Wednesday, 11 December 2019

Character Creation Student Showcase

Lizard Character created by Max Brazier-Jones
One of the most exciting courses at Escape Studios is our class in Character Creation, where students design, model, rig and - if time permits - animate their own characters.

The most recent four week class was taught Michael Davies, the artist who rigged Smaug for The Hobbit) and also rigged  The Minions.

Michael's students created some amazing work - feast your eyes on the beautiful characters below.

Max Brazier Jones
Summer Character Creation Course
Michael taught our very first character creation course this past summer, with stellar results.

Character Creation formed a part of our new Summer School, and was an intensive 4 week course taking students from zero to hero.  Character creation is all about designing, modeling, rigging and animating your own characters.

Tutor: Michael Davies
The Character Creation course was led by industry veteran Mike Davies. Mike's credits are impressive: he rigged Smaug (for The Hobbit) and also The Minions for the Illumination-McGuff studio.

Michael Davies is a 3D generalist who has worked on VFX blockbusters such as Batman vs Superman, Doctor Strange and Thor Ragnarok.  Michael's main areas of expertise are rigging and modelling, but he has also worked as a generalist and supervisor.

Michael has been developing future creative talent by sharing his skills since 2014 and is also an Accredited Trainer for Maya at Autodesk.

Warrior by Sara Sanchez
To see an interview with Michael Davies, and find out more about his work, follow this link.

Character Creation Skillset
Students learned all the basic skills needed to create their own characters from scratch, including concept art (such as the design by Max Brazier Jones on the right), modeling, rigging, texturing and animation.

Character Creation
The Escape Studios' Character Creation course is all about how characters and creatures get put together.

Head Sculpt by Sara Sanchez
The course focuses on the art and craft of creating a 3D model and making a skeleton structure that makes it work, so that you can breathe life into it and create a performance.

Course Details
Students on our character Creation Courses learn the following skills:

Design
Using Anatomy to aid Design
Intro to Maya - User Interface, Introduction to Modelling including using orthodox graphic views
Intro to Zbrush - User Interface, Sculpting Tools, Maya to Zbrush Pipeline
Concept Art by Francesco Leoni
Sculpting details - using Alphas and downloading custom Alphas for skin (creating own custom alphas)
Retopology and Edge Flow theory
UV Coordinated for texturing
Create maps in Zbrush: Displacement, Normals, Bump and Cavity etc.
Map Manipulation in Photoshop
Importing maps to Maya
Painting Textures and Shaders using Substance Painter
Creature by Tom Barton
Look Development in Unreal and Arnold Renderer
Character Rigging in Maya
Import blend shapes with Maya
Import a sound track and animate the character speaking
Character Presentation - Rendering Turntable Animations and other Character specifc Animations ready for a showreel

Official site
To sign up, follow this link.

Character Creation Evening Class
Escape Studios also runs an
Creature by Tom Barton
evening class in character creation starting on 6th January 2020.
The course is taught by industry veteran Jonathan McFall.

Tutor - Jonathan McFall
The Chartacter Creation Evening Class  is taught by Jonathan McFall, veteran of the Harry Potter series, Men in Black 3, and Immortals.

You can see Jonathan's IMDB page here, and also see his personal website here, along with samples of his excellent work.

The Escape Studios Animation Blog offers a personal view on the art of animation and visual effects. To find out more about our new BA/MArt, now recruiting for September 2020, follow this link.  To apply, visit the offical page here.

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