Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Saturday, February 14, 2015


So this is my first hardcore character figure sculpt in several years.  I really wanted to sculpt when the figure sculpting\ecorche class was still fresh on my mind.  So this is a character from the most recent draft of my story.  She's the sniper and pilot for the ship that our main characters sail on during the book, although previously she was a pirate working for various and sundry unsavory crews.

This is also the first test run of some second-hand LED lights I purchased as a christmas gift for myself :)

So I was definitely going for a Steam Punk look here.  I'm generally pleased with the figure, although looking at it now I'm still upset by a few mistakes I clearly made.  But I still think I'm making progress, I just wish I had more time in general to sculpt and develop as an artist.

Saturday, July 5, 2014


So recently I took an Ecorche class at Pixar, taught by Alicia Ponzio.  The class was amazing - we started by sculpting a full skeleton, and then on half the skeleton we built up each of the major muscle groups (I'll post pics of this sculpt soon).  It was an intense class, a 3 hour session each wednesday for the last 4 months.  I worried that I'd forget most of it if I didn't practice, so I decided to create my own ecorche at home, and try doing a female figure instead of male.

So I set forth creating a polymer-clay skeleton - and after about a month of trying to do free-floating ribs, I gave up and did a solid ribcage as you'll see here.  I also struggled with making mistakes in my initial skeleton (the spine didn't arc forward enough, the spinus processes (processi?) were far too exaggerated, fat 'cankle' bases to her tibias) and since polymer clay is a far less forgiving medium I had to compromise a few times in order to finish in reasonable time.  I did hack in and shave down the cankles to a less egregious state (still a bit fat, perhaps) but the lower leg muscles and ankle details are sadly mushy due to this late-game fix.

She also ended up more muscular than your average female - even than the average 'athletic' female - this one is a body-builder \ long-distance uphill cyclist.  But I'm alright with that, it will be useful for future reference to see more exaggerated muscles.

As an aside, this is the first sculpture I have cured using my brand new labcorp oven - it's a forced-air convection oven that is PERFECT for polymer clay.  It bakes at a perfectly even temperature throughout, and even tiny extremities don't burn or even discolor after extended baking.  It's perfect.  Did I mention it's perfection?  After years of dealing with damaged or ruined sculptures cured in conventional kitchen ovens, I am thrilled to know that from now on I have something that won't wreck hours and hours of painstaking work.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

A long term side project -

So it's been a long time since I posted anything.  Life has been crazy, hard, and has kept me from doing too much sculpting.  Some time last year I started working on this 3d project so I could better learn Zbrush and Maya - and it was a rather intense learning process I must say.  The sculpting in Zbrush was fun but very difficult, but getting the Zbrush work through to final render was harder.  Still, by the end, I had a nice smooth and predictable pipeline, so I was able to iterate again...and again...and again - which was both good and bad.

She's been 'mostly done' for months now, so I decided I should finally wrap it up and post some images.  I gave up on rendering the 3d particulates and just painted those in, but otherwise these images are just what the renders looked like, with some color re-balancing.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Jaarl Sculpt

 Latest sculpt for the War of Ashes franchise.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Another fuzzy viking guy

Latest sculpt for Josh from my work. Fuzzy liddle guy.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

New Sculpt

This one was fun because I really enjoyed the whole process of character creation. You can visit my digital painting blog to see the original design.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Pele (finally!)

After wrestling with different ideas to light this sculpture, after attempting a couple of sculpted heads, I decided that this project couldn't be done proper justice with sculpii. If I used UV light to make it glow I couldn't have gotten the nice, rich reds (UV light makes reds go pink) and if I used internal LEDs to light it then I'd never have gotten an even glow, nor could I light delicate things like fingers or arms. I'd been meaning to learn Zbrush anyway, so this project provided a great opportunity to do so. It's been a major battle, taking far longer than a physical sculpture would have taken me - and these renders are a product of 6 different software packages (Zbrush, Maya, Modo, Photoshop, Painter and UVLayout). Yowza. The renders have very little doctoring in photoshop, mostly I used Painter and Photoshop for creating and applying the textures you see on the model.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Voting Closed

We have our Winner! Thanks again for all of you artists and your entries - it was a close race and there's a good chance I'll end up doing more than one of these designs. but first up, I get to do Brittney Lee's - It will likely be a few months before I'll have it ready, due in part to the fact that the technical challenges of this piece will be very large. But they should be interesting to work out - I'm debating right now whether or not I want to try to light her internally or externally with UV lights pointed at phosphorescent red\orange clay. Externally gives me a more even\smooth spread of the glow, while internally lighting gives me a more vibrant\accurate color of glow, though I'll have hot spots where the leds are seated. Hmm.

Monday, April 19, 2010


So here is my latest sculpt - no LEDs, but there is a little bit of slime and drool, so that makes up for it... well, almost it does.

Sorry mom, this one's a bit violent for me, I know. Here's the clip from the story (Book 2, Prometheus Fire)

"Asharadel wrenched her bow free from the hard packed soil. The carved steel of the blades glinted in the blazing sunlight, one of them wet with the Tamarak's violet blood. The creature's bulky body lay a few yards away, the mass of limbs and spikes finally still with death. The terror of the battle, the adrenaline, the thrill of the hunt all slowly drained from her, leaving her body weary and exhausted. But the beast was dead, and that realization suddenly burned bright within her. She had done it, and she lived.
Elder Aoselan still stood on the stony outcropping twenty yards away, flowing robes a bleached bone-gray that seemed to glow in the sunlight. The shadow of his hood hid his expression, and Asharadel could not see if he was pleased or angered that she had done what none said she could. Slowly the man raised his staff, signaling the final form of the ceremony.
Asharadel strode to the body, grasping the Tamarak's severed head by the scruff of the neck with her gauntleted hand. Every muscle in her body ached from the long hunt, and the many scars crisscrossing her plague-ravaged arm burned with the exertion of hefting the thing. She lifted the trophy, the mark of her right to stand among the Hunters, forcing her expression to remain calm as she regarded Elder Aoselan. This was her right, her heritage.
For a moment the Elder regarded her from beneath the shadows of his hood. Finally, wordlessly, he lowered his staff, bowing his head just enough for the light to brush across his brow. It was finished."

Please continue to submit your designs! I'm excited by what I've received so far. To those of you who have sent me your work, thank you so much! I will post the different designs and open it up for voting by the beginning of may.