31-2008, 10:48 AM
Looking awesome Thaldir.
I do like her in red!

03-31-2008, 05:55 PM
LightSovereign, teq, Nekomouse thank you!

...hmmm, if no one objects, I think the color scheme could be this one, then :). Will do my very best not to lose in color anyone of the good points the sketch had, feel free to rap my knuckles if I do. :)

03-31-2008, 08:00 PM
I like this scene! Good viewing angle!...
I can not wait to see more!

Good luck!

03-31-2008, 09:32 PM
Yep, it's looking good. Some very natural poses and good composition.

One minor crit, I think the lighting is a little bright in places; the blue light on the left-most pillar especially. All I'll say now is look at the woman's right arm and also at the floor - that's the ambience and hue I think you should be aiming for.

Keep up the good work, it's on its way to being a winner!

04-01-2008, 03:43 PM
There's a nice sense of anticipation about this piece. Keep it going it's an interesting theme.

04-01-2008, 04:27 PM
morganvillette Thank you, :) working on it!

BaronImpossible thank you, Simon, will pay particular attention to the lights thank you for your keen eyes and support!

Pearlyking thank you so much! Glad the mood works for you. :)

04-01-2008, 10:32 PM
I like the layout overall, you have a nice diagonal line running from left top to bottom right. You do need a quarter inch more space on the left and the top or crop into the female character to perhaps create more presence of action. Unlike other comments, my eye first goes towards the kneeling guy he is the only one outside of the diagonal vision line. The girl is the last visual factor though, and as I believe you mean for her to be the focus, you might want to mix things up to refocus the eye.

04-02-2008, 01:18 AM
I can't offer any crits. Just wanted to say this is looking fantastic

04-02-2008, 11:59 AM
SFedor, thank you for the comment and the suggestions. :)
I'm working on colors right now, I think I'll wait until the whole colors are there to decide about 'focus' adjustments (for instance, the girl's red is likely to be stronger, and as such to change things a bit).

I've kept each character on a separate layer for now, so adjustments won't be a problem, even though done a bit later.

Mark, thank you my friend, it's always a pleasure to see you here. :love:

04-02-2008, 12:42 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1207140125_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1207140125_large.jpg)

Since I'm really scared of messing up what good there was in the sketch, I'm going to post quite a lot of steps for the color passes, I think...

Here is the latest porogress, I've warmed a bit the light on the right-side pillar as per suggestions and I've worked on the far /middle background (up to the central pillar), defining and refining the shapes and the architectural elements.

Next will be the foreground, last the characters...

04-02-2008, 01:59 PM
ciao tiziano,
I like the situation you propose in this work.
It inspire diffidence cause no one look the same target :)
good challenge...

04-02-2008, 06:39 PM
Grazie, Salvo ! It is good to have another Italian on my tread !

In effetti, penso che una razza aliena mutaforma sia perfetta per un atmosfera da "non fidarti di nulla perchè nulla è come sembra...".

04-02-2008, 09:51 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1207173062_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1207173062_large.jpg)

Some more work done, took me most of the evening to paint the central pillar but I'm rather happy with it...

04-02-2008, 09:55 PM
and a detail


04-02-2008, 10:04 PM
ever more relaistic, thaldir!~ just noticed the cloaked figures out the back there, they really add to the ambience especially!.

Sound progression!


04-03-2008, 08:15 AM
Very nice developement indeed ! :)

It is tense and dramatic ! What are the true intentions of the aliens ? What will happen to the poor humans ?

I am also very curious about the "lady" transformation and the way you wil rappresent it :bounce:

04-03-2008, 03:22 PM
Oh wow, that is amazing. I love the sheen on it. This is probably a really noob question but how do you get it so smooth (without the brushmarks), do you smudge it, or use smaller brushes, or something else?

04-03-2008, 05:32 PM
Marley, thank you! I'm trying to pay special attention to the ambience (together with composition), I'm really happy to know you like it.

Arianna, thank you! Yes, I tried to capture a sort of mid-point in the story, to have the viewers wonder and, possibly, make up their own developments.
The Zeron lady will be the last to be refined, hope you'll like my take on the transformation.

Bronwen, thanks! Well, on a different layer in screen mode I painted the the shiny parts with a soft brush using the pillar's lighter color, then I applied a slight gaussian blur and adjusted the opacity. That's it. :)

04-03-2008, 11:10 PM
I agree with badoero. Tense and dramatic. This image really inspires the imagination. You're going brilliantly

04-04-2008, 06:46 AM
Thanks, Mark ! Another update is coming, soon !

