Trancerobot's Sketchbook

Hello again. It’s been a while. I haven’t been active here at all, and I’m embarrassed to say that despite owning the software for over two years I’ve been too distracted to do much with it or even to develop myself as an artist.

Now that things are settled down, I’m realizing that I might want to change industries one day… so I better get started now. I’m not challenged much by my day job anymore. Sometimes I joke that I can feel my brain dying. Anyone doing clash detection in Navisworks will understand the feeling…

One of my problems learning ZBrush in the past is that I didn’t watch any of the ZClassroom videos. I couldn’t be arsed… I just wanted to figure it out as I went. That worked for me in other situations but I didn’t learn much that way with ZBrush. When I did want to watch a video, it was too advanced for me and I lost interest.

I watched a few of the introduction videos today and I’m realizing now that there are basic, fundamental things I just didn’t pick up on by screwing around in Dynamesh sculpting heads. This hit me in the face during my attempt to sculpt a full character for a Unity based platformer I’m planning. I needed to figure out Insert Mesh. But I hadn’t even figured out the Multimesh brushes yet.

If I didn’t figure it out, I would need to go back to Dynamesh where I started and use the mesh merging capability there - but in doing so I would lose some of the fidelity of my work. Why did I sculpt in detail in one area before the rest was ready? Because I wasn’t thinking, that’s why. So I have to fix the hands by sculpting them separately and joining them to the mesh. Which means I had to finally go and force myself to get the basics down. I still skipped ahead for the Insert Mesh info, but I also realized I have to take this seriously moving forward if I really want to finish a video game character in ZBrush.

Having said all that… meet Roderick. He’s a giant-armed character that you’ll play in the game. The game itself is to be a lot like a (modern) Super Mario game, but flipped in that you play the designated bad guy. I had to come up with a story to make this work, which meant months of just thinking and sketching to get to a point where I could model anything.

My anatomy skills need work. I haven’t taken a life-drawing course in over two years. So far, I’ve gotten by using references, including the awesome anatomy studies of jpericles. I hope that’s ok!

My previous (and first) Unity game was Breakspace, which was simply a breakout clone for the Android operating system. I enjoyed the challenge, but the concept itself was very boring to me, and toward the end I actually hated working on it and forced myself to finish anyway.

This time I want to work on something with concepts I actually like, challenging both sides of my brain in the process. But first, I have to warm up on the key DCC softwares that I could have learned by now had I gave it an honest effort in the beginning.

This thread is intended document my progress, and open my work up to much needed constructive criticism.





Small update:

Feeble attempt at polygon hair. This is intended to be a video game model, and I’ve never sculpted hair… successfully… I’ll figure it out.

More arm and leg definition. Improved head shape, etc. The feet need work, I’ll get to that next. I should also start thinking about clothing. He’s basically a barbarian king, so I’m going to do some research into the typical costume design for that.


I worked a bit on the face and ears. There’s still room for improvement and additions though. I want to improve the ears and eyes, and at some point I’m going to want to model the inside of the mouth.


I also look forward to making improvements to the hands and feet. As for the body, I’ll need to remind myself not to define the muscles too much. He’s big, but I want it to look natural too. Sort of like the difference between a bull and a human body builder overloaded with muscles and veins and steroids. The character is more bull than body builder. So he’s got to have plenty of soft tissue as well.

Once I’ve taken care of the body, I’ll begin looking at the hair again. I’ll probably need to coordinate that with the clothing.

I’ve made some tweaks, and now its time to really think about the wardrobe. Well… I probably should have before I started.


Some progress on the outfit.

Hi trancerobot, I like your progress on this tool. Cool looking creature. Things look real clean. The anatomy is not bad. The triceps, forearm etc look pretty good. Just one thing for now, take a second look at the biceps. They look ‘thrown’ in there. Give em a little more love-:wink:

Thanks for your input Dragon. I agree, and will add some more love in that area soon.

Just a little sketch.