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#5206058 High poly finished in Zbrush - What's next?

Posted by BagelHero on 22 January 2015 - 04:04 PM

Alright. So. You want to use the "Decimation Master" tool,  though make sure you have an iteration of your final sculpt saved off first.


This tool decreases the polycount of a subtool, while keeping the shape as best it can. Don't go too low, but you should be able to decrease everything to a few thousand polys each instead of millions. Use those to import into blender for retopo, but still bake from the pieces in the detailed final sculpt file.


Zbrush has retopo tools, but they're kind of questionable at best.


If you need more advice, this forum can be really helpful but sometimes the art sections are a little quiet.

Try asking at Polycount for advice that's program specific, there's just more traffic that actually uses niche tools for game artists in their workflow.

It's a great resource in general and for networking as a 3D artist, too.


Good luck, hope this can help.

#5185023 Looking for an artist

Posted by BagelHero on 04 October 2014 - 03:40 PM

Hey Eggmaster,


There's something that you'll learn, and probably very quickly... No one wants to work like they're being paid on only the promise of money after the game is released.

That's not so much that people inherently don't have faith in an idea (though sometimes that's the case), more that anyone who's been in the development scene for a while knows that so many games just don't get off the ground, no matter how hard working or good or independant the team is.


You also have to remember that you're not offering an amazing experience and resume piece to people, they're offering to help you get out of having poor art on your project. And that's fine, but don't act as if it's anything else.


That may sound negative, but it's just how it is for the former and how it comes across for the latter.



Being more positive about this, the way to fix this is simply saying "No payment". It prevents you seeming unreliable, or at fault if the game flops or never gets released, and it prevents you being able to take advantage of the artists by spouting bullhockey about higher pay in the future or whatever (though you sound like you wouldn't anyways, but try to think of it from the perspective of the person working for free). Also less legal documents and contracts this way! Which you should definitely be writing up if you're serious. ;)


Additionally, you can't recruit here-- Go post over at http://www.gamedev.net/classifieds/category/5-hobbyist-projects/. Yes, hobbyist. I know you have the desire to get it out commercially, but you're also not paying.

Probably also a good idea to go over the vague ideas in the game to make any artists willing to devote their time more interested in picking it up as sort of a personal project. What genre is it? Do they have the freedom to develop the art style or do you already have something in mind and just can't draw it yourself? Isometric, sidescroller, top down...? They'll be more likely to look into if what you're describing sounds interesting to them, and like something they know they'll either have fun with or do without much time or hassle put into it.


Also would be nice if you could post your portfolio (this is my sly way of telling your to start making one now if you haven't) and/or previous games you've documented or progammed on. If you have a notable function, script or base for something you've done, show it, so the artists know you can follow through, and maybe even end up with a playable prototype with their art in it that they can show on their portfolios (that's a pretty good no-money payment, btw, as long as you can follow through).


Good luck, hope you can find some artists who'll help you out!

#5177541 A student who is stuck at the moment

Posted by BagelHero on 01 September 2014 - 06:39 PM

Don't try to make yourself do what you clearly don't have any interest in doing for the sole purpose of "getting into the industry". If you want to work in a medium-sized to large team as an artist, you shouldn't ever be expected to code. In my current small team, we even work around my poor level design skills, I just can't tell you in good faith that all teams you work in will be that accommodating. ;)

Really though, if your passion is for sculpting rocks, focus on being the guy who's the best at sculpting rocks. If your passion is character design, focus on learning how to construct humans and create strong designs. You'll have more fun with it, and I feel that in the future your chances of getting a job will be much higher with those skills in your portfolio than with the skills of an unenthusiastic and stunted programmer.



3. Artist ? Well, there are lot of artist, I would say the majority of roles in the AAA industry are artists. There are lot of branches, like environment artist, character artists, animators. If you want to have professional feedback, seek out forums which are crowded with professional game artists like polycount and ask for feedback/help.

I agree with this. Seriously, post your work or worries in the appropriate subforum at Polycount. They're notoriously harsh, but it's all in good faith, and there are a lot of people in the industry who visit the P&P forums daily who can give you informed advice. Not to belittle dA, but it's a community that coddles it's users and doesn't promote professional growth very well. So now that you've decided where you want to go, I suggest packing your bags for a more constructive site for now and get ready to buckle down and work hard.


