Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Reconstructing Chirostenotes 03

More progress on this sculpture.  I blocked in the forms of the feathers and worked on developing the hands a bit more.  I was able to come up with a technique for sculpting the feather texture along the surface of the body, I'll have to wait until I'm able to up res the sculpt before I can really see the effects.  I'm really exited about finally purchasing my own copy of zbrush up until now I've had to rely on the computers at my school in order to work which is inconvenient at times. 

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Reconstructing Chirostenotes 02

Progress update on my sculpt of Chirostenotes.  Constructed the armature out of zspheres using my ortho in the background as reference.  I then began massing in the muscles by using insert mesh brushes mostly spheres and tubes.  This is the first time I've tried out this process so it's a little slow going but so far I'm liking the approach.  

Artwork © Raul Ramos All Rights Reserved

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Reconstructing Chirostenotes

My reference sheet and orthographic drawing of the oviraptorosaurian Chirostenotes pergracilis.  I've been having a lot of fun reconstructing this guy.  I based his proportions primarily off of a skeletal reconstruction done by Scott Hartman, an amazing paleo artist whom I reference a good deal when I'm doing this type of work. There are also many other skeletal drawings of not only Chirostenotes but its relatives in addition to photographs of actual skeletons.  There are a lot of bird references mainly Emu and Cassowary, I used these to help get a feel for the face and crest of the dinosaur as well as its feet.  I think the most challenging part of this whole drawing was finding reference for the dimensions of the front and top of the animal.  There are plenty of references for the side views but images of these dinosaurs from the top and front are few and far between I found.  This was pretty frustrating considering that knowing these dimensions is essential for the sculpture I'm preparing to make of him.  In the end I had to make a series of educated guesses using what I could find of other oviraptorosaurs, similar therapods and birds.  The ortho still isn't finished, hes featherless right now showing just the basic reptillian skin texture.  The feathers will be added as an overlay so I can experiment with different degrees of coverage.  

Artwork © Raul Ramos All Rights Reserved.  

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Vampire Concepts

These are the initial concepts for a design challenge presented by CG Hub.  The challenge is to take a classic monster werewolf, mummy, vampire, or frankensteins monster and re-imagine it.  Im trying to stay as far away from the traditional interpretation of the vampire as I can taking cues from blood feeders in nature as well as many other aspects to inform my design.  The upper left concept is probably the most familiar.  The anatomy is overall humanoid however I have taken some characteristics from the gliding draco lizard and the celebes crested macaque to separated it from other more beast-like vampire interpretations.  I imagine that this creature would hunt human sized prey hiding in the upper canopy of forests then gliding down for the kill.  To the right of this is a concept based primarily on the anatomy of a flying lemur.  the facial structure was inspired by the nose leaf structures found in bats.  The lower left concept is based on blood sucking insects like mosquitos and ticks.  The final value study is based on the leech as well as the sea lamprey.  I was quick to dismiss this concept initially but I think it presents some interesting rendering opportunities.  I imagined that its body would be semi transparent allowing the viewer to see through the veiny outer tissues into its blood filled stomach much like the abdomen of a mosquito after it has fed.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Direct Painting Practice

This quick head study of some sort of alien creature was done primarily to practice a more direct painting method.  I usually begin my paintings and concepts by doing a detailed value under painting achieving a colored version by glazing color over the top using layers set to various blending modes. This image was a departure from that process starting with a loose sketch and working up values and colors simultaneously. When I'm practicing a new technique I try to do my best to focus only on the skill I'm trying to learn.  For that reason I choose subject matter that I'm very comfortable with like creatures because it requires much less brain power for me.  If I were trying to paint some crazy new design my attention would be divided between the design challenges presented by the image and the method I'm trying to master.  I have found that doing this, for me at least, really complicates things.  It compounds the problems essentially stacking them on top of each other which can result in a frustrating mess.  I of course would like the creature to look interesting but the design of it is not my primary concern.  Though a design may not be the most innovative thing you've ever done I think what is more important is that it provided an interesting enough subject to use while learning something new.   

2 hrs
Photoshop CS5, Intuos 5 Tablet

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Character Portrait.

Just some painting practice.  Started in gray scale then used soft light and multiply layers to add color.  The majority of it was done with the round brush.  There are some touches of some kind of grunge brush in areas but I tried to keep it as minimal as possible. I always feel that photographic brush textures look funny next to hand painted ones.  Maybe I need to find a different way of integrating them.  Not too sure what this character is supposed to be, wasn't really trying to make it anything just practice like I said.

