coyo (coyohti)

19 replies · posted

Coyo's Polybook

I thought I would start one of these polybooks in order to share some of my wips and whatnot. Hopefully by sharing it will help keep me motivated when I'm feeling stuck.

Creative crit is always welcome!

Intro: I am a 50-something female living with my partner in the Seattle area. I've been doing art all my life and have been particularly drawn to sculpture - both digital and real media. I have a very bad habit of not finishing projects. I originally tried to learn 3D modeling in the mid-90s using 3D Studio...not Max, the one that launched from DOS. I modeled Tom Servo from MST3K and decided 3D wasn't for me (ha!). I ended up doing a 3DS Max course and a Maya course in the mid-2000s and when I ran out of time on those I picked up Blender, which was pre-2.5 at the time. Then I faded from 3D work yet again.

I got more interested in Blender after 2.5 was released but mostly used it just to mod stuff. I don't think I really got into it until the sculpting tools were released and my mind was completely blown. Since then I've tinkered with it on and off each time getting deeper and deeper. I love the "Swiss Army Knife" nature of Blender and especially love the vast and diverse community that has grown up around it.

My 3D goals are to be able to create semi-realistic and realistic characters and environments. I also love stylized work but, in spite of being mostly a cartoonist in 2D, I struggle with stylization in 3D.

I've been kicking around CG Cookie equally on-and-off since 2011.

  • One of my current (late 2020) projects is a full figure sculpt based on a character in a book series I read awhile back. Almost all the characters in the series have animal legs which provided some interesting challenges in the sculpt. Mainly, how do human glutes merge with animal legs?

    This fellow is a "foxling" which tend to be very slender and almost childlike. Of course, with fox legs. Another challenge was to sculpt a slender male, without a great deal of visible musculature, and without making him look overly young.

  • Hey Coyo , great to see that you have started a Polybook! Best of luck with your 3D journey , I look forward to seeing the work you put up on here :) 

  • On to retopology! I actually did this retopo a week or so ago and then decided to sit on it awhile because it definitely needs some tidying up and I was getting too close to the project.

    For this I followed Danny Mac's wonderful Youtube videos. He does a great job in breaking a complex task down into manageable "chunks" and I would definitely recommend his videos and additional materials - with some caveats though. Those being, the retopo he shows is not perfect and not a "one-size-fits-all" solution. I think that should go without saying because retopology is so complex but just in case, there I said it. :D In particular the topology he uses around the nose (which appears to be inspired by the Sergi Caballer videos?) resulted in some really wild loops for me when I try to cut in extra loops. This is one of the things I intend to go back and fix.

    The ears on this guy were also very challenging. Ears are already tricky and the giant expanse of his ear tips seemed like it would be simple but no. I might also revisit the ear topology to see if I can even things out a bit.

    Thanks for looking!

  • In the first post of this guy I mentioned the challenge of merging human hips into digitigrade legs...but the image itself doesn't really show it. I really over-think this sort of thing, like how the pelvic bones on animals are vastly different than those of humans and how humans are the only animals who have developed "butts". :D


  • I've been feeling really uninspired and stuck the past few days and have just been poking half-heartedly at my existing projects. What do you do when you're feeling like this?

    I found this beautiful material made by Doublegum for Nodevember and slapped it on one of my old sculpts just to see how it would look. Not the right type of model but I love the material so much I thought I'd share. Check out his other work on his IG and Blendermarket!

  • I honestly think you are on the right track if you are hitting a wall. Most artists hit it.

    You have a few choices: continue or move on haha.


    The benefit of continuing is that you will eventually finish and earn the rewarding satisfaction of completing the project.

    If you decide to continue set a realistic goal for what “finished” means. Then just chip away at it daily or consistently.

    Keep up the good work. Often looking at inspiration helps me  push through the grumbles.

    • Still trying to keep chugging along! I've been doing something Blender-related each day, even if it's just reading some docs or watching a tutorial (without getting stuck in the dreaded "tutorial loop").

      Another thing I've found is helpful is to keep an entirely unrelated project handy. In my case, I have a knitted afghan project I am slowly working on. Getting away from the computer a bit can help a lot!

  • I've been working through the new autumn scene course which is beautiful and amazing. While working on my trees I was inspired to make a "low-poly" fox which may, in some form, find its way into my completed scene. Here's a preview...

  • That is a very nice looking fox coyohti 

  • Wow, I can't believe I've been away since November!?

    I haven't been doing much CG in the interim but for awhile I worked on ceramics - something I recommend to 3D sculptors especially if the opportunity arises.

    Here's a few examples of real media ceramics I created: https://clowceramics.carrd.co/

    Now I'm back to CGC for the Texturing course and looking forward to Human!

    • Welcome Back.

      Some very cool stuff! Digital sculpting is something I never thought I'd be interested in but as I find myself working through the courses, I just want to go back! Haha.

      Also some cool ceramics! Am i right in saying that the last one is based on constellation maps?

    • Thank you! I love sculpting in any form and digital is far less messy than real media so of course I highly recommend it! :D

      Indeed, one bowl is sort of constellation-y though not based on anything real - I was experimenting with tool marks, carving back into the leather-hard clay to create the designs.

    • coyohti I very much like your low-poly fox 😀! Beautiful work 👍!

  • Did a quick sculpt and vertex paint of a character created by a friend of mine. Original reference. She's sort of a mix of andrewsarchus, thylacine, and mustelid. I think. :D


    • coyohti This is really a very original creature with an intense X-ray vision 😉😁! It made me laugh 🤣. Great work 👍!

    • lol! Yes, my friend tends to draw her characters with intense expressions. Not sure why but, especially for this character, it seems very appropriate.

      I forgot to mention that I'd used Danny Mac's Eye Designer for the eye here. Except the "snap to proxy" part of Eye Designer seems broken at the moment and then I broke things even more trying to unlink the eye from everything and now it won't mirror correct. So in future versions I will be making the eye from scratch - that's good practice anyway.

    • coyohti I'm looking forward to your next project 😀! Eyes are really a science for themselves. I remember Kent's tutorial on creating procedural eye materials in EEVEE here and another tuturial by Chris McFall on rigging cartoon eyes here.

    • I did the cartoon eye tutorial quite some time ago - I wish stuff in the portfolios had dates because I'd be interested to know just how long ago. I tried again a few months ago and couldn't get the bit that keeps the pupil/iris from deforming to work in the same way and my old (pre-2.8+) file is totally busted. :/

      I started watching the CGC version of Kent's eye tutorial again recently but haven't had regular access to my home computer in order to follow through. I'm hoping things will settled down soon and I get some Blender time.

    • coyohti I definitively need more practice on the creation of eyes, too. Small changes can make a significant difference since we're very familiar with how eyes have to look from our daily experience. I think, this makes it so difficult to get them right. And I also wish to have more Blender time since the courses on my to-do-list are piling up 😉!