You need to look into the specifics of what job you want in the industry. The bigger side of the industry has a lot of specialists-- big teams have people who only clean up clothing scans in Zbrush, or people who do background characters, or people who do props like garbage and rocks. In that kind of environment, Knowing how to do everything isn't much of a bonus. You don't need to have amazing skills in Environment art, AND Character art, AND Creature art, AND Animals etc because unless you're in a tiny indie team chances are you won't be expected to do ALL those things.


And on the 2D side, you need to figure out if you want to be the guy who puts together the art they show to magazines, hang up around the office, and put on the box. That first "concept" art kinda guy, or the (more likely to be in house and not contracted) job of the guy who puts together art they'll use in production. Eg, actual sprites and props, or production art like orthographics and references for 3D artists, modular scene breakdowns and character breakdowns with good facial ref and reference for ethnicity, what the clothes are made out of, etc. There are more jobs to break that down into, even then. Drawing every day doesn't get you very far unless you have a goal, so I'd really think about that.




I know that I need to practice those but it can be hard without using references and even with those references its still hard to figure out the layout.

Wait, hold up. Use references. All the time. In fact, drawing from imagination at this point will actually get you next to nowhere. How do you expect to draw something accurately if you don't know how it works? You need to study the construction of anything before you draw it. This breaks it down nice and simple for people new to the idea:



But check the links below to find some higher level advice regarding it, both ctrl+Paint and FZDSchool really advocate for the use of a "mental library" of objects and shapes and such, and I'm all for it. It will help communicate your designs more effectively, too. In fact, you can apply this to the human form and animal form, and once you have a good libary of anatomical and function ref from that, you should be able to more effectively create creatures. It all feeds into each other; knwoing lots about the functions and implied "feel" of animal parts can feed into vehicle creation, and that can feed into armor and character design... so on. tongue.png


Some links:




http://www.polycount.com/forum/index.php ("general discussion" for your posts about general career path and artist doubt kinds of advice like this thread you've made here, the approprate "Pimping and Previews" subforum for threads on your portfolio, or a specific peice of art you want feedback on, or a project WIP thread. Check out other peoples threads, too, theres a lot of good advice around and lots of inspiration!)


Finally, it's alright to be shy, but try to break out a little. Polycount is pretty laid back (Well, most over there are just artists and art students, so I find it tends to feel quite homely), and if you post a lot and help some people you can do some minor networking there quite naturally as well. Try not to let your shyness get you down, and definitely don't think that you can't make it on your own. You're right that you need the opinions and advice of other people to really make some progress, but it's quite negative to say that without that help you just won't ever make it. Don't worry so much. smile.png


Bleh, I talk too much. Just keep it up, hey? And post your art! I'd like to see it.

#5176846 Raster art for beginners.(Tools,problems,tutorials)

Posted by BagelHero on 28 August 2014 - 11:52 PM

Well, that guy already knew how to paint, so effectively (given enough time) they could paint in any program. smile.png It doesn't mean Krita is going to make you paint awesome, or even better than in GIMP, or Photoshop, or Painter, etc... Though, I'll say Krita is a much better program for painting than GIMP is out of the box. Since, y'know, it's not an image editor, it focuses more on the "painting" aspect.

I'll also say I prefer MyPaint to Krita on the free-open-source-painting-apps front, but I have a preference for the lightweight.

#5176812 Welcome your new Visual Arts forum moderator

Posted by BagelHero on 28 August 2014 - 08:49 PM

Hey, congrats. :)

#5175662 Raster art for beginners.(Tools,problems,tutorials)

Posted by BagelHero on 23 August 2014 - 11:21 AM

Welp, past 1920 x 1080, a lot of games just kind of scale it. It's stuff I don't know much about, my 2D assets are aimed at mobile + I am just an artist so my tech knowledge is limited.


Reguarding indefinitely tiling textures, I am very sleep deprived right now and that is a very redundant textures. I just mean "Tiling Texture", like these:


#5175612 Raster art for beginners.(Tools,problems,tutorials)

Posted by BagelHero on 23 August 2014 - 04:09 AM

The general solution to the resolution issue is often to just draw your sprites as either really large at a high resolution (The largest they'll be seen on the biggest target device), or indefinitely tiling depending on whether it's a one off sprite, hero character or environment tilesheet.