04-04-2008, 12:24 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1207311879_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1207311879_large.jpg)

Here it is.

Now on with the characters

04-06-2008, 12:02 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1207483345_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1207483345_large.jpg)

I've started working on the characters. Here is a more advanced (but still in need of refining of course) color pass on the red alien during her transition from human to zeron form.

04-06-2008, 12:20 PM
This is coming along great. The detail is excellent, especially the stone pillars :thumbsup:

04-06-2008, 01:16 PM
looking good ... looking forward for the next update .. keep it up :thumbsup:

04-06-2008, 02:17 PM
Just amazing. It just keeps getting better and better. The stone work texturing is superb. In fact all of your texturing is superb. I'm really enjoying the progress of this image

04-06-2008, 08:49 PM
Simon, thanks! Glad you approuve, thanks for the suggestion about the light.:)

Nightwoodwolf thank you! :) Working on her right now, that transformation isn't easy to pull off...

Mark :blush:, thank you! I've been focusing on textures recently, I'm really happy it shows. Hope you'll enjoy it till the end. :)

04-07-2008, 09:27 AM
liking the character design. scenes really coming together too! sweet.

04-07-2008, 12:48 PM
Thanks, Neubius ! :)

04-07-2008, 08:47 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1207601217_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1207601217_large.jpg)

Still working on the red zeron and her transformation...

04-08-2008, 12:10 AM
awesome colour work Tiz! :love: the crimson tone really works well here!
i wonder if she'll be sporting a metallic sheen?? :p really curious to see the next steps! :eek:
rock on bro! :beer:

04-08-2008, 01:55 AM
Hi, Thaldir. You seem to be on your way with this illustration. I was wondering about the point of view in your composition. Maybe it could be interesting to put the eye (or the camera as you wish :) ) just behind your main character, that could strenghten the impact of the picture. That could focus the line force of the perspective directly in the action. By this way the "main focus point" of your picture could be the same one for your characters and..for us :) (I don't know if I'm clear enough with my poor english)

04-08-2008, 06:48 AM
Okay here are my thoughts. I think this wonderfully painted as always. Composition is not bad. I think the Alien girl could have a weapon of some sort in her hand maybe and it she could be holding it up, like she is ready to merc someone. Those 2 shiny metal people, in my opinion is not interesting. I think you could add more to the story by having someone there of high importance walking away or walking towards us. Try to design this person in a way that he/she/it stands out. Maybe some guards to surround the character as well. Anything that can give these characters some love juice. I love the realism though pillars floor and background are painted nicely. Later dude. Hope anything I've said helps. :thumbsup:

04-08-2008, 06:55 AM
Always liked your avatar and I like the girl's design now, it must be great to be able to use the characters you have worked on and know well for the challenge!!
I think it's good that not much of her face is visble now, but maybe you could make the part covering that area a bit more transparent, fading, like the in 'ear circle', so you could get just a hint of her eye to show the human side of the transformation still there.

Great work so far, you're really ahead with it!:cool:

04-08-2008, 12:41 PM
Hey, Nevs, thank you, bro!
Not quite a metallic sheen, rather more like coleopter's sheen, those scales are hard but organic. Working, working...

Luter, thank you! :) I'm not really sure if I got what you meant (I'm not an English native speaker, either), but to change the whole point of view at this point would meant to restart from scratch, and given that I'm working a day-job and free-lancing in addition to doing the challenge it's something I've no way of doing this time. Will try to pay special attention to the focus though.

beelow, thanks for coming! :)
You are perfectly right on the secondary Zeron characters, at the moments those are there more or less as placeholders (and color checks), I hadn't thought about having one of them as a big dignitary, that's a great idea! I'll definitely use it, thank you so much!

SteevieWoo, Thanks, Steevie! Glad you like the Zeron, they've been keeping me company for a long while and this Challenge was perfect to define them properly, at long last. I'll certainly try out your suggestion, it's very important to have the transformation working right, and I'm in no hurry. :)

04-08-2008, 06:59 PM
Hi, Tiziano! Just stopping by to subscribe to your thread. The only thing I would have critiqued you on if I'd gotten here sooner is that I wish there was a little more breathing room around the edges of the canvas - especially at the top... It works as it is now, but I would have liked to see you play with it a little bit more to see if adding more space looked better. Anyway, enjoying your progress so far!

