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First steps in the wondrous world of sculpting

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  • First steps in the wondrous world of sculpting

    Hello all

    Inspired by amongst others Warploque Monkey I decided to have a go at sculpting a model from scratch a while ago. It's turning out better than I feared, but as I really want to learn as much as possible while working on this model, I thought feedback from this forum would be more than welcome. Don't hesitate to be harsh. I really want to improve as much as possible in this process, and that's only possible by accepting criticism.

    I'll link to the pictures from the first steps, and add the ones from the current state as an image.


    Making the armature



    Image 2



    Sculpting he tail, blocking out the body, and a first attempt at the face



    Image 2

    Image 3



    Smoothing out the body, and a second attempt at the face



    Image 2
    Image 3
    Image 4



    Adding the chains, and adding some more detail to the face



    Image 2
    Image 3
    Image 4



    Working on the abdomen



    Image 2



    Sculpting the cloth and back of the saddle



    Image 2
    Image 3
    Image 4


    And then the pictures of where I've ended up so far. On the basic structure of the saddle, I've added a layer of fur. there's also the very basic armature of the Warlord, and some fur and skin texture added to the Pox Rat. I'm still experimenting very much with how to sculpt fur, so there are quite large differences between different areas on the model. I hope it's not too visible, but if it bothers me in the end I'll resculpt some parts.










    Thank you very much for watching. Any kind of criticism is very much appreciated.
    Things I'm working on: Sculpting, Puppet Wars Unstitched, Sapo

  • #2
    That looks awesome!
    I'll be lucky to paint a single figure this year or any other. If I do manage it, no one will be more shocked than I.

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    • #3
      excellent start and for first attempt even better. I think the fur in places need to be a little sharper and a little thinner, but your off to a good start
      Shop at the Wampstore

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      • #4
        Thanks, guys.
        You're right, Darklord. The first patches of fur I sculpted rolling each strand separately, and adding that on, but that took ages, and also resulted in the too thick fur.
        Only the last ones I made starting with one piece of greenstuff, which I try to separate in triangles then, but I still need quite some practice to get it sharp enough.
        Things I'm working on: Sculpting, Puppet Wars Unstitched, Sapo

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        • #5
          Not much to add at this point in the way of constructive criticism. Seems like you've really thought this one through and it's looking great, especially being a first attempt. Did you use one of those tentacle making tools for the tail as that is always a tricky part. If not, kudos to you!
          sigpic

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          • #6
            Thanks, Moonmin.
            I don't have one of those tentacle makers, so I had to resort to just rolling over it with sculpting tools and my knife. Parts of it are okay, but it does look a little crude from some angles. I also made a tail for the Warlord (which I haven't photographed yet), recently, which came out a little better I think.

            After the last pictures, a little more work has been done, and quite bad pictures have been taken. The face has had a little refining, and I decided to give him a bloated neck. I'll probably make the whole model a little fatter than the regular Skaven, to make him stand out as an individual as well. I might have overdone the wrinkles in his face below his eyes a little.



            Apart from that, I bulked out the armature a little, trying to get some basic musculature in. Most of it will be covered by a robe, probably, but as this project is all about learning, I thought I could use the exercise.





            As a final small addition, I added some spikes to the chain (which probably need some refining with a knife later on).

            Things I'm working on: Sculpting, Puppet Wars Unstitched, Sapo

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            • #7
              I like this skaven face. Don't hesitate to take your time on the anatomy now. :)
              http://ob-sculptures.blogspot.fr

              http://www.blackforest-miniatures.com

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              • #8
                thats a mad mouse!

                like the spikes
                Shop at the Wampstore

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                • #9
                  Thanks to both of you!
                  Don't hesitate to be harsh in your criticism; there's a lot I can learn from experienced sculptors and painters like you.
                  I have made some more progress since these last pictures. As he's wearing a robe, you can't see a lot of the musculature. The hands turned out okay, and the last steps I have to take now are finishing the legs and feet, and then the paws of the Pox Rat.
                  I hope to finish that in a couple of days, after which I'll try to get some decent pictures up. Even though there are parts which could be improved a lot, I think I'll just finish this one up and try to push my sculpting to the next level in a second project, in which I'll work on human(oid) anatomy, attempt at a coherent texturing (regarding fur and the like) and try to get some sharper edges.
                  That means I can really use any tips or critical remarks you can think of on this project, to really push the awareness for the finesses of the art to tackle another one.
                  Things I'm working on: Sculpting, Puppet Wars Unstitched, Sapo

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                  • #10
                    Here we are again, and I'm calling this one done. It isn't really 'finished', as in there are still a lot of mistakes, but I really want to take what I've learned about sculpting with this model (and will learn painting it) to start a fresh sculpt, which is less hampered by bad armatures, too large undefined volumes, and incoherence than this one is, rather than keep working on this one. I'll first throw you the pictures, followed by my own remarks on the major mistakes.