"Raster art tutorials for gimp" won't get you anywhere. Photoshop tutorials will probably translate fine, fyi, what you'll want to look up is something more akin to "2D game art tutorials", "2D game assets tutorial beginner" or "how to paint in Gimp". The tool doesn't matter so much as the knowledge of how to actually make the art; unless you're stuck on something more specific, like what kind of assets you'll need.

#5175153 Approaching an Artist

Posted by BagelHero on 20 August 2014 - 07:53 PM

Artists are more than willing to work for free if it's a passion project. That, though, implies a tiny team where they'll have a big sway in the final product (if there is one).


But if you try to recruit any artist worth their salt to do an established project they're not particularly invested in "for free", they won't do it. This is because their time is worth money, and if they don't care too much about the final product + they won't hold much sway in the established team, then what's the point if they're not being paid for it?


As an artist who is currently job searching, I don't require anything in particular. I look for people who seem pleasant to work with, seem like they have a strong idea and the work ethic to settle on it and get going (as opposed to letting the feature creep set in, or permanently being stuck in idea limbo). If I'm going to work for free or with promise of a return if the project gets off the ground, I look for all of that + if the project is "my style". Something that won't be too difficult to create for on my free time, and that I would probably already be doing work similar to in my free time. Because I won't be devoting anything but my free time to it, gotta be something I really want to do. And that's entirely subjective.


If you want to recruit an artist and don't have any budget, I would advise that you go hunting for artists who would be invested in the project on idea alone, and that you go into it thinking of it more as a partnership than getting that artist to work for you. So, if you're doing a game and you were thinking of doing super stylised graphics, and your mechanics are based on X, Y or Z, try to find an artist who has always wanted that game to exist, and already draws/paints/models/sculpts in that style. Also, don't try to boss around an artist that you're not paying, and make sure to take their ideas into account. They will probably up and leave, and I wouldn't blame them.


Are you really surprised that people aren't willing to work for free on anything? The reasons why are subjective, but it's a pretty ludicrous idea in any respect to expect anyone in any field to do professional work without being paid.


:) So yeah. I firmly believe that you should just pay artists that you want to work for you, but if you really have no budget, then just make sure your idea is good, you have a plan and you really believe that it'll at least get released (if not also be very good and decently recieved), and you'll find someone who wants to work on it.

#5174229 Lighting/Shading in 2D

Posted by BagelHero on 17 August 2014 - 02:00 AM

+1 to CtrlPaint, also this:

#5173474 What's the industry like?

Posted by BagelHero on 13 August 2014 - 07:48 PM

This forum is really strange to come back to when you've been frequenting game art sites. Entirely different attitude...

I know a handful of ex-architects making a reasonably happy living off being environment artists or level designers. They like their jobs, but the nature of the industry is that it's quite difficult to weather.


A teacher of mine (who left the school last year to go work at 2K Australia) said switching to games was one of the better decisions he'd made, even with the depressing reality of getting cut at the end of big projects and working on so many games that just never come out. See, the reason he'd wanted to be an architect in the first place was that he wanted to make buildings, interesting ones. He didn't realise how much hard work would go into doing things he really didn't care about. Then he discovered environment art, and to him, it was all of the things in Architecture that he wanted to do, but were unviable and not what you ended up spending all your time on. He could cojure up any crazy design he wanted, no matter how improbable, and it would actually be viable for the project. That was about when he jumped ship and took up a mid-level environment role at a reasonably sized studio.


Thats not to say that any of this is applicable to you, but to give you a real world example of this kind of situation working out.
But especially if you have a family, it's important to warn that the industry doesn't always treat it's employ well; the example of getting cut every time a big project is finished and similar are uncomfortably common stories.


Games may actually hold the ideal job for you, but it's best if you make it a passion project. Don't quit your day job, but spend your free time exploring jobs in the industry you could see yourself doing eg, environment artist, technical artist, level designer... If you really enjoy it (the task, not the idea of making games), and you want to persue it (meaning, you love it so much you wouldn't mind slaving away on it day in and day out), THEN consider it. You say you like games? Keep in mind that if you're serious about wanting to make them, you may very well not have that much time to actually play them. And making them isn't playing them. Kinda sucks the fun out of a lot of the ones you do play, too.