04-09-2008, 06:42 AM
Thanks, Nyrak ! It's good to see another "Portrait Adoption" member around here :wavey: .

Well, in the beginning (pencil, very rough sketch phase) I've played with the canvas size a lot for a long day of indecision between portrait and landscape, next between aspect ratios ending up (again) with a "wide screen" type one. Maybe I should have posted here that phase too. :blush:
Ok, next time, lady !

04-09-2008, 03:11 PM
The transformation is coming out nicely, good job!
Given the scene I see now, I think the canvas proportions are just good as they are: more space aroud could be distracting and move the attention of the observer away.

I concord with Beelow about the far group of aliens: a hint of some kind of action such as "patrolling the area" or "have you herd something ?" shoud improve the mood of the scene.

No weapon such a gun to the red one tough... too conventional. Maybe some sort of "natural" attack form like energy or lighting. Just my two cents.

Keep it up !

04-10-2008, 06:35 AM
Thanks, Arianna!
Yes, something more intense is definitely needed for the far alien group, I'll work on it.
I also agree with you that a 'simil-gun' weapon would be an anti-climax on her, will see if I can come out with something in character.:love:

04-10-2008, 10:24 AM

I really love your entry, the style is amazing and the color and texture feeling is really great!

Good luck!

04-10-2008, 04:47 PM
Thanks, SuperXCM ! Next update this weekend for sure :arteest: !

04-12-2008, 05:34 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208021648_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208021648_large.jpg)

At last after juggling a bit of work I'm back on this one.

Some progress made on the red Zeron's shapeshifting, next in line are the other characters...

04-13-2008, 08:41 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208119289_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208119289_large.jpg)

And here is the full scene. As suggested by Beelow and Badoero there are some 'new' Zeron (a bit more reactive ones) instead of the 'old' placeholders.


04-13-2008, 10:33 PM
hey bro!! :p :bounce: man! this has come a long way! :eek: if i'm not mistaken .. the two characters at the far end, right, they're in your portfolio as well ... alien triad :D
very creative indeed! love it! :love:

04-13-2008, 10:35 PM
it just clicked in my head .. maybe you can add more colour on the right side? in order to balance the image that way? ...

04-14-2008, 02:41 AM
Its all looking very swell, each individual element is rendered superbly. especially casting my eye onto the pillars..But my eye doesn't rest comfortably at the moment..just a bit too much fighting going on and its all the lighting..there is more importance to the rear characters than the mischievous humans..(realizing they are unfinished)..Id lighten the contrast of those rear characters a tad.

In any case very nice progress.


04-14-2008, 11:53 AM
Uhuh...conflicting advice...

Thanks for the comments Neville and Marley, tell you what? I'll bring the two humans to the same level of the Zeron (yes, Nevs, same species than those in Alien Triad) keeping in mind the color /contrast quandary and then it will be time to ponder on balance adjustments and other tweaks, it will probably be easier then, with all the characters at the same level of polish. :)

04-14-2008, 12:00 PM
Wow. I can't recommend anything. I love it. The texturing visible in the high-res version is wonderful

04-14-2008, 12:53 PM
The left part is already a beautiful piece ? I think you found something there . It's almost finished .Really interesting Tiziano .Your style is getting better and better .

04-14-2008, 06:04 PM
Well, Mark & Eric, THANKS ! I'd like to be a bit more articulate, but such straightforward praise has left me speechless, I just hope the finished piece will be up to your expectations.

04-14-2008, 06:59 PM
Hey Tiziano, you've made a lot of amazing progress since I last stopped in. And I see that this is only the halfway mark, I can't wait to see what else you have in store for us. Great work man!

Matt :)

04-15-2008, 02:01 AM
Uhuh...conflicting advice...

Thanks for the comments Neville and Marley, tell you what? I'll bring the two humans to the same level of the Zeron (yes, Nevs, same species than those in Alien Triad) keeping in mind the color /contrast quandary and then it will be time to ponder on balance adjustments and other tweaks, it will probably be easier then, with all the characters at the same level of polish. :)

actually i didn't think so, we both homed in on the same area..try one or the other..but admit that neville's idea might be the answer.


04-15-2008, 03:30 AM
Wow! Fantastic work. I love the shapeshifting concept.The only thing that sticks out to me is the green alien chicks pose. It seems too posed, almost unatural compared to the rest of the characters. SHe seems like she's posing for the camera, or a photo shoot. That's my two cents worth. Fantastic job.


