Concept Art MasterClass #7: Comping Renders, Paint, and Finish

Gnomon Instructor and Senior Concept Artist Kyle Brown shares a groundbreaking workflow

Kyle Brown, a veteran of the CG world, Kyle has worked within the field since 2015 and has had his hand in a number of projects throughout the film and television industry. He also currently is an instructor at the Gnomon School of Visual Effects where he is able to share his expertise with others.

This Master Class comes in 7 parts, each carries its own tutorial video to guide you through the entire process of how Kyle incorporates Character Creator, Photoshop, ZBrush and other tools to create the concept art. You can find links to the other 6 tutorials below.

Part #7: Comping Renders, Paint, and Finish

With the renders complete, I bring them into Photoshop to put on the final touches. The amount of painting varies from piece to piece but as so much of these pieces were figured out early in the process, it doesn’t take much to get them looking the way I want them to.

The first thing I do is play around with some color LUTs to get a unified color grading, very similar to the post effects available in CC3.

On the two other versions that weren’t based on my initial sketches I want to push some of the stock elements a little bit further to match the Cyberpunk look. As mentioned earlier in the tutorial, I not only wanted the costume to be different between the versions but also the artificial skin as well. I opted to tweak some of the cut lines and QR code on the cheek a bit, opting on the third to remove it completely for more of a natural aesthetic.

With the more ‘mechanical’ bits on the second version, I wanted to paint in some extra cut lines and material reads, including some additional texture and sheen. As well, this version showcases the alternate glow texture created earlier in the tutorial.

I used some really cool streetwear for the third variation that looked great right out of the box but felt it needed some more break ups in the pattern and something futuristic in the read to push it over so I opted for some plastic or some sort of transparent material.

And here we are! The three final design iterations for our futuristic Cyberpunk android!

And that about does it! There are plenty of resources out there to cover the digital sculpting and digital painting processes, but I was happy to put together a tutorial that tied all of these elements together and showcased an alternate way of utilizing Character Creator 3 for concept design! As I experimented with this new workflow, I found feature after feature that I am excited to implement going forward. I only scratched the surface of all of the new features available in Character Creator 3, whether it’s the brand new SkinGen or the awesome Headshot plugin that allows you to easily capture likeness, something I feel will be extremely valuable on upcoming projects! 

Thank you so much for taking the time to check out this tutorial! It was fantastic getting to explore a new workflow, one that feels like a missing component my workflow was missing and one I am excited to push forward. Once again, thank you to the Reallusion team for inviting me to participate and helping so much along the way! Can’t wait to get into the next piece!

Follow the other 6 tutorials in this series:

Part #1: Getting Started and Sketches

Part #2: Costume & Asset Creation in ZBrush

Part #3: Refining and Adding Details in ZBrush

Part #4: Generating Textures and Importing into Character Creator 3

Part #5: Lighting and Posing a Character in Character Creator 3

Part #6: Costume Variation and Texture Modification

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