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  1. #31
    Adapting Artist jasonwestmas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Surrealist. View Post
    I'll be the odd man out and just flat out disagree.

    I won't go as far as to say that you have to be a master at drawing first. Nor will I say that you can't model if you can't draw. And it would be silly to say this in a way that discourages people from modeling if they can not draw to save their lives. Doesn't take a genius to see that that could be very discouraging to some artists. Including me.

    But I have read these arguments many times before and they usually go unqualified.

    So a better question to ask yourself is, "will I improve my skills as a 3D artist if I hunker down and learn to draw?" And the answer to that is a resounding yes. Assuming that you actually learn some art basics along the way. So I think the flip side of it is you can not just give a blanket unqualified answer. It is slightly short-sighted. It needs to have some qualifications in there.

    There are numerous things to consider. One is that most if not all productions start with some kind of a sketch form. It is faster and even more fluid than sculpting. So as a generalist, right there you are limited if you can't draw. You can say I am not a designer. OK. fine. But then you are also saying you are limited to not or designing. It is a limitation. Or you design with sculpting which is also a time limitation by comparison. It is a qualified answer. There is no yes or no.

    Another thing to consider. How far are you going to be taking the modeling process? Are you going to be painting textures? 3D or 2D? And it does not take too much of a stretch of the imagination to realize that again if you are 2D challenged you are actually limited in the things you can do. Even 3D painting (and sculpting for that matter) are really 2D skills. And if your 2D suffers so will those. Because using a tablet to draw paint or sculpt is the same skill/dexterity as drawing.

    My best modeler in my studio is my worst 2D guy. What does that say about him? It says I can not rely on him to sculpt convincing details and paint convincingly on his models. It is a shame considering his talent. He is a crack Zbrush artist. And does amazing work. And it is pretty good at adding details and painting. But not nearly as good as he could be. Does not mean I will fire him. But he is limited. So I have to rely on another artist to do the painting.

    And so you have to realize that 2D is a large part of the process all the way through. And to the degree you improve that skill is to the degree you will improve your 3D skills and lift limitations on what you can do and be less dependent on others to realize your visions.

    That I think is the proper qualified answer.
    Just to add to what you are saying. . .I think true understanding of a structural object is spacial understanding that is stored in memory. As is the understanding of what light does on certain materials without reference. When I was young I could copy a photograph perfectly with a pencil or brush just by eyeballing it but I could never do it from just my memory. I didn't understand anything that I was replicating. I had to take the time to draw or sculpt or add color to something from understanding rather than just what I was seeing. Only then could I invent new things that weren't things just to copy.

    I think my point is regardless of the medium, we all need understanding to do anything that isn't just replication of what we see.

    I think I wrote this somewhere else before lol.
    Last edited by jasonwestmas; 10-26-2016 at 10:20 PM.
    All that is powerful or long standing is first conceived in the imagination; supported by the hope of possibility and then made manifest in our commitment of our current physical reality.

  2. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by Surrealist. View Post
    Words. More words..
    Youve disagreed with me, ive disagreed with you. we have in fact agreed that we disagree with each other. But knock yourself out if you need to keep asserting your point.

  3. #33
    Sure, why not. As if I needed the invitation... lol

    I actually enjoy being challenged on something I have been thinking on for a while. And then the thoughts culminate and solidify and clarify. Many people have said just what you and even William have said in the past. Many times. And I always wondered why exactly it was I just did not agree. How you think about it is your own damn business as far as I am concerned. But if an artist comes here to ask the question I think it should be talked about objectively.

    I think if an artist comes to me and asks this, I could never give the answers you have given. It is not the good honest answer. It is more of an appeasing answer. Like, "nah, don't worry about it'. You'll be fine."

    And you know what? He will be fine. It is OK to say that as the first response perhaps. Because a guy should not be all worked up about it and worrying. That would be the wrong approach to it.

    But there is absolutely more to the subject. It is kind of a half answer. And the points I have argued are the second half. I said that from the beginning.

    There is a second half and it is an important thing to consider.

    Definitely should not be brushed off.

  4. #34
    Quote Originally Posted by jasonwestmas View Post
    Just to add to what you are saying. . .I think true understanding of a structural object is spacial understanding that is stored in memory. As is the understanding of what light does on certain materials without reference. When I was young I could copy a photograph perfectly with a pencil or brush just by eyeballing it but I could never do it from just my memory. I didn't understand anything that I was replicating. I had to take the time to draw or sculpt or add color to something from understanding rather than just what I was seeing. Only then could I invent new things that weren't things just to copy.

    I think my point is regardless of the medium, we all need understanding to do anything that isn't just replication of what we see.

    I think I wrote this somewhere else before lol.
    You may have, but I think I don't remember.