04-15-2008, 08:09 AM
Hi Tiziano,

I knew I will find you here :)!

Like very much your concept, specially the shape shifting. The foreground that is in the process of changing the shape is amazing!
I like the way you use colours: cool blues and greens on the background and worm colors on the foreground. It gives the image depth and dimension.
Another thing I like that you have placed humans between aliens... Like in the trap...
And like very much the details on the pillars, specially the one on the right side foreground!

Well, no less expected from you, Tiziano :scream:.

Good luck, my friend!

04-15-2008, 07:49 PM
LightSovereign: actually i didn't think so, we both homed in on the same area...

Sorry if my answer was unclear, Marley! I'll definitely work on that area, it was the 'lower contrast/add color' that I was referring to as (somewhat) conflicting advice, anyway, I'm sure to do something there before the next update. :)

sasquatch70: ciao! And thank you. :), I see your point with the green girl, will try and come out with something more natural for her.
musi Thank you my friend, always happy to see you!:love:I'm really, really glad that you like my attempt this much, hope I won't blunder at this stage... you're welcome to keep me in line, just in case ;)

04-15-2008, 07:55 PM
Hi, Tiziano, this is looking great! THe woman in teh foreground totally reads as a shape-shifter, so that part's working well. I was going to comment on the pose of the female Zeron, but Sasqutch just got there first. :) The only other crit I can think of is that it might be nice, when you get around to refining the humans, to give them more "science-fictiony" looking guns. But great rendering so far on everything you've touched - the front shape-shifter and the columns especially. Keep on going with it!


04-15-2008, 10:09 PM
Hey Thaldir. :) Your style is easy to spot. Superb work like always. Rock on :bowdown:

04-16-2008, 12:33 AM
Hey Tiziano, I only can say... awesome!! :) Really great image. Love the misterious feeling and atmosphere in your scene. You have a great touch to move te viewer imagination, that is really cool my friend, and this illustartion is not the exception :D Great work!! Cheers!! :beer:

04-16-2008, 12:35 AM
Ma che bello! :thumbsup:
Continua così!

04-16-2008, 12:03 PM
walrus: thank you, Mike, will do! :)

MartinNielsen :blush: thanks! (works even harder)

Ferx thank you! Great to see you around, Ferx, thanks for the warm words. :)

Neo-x: grazie, Manuel! Bello vedere dei compatrioti su CG Society. :)

04-16-2008, 03:07 PM
Outstanding job on the red alien "morph" ! One of the most original concepts I've seen here, Tiziano.

The lights are wonderful too !

The pose of the green alien, as it is, is good and dynamic, but... yes the feeling she is traing to look cool on porpouse is there. Maybe less dynamic and more natural ?

Keep it up, I'm watching you ! (as always).

04-16-2008, 04:31 PM
Amazing work :drool:

04-16-2008, 05:13 PM
nice to see you here my friend!
great concept and it's seems always a good and interesting story in your works!
sorry for have no time to join this challenge with you this time, ha..
and wish you all the best!



04-16-2008, 09:51 PM
Arianna, I've been missing you. :love: Thank you so much for the wonderful words.
Yes, the green Zeron will be re-worked in a different pose, stay tuned! :)

Sycar, thank you so much! :)

Alon, my friend, thank you so much for your kind words and well wishes! I am sorry that you are not competing this time, but being too busy is a positive reason for not being in. :)

I hope we all will see what you are busy with. :)

04-17-2008, 04:01 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208448067_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208448067_large.jpg)

Working on the green Zeron I came up with a couple of possibilities.

I'd love opinions on this: A, B or I'm totally off? :)

04-17-2008, 04:10 PM
A is looking into the right direction. B is more dynamic. I think.

04-17-2008, 04:50 PM
I vote for B

04-17-2008, 08:29 PM
I think B gives the image as a whole more variety in poses

04-17-2008, 08:40 PM
option B its more balanced, it adds depth in the composition..

04-17-2008, 08:49 PM
I vote A. Second one just seems too posed. It does not seem like she is in action. She looks like she is in heels. First one feels more natural.

04-17-2008, 09:18 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208467111_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208467111_large.jpg)

Thank you all for sharing your thoughts. :-)

Here we go again: I'm trying to strike a balance between dynamism and a natural pose. I changed slightly the position in B, any better?

