AuthorTopic: Having problems with some faces  (Read 3398 times)

Offline Tourist

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Having problems with some faces

on: December 06, 2009, 05:52:41 am
I set myself a goal to practice making some generic human heads.  Something that might work as a base for portraits.  Then to verify they would work, make an actual portrait based on the generic head.  Then deform the base and see how well it worked as a starting point for a differently shaped head. 

I didn't get to the last step.  Somewhere along the way the faces got more and more off track.  I've been staring at these too long and I can't see the source of the flaws.  I need some fresh eyes to look at this.

I tried both a 5 color shading of the female head and a 10 color dithered version.  The hair needs rework in all of them that have hair.  The last image with the gaps is where I started chopping up the facial anatomy and realized I wasn't sure if I was making corrections or just changes.

I went back to the male head to see if the detailed dithering exposed any anatomy flaws.  I stopped even though it still has a lot of banding because I couldn't tell if this was working or not.

So, um, any help is appreciated.

Anatomy crits on the grayscale heads?
Shading crits on the heads with color?
Palette crits?
Basic process flaws?



Thanks in advance,
Tourist

Offline Altoontoon

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Re: Having problems with some faces

Reply #1 on: December 06, 2009, 07:29:59 am
Hello. I like your construction process and the light colors and shadows. I think you can retouch two things:

Here's my EDIT:



I adjust the eyes so his look points in right direction. In 3/4 view, the eye that is far from us must have a little deformation stretching his shape, i reduced in 1 pixel the pupil.
Even the blonde persons have underlined eyes, i  emphasized his contour a little.
The lips can finish in a more pointed form, i add one pixel.
Emphasize the nasal hole a little.
The shadow at side of the mouth i think is too much marked (just a little) i down his tone.
For the crane you need to think that the hair has his own volume and alwais will be out of the skull line. Draw your crane line as guide, but think that hair has his space and dont share the line of the crane for him. Except is the character is cropped or bald.  :P

Well i hope this helps you.

Offline Tourist

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Re: Having problems with some faces

Reply #2 on: December 07, 2009, 06:09:21 am
Thank you for the suggestions and the edit.  They are a great help.  The change to the shape of the eye really makes a difference.

I'll follow your advice and then start the rework on the hair.

Thanks again,
Tourist

Offline NaCl

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Re: Having problems with some faces

Reply #3 on: December 10, 2009, 12:17:41 pm
First few things I notice:

- The eyes should be about half way from the top of the head to the bottom of the chin. Of course there are no "rules", but if they are farther up then the character looks kind of mongoloid. Yours are 5/9ths up the way of the head, and it is negatively impacting the look in my opinion

- Dithering does not work well for skin. I find that usually when something has definite and obvious lines, as in your top left colored one, then it is because there are flaws in the shading, and/or the colors are poorly chosen. It can work, don't get me wrong, but usually it makes the texture too grainy to look like skin, and the whole piece just looks muddled because of it.

- You have nothing indicating an eye lid and eyelashes and such. It's like the color of the skin around the eye transfers directly into the white of the eye, and it makes it look like the eyes are totally flat and glued onto the face. You can see Altoontoon addressed this in his edit.

- Having the bottom of the pupil visible, but the top hidden gives the impression of looking up. Not sure if you want this.

- In natural light, the upper lip is darker then the bottom one. Your mouth looks kind of plastered onto the face, similar the the problem with the eyes. One thing may be too great a shadow underneath the bottom lip.

- Seems to be too many colors. 9 colors for just the skin? Again like I said about dithering, often when there is a flaw in the color scheme then the only way to make it look alright is to add in more and more intermediary colors. However this will make it look, "pillowy" as yours kind of does.

I'm not sure if the workflow you are using, making a planar type model is good or not. If it helps you then use it I guess, but always remember the bottom line, making it look how you imagine. Anyway keep it up, seems you are pretty dedicated.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2009, 12:20:56 pm by NaCl »

Offline Tourist

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Re: Having problems with some faces

Reply #4 on: December 11, 2009, 07:20:53 am
Just a quick update.  Mostly adjusting the face, haven't started on the hair rework yet.   The far cheek isn't quite right, but I think the whole thing looks a lot less distorted.  The change to the eye really let me pull that side of the face to a better spot.



@NaCL:
I find it's not that there aren't any rules, but too many, without any qualifiers.  One guide says eyes at the half-way line.  Another says the half-way line is the brow line.  A book on cartooning says go ahead and crush the top of the skull, it's not that important.  Ugh.

For this piece, I agree with you about the eye-height.   I expect to raise the top of the skull/hair to help that out.  The line in the version above is a placeholder until I rework the hair; it will need to move around.

The colors in the top left pic of the original image are poor; the one to the right of it is better, but not great.  I'm sticking with the many colors for now.  I plan to update the pic with 5 colors and compare the final versions.

Thanks for the feedback, it helps.
Tourist

« Last Edit: December 11, 2009, 07:23:35 am by Tourist »

Offline NaCl

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Re: Having problems with some faces

Reply #5 on: December 11, 2009, 08:54:13 am
I made an edit to try and show some of the things I mentioned. I got rid of the hair and everything but the face cause I didn't feel like doing anything with that. I got rid of a bunch of colors and added in a few new ones. The colors arn't perfect, but hopefully I showed that you don't need a million colors to make anything looks smooth. In fact, having too many colors will make things look pillow shaded and grainy.

I also added a highlight color for the nose, and put one on the lips. Remember that faces are naturally quite oily, so some surfaces can be quite reflective, especially the nose. Also, the lips are usually wet and have a decent shine.

I can't itemize exactly everything I did, but it was pretty much just stuff off the list I posted, plus a lot of the time was spent trying to find decent colors.



Hope it helps some.

Offline Tourist

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Re: Having problems with some faces

Reply #6 on: December 18, 2009, 02:38:41 am

I looked at was the size of the eyes, since everyone prefers smaller eyes.



The smaller eyes look better, or at least have a better proportion to them.  The smaller eyes also make the rest of the features (nose, lips) too large.  Hmm.  Set that aside for a moment and worked on the hair.



Used the smaller eyes.  First cut at the hair (4 colors).  Raised the brow line one pixel.   Some smoothing of the forehead.  Adjusted the lip colors after studying NaCl's edit.

Two versions, one with 9 skin tones and one with 5.  The image on the right (with 5) is a bit unrefined at this point.  I just wanted to compare the effect of many vs few colors.  It's a bit flatter, but that might be ok.

Still need to fix the braid in the hair, experiment with the size of the lips and chin.

Opinions?  Suggestions?

@NaCL

Thanks for taking the time to make the edit.  It pushed me to rethink using fewer colors for the skin tones and a simpler shading. 

Tourist

Offline EvilEye

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Re: Having problems with some faces

Reply #7 on: December 18, 2009, 05:39:14 am
I suggest getting down a shape with the correct proportions first and then building on that. For instance:



Get some reference it helps.

Might also help to study some basic stuff on how to draw faces. There are tons of good books on the subject. Check your local library.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2009, 05:41:01 am by EvilEye »

Offline Tourist

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Re: Having problems with some faces

Reply #8 on: December 18, 2009, 10:32:27 pm
Well, rats.  I guess I need to go back and redo the base for more accurate proportions.  Thanks for the help pointing out the flaws.

To the library!  (sound effects from the 1960s Batman show)

Tourist