4-5 Hrs
Photoshop CS5 & Intuos 4 Wacom Tablet 

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Icarosaurus Ortho

This is the orthographic reconstruction of Icarosaurus that I will be using as the basis for my sculpture.  It took a while to gather all of the references I needed, some of the details still don't feel quit right mostly the skin and scale patterns, but as far as starting my sculpture is concerned I think this will do.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Flying Lizard Research

So these are a collection of photo references for and upcoming challenge.  The basic goal is to pick a species of exotic lizard and model it as accurately as possible.  The species I settled upon is this Draco Lizard also known as a Flying Dragon.  The images I've collected depict multiple subspecies of Draco Lizards. I haven't figured out which species specifically I would like to sculpt.   The Draco Lizards are fairly small insectivores  measuring only about 8 inches in length.  The genus Draco is represented by 41 species and is found in forests ranging from India, Southern China, The Maylay Peninsula, Sumatra, Java, Borneo, Sulawesi, The Philippines, Malukus and Timor.  The most unique characteristic of the Draco Lizard is without a doubt the their winglike membranes that flare out in bright colors and intricate patterns from their sides.  Though they are called Flying Dragons these lizards can't actually fly, rather they glide from tree to tree.  They can however, obtain some lift during their glides.  Distances of up to 60m have been recorded over which the animal looses only about 10m in height.  

This guy is Icarosaurus its an extinct genus of  Kuehneosaurid reptile from the Late Triassic.  It's closely related to lizards and tuataras.  It was a small animal only about four inches in length from the skull to the hips.  Much like the Draco Lizard it was able to glide using wings supported by highly elongated ribs covered in skin.  My plan is to use the information I gain from studying the living Draco Lizard to accurately reconstruct this lizard. 

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Pandora Creature Progress 02

Just an update of my creature sculpt for CG Hubs Pandora Creature 3D challenge.  I've placed all of his teeth in along with his eyes, refined the overall forms of the body and added some surface detail.  

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Pandora Creature Progress

This is the progression of my sculpture so far.  I'm was really relieved to find that the problems I was having with the head in on paper seemed to work themselves out a while I was modeling.  For some reason it just made more sense in 3d.  I suppose its because I could see how the forms were interacting with each other more easily.  Anyway, I still have a lot of work to do, hope to post the final soon.  

Pandora Creature Studies & Concept Sketches

These are the initial studies and concept sketches that I did for a new sculpture I'm currently working on for a CG Hub design challenge.  The task was to create a creature that could possibly be found in the oceans of Pandora, the home of the Na'vi in James Cameron's Avatar.  I wanted my creature to be the equivalent of the Leonopteryx (the big orange bird) under water.  I also did some research as to what the designers on the actual movie used as influence for their designs and found that they were pulling from alot of ocean life as well as dinosaurs, cars, and Art Nouveau motifs and patterns for coloration.  keeping those influences in mind I began to study ancient marine reptiles, abyssal fish, sharks, seals and jets.  I also had to keep in mind the body plans already established in the movie.  The majority of the animals featured had were hexapedal so figuring out how that translated to an aquatic predator was a challenge.  I ended up going with the body plan in the lower left corner of the last image.  At this point even though I had done a ton of drawings of the creatures head (might post those later) I still wasn't sure what I was looking for so I decided to proceed to the sculpting phase to try and work it out there. 

Monday, February 13, 2012

Primate Skull Studies

Studies of various primate skulls done from photo refs for a creature design I was working on. 

Photoshop CS 5, Intuos 4 Tablet

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Angler Dude

This was just a random character design I did while taking a break from my grad project.  I was browsing the internet for photo refs when this cool looking angler fish popped up.  I used that photo as the basis for the fish man on the left and did a little study of the actual fish on the right. 

Mechanical Pencil on Sketchbook Paper

Artwork © Raul Ramos All Rights Reserved.  

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Dino Creature Paint

This is the painted version of the creature I sketched a couple days back.  I'm adapting this to go onto the front of my business card.  The concept behind it was to show my workflow.  During my time at CTN I received a lot of feedback on my portfolio regarding process.  The artist I spoke to wanted to see the steps I took to arrive at the final designs.  The goal of this image was to show my entire workflow in one image from sketch to grayscale render, color rough, to polishing and detail.  I also took influence from a favorite artist of mine, J.C. Leyenndecker, which can be seen in the white painted strokes I used to carve and define the silhouetted of the creature. 

Photoshop CS5, Intuos 4 Tablet

Artwork © Raul Ramos All Rights Reserved. 

Monday, February 6, 2012

Dino Creature Sketch

I've been doing a lot of digital work lately.  I go through phases where for a period of time drawing digitally doesn't seem to make sense.  Something about the feel of it doesn't really connect with me.  In those instances I grab my pencils and sketch fun stuff, things i don't really have to think to hard about.  This guy is just an amalgamation of a few dinosaurs.  Some kind of raptor, Spinosaurus and the texture of a crocodile or alligator.  

Prismacolor pencils on sketchbook paper.  

Artwork © Raul Ramos All Rights Reserved