Reaper Dragon WIP

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  11 November 2006
Reaper Dragon WIP

Hey everyone...

Well this is a project I started just kinda playing around with the reaper jaw from the vampires from the blade series - it turned into alot of sketching and anatomy study and prep and now I'm starting the 3D model.
I figure this would be a great project for me to learn some advanced techniques while I am on break from school (actually I am transferring from IADT to Vancouver Film School - I cant wait!). Anyways - i really just want to increase my skills before I get there so I can hit the ground running in Feb.

The basic modelling is done... I'll try to scan an upload my concept sketches sometime. But for now here are some of the wires... there have been minor changes to the model since - but you can get a good feel.

Please give ur comments and crits - they are much appreciated!
ENJOY!



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  11 November 2006
Some Updates

Here are more recent wires:






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  11 November 2006
The RIG

Started building the RIG...

Not sure on the bone layout just yet though... Please give some comments and suggestions:
I still dont know how I am gonna rig the skin between the wings to make it look loose - I was thinking maybe with a couple joints? or maybe some sort of cloth simulation would be better? But i don't know how to work that in... any suggestions?

Here's the rig as it stands:
(-I'll be doing an IK/FW switch rig)







Here's a quick test of the rig posed... not done weighting as yet...
(still have issues with the wing skin folding... any suggestions on this?)

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  11 November 2006
Oh very cool!, I love your model

I hope to see more of this, its a fine lookin dragon alright
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  11 November 2006
Thumbs up Nice work so far...

It looks a little different from the concept sketch you showed me, last time. I remembered it having a longer neck and small wings, but overall it looks great. I actually lke this body type a bit better than the last one, the dragon you showed me before had more of a slugs body this one looks more like a bat. I really like the style of it, the spikes on his back and that spiked tale, awesome(that mouth is cool to). But one thing though please dont give him fangs, that to me would make it look cheesy. I really can't give much suggesting on the rig, Im still looking into them right now, altough it looks like alot to do manage, and I do think you would need some kinda of cloth simulation for the wings to make it look natural. And also that simple pose you put him in really brings out his character "don't F*** with me". Once you start adding the details in Zbrush and give it some cool textures it should come out perfect. Great Job.

P.S. Now I want to model a dragon.
 
  11 November 2006
Talking Thanks

Thanks for the comments Jeremy... yea - i changed him alot since the concept i showed u... I've done a couple more concept sketches since then and made some changes to make him look more mean...

I still have no clue on wut to do with those wings though... not too sure on how to setup the cloth simulation... i'll be playing around with that next week i guess - and I'm open to any suggestions CGTALKers....
I'm right now trying out a bone solution between the wings - might give me more control in terms of specifying how the wings fold... I added 3 bones to the large flap of wing near the elbow... and i'm gonna see if i can weight the skin to that and see how it moves...

Right now I'm working on refining the topology after i did my first test bind - i saw some places i needed to change as well as adjust the positioning of certain joints. Hopefully by the end of the week I'll have the basic rig and bind done - so i'll post that up.

Keep the comments and suggestions coming!
Thanks.
-T
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  11 November 2006
This is a very solid looking concept, I look forward to this getting finished. I also like your approach of screen grabbing the mesh half smoothed and the other half not. I shall be plundering that Keep going!
 
  11 November 2006
I think with a cloth sim, you would build planes for the wing pieces, then skin to the plane??


shot in the dark!
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  11 November 2006
Yo Thad, howzit goin! Your dragon is lookin pretty smokin. I really like the reaper jaw, its a really nice concept. I would absolutely use syflex for the wings. Can't wait to see it in z-brush.

O by the way I thought you might like to know that your orc guy hanging up on the 4th floor came down 4 a couple of days and when I saw it put back up, all your writing was covered up with white out. I thought it was halarious. Well good luck w/ all future endevors especially vfs. Keep in touch man later!
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  11 November 2006
Thanks

Mr. Bricks - Thanks, yea I'm gonna see if i can try out a MayaCloth simulation solution first before i do syflex - just for the heck of it... but if i get frustrated i'll just use syflex...

SquashandStretch - Thanks - I spent a while developing the concept on paper at first... even down to roughing out the anatomy and muscles... I'll be posting updates soon of the rig - should be done by the weekend... so keep checking back.

