Novica & Forum Members Tips & Product Reviews Pt 9

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  • NovicaNovica Posts: 23,257

    On several of these renders, everything does seem really over-saturated. Remember there is a Saturation slider in Tone Mapping. Turn it down to .85-.90 and see what that does. (Or lower.) You can also change the White Point to change the render hue. If you have too much yellow, use a whitish yellow for White Point. It puts the complementary color hue as the overall tone for the render. (You can also increase the effect of the White Point with the White Point Scale, but I haven't fiddled with that enough to know how drastic the changes are with that. For example, for Environment Intensity over in Environment, those are .5 changes as they do a lot.) 

  • NovicaNovica Posts: 23,257
    edited September 2017

    Just testing a few characters, and thought I'd give a little tutorial on drawing hair for folks who may be a bit challenged in 2D artwork. I also want to point out to newbies what smoothing can do for hair and why you need to be careful with that. 

    First,  heres Hag HD for Genesis 3 Female with Adalyn Hair (Gen3F)   It's important for you to go look at that hair so you can see what changes with smoothing. First, here's the hair rendered with the default, there was no smoothing. Hair is crinkly.

    Then I had to create a Smoothing Modifier and I did it at 6. It smooths the crinkles, but look how it shrunk the hair and what it did to the buzzed section on our right. You can do less than 6, but I wanted to show the effects, and also do a drawing hair tutorial where we start from scratch on a fairly bald surface. 

    Okay, here's what I did. The first image, I showed one of the colors that I used as the base. In the second render (go across) I made strands using that dark color.
    1. put your dark color down first
    2. for hair at the temple, do NOT have your strokes starting at the same place
    3. leave pink flesh areas showing through.
    4. make your strokes different length- long and short
    5. FOLLOW THE CURVE OF THE HEAD!

    Now look at the third render. Get a second color which is lighter than the first one, but still dark. 
    1. put this color with the first one, to make those areas thicker.
    2. don't cover up all of the dark color (color #1)
    3. leave some of the flesh areas showing, this is NOT a complete fill-in.

    Fourth render:
    1. go back and add more of the dark color, on top of SOME of the second color.
    2. make a few dramatic strands, that criss-cross the other shorter strands that follow the temple's curve. This is a messy hair-do, so we don't want ultra smooth hair, even if it's pulled back. The dramatic strands are longer and pull up. (See last one, I circled it for you.) 

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  • NovicaNovica Posts: 23,257
    edited September 2017

    First render: I brought the temple hairline down further than it will go because I'll go back and put in the forehead. I am still working with the first dark color, and second medium-dark color. Note the strands are a bit longer.

    Second render: Now introduce the third color which is fairly light, follow the same stroke lines. Be sure and leave some flesh color areas. Note I left the hairline the same, before I blend more flesh back in, I want all the colors present that I am going to use. Go bold, you'll be covering up some of this later, but you want the overall flow to be there. Think LAYERING.

    Third render: two different things going on here. First, adding more of the first and second dark colors on top of the light third color. Notice however, I added the light color into the entire dark section that is directly above the ear.

    Fourth render: This is the biggie. Look at the hairline. Here are the steps.
    1. start taking flesh in the direction of the FACE flow, not the hair flow. Make sure the hairline stays uneven.
    2. add the second color, NOT the dark color, to assist in blending.
    3. add strands of the lighter color. It's better to go lighter than darker. 

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  • NovicaNovica Posts: 23,257
    edited September 2017

    Now let's fine tune. 

    First render: I added a lot more flesh and pulled back the hairline down by the ear. Basically, thin the hairline so there is a finer, thinner section. There are finer hairs that help create the uneven hairline. I added more of the lighter colors. I also darkened the section right below the horizontal long strand. So for this pass, it is the lighter color that is dominates at the hairline.

    Second render: Notice I finished the vertical section that got chopped off when smoothing was applied. (As you look at it, follow the curve of the top of the hair from left to right, and see the whacked off long bangs on our right?) I filled that in. The first render focused on light colors, now I add layers of dark colors back in. When you do hair, it's layer, rinse, repeat. 

    I also fine tuned the face by adding more flesh and touching up any specks of dark that I missed when I did previous flesh lines (that follow the face curvature.)  I added a LOT of small lines into the hairline so the big lines get thinned out. You can leave it like this, OR I'll show you the darker option in the next one.

