BC2-1803 - March 2018 Class Homepage - Creating Stylized Characters with Blender
[FINAL, FINAL] CLASS ANNOUNCEMENT #7 (Apr 11, 2018): Thanks to those of you who have responded to the Questionnaire. The feedback is extremely helpful. If you haven't responded yet and you participated in the class - or even if you didn't participate - please fill that out and I will gift you 20 Breath of the Wild screenshots from my Switch.
[FINAL] CLASS ANNOUNCEMENT #6 (Apr 9, 2018): We've reached the end of the homework extension period and this class officially comes to end. What a month! It's been a thrill to see each of you forge your characters, learn new things, share tips with each other, and offer critiques along the way.
This thread will be open indefinitely but it's officially at the end of it's "class lifespan" meaning I won't be able to commit weekly time to it anymore and I will unpin it from the forum topics list. I'll pop in occasionally if I see activity but you all are more than welcome to keep working on their characters here if you wish!
UPDATE: Closing post on page 44 and XP has been added to each participating account.
CLASS ANNOUNCEMENT #5 (Mar 28, 2018): Week 4's stream is archived and available via the Past Events button on the Live Event page. Also a reminder that I'm extending the 'deadline' of this month and will be keeping this thread alive through the end of the first week in April. Hopefully that gives you all a bit more time to get your characters done!
CLASS ANNOUNCEMENT #4 (Mar 26, 2018): Week 3, done! Thanks to everyone who submitted by Sunday. I'm quite impressed by the neutralization and retoplogy work I've seen. It's a lot of work and I can see that effort in the WIPs and especially completed submissions.
Week 4 - the final week - dives into adding color to our model, primarily in the form of creating textures. Check out this week's breakdown a little further down in this description and see you tomorrow at the Live Event!
CLASS ANNOUNCEMENT #3 (Mar 19, 2018): Week 2 is accomplished and I'm finally caught up on submissions! Thanks to everyone who submitted by Sunday. We have some impressive character concept sculpts underway. In fact, I have yet to bestow a grade lower than an A this week.
Week 3 continues our 3-week character building production. Specifically we're going to look at pursuing an animation friendly version of our character - both how and why we would do this. See you tomorrow at the Live Event! Don't forget to RSVP.
CLASS ANNOUNCEMENT #2 (Mar 12, 2018): Week 1 is done! Thanks to everyone who submitted by Sunday. It's been a lot of fun seeing your caricature work and concept art choices.
Week 2 begins the 3-week process of building a character based on the concepts we choose. Don't forget to RSVP to the Live Event tomorrow - See you then!
CLASS ANNOUNCEMENT #1 (Mar 5, 2018): Class is in session! Today officially begins the BC2-1803 class. Please check the syllabus below for Week 1's focus and assignments. Begin watching the pre-recorded courses if you haven't already and begin looking for a cool, stylized character design for creating in 3D this month. The first Live Event is tomorrow at 2pm EST - SEE YOU THERE! 😎
Welcome to the CGCookie Class: Creating Stylized Characters with Blender! This class is designed to teach you everything you need to know about building stylized 3D characters. If you’re diligent in watching all content and hitting homework deadlines, by the end you will have a modeled and textured stylized character! It’s an intermediate-to-advanced class which means you’ll do best by having some experience with Blender and 3D modeling before committing to this class.
This is the second "Class" format where Citizen members are invited to focus together on a particular topic/skill for a month. Participation looks like this:
- RSVP and attend the Live Events
- Watch the courses outlined below
- Ask questions
- Submit homework
- Generally be active in this thread
WHEN? The class will take place from March 5th through March 31st
✅WEEK 1: Understanding Character "Stylization" (March 5-11)
Abstract: Stylization is any deviation from realism. Thus it’s a broad spectrum from slight liberty away from reality to extreme abstraction of reality. This week we're going to sift through various examples of stylized characters, noting their qualities, and categorizing a spectrum of stylization.
Goal of the Week: Train your eye and mind to stylize your perception. Practice simplifying and exaggerating reality. Loosen up your sculpting approach (gestural sculpting).
Pre-recorded course to watch: Art of Sculpting: Caricature Chapter
Week 1 Live Event (Already happened and archived!)
- Sculpt a caricature bust [post a screenshot, render, or sketchfab embed]
- Choose/create concept art for your character. [post an image of your chosen concept art]
✅WEEK 2: Character Development & Sculpture (March 12-18)
Abstract: Story plays a big part in stylization. Not necessarily ‘narrative’ but background, personality, and purpose. The success of a character is strengthened by its developmental arc. The best artists create characters that are more than the sum of its pixels; more than the sum of its brush strokes and polygons; more than its final render.
Goal of the Week: Develop a story for your character; one that can fuel your creative workflow for the rest of the month. Then channel that story into the first stage of sculpting.
Pre-recorded courses to watch:
Week 2 Live Event (Don't forget to RSVP)
- Write a background for your character at least 2-3 paragraphs long (200-300 words) [share as a Google Doc if longer with a TL;DR summary at the top]
- Sculpt your character. [post a screenshot, render, or sketchfab embed]
✅WEEK 3: Production-Friendly Character Models (March 19-25)
Abstract: At this point a decision needs to be made about our character sculptures: A) Leave it as a sculpture or B) optimize it for ‘production’. Leaving it as a sculpture means it’s a static sculpture that can be painted, rendered, or 3D printed but not animated. Optimizing it for production means you turn your sculpture into a model that’s easiest to work with up to and including animation. If you opt for optimization, this week is mostly a technical and problem-solving task. We need to both retopologize our mesh and also neutralize it if the sculpt is posed.
Goal of the Week: Understand the concept of “production-friendly” and practice retopology.
Pre-recorded courses to watch:
- Introduction to Retopology
- Chapter 2 & 3 of Intro to Character Modeling
- Chapter 4 of Modeling Realistic Characters
Week 3 Live Event (Don't forget to RSVP)
- Do the Robo Orb Retopo Exercise [post link to your submission]
- If you’re maintaining a static character sculpture, just focus on polishing it to perfection.
- If you’re retopologizing your character sculpt, retopologize and neutralize it.
✅WEEK 4: Painting Our Characters (March 26-31)
Abstract: Like Dorothy, our characters have so far lived in a black and white world. This week we’re leaving Kansas and adding color. There’s many methods for creating our character texture(s) including hand-painting, baking maps that accent the painting process (great for the less painterly character artists), as well as photo-sourcing. There's also a couple different formats: Vertex Colors and UV/Textures.
Goal of the Week: Get comfortable with painting textures.
Pre-recorded courses to watch:
- Basics of Digital Painting
- At least one other Concept course or tutorial
- Texturing & Shading a Stylized Character
Week 4 Live Event (Don't forget to RSVP)
- Do the Axe Texture Painting exercise
- Paint your character sculpture/model.
- Present a final render or viewport screenshot of your character.
See you in March!
This thread is reserved for CG Cookie Citizens that are participating in the "Creating Stylized Characters with Blender" class. Its purpose is to serve as central communication for all participating Citizens (excluding Hobby plan Citizens) to ask me and each other questions and to post homework. As the instructor of the class, I will be monitoring this thread on a daily basis (especially Mon-Thurs) throughout the month of March to review homework and answer questions.
Free members are welcome to observe the thread but please respect that communication is reserved for Citizens.