Cant believe we are already at the half way point. I finally got my printed model. It looks great & am super excited to get to the next stages of bringing it further to life. However, since my professor will be travelling in a week’s time, I decided to change my plan a little & finish up the digital work of transferring Winona from Zbrush to 3Ds Max & create my demo reel. And lo behold, everything seems to have fallen apart. Although I created all the low meshes, normal maps from them, UV unwrapped them & then digitally textured them, 3Ds Max decided not to take a liking to her. It has been throwing up tons of errors regarding normal, not lighting up my scene appropriately, not letting textures react in the appropriate manner etc. I Have really struggled this week trying to get this mammoth of a software (3Ds Max) under control & I seem to be losing the battle so far. I am giving it just a few more days until I move to plan b of rendering out my turntables in keyshot. Keeping fingers crossed & hoping for the best.
This week I thought I would jot down a few things on anatomy. Anatomy is something I have forever run away from as an artist as it would intimidate me. The complexity of the human body keeps me in awe as well as scares me at the same time. Thanks to my introduction to Zbrush, I have been trying stare my nemesis in the face for the past few months & I am beginning to fall in love this subject now.
I have been studying the bean drawing techniques for the torso, or understanding the curves of the spine etc. Given that my interest lies in 3D sculpting, the ecorche technique is what helped me the most.
Ecorche is when a human or animal figure is painted, drawn or sculpted without the skin, exposing the underlying muscles & tissues. It helps to show the location & interplay of the muscles. It was around the 15th century that artists started to concern themselves with the accurate representation of the body & it’s functioning. They sometimes performed dissections on cadavers to determine the position & function of anatomical structures. These became an essential part of most artist’s studio equipment. Leonardo Da Vinci’s drawings are one of the most well known in this.
I found that approaching my model this trimester, specially when I started to repose her, with this technique was what helped. To keep in mind the various muscles & then the principles of how they function be it stretch or quash or rotate, helped get the form accurately in place. Just by putting the landmark points of a figure in place is not normally enough. The only way to get the silhouette working is to be able to imagine the functioning of the muscle & get those in place too. Once this is done, the top layer of the skin is easy to get & slowly the final outcome comes to life.
The ecorche technique has managed to catch my attention making me want to explore this technique even more. I think I can see myself doing some more study ecorche sculptures in future.
The Art of Dissection. (n.d.). Retrieved November 11, 2017, from http://www.thepittpulse.org/the-art-of-dissection/
McMahon, M., & Wallace, O. (2017, November 02). What is Ecorche? Retrieved November 11, 2017, from http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-ecorche.htm
The Editors of Encyclopædia Britannica. (2016, March 16). Écorché. Retrieved November 11, 2017, from https://www.britannica.com/art/ecorche