RYGUY - Dude - they took it down and white out wut i wrote!!!???? Man those bastards!!! lol... Just another reason why I left that school aye... IADT Tampa is really just goin down the crapper it seems... sorry to say man... but I heard some rumors about Chris leaving???
Anywho - I think u should write back wut I had on there!! LOL... I dare u!!!
Anyways - jokin aside - I'm really lookin forward to vfs. And I'll be posting regular updates to this thread when i have progress to show.

Thanks everyone and please keep on commenting!!!
Have a great day!
-T
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  11 November 2006
Cool Rig Update

Ok - well - I have been working on the rig for the dragon for the past couple of days...
So far so good...

It has been a lot more complicated than any other rig I've built - esp since its only my 5th...
But I've been doing alot of more advanced riggin tutorials to learn wut i need... and its coming along nicely...

It's going to be a rig with an IK/FK switch for the arms, legs, spine and tail... also - it will have a head constrain switch so that his head can be contrained to focus on a target or move as a regular FK joint.... and of course all the usual set driven keys on the fingers and toes...
The eyes are also rigged to the skin to do a fleshy eyes effect - a la Alias Hyper-real rigging series... so that the eyes look real when they move around. Also i started building the shader for the eyes... still not done... but hopefully it should look good... thinking of going with firey eyes with some sort of glow to them... also need to have pupil dialation controls...

So far - I've set up most of the IK parts of the rig and done a barebones FK/IK blend between the FK skeleton, the Ik skeleton and the Bound skeleton...

Its taking a while for me since this is all new to me and i'm learning as i go along - but it has definitely been a real great learning experience thus far... And of course - any comments, suggestions and help are greatly appreciated.

Since its all rigging progress - there isnt much to really show - unless I screen captured my hypergraph... lol... but here are some pics of the rig....







ENJOY!!!
And I look forward to your comments!
Thanks.
Have a great day.
-Thaddeus
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www.thechindian.com

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Zbrush Thread
My CGTALK Sketchbook
 
  11 November 2006
Thumbs up nice job

looks like its coming along good, can't wait to see the next step.
 
  11 November 2006
Thanks

THanks for the continuing support Mosely...

I just finished up the FK controls and IK/FK switch for the arms, spine, and head.... and also set up a Constrained/FK Switch for the head direction control so that he can fix his gaze on a target object when in constrained mode...

I'm gonna be setting up the FK controllers for the neck and Tail... as well as the IK/FK blends for the tail and legs... also thinking about maybe playing with a FBIK skeleton of the rig... dunno yet though. Still trying to sort out the wing skin simulation...

Any suggestions on the wing skin anyone!??? Cloth simulation? Syflex? How do i do it? So far I just have a bone in there to control it... that works ok for if it is more of a gamecharacter... which i will probably have a game res version of this rig... so thats fine... but I also wanna get it into Zbrush and res it up to movie quality... in which case I am gonna need a dynamic simulation solution... so any help is greatly appreciated.

Thanks!
-T
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thechindian@gmail.com
www.thechindian.com

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Zbrush Thread
My CGTALK Sketchbook
 
  11 November 2006
It looks very nice, i like it.


Can you tell how you've did the wings? Are this edges you extruded?
 
  11 November 2006
Cool Wings

Thanks for the comment Star... the wings are actually modelled as volumetric geometry - ie - they arent just an extruded plain - but actually have volume - back and front.
The way I did them were - I built the arms and body first - without the wings... with the finger geometry already set out... then I made a thin row of faces along the fingers, arm and side of the body where the wing membrane attaches. I then deleted these faces and use the append polygon tool to draw the wings in from finger to finger and to the body.
After this - some careful use of the split polygon tool to correct edgeflow and some tweeking with the move tool of the vertices - and VIOLA!
Also - to make sure both the top and bottom faces/sides of the wing lined up - i duplicated the faces of one to make the other - then combined the polygons and merged verts.

Hope that helped!

PS - to everyone else - I've finally found a software to record Maya so I can show the rig in action and the controls I've devised. As soon as I have the core rig done I'll post a video of how it works. Right now I'm just setting up the final set of FK controls for the legs, spine and tail with a couple custom controls for some other stuff...
Once the core rig is done - I'll start on building the facial blendshapes, Painting skin weights, adding muscle influences and jiggle deformers as well as take the geometry to Zbrush to start adding the high res details.

Hopefully I'll be laying out UVs soon too... yay... :-P
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www.thechindian.com

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