01 September 2020

Indian School Girl Uniform – Character Storytelling – Kartik Sharma

kartik-sharma-full-shot

Introduction

Hello everyone, my name is Kartik Sharma and I am a 3D Artist from Jaipur, India. I’m currently studying Game Asset Design at Frameboxx Institute based in Jaipur, after completing my graduation (B.Sc in Animation & Multimedia).

About this Project

 

My teacher (Mr. Mukesh Pachauri) casually assigned this task to me. So I immediately started doing research and collecting references for this project. I usually gather reference first for modeling/sculpting and then for texturing. I mainly use PureRef for assembling the references.
Whilst collecting references, I already have planned what will be created in which software, how much resolution is needed for texturing and more importantly how this thing will look in the end. To have that final output image in your mind will make things very easy as you know what is required and how to get it/ do it.

The below images were my main references for sculpting.

1

Blockout

I started with exporting the base mesh from Zbrush and then importing it into Marvelous Designer as an avatar. I made the Shirt and Skirt there and decided to make all other things in Zbrush manually (I like things to be a little raw).
I chose Marvelous Designer for creating the base meshes for the clothes because I wanted to explore and learn this software too. It is surely a powerful tool and a big time saving software.

Bag, tie, shoes and socks were directly sculpted in Zbrush. Hairband and some attachments for bag, belt & shoes were made in Maya.
Proportions are the main thing one should be working with, this is mostly done during blocking out any asset.
The below image shows the base mesh for the shirt and skirt. I was in a hurry as I just wanted to jump into Zbrush as soon as possible, so I did not invest much time in Marvelous.

2

Sculpting

After exporting from Marvelous Designer I finally got it into Zbrush. The first thing I do is create all other base meshes for the bag, tie, socks etc. Once the whole composition blockout is ready then I move on to primary details for each asset.
I mainly use basic brushes for sculpting like Clay_Buildup, Standard, Dam_Standard, HPolish and Trim_Dynamic.
For all the base meshes directly done in Zbrush, these were made using dyanmesh first, then I used Zremesher to gain some clean topology. Topology always plays a major role when making the highpoly. Clean topology is always needed.
Below image shows you what my complete block out looks like:

3

Once I finish my primary detail, I move on to the secondary detail, followed by tertiary details. I used some alphas for memory folds. Alphas are very effective and they speed up your work.
Just after the primary details, I modeled the hairband and attachments for bag, shoes and belt.
While doing primary and secondary details I always try to make it authentic so that it soothes the eye and looks realistic till the end.
Authenticity is a very important principle to achieve realism in an asset and to let the viewer connect to your asset.
Another interesting tip is when you are modeling/sculpting you should know which details are needed for sculpting, and which can be added in, in the texturing stage.

This is my final sculpt:

4

Low poly & Baking

Retopo is required for this project, so I decimated everything to import it all in Maya. By using quad draw I modeled the low poly. One thing to be kept in mind with the topology during the low poly stage, is if the model is going to be rigged, animated or played in game.

This is how my final low poly looks like. It has around 11k tris.

5

For unwrapping & layout, I again used Maya only. For this project, I used 4 UV sets:

One 4k map for shirt, skirt, tie, belt
One 2k for bag
One 2k for shoes and socks
One 512 for hairband

Things to remember whilst doing the UVs, is that UVs plays a very important role in texturing, good uv means an easy texturing flow.
Try to keep UVs straight (if possible) and give proper space between 2 UVs so that they don’t fight for their space. Good UVs also gives you a clean result in bake.

I used Xnormal for baking in this project. Xnormal is pretty fast and gives you a crisp result.

Texturing

My texturing process is simple, first create the material, then do the treatments/aging.
For materials, simple images/grunge’s did the work pretty well. I created lots of alphas in Photoshop. Eg – all those designs on the bag.
For treatments, I used some generators and some manually created masks from Quixel Suite too. Quixel a powerful software for creating masks but it doesn’t mean that generators from Substance are not also just as powerful. Both provide good results, I just prefer to create masks in Quixel.

The below images were my main references for texturing:

6

While texturing any asset, keeping it balanced is a heavy task. The more you balance your asset is the more you can hold your audience. Holding an audience on your canvas is every commercial artist’s responsibility.
To make it more realistic and interesting I added some adjectives like pen marks, paint spots, stickers, etc. Adjectives will make your asset stand out of the crowd.
One more tip – Keep your layers well managed and use a hand-painting technique for better results.

Rendering

This phase is equally important as modeling or texturing because this is going to show you the final quality of your asset.
I use Marmoset toolbag for rendering. This asset used a simple 3 point light setup. I wanted to render a soothing and peaceful mood but with some contrast in foreground and background.

Below image shows all lighting breakdowns:

7-scaled
kartik-sharma-full-shot
kartik-sharma-close-up-front
kartik-sharma-shoes
kartik-sharma-wireframe

Thank You for reading this article! I hope this helps you in creating some really cool art.

I also would like to thank the GamesArtist team for giving me this opportunity.

You can check my other work here on my Artstation profile.