Hi everyone, I wanted to share my first demo reel, recently completed at Vancouver Film School. My character, Anansi, was my first Character sculpt and was a labour of love on and off for 6 months. I have some background with traditional clay and Zbrush was a phenomenal and intuitive tool that quickly showed me how much I had to learn about anatomy, but I am very happy now with the final product. Looking back on WIPs is pretty painful though.
Here’s the reel:
Anatomy and clothing were resculpted per pose with Zbrush and the facial animation at the end was driven by Blend Shapes created in Zbrush and keyed in Maya.
Hope you like it! I will post some more character stills and some breakdowns of the blend shapes when I get the chance. Let me know what you think!
These are the Blend Shapes I created for the facial animation. I was able to sculpt these quite quickly in Zbrush over the course of about 6 hours using basically just the Move Topological brush at SubD level 2 or 3, ( 6 being the final level pictured in diagram ). Of course it’s a must to have the eyeballs and teeth if you’re doing these types of movements so that you can have the face move around the elements as naturally as possible.
The animation was not something I had originally planned until there was only about 3 weeks left in my project and was something we were actually able to start, animate and render over the course of 3 days at the last minute. Blend Shapes were the Perfect tool for this because I knew we didn’t have time for a complicated animation and so was able to figure out ahead of time exactly how/what i wanted the character to do. As such my sculpting mentor had some great suggestions as far as what facial shapes he thought I would need and then I freehand sculpted the shapes and was checking in with my animator to get his thoughts on how they felt.
A small handicap was starting from a mesh with an expression, and I hope to do blends and animation on more sculpts in the future but hopefully with blends based on the FACS which I plan to do some studying of this holiday season.
Thanks for the comments so far guys! I’ll render out some more stills and if theres anything else you’d like to see or ask please let me know!