04-17-2008, 09:49 PM
hey bro! :p looking awesome as ever:p .. me vote for 'A' :bounce:

04-18-2008, 01:06 AM
In both cases, I wonder how 'A' can't see teh guy standing only barely concealed by the columns. 'B' is facing away and clearly can't see him, lending more to the feeling of ambush. So I think 'B' works better for your story.

04-18-2008, 01:57 AM
Hi Tiziano, looks like I come in late! -A- looks like the green Zeron already spotted the man poorly hidden behind the pillar (They do that in the movies all the time! :D ). -B- works better. However, the male Zeron in both version looks like he already saw them both all along and is not reacting to it. As beelow has mentioned, the female in -A- has a more natural pose, so you can try to apply that to -B-.

Overall, the colour palette really fits the espionage mood and the setting is perfectly fitted. I am waiting to see you flesh out the 2 guys more. Keep up the great work and all the best!

04-18-2008, 07:54 AM
I vote for "B" or something similiar, i concord with Walrus: she works better for your story. And the white one could have been just warned telepatically by the red one or something like that, or simply have been hearing a suspect noise.

04-18-2008, 08:01 AM
I vote for A. The tension into the scene is more dense. Great image!:)

04-18-2008, 08:35 AM
I think B is the best of them. But in both cases it looks like they are already spotted.

04-18-2008, 08:46 AM
Hi for me there's more a circulation in the faces in the B .

04-18-2008, 09:25 PM
Thank you all for taking part in my little poll.

On the 'revised' one we have 2 votes for A and 5 for B (or similar), I think I'll follow the consensus and go with that one, maybe changing her a little bit (although she already looks more natural to me with only the right arm visible).

About the white one, yes, my idea was that either he was a 'knowing' bait and the whole setup is a trap or he has noticed/heard something and is about to react, I'm glad that his pose reads right (of course I had to complicate things for myself doing away with face expressions...).

If everything goes as planned , I'll have an update by Sunday night with at least one of the maquis at the same level of polish of the Zeron (maybe both).

*Warms up his wacom singing softly to himself: ' I'm just a slave, working, slaaaving away...'*

04-19-2008, 02:07 AM
Hey Tiziano, a bit late for voting... hahahahaha :D Ok, my vote is for "B" :D Think B work really great on your image story and atmosphere :) Cheers friend ! :beer:

04-19-2008, 08:14 AM
Thank You, Ferx ! Today I'll post an update with the "advanced color pass" of the standing human. Stay tuned !

04-19-2008, 05:19 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208625557_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208625557_large.jpg)

Fixed the green alien, and here is a more refined version of the first of the two "poor humans".

04-19-2008, 07:11 PM
Almost forgot: I've also added a little device on the red alien right forearm ;) .

04-20-2008, 08:17 AM
Wow the human looks incredible. Your detailing is fantastic. Changing the green chick definately helped. I know it's a little late but I like her pose in A. She has that look like what the hells going on over there, or an alarmed suspicious look.I agee with some of the other critiques as in, you might want to slide the humans to the left a bit so their more concealed. Finish it up quick so you can help me with mine.LOl Excellent work.


04-20-2008, 08:24 AM
i totally agree! :p very realistic indeed bro! ... he's really got that assasin look thingy goin on ;)

04-20-2008, 04:12 PM
Thank you Brad and Neville! Advice followed and update posted. ;)

04-20-2008, 04:12 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208707959_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208707959_large.jpg)

And now the second maquis has been worked on too, the standing one has been moved a bit more to the left, as suggested by Sasquatch70 (thank you!)

Unless more correction are needed, all that is left is the final refining...

04-21-2008, 07:15 AM
Yes, option "B" worked perfectly in my opinion and now that even the two humans are finished the composition is well balanced.

More refining you said ? What refining, the piece is gorgeous as it is and looks finished to me !

04-21-2008, 11:09 AM
Thanks, Arianna ! I'm happy to hear that composition is working: it's a very important point.

Some more refinement is needed but I'll try not too overdo it, promise ! ;)

04-21-2008, 09:44 PM
Hey Tiziano, your image really looks great!! Love the blue tones and light for the background zone. I think you need to put some blue lights over the zeron and the girl on the right part ( now you are working on the painting passes :D) Only a comment my friend :) Again, I really love great environment on your illustration!! Cheers !! :beer:

04-21-2008, 09:53 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208814782_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208814782_large.jpg)

In my opinion, it is finished. Do you see anything that I missed?