Plenty of people make it just fine in the industry, but it's a combination of luck and passion. You may not want to rely on luck when you have a family to think of, but if you like it enough, it's certainly possible to give it a go with all that fire in your belly and the hard work that comes along with it. Just actually figure out if you like it that much, first. Because you may find it holds the same issues as your previous career choices.


Good luck!



#5171814 2d tutorials and learning resources

Posted by BagelHero on 06 August 2014 - 03:16 AM

Well, while this is bumped...

Lots of stuff:






#5171535 Custom skyboxes ?

Posted by BagelHero on 04 August 2014 - 08:07 PM

In these times of "Next-Gen" hysteria, I feel like I gotta tell you; UE4 demo backdrops are actual geo. Drop $20 and download the sample projects to check out how they did it. I know they're geo in many current gen games (selling point in consumer-aimed dev vids). 360/PS3/PC games might have billboards, but it's still usually geo and not paintovers. UDK/UE3 demos still had geo as background detail; simple as heck (often textured cubes or the same rock 2939347849843 times; its why they like distant cities so much) but still geo.


But Skybox is valid, too, as long as it will mesh with your scene well. :)

#5170862 What makes a good 3D modeler?

Posted by BagelHero on 01 August 2014 - 06:26 AM

A good modeller gets the work done, quickly, and to the requirements necessary for the project.


But what skills one needs before approaching modelling... Absolutely zero, actually. Well, unless you count basic logic and problem solving skills, and the ability to navigate 3D space as much as is required to pan a camera around a scene. Heck, you don't need to be able to draw even if your eventual goal is hyper-realistic characters; as long as you have a good eye for shape and measurement. So it kind of depends on the person.
I know a lot of environment artists and prop artists who are modest at 2D freehand drawing, if that. Yuri Alexander, a character artist I greatly admire, just opened a thread on Polycount asking how to approach 2D drawing and painting himself, as he feels he's never really taken the time to learn it... and dang, just look at how far he's come without freehand drawing skills.


That said.


Both 2D art and 3D art are learned skills, and neither moreso than the other. You'll need a good eye for shape and measure in both, arguably this is more difficult to get a handle on in 3D. In 3D you don't have to learn things like perspective, line, form, rendering so much... but learning those is replaced by learning the ins and outs of the technical side of things instead, how to set up lights, get shaders to work, renderng, getting it to run in a game engine, UV mapping, rigging, etc.

You can pick up drawing whenever and get really good at it as long as you stick at it. Same goes for modelling, and you don't need to know 2D already to get good at 3D or vice versa. You just need to stick at it and practice smartly, setting yourself up to cover stuff you don't already know.


They're both difficult, and I firmly believe you'll be better off understanding both in the long run. Just don't try and pick up all the skills of both at the same time. :)

If you want to be a modeller, don't worry if you can't draw. Just model, you can learn composition and color theory and lighting and eventually maybe even pick up a pencil if you're interested, but you can do it on the side in your own time. It probably wont impact your models for a while yet, anyway.


Drawing isn't something you're born good at, it's a skill like anything else. With that in mind, so is 3D. So you can pick up whichever you're more comfortable with and focus on learning that for now; though chances are you'll at least have to get aquainted with the other one at some point. You might pick it up naturally, or you might have to work at it, but it'll pay off.

#5149727 How can i save an image without edges?

Posted by BagelHero on 26 April 2014 - 05:19 PM

Next time when you start an image, if possible, start with no background. Either add a new layer, draw only on that, then delete/hide the old white one with the lock on it for immediate transparency, or when choosing to open a new image, make sure "transparent background" is used.


Much easier than drawing on white and erasing the background every time, of course you may need to do that with complex sprites you've already gotten/done that are all on the same layer/have white backgrounds.

#5148258 recreating N64 map for CRYENGINE

Posted by BagelHero on 19 April 2014 - 06:34 PM

I would honestly literally sculpt the original mesh. Why sculpt over it with a separate plane, when you could just... add the additional geometry straight onto the original, using it as a base?
I only know where to start on this in Zbrush and don't know if Mudbox has a similar function, but I'd use dynamesh to add enough geometry to sculpt on and even out the existing geometry, then just start sculpting in the terrain.

Edit: Though I'd probably duplicate it first, and hide the double. Just so I have something to reference to make sure I'm not going too crazy.