After remodeling our office at home, I’ve had the chance to update my Daz 3D program and play around with more character art. I’m slowly updating the profile images for the characters, as I learn more and more fancy lighting, posing and rendering tricks. Anyway, I thought I’d share the new renders of Talon and her sisters from Sword of the Guardian – I’m especially pleased with the new Talon model, as she more closely resembles the image of her that I have in my head. :) And I love the way Lyris’ celestial fire turned out! You can also find these images on the SotG “Meet the Characters” page. Enjoy!
I’ve done at least three different models for Talon now, trying to achieve a face shape that really fits her. This one is the one I’ve been most pleased with. Her hairstyle has also gone through several iterations – the shaggier one that’s featured in the book trailer doesn’t really seem appropriate for a soldier, LOL… Anyway, every render thus far has been extremely difficult because her military uniform is actually designed for a male-bodied model, and it doesn’t want to fit the female one. I finally upgraded to the “Genesis” model, which allowed me to import the boy-clothes and auto-fit them to a more feminine figure. Much better! The weird warping is gone, and the lines are sharp and smooth again. After I got the face, hair and uniform sorted, then came the problem of lighting… lighting is something I’m still really struggling to master as it seems to be pretty arbitrary and hard to preview without rendering over and over again and tweaking in between. Ugh. Anyway, after working on this dratted thing for about 10 – 12 hours, I finally landed on a lighting setup I really like.
Used the “Genesis” figure again here, and copied over the texture and surface settings from Talon’s render to achieve the same skin tone. I had to alter the robe texture in Photoshop in order to take it from an ivory/black-trimmed fabric to a white one, but the results turned out very pretty. Also got to wrestle with the lights in this one, as she not only has the usual surround lighting but also a light that comes from the celestial fire in her hand… took a while to get something I was happy with, but I think this one’s pretty. I much prefer this bit of fire to the funny rotating glowing disc in the book trailer (at the time it was the best effect I could find!)
Sassy Miss Bria made me rediscover the fabulosity of the Morphing Fantasy Dress (MFD) and the amazing assortment of free textures offered by the very talented 3D artist Chohole. This character is built on the “Genesis” model again. I’m not entirely sure I love the lighting, but it’s still a vast improvement on my earlier renders.