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MageMaze Trailer is up

by admin on Oct.19, 2010, under Artblog

The indie game me and Michael Dashow are working on closing in on getting completed!

We’ve been working non stop on this game outside our day jobs since the last GDC in march, and the game is well ready for IGF submission!
And because of GDC submission, we needed a trailer! So here it is. :)

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Sculpting Classes: Death Mask 1

by admin on Oct.19, 2010, under Artblog

Long time no update for the sculpting classes. I’ve been super busy with my indie game called Mage Maze together with Michael Dashow to get it ready for IGF submission so I didn’t have a lot of time to update on my progress. But seeing that we have a pretty solid build to submit, I figured it was time I updated this little blog!

In the meantime, I finished reproducing a flat death mask of some… well, dead bloke. Which took me about 5 classes or so, with 2 classes getting the basic shapes in place, and the rest of the time was really spent on reshaping, finetuning, and what not.
The mouth and eyes in particular were a complete b*tch to do. It’s hard to keep something roughly the same size when you’re working in clay imho, but I managed fine I think.

The guy doesn’t have the most interesting shape of a head, but he was good to practice with. The classes tend to focus on Greek and roman style of sculpting, so no monsters and demons I’m afraid. But those are a comin’ when I get some spare time!

Next up, the death mask of Napoleon Bonaparte (or so I was told it was from Napoleon) . :)

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Sculpting Classes :: Week three

by admin on Sep.21, 2010, under Artblog

It’s been two weeks and a bit since I started this foot and thankfully I’m nearly finished with it!
Things have been learned, frustrations have arose but generally, fun times have been had. I think the hardest thing to overcome is trying to see past the details and anatomy and just figure out the planes that make up the foot. Trying to see the subtle changes in value, how shapes interact with each other and how shadows are cast on to the foot and work board, and the list goes on.
It’s a lot of work and a lot of things to keep in mind, but it should come as second nature as time progresses; at least, I hope it does!

Still got to fix the weight distribution on the toes and the shape of the big toe’s abductor muscle, and then it’s done.
I asked the teacher what on earth we do with these sculpts when they’re finished. It seems we have three choices…
1. Hollow it out, bake it and it take it home
2. Mold and cast it in plaster
3. Take a picture and dump the entire thing back in the barrel of clay…

I’m a bit wary about doing the latter, especially if you spent almost 20 hours on it in total. So baking it is!

Either way, have a foot. :)

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Sculpting Classes :: Lesson 1

by admin on Sep.06, 2010, under Artblog

Ok, I have been telling myself the past two years I should really take up traditional sculpting so I can improve my digital sculpting work. So I finally took the plunge and registered myself for an entire year of classes, 10 hours a week! Every monday, tuesday and wednesday evening, yours truly will be dabbling in clay trying to not make a complete fool out of himself!

For our first “lesson”, I had the choice to recreate either a hand, foot or the front of a face. I felt rather good about myself today, so I said “what the heck, give me a foot!”. This is where I should note that sculpting feet is one of the hardest things to do right. They’re in the same difficulty zone as heads and hands in my oh so humble opinion.
Now, I was however expecting some sort of basic guidance as to how to start something like this (did I mention it was life size?) in pure clay. The guy told me not to use any kind of framing structure, just slabs of clay.
The only guide I got was that should take a big blob of clay, smash it with a hammer to flatten it, take the original foot cast, mark out the pedestal and work from there on out. In the end I just screwed around for 3 hours without much feedback. But the feedback I did get was pretty damn priceless!

The key here is to find one point of reference/measurement  - let’s say the length of the heel of the foot  - and use that measurement/point as a guideline for everything else. Once you’ve decided on your point of reference, you should never use anything else anymore. Pretty solid stuff imho.

Either way, picture time! Can you feel the Rodin inside of me? *ahem* :)

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Female head sketch

by admin on Jun.14, 2010, under Artblog

A little something I’ve been working in my lunch breaks at work. :)

Her left eye freaks me out tremendiously, that one needs to be redone.
It is however, loads of fun painting this kind of characters. The incredible fidelity in the female face is just amazing! As a sculptor you have this nasty tendency of overdoing it in the detail and forms department (and I plead guilty for doing that on this girl as well), but female faces are so delicate that they hardly need detail to look appealing.

Interesting stuff to study I’d say!

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Frazetta Tribute Part I

by admin on May.25, 2010, under Artblog

The 2D section over at gameartisans.org is holding a concept art contest in memory of the late -and great- Frank Frazetta. So I figured I’d join in the fun to honor this icon of fantasy art!
So here’s the first pass at my entry, the general surrounding and a quicky character silhouette, which I’m not too happy about, but he’ll be changed anyway. I was thinking of a Barbarian approaching a foul beast while reaching for his massive sword.
Obviously, the foul beast still needs to be added. :)
Frank Frazetta Tribute

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ZBrush 3.5 ZTool AutoSave

by admin on Apr.07, 2010, under Freebies

Alrighty boys and girls,

Here it is! An AutoSave utility for ZBrush 3.5. Anyone working with ZBrush knows how crash happy the app can be, and I’m sure I’m not the only who sometimes gets “lost in the moment” and forgets to save a huge piece of work.
In fact, it happened to me again last week, and I grew tired of having to redo a LOT of work; so I decided to whip up this little extension to the Tool palette.

You only need to save once in the beginning of your session, and auto save does the rest. :)

And if any Pixologic guys are seeing this… Please, please update the ZScript language and make [Sleep] and [ISwitch] WORK as a ZPlug! Or even better, release a fully fledged C++ or whatever SDK!

If you have any suggestions on how to improve Auto Save, or you just wish to contact me, please do so at kristof@maphart.com. :)


And there’s a Mac OSX version as well! Tested on Mac OSX Snow Leopard and Zbrush 4.0.
Autosaver for Mac OSX

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Female BaseMesh 1.0

by admin on Feb.21, 2010, under Freebies


click me!

Hi guys ‘n gals!

I’ve just recently built a fairly adequite re-useable basemesh for female characters. And I decided to share her for you to use!

She’s been optimized for digital sculpting and as such, she’s made up out of evenly spaced quads. There are a few triangles in the mesh, but these are located between the individual fingers and on the bottom of the feet. So they shouldn’t pose too much of a problem. :)

She’s about 1.72 meters in height in relation to Modo’s coordinate system. It is possible that when you import this mesh in other DCC applications such as XSI, Max, Maya, etc… that it will not read 1.71 meters so you’ll need to manually scale her up or down accordingly.
Tongue and eyes are included, but teeth are not. You can find a good set of teeth on gnomonlogy.com by Alex Alveraz .

Feel free to use this mesh for any kind of project or sculpting exercise you see fit. :)

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by admin on Feb.21, 2010, under Artblog


goblin sculpt


goblin marmoset

A quicky sculpt of a hellgoblin. And as well a screengrab of how the fella looks in marmoset toolbag with a diffuse, normal and detail map.

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Apoc muties WIP

by admin on Jan.28, 2010, under Artblog

Apoc Mutie

Apoc Mutie

Allright, I’ve been working on this little guy for the latest sculpting challenge over at gameArtisans.org, Post Apocalyptic Muties.

It’s been a while since I’ve done anything purely asymmetrical, but it’s loads of fun! :)
The guy weighs in at about 13 million polygons and is rendered in Zbrush using Ralf Stumpf’s Red Wax material.

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