    Before that, however- Once you have your hairline where you want it, use a big brush and turn the transparency to about 97% so it's barely showing. Take your second color and lightly brush back and forth VERTICALLY to create a nice shadow that unites the skin and hair. You don't want it too dark. This is an important step to blend hair!!!!  (Ignore that the face is darker, it just didn't get lightened in postwork.) 

    Third render: this is your other option- just go in and darken the hairline using the first two colors. 

    So here is the original, and the finished. I only spent 20 minutes on it, it can really be fine tuned even more but this shows you how to layer, add flesh/ leave flesh showing through, keep the hairline uneven, and use transparent colors to blend the skin and hairline. If you open both up and click back and forth, you'll see why smoothing too much takes out large sections- so do it in moderation. A lot of the nice, curved bangs got removed and we had to draw that area back in.

    Hope it helps!

     

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  • RGcincy said:

    Here's another example of The Flock Gulls and Crows. This uses one of the 3DL gull props (01) and is combined with Ridge Walk Mountains. The camera is one of the fog cameras that come with RWM. 

    Another view:

    This is about as close as you want to get to the birds. You can go  closer but the low poly nature becomes more and more obvious.

    Beautiful!!!

  • FistyFisty Posts: 3,416
    Novica said:

    First,  heres Hag HD for Genesis 3 Female with Adalyn Hair (Gen3F)   It's important for you to go look at that hair so you can see what changes with smoothing. First, here's the hair rendered with the default, there was no smoothing. Hair is crinkly.

    Then I had to create a Smoothing Modifier and I did it at 6. It smooths the crinkles, but look how it shrunk the hair and what it did to the buzzed section on our right. You can do less than 6, but I wanted to show the effects, and also do a drawing hair tutorial where we start from scratch on a fairly bald surface.

    Did the smoothing modifier have collision iterations higher than 0?  And there probably are adjustment morphs in the hair that could pull it back out again.  (Don't have that hair, just guessing)  Failing all that you could render twice, with and without the smoothing and just use a layer mask (or even just the eraser) in your 2D program to composite the two.  All that being said, your final results are much better than the original hair anyway so it was worth the effort.  I'm terrible at drawing by hand on the computer (left hander using a right handed mouse) so I avoid it at all costs.

  • NovicaNovica Posts: 23,257

    Thanks- the collision was 2.  I just went the "tutorial" route in case it helped other folks who don't draw. :)  Was in the mood. 

    Headed to the barn, it's 8am and relatively cool. 

  • FistyFisty Posts: 3,416

    Ah.. looking at the product page I see what happened, and collsion or adjustment morphs wouldn't fix it.  Smoothing always moves the edges of the mesh up so if you have things with very few polys like all those tiny buzzed hairs it'll basically make them disappear.  It's something I fight with on every outfit, sometimes reworking the mesh on the edges 3 to 4 times to get it to take smoothing without shrinking noticably 'cause using smoothing modifier is a really accurate and time saving way to make all the fitting morphs for body shapes without losing mesh details.  (Think I've finally found a solution for it after all this time that requires the least amount of extra polys, adds edge thickness but doesn't risk the edge poking back through itself, and can handle smoothing up to 30 without noticable shrinkage.. but it's taken me over 3 years of making clothes to figure it out)

  • jakibluejakiblue Posts: 7,212

    I remember when that hair came out and I was quite interested as it's a style that I liked...then I looked closer at the promos, particularly the lighter coloured ones....and it went OFF my wishlist so quick, I think I gave it whiplash. I have no idea what is going on with it, or whether it's just the promos (but looking at what you posted, I don't think so), but that has to be one of the worst hairs I've ever seen in recent times. It looks like my old Duran Duran cassette tape that the cat got to and pulled out. Seriously. 

    Novica said:

    Just testing a few characters, and thought I'd give a little tutorial on drawing hair for folks who may be a bit challenged in 2D artwork. I also want to point out to newbies what smoothing can do for hair and why you need to be careful with that. 

    First,  heres Hag HD for Genesis 3 Female with Adalyn Hair (Gen3F)   It's important for you to go look at that hair so you can see what changes with smoothing. First, here's the hair rendered with the default, there was no smoothing. Hair is crinkly.

     

  • RGcincyRGcincy Posts: 2,629
    edited September 2017

    Thanks jakiblue and Sven!

     

    Novica said:

    OMGosh Rich, I was so afraid I was going to have to disagree with you strongly- but it's a FLAG, not a bird, in your first render!   I was thinking "How on earth can he recommend this????"   Because it's gray and fluttering, it looked like a squashed bird! 

