Hardcore Modeling Challenge #37 Femme Fatale by Nat

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Old 03 March 2013   #1
Hardcore Modeling Challenge #37 Femme Fatale Michelle Pfeiffer by Nat!


I lately decided to participate to this new hardcore modeling challenge#37.
So here are some pix of my wip I will try to post in this 'Femme Fatale' thread as often as I can make it.
I started on it a little while ago, as a woman I quite like the idea to represent a femme fatale so TY Roberto.
Then I naturaly thought of Michelle Pfeiffer who is not only a great and talented actress (the best Catwoman ever) but a timeless beauty as well. IMO Found a bit too 'cliché' to sculpt Michelle Pfeiffer as Selina again so through this lil contest I wish I could represent her the way she looks nowadays in her mid 50'ies as she still looks attractive and a femme fatale more than ever (I could never be your woman, I am Sam, Personnal effect, Dark shadows...). It's also much more challenging to make her some wrinkles and flaws and to keep her beautiful the way she is IRL...To do short...A good way to improve my skills and it's why I wish to join all of you here
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Wip00.jpg (91.8 KB, 51 views)
File Type: jpg Wip02.jpg (49.0 KB, 18 views)

Last edited by ARTISTOC : 03 March 2013 at 01:35 AM.
Old 03 March 2013   #2
Hardcore Modeling Challenge #37 Femme Fatale by Nat

Here are some pix of my wip using ZBrush for the HD modeling.


Last edited by ARTISTOC : 03 March 2013 at 01:28 PM.
Old 03 March 2013   #3
Hardcore Modeling Challenge #37 Femme Fatale by Nat

I sculpted her a little nighty. She wore a white nighty in the movie 'I could never be your woman' (2007). I thought it would have added a piece of sensuality which is nice for a Femme fatale... I didn't want to make her topless...Because she is not a french actress ahaha so I only slightly left a lil part of her breast visible, but not much ok.
I guess I watched lots of her movies hundreds of times...If not all of them!!! To work on this modeling challenge, but it's cool I like her hopefully haha, so it's ok.
I didn't have good pix of her in nighty then I had to shot some pix of somebody I know built like her and then it had helped me to model her the nighty.

Last edited by ARTISTOC : 03 March 2013 at 04:55 PM.
Old 03 March 2013   #4
Hardcore Modeling Challenge #37 Femme Fatale by Nat

I added some wrinkles and flaws on her face and skin, I amplifyed these details in ZBrush on purpose to have a nicer result on the Normal map and SSS shader using Mental Ray after. I noticed sometimes with the SSS in Mental Ray we have to overdo the skin details and stuff on the 3D model because if not it wouldn't be visible enoughin rendering.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Wip10.jpg (59.8 KB, 28 views)

Last edited by ARTISTOC : 03 March 2013 at 05:01 PM.
Old 03 March 2013   #5
Michelle Pfeiffer is a interesting choice, nice progress of your work.
Have fund and welcome.

keep it up!

Old 03 March 2013   #6
Hardcore Modeling Challenge #37 Femme Fatale by Nat

Still my HD wip, I think it should be ok in a bit to start with the Low res retopology asap.
Hope to get some spare time to end this (HD modeling/low res retopology/UV unfolding=> Normal Map/Color Map) by the end of this week and to post some new wip here on sunday.
C U on Sunday,
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Wip13.jpg (80.0 KB, 19 views)
File Type: jpg Wip14.jpg (75.5 KB, 36 views)
File Type: jpg Wip15.jpg (74.9 KB, 21 views)
Old 03 March 2013   #7
This looks great.

The latest WIP looks like you've pushed the wrinkles a little too far, especially between the eyebrows. The only image in your refs that comes close is the one where her face is scrunched up. I don't really know how it should look close up but one aspect of her nowadays in the makeup used to cover up those wrinkles.

Are you going to try and tie her to a character (like dark shadows) or are you just going with Pheiffer as the Femme Fatale? I supose those are the only roles she does, but it might be a stronger design associated with a character.