                    I would really appreciate criticism very much, even though I probably won't change anything on this model anymore. This model really was a first exercise in sculpting, and I think I've really improved a lot doing it, especially considering general feel for the putties I used, getting the surfaces much smoother now, and discovering the importance of decent armatures.












                    The Great Pox Rat is the worst part about this model. He has no musculature to speak of, the face is quite crude, he has a lot of different types of fur (due to me experimenting with how to make it), and above all, his paws are utter crap.

                    On the Warlord, I think the main problems are caused by a bad armature, with proportions which are off. His limbs are too long (and as such too slender), especially in comparison to his bulked face. Also, I really found sculpting his feet really difficult, having nothing to work against when making these rather thin and long parts; they ended up crude and short. In general, he's somewhat lacking in musculature, and on his knees do weird things. I think I improved a lot on sculpting cloth on this one, the last part going much better than the first, and some fine detailing and edges are getting somewhere decent as well. All in all, I'm not too happy with him.

                    So, with this one done, I hope to start my second sculpt soon. I'll be working on the main faults in this one, trying to sculpt a (naked) human anatomy dummy, trying to get the musculature as good as I can.
                    When that's done, I hope to cast it up a few times, and work on textures using the dummy as a base, basically 'dressing' him up to get a better knowledge on how to sculpt fur, sharp armour edges, flowing cloth,...

                    As said, criticism is more than welcome. Don't spare me.

                    PS: I know the pictures are crap. If you want any other angles, give me shout. I hope to take better ones one of these days.
                    Things I'm working on: Sculpting, Puppet Wars Unstitched, Sapo

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                    • #11
                      for a first attempt thats great, you didnt go for an easy option
                      Shop at the Wampstore

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                      • #12
                        Thanks. In retrospect I probably should have. Even though I learned a lot on this model, I think I could have done two simpler ones in the same time, which probably would have paid off more.
                        How's your Dinosaur coming along?
                        Last edited by Jona; 10-02-2014, 04:06 pm.
                        Things I'm working on: Sculpting, Puppet Wars Unstitched, Sapo

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                        • #13
                          Contrary to my earlier ambitions, I decided to have a go at a 15mm scale model. It took quite some adapting, especially since I hadn't really built up much sculpting experience in general, but I'm starting to like the scale quite a bit.

                          Below are a picture of the earlier stage, at which moment the basic anatomy was still visible, and some links to other angles. I'm aiming for a more or less realistic proportioning, except for the head which is slightly larger to allow for a focal point and some facial expression. The model is around 17mm to the top of the head, which I understand is pretty much the standard for what's called 15mm (correct me if I'm wrong). He's to become a Roman-ish (not aiming for historical accuracy) orator. I basically wanted to get a feel for proportioning, cloth flows, facial expression, and experiment with dramatic/tense atmosphere in a static miniature (opposed to the rather blunt and overly 'dynamic' one I did on the Skaven).



                          Left side
                          Back side

                          At the moment I've added the toga and hair. Parts are still very crude (especially the tunica and his legs). After solving that, he needs hands and sandals, and he's pretty much done.









                          As always, I'm seeing this as a learning experience, so I'd appreciate any comments you may have.

                          Thanks for looking
                          Things I'm working on: Sculpting, Puppet Wars Unstitched, Sapo

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                          • #14
                            By the way, is there any way to change the thread title?
                            Things I'm working on: Sculpting, Puppet Wars Unstitched, Sapo

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                            • #15
                              That's funny, I was thinking about trying to sculpt 15mm the last few weeks, without having much prior sculpting experience myself. But I hesitated, and now I discovered this thread. You simply tried it and got a very good result.
                              Maybe I should think less about daring or not to give something a try (and possibly fail), but simply sit down and try it and accept the outcome...

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