    Your comment highlights one issue with The Flocks: you can't move or rotate individual birds (e.g., to move some of the birds next to the upper flag so they don't overlap). It's nice that all the posing and positioning is done for you, but you can't fine tune location other than by translating/rotating the entire flock or the camera. That's not a problem when they are high in the sky, but if closer to other objects, it can be tricky to find the right spot. You can hide birds by using the geometry editor to give individual birds a transparent surface.

    Post edited by RGcincy on
  • RGcincyRGcincy Posts: 2,629

    @Novica Thanks for the art lesson! did you pick your colors from the exiting hair using the eyedropper tool or did you just pick soemthing from the color pallette?

  • I wasn't going to get the birds but now it looks like I may have to lol. 

    As far as hair goes, now that I am back into adding postwork to my work flow, there is rarely a hair that I don't do some work to, sometimes a LOT of work to. Its not uncommon to spend two or three hours on hair painting. So worth it though.

    Does anyone remember if the PC+ memberships are going to go on sale soon, with the PC+ sale coming up?  My membership expires in two days and I am trying to hold out for a sale...

  • Nice tutorial on hair painting.  Now I feel like adding hair to a figure whether necessary or not, just for the fun of it.  In the past, I've never actualy painted the flesh color back into any hairline, and that is a great tip and one I will remember for a more natural look.

  • RGcincyRGcincy Posts: 2,629

    Does anyone remember if the PC+ memberships are going to go on sale soon, with the PC+ sale coming up?  My membership expires in two days and I am trying to hold out for a sale...

    Usually a discount is available some time during the PC+ sale. I checked my PC account settings and see I got a year for $24.50 on 9/30/16.

  • LlynaraLlynara Posts: 4,762
    edited September 2017

    I actually painted hair for the first time on my "Maiden with the Flowing Hair" image.

    Before: (Rough draft) Love this hair, but there was a wide gap that even stacking multiple layers of the same image didn't fix. 

    I used the flat angled brush that comes with Photoshop and did each color on a different layer, then played with layer order, opacities and blending styles. I added some effects to the layers as well to give them more depth. I think I did a Guassian Blur on the brown layer to blend it more behind the others.

    Final: I used Ronya HD for V7, Olenna Hair, Jepe and Muscleman's Equine Dreams, and DA Unicorn for DAZ Horse 2 here. 

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  • L'AdairL'Adair Posts: 9,469
    Does anyone remember if the PC+ memberships are going to go on sale soon, with the PC+ sale coming up?  My membership expires in two days and I am trying to hold out for a sale...

    I started here at Daz three years ago, my first purchase including a quarterly PC+ membership. Since then, I've been able to add annual memberships when they are heavily discounted and my membership expires at the end of the calendar year.

    I know it's not discounted, but buying a quarterly membership now would probably save you more than it costs even between now and the PC Anniversary sale. And going forward, assuming you renew annually at some point every year, you'd never have to worry about missing out the last half of the PA sale while waiting for the PC memberships to go on sale during the PC sale. Just a thought.

  • I use Custom Photoshop Brushes – Set 5 (Directional Fur Brushes) by Aaron Bair for men and people with shorter hair. They are 5 bucks and have a good range of short brushes. I also use Antje's Hair Brushes - 2 - & Bonus Fur on rendo.

  • NovicaNovica Posts: 23,257
    RGcincy said:

    @Novica Thanks for the art lesson! did you pick your colors from the exiting hair using the eyedropper tool or did you just pick soemthing from the color pallette?

    Eyedropper. Go dark, second darker, light, lightest. 

  • NovicaNovica Posts: 23,257

    Back from the barn. Rode bareback in the arena and was galloping when Stetson saw some slightly muddied areas and decided he wasn't going through them. I stayed on as he did a sharp right cutaway, but I was hunkered forward over the neck and heading left down the SIDE of his neck, holding a handful of mane!  I kept my seat but you can guess what he did for the next few minutes- back and forth, back and forth through the slightly darker big-bad-sandy-mud. He had the sense to at least look embarrassed. Like, "Oh. That's all it is?" (That's my story and I'm sticking to it. You know, like how parents make excuses for their less-than-perfect kids? "Well, he didn't MEAN to do it..." ) 

    @icedragonart  Oh, that's lousy timing- to run out of a membership during a sale.  It's hard to know when memberships are going to be the cheapest, some of us did get it for $12.50 during a stacking glitch, but the $25 range is really good. They do put it on sale (usually) at the beginning of the PC+ monthly sale.