I dunno though, your modeling looks great.
When I first appear I may seem mysterious, but when explained I'm nothing serious.
Old 03 March 2013   #8
Looks pretty nice. Are you going to do a bust or a whole figure?
The terminal velocity of individual particles is directly related to pink rabbits on a bank holiday.
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Old 03 March 2013   #9
Hardcore Modeling Challenge #37 Femme Fatale by Nat

Hey Tombery thx for welcoming me,
Yup Kanga, indeed won't be a full shot as I'ld like to work on a close shot for a change.
H2olt, indeed I pushed the skin details (wrinkles, pore skin, veins) on purpose in order to get fine details using SSS shader in mental Ray otherwise those details won't be visible enough in rendering, plus I decided to represent MP in her mid 50'ies so anyway she has wrinkles (take a look at the pic I've just uploaded here 4 u )...On close shots, make up it's not enough to hide wrinkles anyway, so that's why I also had to push the modeling details and to be carefull not to turn her into a monster or to make her look like someone hideous hahaha.
She was a femme fatale as Catwoman but she also was as Elvira Harcock in 'scareface', as Sukie in 'The witches of eastwick', as Laura Alden in 'Wolf', and as Mrs Collins in 'Dark shadows'...I do not wish to tie her to one of those characters in particular and I do not wish either to design her like an heroin in armor with a gun or all kinda stereotyped representations we might first think of...For this challenge all I'ld like to manage to do is to make a pic that would look alike her as much as poss and also a sensitive/aesthetics/attractive and sensual pic as a tribute to her 'Femme fatale' timeless beauty, because she still has the beauty of a 'femme fatale' however she is old enough to be a mother for all of us here. Then I'm doing my own interpretation of her in nighty with a nice and large cleavage subtly showing one of her breast to give her some good femme fatale sex appeal, such as if it's bed time and she is waiting for someone...which is IMO a stronger design to represent a 'femme fatale' than to make her look like a soldier or any kinda game character, and also because it matches with my current will to try a realistic approach of this model.
So my final pic would probly be a mix of the different char she played, her hair lookin like in 'I could never be ur woman', make up like Selina, bckground and atmosphere like in 'Dark shadows' or' what lies bebeath'...I see something like that.
Hope my explanation is clear...Pardon my french hehe!
Thanx to all 3 of you for your comments and also for liking my current modeling,

Attached Images
File Type: jpg Wip34.jpg (89.5 KB, 15 views)

Last edited by ARTISTOC : 03 March 2013 at 07:38 PM.
Old 03 March 2013   #10
Hardcore Modeling Challenge #37 Femme Fatale by Nat


Took me some nights this week to finish with the Zbrush HD modeling of MP and to carry on with the low-res retopology, the UV unfolding and the rig. So I set up a camera with my char in the middle of a IBL1 sphere and 3 lights: 2 area lights/Raytracing shadows (one in front of her and one behind) and a sunlight above.
after I had skinned and did the UV unfolding of the low res model I made a rotation on the neck/jaw bones of her head to give her a natural posing same as in the film 'I could never be ur woman' leaning her head, pensive.
Then I modeled the eyebrows and the eyelashes of her upper eyelids.
For the eyelashes of the lower eyelids I combined 2 patches to be textured later using an 8 bits alpha channel map.
That's it for now.
I should start with the normal map and the whole texturing part tmro (Face + eyeball) and would use a 'silk' shader with a normal map only for her nighty...For this all (face + eyeball + top), if I hold the line, it should be achieved in 3/4 days with some tests of rendering. 3/4 days...Ugh should say 3/4 evenings/nights after work... But as I wish to push as much as poss the details and make high res textures it'ld probly take me a little while to make it look nice...So let's do it, yeahhh

To view some pix of my WIP, follow the link below:


C U guys on wednesday or thursday, soon I'll have some rendering to show in here
have fun,

Last edited by ARTISTOC : 03 March 2013 at 01:29 PM.
Old 03 March 2013   #11
Hardcore Modeling Challenge #37 Femme Fatale by Nat

Hello folks,

I wanted to post my new update on this current thread a while ago but I didn't have much time to make it lately. So I am doin it now and happy to tell ya I've finished with the all texturing part I uploaded here a screenshot of my hypershade to see how thgs are connected and used.
I really tryed to be the most accurate possible in term of likeness with all the reference pix and films I watched and watched over and over again ahaha (such a harshhhhh pain lol...No, Im kiddin it's not at all and I luv her a lot, but yep it's real time consuming this challenge!).
And then I 've finaly started with some first Mental Ray rendering that you can see here (See my link below, for now settings ain't pushed to the best for time reason but I will render the pic with best MR settings for my next post ok):

