Adventures in 3D Modeling – Work In Progress

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Earlier this year, I decided to reteach myself how to use Zbrush. For practice, I opted to use my old Glorfindel design; I threw in a Balrog as well, in case I ever wanted to rig and animate the models later for some sort of “Glorfindel vs the Balrog” short.

Below are some work-in-progress shots that I’ve posted elsewhere online earlier this year; both models are pretty much done now, but I don’t want to post any finished images until I have time to do the textures… which I’ll be doing later on, after I’ve also finished modeling a character from a different project (see the second half of this post) so I can do all my texture work at once.

glorfindel_wip01Early phase of modeling, just blocking all the shapes in.

glorfindel_wip02 Getting the character of the face right.

glorfindel_wip03 glorfindel_wip04 Transferring the main mesh from Zbrush to Maya for retopology.

balrog_wip01 Balrog studies. These were based off the FotR film, but I also looked at a lot of Bison and Ram skulls.

balrog_wip02 A thumbnail I drew that I just really liked the feel of, and tried to incorporate into the final design.

balrog_wip03 Behold the beauty of zSpheres.

balrog_wip04 Blocking in the basic shapes.

balrog_wip05Getting into the details of the face.


In addition to Glorfindel and the Balrog, I’ve also not so secretly been hinting at the fact that I’m working on a game. Awhile ago, I started teaching myself how to use game engines like Unity and Unreal, and I decided the best way to learn was to do. As a result, I’m currently working on a prototype in my spare time of a third-person adventure game primarily based around walking around in Nordic-inspired landscapes.

I’m currently finishing up the modeling phase and will be transitioning to rigging within the next week or so. I don’t plan on unveiling the full character until after rigging is complete, but here are some of the work-in-progress shots I’ve posted elsewhere online over the last month or so.

mesh_wip01 Creating a base mesh with good topology that I can reuse as a starting point for future projects.

11311068_1609371782665054_1993459167_nThe early stages of modeling hair and clothing.
11336280_1614765465450107_26335414_n Drew NURBS curves on top of the poly mesh and used nHair to preview what the hair might look like. I’ll be using textures on polyplanes in the actual game.

11264967_400315643507907_1656754067_n The beginnings of an arsenal.

I plan on posting turnaround videos for all three of these characters near the end of the year.

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