    But continuing on this line of thinking. Something that Ed Catmull said about art. He said it is about learning to look. And I have found that this is such a key thing. And the thing that most artists have trouble with. I have stood over the shoulder of many an artist and pointed to the photo and then to their model and said, look. Can you see how this is another shape than what you are making?

    The ability to assimilate shapes and space and transfer that to a medium of any kind is a skill that has to be learned. And it takes a lot of practice. And this is not limited to or something that can only be learned in 2D obviously.

    But as I think of that. Here is another aspect of it. Seems to me though that I almost never see traditional techniques taught in 3D. Meaning that it is interesting that these skills that are taught there, in 2D are not making it to the 3D world. I am sure it is not true in all cases. But I would say broadly probably so. So this is another fall out of negating 2D. Because this is the world where all of this stuff has been developed over centuries of art and art teaching. And we are going to come along and say, well it really does not translate or is not important?

    And it would be all well and good, if 3D courses were structured in the same way as 2D courses are. But they are not. At least from what I have seen. In the uni obviously the artists are expected to get that in the traditional drawing class.

    And so this is another way some very fundamental foundations of skills can get lost, by simply negating 2D as not necessary. I beg to differ. I think it is fundamental to the entire thing from start to finish and negating it in an off hand way is not a good idea.

  5. #35
    Registered User DCjr's Avatar
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    Great work William! Nice to see you at the Lightwave forum again.

  6. #36
    Axes grinder- Dongle #99
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    Richard: I saw some outstanding artist using Zbrush (probably) to sculpt a head, and he started w/the skeleton, added the musculature, before getting to the skin.

    IIRC, this is a very classical way of 2d drawing-- even though subsequent work obliterates the early stuff, the early stuff informs the later work. And the result was outstanding.

    Is that kinda where you're going w/this?

    +++++++++

    This discussion reminds me of social dancing: I like to waltz, and some of my partners are not of the highest skill level. I've found when they take tango classes, they become much better waltzers, even if they never get very good at tango.

    Tango teaches you to sense what your partner is doing. You may not learn to tango well, but you certainly learn to pay attention to your partner, and that is crucial in all social dance.

    Similarly, while most 3d practitioners will most likely never be good at drawing, drawing will teach them how to LOOK, and how to SEE. Seeing, to me, is the premiere skill in the artist's toolkit.
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  7. #37
    Registered User Rayek's Avatar
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    When I was younger, I always thought reasonable 2d drawing skills weren't that important to become a good 3d artist. I still think that good (even excellent) 3d work can be done (and is done) by artists who lack the ability to put their ideas on a 2d canvas.

    These days I have become more nuanced, and I am convinced that, in order to grow as a 3d artist, 2d drawing skills are the easiest and simplest method to improve one's "seeing". An artist with good drawing skills generally imbues his/her work with an edge that is harder to achieve without those skills. I do find that learning 3d has improved my drawing skills, and vice versa.

    Good 2d construction skills lead to better 3d construction skills. On the other hand, I have seen students study anatomy through their 3d work only, and this understanding lead them to construct character work that broke through to the next level(s) of 3d finesse.

    I do completely agree with Richard that understanding of the 2d canvas may dramatically improve 3d work (which is ultimately a 2d canvas as well). Although it is not the only way to improve it - I feel it depends on the individual artist as well. Some respond exceedingly well with 2d drawing, while I have seen others grow as artists without much 2d skills at all. And some of those had brilliant sculpting skills (in physical clay :-). I know of one or two students in my classes who learned to "see" through their photography and cinematography work (no drafting skills to speak of).

    I suppose the key is the capability to "look" - which is most often, but not always, acquired with good 2d drawing skills. But there are always exceptions, and there always will be. Not everyone learns the same way - which makes things so interesting!
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  8. #38
    RETROGRADER prometheus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeric_synergy View Post
    If I was a noob I'd think you were pulling my leg. Of course, I know you could do this.

    ++++++
    For people who "can't" sketch, there's always Sculpy or Play-Doh. Seriously.
    Plasteline/plastecine is probably better, before going with sculpy.(cheaper too).play doh one can always go back to once your in the elder care, thoug play doh is different in consistence..and dries out after a while,, and not as good as plasteline and sculpy
    Plasteline is nice and easy to form, if you want it to be solid later, learn how to work with that and plaster.
    sculpting with real clay would probably be my number one favourite occupation before 3d graphics, if you could make a living with it.

    Even a blind person can sculpt stuff with clay, just by feeling the shape.

    Plastecine and plaster set work..
    To bad the amazing set of the spacejockey was burnt down by accident, I would have liked to see that in real life, maybe I should build one myself if I find some space somewhere


  9. #39
    Adapting Artist jasonwestmas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Surrealist. View Post
    You may have, but I think I don't remember.