Plzzz follow my link to see my latest updates and larger pix ==>


I got no more space on this thread to upload files so I set up a HTML page to show you all this thread on it from the begining to now and you can enlarge my pix to view everything larger than here ok.
Hope to get some feedbcks, I'm now bout to start with the hair, and the DOF and I also will have to make a proper bckground too. So see ya all next time probly on sunday (hope to), my texturing took me a while to create in high res, (color map/spe/NM/Bump/Overall map/subdermal Map) but I'm please bout the realistic result

Cheers buds,

Last edited by ARTISTOC : 03 March 2013 at 01:30 PM.
Old 03 March 2013   #12
Hardcore Modeling Challenge #37 Femme Fatale by Nat


I wish u ppl to see my latest pix on this hardcore challenge, and to get some comments as well.
Enclosed to this post it's my very first MR rendering tests I'll have to push the quality later.
I'm now working on the hair and the DOF of the scene. I will post some new and well improved rendering on sunday.


To view my whole thread from start with larger pix, just go to my webpage here:http://www.artistoc.com/#!wip/c1gib

Last edited by ARTISTOC : 04 April 2013 at 07:00 PM.
Old 03 March 2013   #13
It's kinda hard to judge thos images because there is a lot going into them. The one on the left looks better to me. I think all of the pores and wrinkles add a lot more surface noise than is actually on anyone's face. I dunno, it seems like really harsh lighting and I can't tell if that's the rendering or the texture itself.

The mouth looks to be too flat. Again the renders don't do a great job showing shape so it's hard to tell what's the problem, but they look smushed thin like the ref you have above where she's smiling.

The likeness is really close, it's in that close to real valley where things look weird though. I'd leave off that photo texture hair, it's just detracting from the model. put whatever hair you plan to on the model.

Lastly I'll say this. You're not going to get a lot of comments if you ask people to leave the forum to look at your website. sadly it just won't happen. Upload your pictures to your personal html site as normal, and then link to them using the image link tag in the forum post editor. It's the icon that looks like yellow mountains. People only really respond to high rez stuff in their face.

It's looking really good, and my only real complaints are that it's difficult to judge any little things on such a final presentation.
When I first appear I may seem mysterious, but when explained I'm nothing serious.
Old 03 March 2013   #14
Hardcore Modeling Challenge #37 Femme Fatale, Michelle Pfeiffer! by Nat

Hello everybody,

TY H2olt to have spent a bit of ur time to post on my thread...What we are all doin here is a lot of work goin on a short period so any comments and crits are more than welcome to help to improve.
So bout what you said noise on the right pic is because my MR rendering is set to a low quality and then it had added noise on it. And yes I totally agree it's pretty harsh to judge a pic with a low quality rendering, but all I wanted to show is where I am now on this wip, and to show my texturing is done. I'm now working on a better rendering which is not finished yet, so I'll post here again asap...I try to do all of this as fast as poss, I really do.
Like you said, I will also try to fix the Burn highlights but I'll do this when my bckground will be all done, to give the proper atmosphere to my scene (like in the movie film Dark shadows, I will post some ref pic about what I'm thinkin of).
About the hair in the texturing it will be removed or totally recovered by the hair that I'm about to start tmro. I only did that for me to see where I will have to start to implant hair on my char head, still to be accurate in term of likeness, a kinda little help in a way.
About the lips I'll see what I can do, for now I will have to start with the hair which will be a very hard 'n tidious part to make...So I'll get back on some details on the modeling in a bit, but I keep that in mind k

Old 03 March 2013   #15
Hardcore Modeling Challenge #37 Femme Fatale, Michelle Pfeiffer! by Nat

Here is the bckground I gonna use for my MP scene. All I did is to remove the char which is set in the midst of the screenshot (I took from the internet) of Dark Shadows movie (Tim Burton)==> Photoshop photo retouching. I'll try to make my MP bust match with this kinda atmosphere and lighting. Also I will fix some DOF too.See my background here
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Wip40.jpg (92.3 KB, 28 views)

Last edited by ARTISTOC : 03 March 2013 at 10:46 PM.
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