Day 1 - Tuesday
Practice does not make perfect What I will present here is my methodology for the understanding of the human form and later its accurate and efficient reproduction in Zbrush. Thus all proceeding information may be placed into either of these catagories. I do not claim birth of these idea, they are the product of my personal experence and readings of Andrew Loomis - including numerous philosophers on the science of Epistemology.
It is not enough merely to observe, and thought alone is an equal plunder - they must always exist together in a state of superimposition - I'm speaking here about a methodology of perception - the beginning of the beginning
01 - Inference
A sculpture models with his memory and intent but also relies on a hidden variable/process, inherant in his perception of things - that, oweing to the great many complexaties in human form, further compounded by different lighting situation and activities - relies on a system of reference to destinguish identity, mood and activity - of form. In otherwords, there seems to exist a hierarchy of interdepandant characteristics, one giving rise/reference to the other, that result in the understanding of the human form.
At all times during the sculpting process the mind is in constant flux with the consideration of this hierarchy.
The constituents and order of this hierarchy, as I know it, are as follows : First - The volume of the entire subject denoted by its outline, as viewed at different angles - Two - The internal distribution of features, denoted by valley's--mountains on the surface - Three - The volume of these internal features, denoted by areas of Full - Mid and No-tone, or just, shadowing.
Note -In essence there need not be taken any recourse to anatomical studies when modelling, however it does help in numerous other areas - more on that later.
Modelling Methodology 02
Figures 01 and 02 represent my first attempt at understanding the human body in these terms. Fortunately Zbrush provides just the tools to accomodate the preceding theory. In this attempt I have payed no concious attention to measurement - anatomy or any one single subject.
The first step I took was to observe and attempt to recreate an accurate volume of the entire model(Figure 01) - I concentrated my attention solely on this characterisitc. Since I required a direct translation of this volume on to an editable mesh 'Unified skinning' was deployed.
Note - Don't worry about the little pinch artifects - they can easily be fixed by using Texture Master -> Blur Brush.
The second step involved the observation of any lines(vallies-mountains) on the surface. Again my attention was focused ONLY on this task. I used the standard sculpting brushes for this step.
And the third step , as you might have guessed - but which I must make specific - was to observe the shadowing. This is a very important step and in the next addition to this demonstration I will elucidate its machenics.
Note - Due to time restriction this part was mostly neglected in this attempt.
What we have established here is an approach to the perception and understanding of the human form. There is considerable importance heald in this methodology because we have compartmentalised the visual data making it easier to understand, remember and in the long run, execute - The basis: that these seperate characteristics are ,in the human perception, dependant on each other.
As you continue on this road you will begin to form, naturally, observations of relations - proportions - and the need to establish sound knowledge of anatomy. I suggest that, for the serious artist, writing your observations in words is very helpfull.But I must warn against the recourse to anatomy studies at this early stage, it is simply not nessesary.
Lastly, as a matter thoroughness, details - such as pours, defacts and variations of the skin etc - form another compartment of perception, but since it is dependant on all previously mentioned characteristics it should follow last in your study of the human form, not before you have the aforementioned charactersitics mastered.
Perhaps the time around Wrapped Presents Day was not the best choice for this exercise, the cause of my delay in posting, my apologies. There will be 7 entries made dureing this demonstration, but not inside the space of this week.