  • NovicaNovica Posts: 23,257

    @llynara  Your hair looks much better!

    I know Kathyrn Loch had a link to her fur brushes somewhere in the book cover thread, it's a YouTube video and below it she put a link. 

  • I will renew at the quarterly membership until I can get the annual on sale again. I had managed to add on to the membership a couple times at really good prices so its renewing at an odd time lol.  I will hold out another day and see if maybe it goes on sale tomorrow, if not, I will do a quartely and then pick up the rest when its on sale again.

    Glad you didn't end up on the ground Novica!  And he should be embarassed silly horse!  Kathryin's hair brushes are awesome by the way, I think they were on her Deviant Art account

  • cismiccismic Posts: 614
    edited September 2017

    Don't post much here but I certainly learn a lot. :-) I picked up the gulls as well and a couple other items and they seemed to work well for this image. 

    I also have used the crows from that same package on a different image. 


    Joseph Kravis

    Post edited by cismic on
  • NovicaNovica Posts: 23,257
    edited September 2017

    @cismic  Gorgeous! Love the warm tones and the glow on the birds. Those are promo-art worthy!  yes

    Wow, Maria went from a Category 1 to a Category 5 in 15 hours! SO sorry for Dominica.Hurricane Maria went to Category 5 there and it's "grim." Puerto Rico going to get hit with Category 4 today. It was 85 years ago since their last Category 4 hit, according to CNN.  Many are still without power from Irma. Los Angeles had a 3.6 earthquake on the west side this morning. I'm starting to feel guilty about beautiful weather here- but I'll gladly take it!  Anyone feel the earthquake? That must be scary.

    My thoughts on Josie 8:  I don't like all the lines in her face, it's more like an older person's.  Waiting to see if there will be an orange banner later for previous owners of Josies. 

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  • jakibluejakiblue Posts: 7,212

    there is an orange banner if you've previously bought josie pro bundles. It's in 'exclusive messages', not showing as a pop up banner as yet.  

    Novica said:

    @cismic  Gorgeous! Love the warm tones and the glow on the birds. Those are promo-art worthy!  yes

    SO sorry for Dominica.Hurricane Maria went to Category 5 there and it's "grim." Puerto Rico going to get hit with Category 4 today. It was 85 years ago since their last Category 4 hit, according to CNN.  Many are still without power from Irma. Los Angeles had a 3.6 earthquake on the west side this morning. I'm starting to feel guilty about beautiful weather here- but I'll gladly take it!  Anyone feel the earthquake? That must be scary.

    My thoughts on Josie 8:  I don't like all the lines in her face, it's more like an older person's. Waiting to see if there will be an orange banner later for previous owners of Josies. 

     

  • NathNath Posts: 2,399

    I kinda like Josie 8 - just as well since I instabought her (no rendering until after work though). The only thing I don't like is the overabundant eyelashes.

  • NovicaNovica Posts: 23,257
    Nath said:

    I kinda like Josie 8 - just as well since I instabought her (no rendering until after work though). The only thing I don't like is the overabundant eyelashes.

    @nath   Yeah, I can see that too. 

    @jakiblue   Hadn't gotten that far LOL. Thanks for pointing it out, it makes the discount 66% which is fine since the hair and clothes are good for other G8F's. 

  • I felt ithe quake, it was just a little temblor.  Nothing most would bat an eyelash at, thank goodness.  

    Re josie 8 - I had an extra 20% off notice in my inbox, and it automatically applied.  I'm not sure about her look, but I like the clothing and hair etc that come in the bundle, and the FW side character included in the bundle looks good in the promos.  There is something strange about some of Josie's expressions though, so it will be interesting to see how she renders.  It might certainly be the lines that you pointed out.  I wonder if Zevo's new expression smoothing product will sort that out.

  • Eh doesn't look like a teen to me. Almost like a fairy or something. For some reason daz teens never look real. But I'm not really a fan of the big eyed Thorne anime fusion look.

  • NovicaNovica Posts: 23,257

    Edit- ummm...okay, you can get the price down to 37.78 for the Pro Bundle and that's 72% off, but I'm not saying how because it seems to be a a glitch. If you put another New Debut in, that would be another 10% off, but I'm still doing the math. 134.95 is the original price, 66% off would be pay 34% which is 45.88 and 10% is $4.58 so that would be 41.30. Hmmm.

  • NovicaNovica Posts: 23,257

    Ati explained it.

    50% for having two debut items in the cart, +30% DO, +20% for owning her old bundles.

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