sculpting, modeling,...and expanding anatomy knowledge

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  08 August 2009
sculpting, modeling,...and expanding anatomy knowledge

I feel that I really need to step up my anatomy knowledge and overall quality of content...Right now my process has always been to draw for several hours from reference (for example, if my shoulder blade areas look goofy, find figure reference, draw it til something clicks in my head, and return to Zbrush where I 'sculpt' the model)...
I want to hit a more convincing level, and I'm really struggling to get there, its like I can get a stylized effect, but when it comes to some convincing naturalism, I'm lagging....

My question is how do you work and grow? Do you simply grab reference and look at that while making a character? Do you set aside time apart from character creation to make 'studies' of the reference and attempt to absorb it into your mind? I find this time consuming but most beneficial, yet may not be practical and efficient, not sure...but if you do study, in what medium? I know many sculpt with traditional clay, model in zbrush, ect, but is there recourse to pen and paper when studying or is it all done in 3d? I know these bits my seem trivial to pick apart, but I just wonder how I should spend my time trying to get my character models to the next level (if cross training is indeed most beneficial, or just mono-medium growth)...Some say just proceed from character to character, painfully trouble shooting each anatomy problem til it becomes easy, some say to figure it out seperately; in any case, I'd love suggestions or just illustrations of how people work,


  08 August 2009
Hi Josh,

I only last week crossed the 3d threshold, in traditional clay, and I have to say that it has been helping me tremendously in terms of understanding how stuff fits together! Being primarily a 2d traditional draughtsperson myself, I never felt that sculpting was going to be my cup of tea, but I have been loving it. You're welcome to check out some shots of my WIP figure sculpt (the second that I've done) on my blog here:

I've basically been working on this since Sunday (so, for less than a week) when I attended a 5 hour life session with a female model. The beginning sculpt was pretty pathetic. Since I found sculpting to be fun, I bought the armature and some additional clay, and have been working on the sculpt using reference at my studio. (You'll notice that this has since become male). It's been a lot of trial and error, but I keep kicking myself for not trying this sooner, because it is so much fun. Definitely give it a try - I basically think of myself not as trying to make a great sculpt, but of trying to understand where stuff is.

Edit - also, I've read that it's really helpful to go back and forth between drawing and sculpting, as it seems like you're already doing. I think anatomy knowledge is something like the growth of a stalagmite, you just keep adding layers and layers and eventually it all builds up. It takes an ungodly amount of time!



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Last edited by Rebeccak : 08 August 2009 at 06:37 PM.
  08 August 2009
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