And now the story.

After a long time the answer to 'Is there other sentient life in the universe?' has come, and Earth doesn't like the answer.

The Zeron are here, they are high energy, featureless shape-shifters. More than that, much like lichen they are the fusion of two species, to produce a new Zeron an 'energy seed' has to combine with another being, and humans have the highest compatibility.
Are they 'evil conquerors'? Would it be right to condemn them to extinction? Is there another solution?

These human maquis aren't concerned with
philosophical dilemmas, they believe they are fighting for human survival. Often, though, things aren't how they look.

04-21-2008, 10:12 PM
I can't see anything to crit :) It is beautiful Thaldir

04-21-2008, 10:17 PM
No crits from me :) Congrats :bounce: You did a fine piece (again).

04-22-2008, 12:40 AM
Looks great to me. I like your story too

04-22-2008, 05:04 AM
Hey Tiziano,
Theres only one thing that sticks out to me, and maybe it's because the resolution on the image is low right now. The tan guy with the helmet background right, it looks like a chunk from the square thing above him fell of and it's about to hit him ontop of his head. I hope that makes sense. Besides that wonderful piece. Brad

04-22-2008, 06:54 AM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208847270_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208847270_large.jpg)

Thank you!
Fernando, I think we posted at the same time...as you can see I had gone a slightly different way about light for the 'white/green'pair, hope that works for you.

Linda, Martin, Mark thank you my friends! :-)

Brad, you're perfectly right, it wasn't clear what the white thing was,the wall is in better shape now ;-) thank you!

04-22-2008, 09:24 AM
Hi Tiziano, I think maybe you should add a ray of light shining from the big window above the Zeron guy in the bg, similar to the one you have in your midground.

Other than that, really solid work! Congratulations!

04-22-2008, 12:26 PM
The drop of light onto the rear characters has made the image nicely!!, Beautiful work :)

A snapshot of Tiziano's mind :D



04-22-2008, 01:11 PM
Sorry I haven't dropped by in a while, Tiziano. I've had family visiting and been really busy. You've done a great job finishing this up. It looks terrfic!

As for crits, I agree with Jerome's suggestion of a sunbeam coming through the rear window like the one we see in the mid-ground. I also happen to think that the shadows on the midground figures - especially the green Zeron - feel too washed out and light for the rest of the peice. The foreground characters have nice dark shadows, but the clincher for me is the blue lady in the far background, even she looks nice and heavily shadowed. By contrast, the green lady feels like she's just getting too much bvounced light on her backside.

One other idea, not a crit per se but something that I think would look great: You have that strong hilight on the left by the shape-shifter's face and left shoulder. What about some light bloom there, a bit of a glow outside the boundeary of the sculpture? I think that would look great!

But the whole thing already looks great. Nice work! Now it's back to work for me...

04-22-2008, 05:54 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208886855_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208886855_large.jpg)

Thank you Jerome, Marley and Mike, really appreciated. :-)

I've added the light on the blue one, as per general suggestion, worked a bit on the shadows in the middle ground and toned down the lights on the green, I've also added a bit of halo on the stone-head as you suggested, Mike (It's great to see you here, but please, don't feel bad about not commenting, I know how busy life can get).

Anything else, something overdone? :-)

One thing...I'll need a title and I haven't the foggiest, 'Ambush' is already taken...

04-22-2008, 06:40 PM
Beautiful artpiece Thaldir. The only thing I can say is, that window; dunno. Maybe rethink that shape; maybe change the hue of the 'sky' light. Maybe its the resolution, the actual pic being even more perfect; maybe its just me. - But really, a very nice piece of art.

04-22-2008, 08:41 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208896877_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208896877_large.jpg)

Thank you, Drew.
The first idea was to imply/represent a certain level of damage to the building, but all in all it was limited to the breaching of the window and not really needed. Window has been repaired :-)
Also I've eliminated the statue that was just behind the red one's visor, I think it reads better now.

...And I'm still looking for a title.

04-23-2008, 07:35 AM
I think the fine tuning is over. The piece is finished and it's gorgeous ! You could rest now.

Colour palette, athmosphear, storytelling, composition: all works perfectly ! :thumbsup:

I concord with BaronImpossible: a winner !

