Keira 3D Modeling

13 04 2013

+ Learning how to do Clothes and Hair

This past weeks I’ve been modeling some stuff (scenario + character) for doing the first animation tests. This was a very hard work, because I had to learn for myself how to do clothes, eyelashes, and hair. All applied to the Character.

I had quite experience modeling bodies and cartoon faces (so that’s not the difficult part for me), but I haven’t any experience on clothing. Also I had very few experience with real hair. So it was quite a research process in order to learn how to do some things.

I’ve been modeling the main character of my short, Keira. Although I like the result, I didn’t dominate the technique, so I don’t have the same ease as when I design 2D characters. That’s making me doubt about of how I’m going to do the characters form my short (in 3D or in 2D).

As I’m doing some kind of graphic novel, maybe I don’t need 3D characters. Make a 3D character is an immense work, and I think I haven’t the same ease that I have when designing 2D character. I realized of all that when designing Keira in 3D. This is the final 3D modeling with hair, eyelashes, texturing, and clothes:


And here is a turntable of the final 3D modeling/design of the character I’ve done:

So I had a lot of problems with the clothes, because I’ve never done this before. I’ve saw and read lots of tutorials. I’ve done a lot of tests and finally I’ve got some results. Doing real clothes with physics is really hard. There are a lot of little problems that appears when doing the clothes, and it’s very hard to get all working perfect. Also, is very difficult to achieve an specific form.

I’ve starting modeling the Head of Keira from the side and front designs/views I’ve done. I’ve put the views in the 3D program and I’ve started modeling, once I had a head that I’ve liked, I started modeling the body also from the design views.

frontview sideview

First I was doing the 3D design with the exact form of the original drawn design. But then I had to adapt some parts into the perspective view (in order to make it look proportionate and good looking in 3D). The texturing of the body is done with “Art Shader”, as I said on my Dissertation some months ago, I drawn the texture/material on ArtRage, and then I import it in the 3D software in order to use as an Art Shader texture.

This are some of the textures/materials I’ve drawn:

lips_testskin_firsttest texturedress

This is the Dress pattern I’ve done in order to apply the cloth physics, I’ve done a lot of failures, this was mostly the tenth attempt to do it, and the good one:


This is the dress, adapted to the body with the Dress-O-Matic function of Cinema 4D, it’s also textured:


And this is the dress relaxed, I’ve attached the top of the dress to the body with a belt tag (also here I had done lots of versions until it worked). The skirt part is relaxed. Arrive to this result has taken me a lot of work, it has been very difficult to work with the cloth dynamics in order to make all work perfectly.


Finally, I combined the cloth with a NURBS Cloth object (for make the cloth thicker), and a Nurbs Object (for smothing the mesh). I’ve also applied a nurbs object to the body mesh, etc.

I had also research for tutorials in order to learn how to do eyelashes, is similar to hair, so it wasn’t so difficult. Eyelashes doesn’t need dynamics so they are easier to shape.


I had some problems with the hair of the head itself. It is very difficult to control hair and get the appropriate shape. I practiced this before but it was difficult too. Is really hard to get the dynamics of the hair work as you want, but finally I get it. This is a Hair test I’ve done with an older version of Keria’s face modeling:

You can’t transfer a Hairstyle from one Hair object to another because it is attached to the head. It releases the attachments when working with symmetry modeling. So I’ve made the final hair another time in the final model (but you can transfer the hair properties, so I did).


Here is a capture of the side view, with the 2D reference design at the background:


And here a full body render of the final version:


And after all this hard work, I don’t know if doing the characters in 3D is the appropriate way for my short. I will be doing tests with 2D hand drawn characters combined with the 3D backgrounds I’m modeling. I will do the tests in order to see how the final production will look, and I will choose the best option basing on visual results.

I’ve learned a lot doing this model, so it worth the effort.




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