04-23-2008, 04:30 PM
Hi Tizianohttp://forums.cgsociety.org/images/icons/icon13.gif

sorry I am late!

it's really a great work,
so it' s very hard to give you some crit,
but only my personal opinion:


I think every thing is too clear here,
you can make some thing more further or not too eye-catching,
i divide some area,

1: area 1, can be more dark and blur, like cover a slight fog for
make it more further and reduce the contrast,

2:area 2, the back fo the pillars can be more
dark a little, now it's too clear, it can give it a slight fog too,
maybe reduce the reflection of it.
just a bit for viewers can more focus on the main characters,

3: you can give the left girl some shadow for separate her and the head sculpture,
and in the right side, maybe give it a slightly spot light will help the mood and make focus.

4: then it can give the two man some lighting in this area, because they are in the
dark area, some bright will enhance the focus,

that's only my think of, however, you did a great job!
cheers, hope you all the best in this challenge!
good luck mate!


04-23-2008, 04:33 PM
wow, I see you have done the spot light,
that's as the same as what I think,
great !


04-23-2008, 06:36 PM
Beautifull, I really like the way that you have combined the more clasical elements of the structures with the futuristic characters.

04-23-2008, 09:44 PM
http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208987072_medium.jpg (http://assets.cgsociety.org/challenge/entries/20/14316/14316_1208987072_large.jpg)

Andreas, thank you! I love the athmosphere that comes from mixing history with SF, I'm glad you appreciate it too. :-).

Alon, thank you so much for taking the time to come and give me such good advice, most of what you have suggested has been done (a couple of small things were done already thanks to some other precious advice) and I really like the result, here it is.

Given that the original story was posted a few versions back I think it is better to re-post it, here it comes:


After a long time the answer to 'Is there other sentient life in the universe?' has come, and Earth doesn't like the answer.

The Zeron are here, they are high energy, featureless shape-shifters. More than that, much like lichen they are the fusion of two species, to produce a new Zeron an 'energy seed' has to combine with another being, and humans have the highest compatibility.
Are they 'evil conquerors'? Would it be right to condemn them to extinction? Is there another solution?

These human maquis aren't concerned with
philosophical dilemmas, they believe they are fighting for human survival. Often, though, things aren't how they look.

04-24-2008, 04:33 PM
sensational finale Tiz!! :bounce: :p :love: even my senior at work had a good gawking session :D :D you really outdone yourself this time! :p all the best to you bro! congratulations! :thumbsup: :applause:

04-24-2008, 04:50 PM
Congratulations Tiziano Wonderful piece.

04-24-2008, 06:15 PM


04-24-2008, 08:34 PM
Hey Tiziano, really cool work! Great enviroment on your image with a great lighting mood! I really like that "mysterious" atmosphere feeling! Congrats on your finale!! And now is time for some ( or much :D ) cold beers!! Cheers mate!! :beer:

04-24-2008, 08:58 PM
Good work :thumbsup:
The concept's great, the composition's great but what I like most is your texture work it's brilliant.
good luck I think this could be a winner

04-25-2008, 09:35 AM
Thank you Nevs! And now I want to see your entry finished :arteest:

Merci bien, Eric! And yours too, m'sieur. ;)

Thank you, Arias! Anymore of your great concepts coming?
Beer is exactly what I need now, Fernando. :beer: , maybe with some nice music from your alien-human band in the background?

Thank you, Kieran. I don't really hope in a placement, but it would be a wonderful surprise...;)

04-25-2008, 07:26 PM
As a finishing touch, a few details (about 30-40 % of the working size, depending on which detail).


Ladies first ;)


The humans are definitely caught in between.


I heard something...

04-25-2008, 08:19 PM
Stunning work in every detail :thumbsup:

04-25-2008, 08:49 PM
OMG.:bounce: So delicately !Awesome work.

04-25-2008, 08:51 PM
I think you're close to finish now. :) By the way, are your still using your hot (or "average" as you call her) wife as reference?

04-26-2008, 01:51 AM
Just amazing. You've produced an image as beautiful as it is intriguing. Your use of dramatic light and shadows reminds me of the best of cinematographic lighting. This is a really strong entry in this challenge and I wish you all the best of luck in the judging

04-26-2008, 12:22 PM
Kerem, Arias thank you so much! lots of detail got lost posting the bigger image, I thought it could be good to show some of them :)

Martin, lol! My wife has been the critic audience (she is quite nitpicking and, most often than not, also right ) and the photographer (I posed for the two maquis, although I must say that I look nothing like either of them ;) ).

David, I think this is the highest praise I've ever received :blush:... A whole lot of the merit goes to the wonderful people who have followed my progress with suggestions, constructive criticism, encouragments and strong specific advice.

I don't know how this challenge will go, and one always harbors some hope in a competition, but the highest reason for me to take part in a Challenge (and take part I will every time, barring disasters), is the community: the great people I met, starting from the very beginning when I was a total newbie both to digital and to CGSociety, who freely and helpfully shared and keep sharing their knowledge and experience.

Thank you to all that crossed my Challenge path!

04-26-2008, 03:37 PM
Wonderful tension, wonderful drawing, wonderful light - OK - it's justwonderful, Tiziano.

04-26-2008, 08:58 PM
... and wonderful praise ! Thank You Nick ! :)

04-28-2008, 07:21 AM
Thanks for posting bigger "hotspots" of the scene ! As always your detailing is great. Really, it could be a movie shot, I can almost hear the heavy breath of the humans...

BTW, what is the actual size of the image ?

04-28-2008, 12:43 PM
Thank YOU, Arianna ! The original image size is 5200 X 2955 pixels, 300 DPI.

04-28-2008, 03:14 PM
nice image and nice textures. Good luck with your entry Tiz. Adding atmosphere really gave this image more drama to it. later.

04-28-2008, 08:48 PM
Congratulations Tiziano! it's really a masterpiece :)

04-29-2008, 04:53 AM
I can see a lot of work and passion has gone into this image, great detail and lighting!

Well done Tiziano!

04-29-2008, 11:56 AM
beelow, lauranonce, headtrip, thank you very much ! :love:

05-07-2008, 05:02 AM
nice color layout.beautiful work:)
and thank you posting my thread;)

05-07-2008, 12:27 PM
Tank You very much, notec ! :wavey:

05-07-2008, 01:32 PM
ya know , I can't remember if I posted after your last update :P This is fantastic work my friend. :)

05-07-2008, 05:59 PM
Thanks, Linda ! Always a pleasure to see you on my threads. :)

05-11-2008, 04:47 AM
Tiziano was a pleasure to follow your Wip . And I was sure at the moment I saw your First Alien Concept . :bounce:

05-11-2008, 10:40 AM
Thanks, Eric ! I'm honored. :)

05-12-2008, 10:01 PM
Yessai Tiziano!Great entry man!
Like that character in the foreground!
Hope I can be in with you guys next time again.
Good luck and all the best to you buddy!:beer:


05-13-2008, 11:09 AM
Thank you, Remko ! DW III has been a very demanding run !
I really hope to see you in the next challenge. :wavey:

05-13-2008, 12:04 PM
great work mate and good luck!

see you on the next one :)


05-13-2008, 05:22 PM
Thanks, Neubius ! Fingers crossed. :) Until the next one, then ! But I hope to see you around in CG Talk.:wavey:

05-15-2008, 01:28 AM
really good WIP and final indeed.
your image is so strong ! Thaldir
congratulations! : )

05-15-2008, 11:00 AM
Thank you, Arias ! :)

05-15-2008, 04:23 PM
excellent final result...
i feel the forground and background contrast could have been pushed a little more but its reall no prob...
would make a cool sci-fi book cover

05-16-2008, 06:25 AM
Thanks, Cyberone. I've tweaked and played with contrast a lot with many results and many different opinions, at the end I had to chose one, and, at least on my monitor, this option seemed to work best.

05-22-2008, 10:30 AM
Wow, such a situation we have here ! I'm very glad to see that you have included elements of our histotical traditon in the location of the scene, tweaking the atmosphere to give the right drama like a movie director. Ben fatto ! :applause:

05-26-2008, 12:26 PM
Grazie, Antenore!

The location (rather tweaked) is, in fact our San Zeno church, a wonderful example of Middle Ages architecture, IMO.

In my opinion, since we are lucky enough to have such artistic traditions in our continent it is both beautiful and somehow due to recognize them and build upon them, I'm really happy that you share this point of view. :)

Thanks for the great compliment, the road is long, but I try to keep making progress...

06-18-2008, 03:16 AM
This ended up a real nice pic. Should also have been up there. Congrats is in order regardless.

06-21-2008, 09:02 PM
Thank you so much for the vote of confidence ! There is always next time...

08-09-2008, 04:34 PM
When I saw your works,I know you just got a great picture!

08-09-2008, 04:44 PM
Thank you so much, 谢谢你!

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