    But continuing on this line of thinking. Something that Ed Catmull said about art. He said it is about learning to look. And I have found that this is such a key thing. And the thing that most artists have trouble with. I have stood over the shoulder of many an artist and pointed to the photo and then to their model and said, look. Can you see how this is another shape than what you are making?

    The ability to assimilate shapes and space and transfer that to a medium of any kind is a skill that has to be learned. And it takes a lot of practice. And this is not limited to or something that can only be learned in 2D obviously.

    But as I think of that. Here is another aspect of it. Seems to me though that I almost never see traditional techniques taught in 3D. Meaning that it is interesting that these skills that are taught there, in 2D are not making it to the 3D world. I am sure it is not true in all cases. But I would say broadly probably so. So this is another fall out of negating 2D. Because this is the world where all of this stuff has been developed over centuries of art and art teaching. And we are going to come along and say, well it really does not translate or is not important?

    And it would be all well and good, if 3D courses were structured in the same way as 2D courses are. But they are not. At least from what I have seen. In the uni obviously the artists are expected to get that in the traditional drawing class.

    And so this is another way some very fundamental foundations of skills can get lost, by simply negating 2D as not necessary. I beg to differ. I think it is fundamental to the entire thing from start to finish and negating it in an off hand way is not a good idea.
    Perhaps I'm not clear on the context for which you are speaking but I think I know what you mean by 2D skills. I took on a job that required a lot of unity/ afterFX motion graphics and graphic design in general regarding popups, logos, Button UI as well as particle effects and 3D character animation all working together in the same 2D camera space. I definitely noticed that 2D composition was not my forte and I have since learned a lot about that. I could do it but I know that I have improved a lot in that regard in a per pixel type of examination. Just a few pixels in 2D space makes a huge difference when creating clearly readable video game projects.
    Last edited by jasonwestmas; 10-27-2016 at 09:40 AM.
    All that is powerful or long standing is first conceived in the imagination; supported by the hope of possibility and then made manifest in our commitment of our current physical reality.

  10. #40
    Quote Originally Posted by jeric_synergy View Post
    Richard: I saw some outstanding artist using Zbrush (probably) to sculpt a head, and he started w/the skeleton, added the musculature, before getting to the skin.

    IIRC, this is a very classical way of 2d drawing-- even though subsequent work obliterates the early stuff, the early stuff informs the later work. And the result was outstanding.

    Is that kinda where you're going w/this?

    +++++++++

    This discussion reminds me of social dancing: I like to waltz, and some of my partners are not of the highest skill level. I've found when they take tango classes, they become much better waltzers, even if they never get very good at tango.

    Tango teaches you to sense what your partner is doing. You may not learn to tango well, but you certainly learn to pay attention to your partner, and that is crucial in all social dance.

    Similarly, while most 3d practitioners will most likely never be good at drawing, drawing will teach them how to LOOK, and how to SEE. Seeing, to me, is the premiere skill in the artist's toolkit.
    Yes in both cases that is the general idea.

    Actually this is nothing new. It is centuries old. Over time good information gets obscured. Some times information is improved, sometimes it isn't. Sometimes we think we are "smarter now" when in fact we have simply stopped using common sense. In the old classic schools even doctors learned art and other humanities along with science. It was widely accepted that the more well-rounded a person is educated the better person he is. Then over time we started to specialize. When we specialize we loose a broader scope.

    If all you learn is how to make bombs but you never learn diplomacy.... well off topic, we can't go there. But you get my point.

    However all of this said. Here is my main point that I come to rest on. And that is that we can debate all we want about how important it is to be well rounded as an artist. Or how 2D education will affect your 3D.

    But there is one thing that is not up for debate. 3D is not 3D. It is actually 2D with the illusion of 3D.

    All of our input devices - or I should say the current most used - are 2D devices. A mouse and a tablet are both 2 dimensional input devices. The best artists - if they can afford it - use a tablet screen so that the monitor is actually the canvas. And so there you are definitely 2D. It is usually the preferred way if you are a 2D digital artist but some 3D artists find it attractive as well.

    So the history and the tech of this all come from 2D.

    So, then to say that 2D is optional? How can that possibly be? It is essential.

    And that is not even counting the fact that probably 80 percent of 3D work is actually 2D work. (painting, 3D sculpting, weight painting texturing, UV mapping are all 2D input skills on the illusion of 3D or directly in 2D in a paint program or UV map) Then you add to that, the fact that it all comes together in 2D on a flat screen. (aside from the current 3D trend). It is in fact a 2 D medium from input to final image.

    So 2D is optional?

    Hardly. The skill you have in 2D would directly be applied on a daily basis for 80 percent of your work including and especially with "3D" sculpting.
    Last edited by Surrealist.; 10-27-2016 at 09:55 AM.

  11. #41
    Adapting Artist jasonwestmas's Avatar
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    well 3D isn't an illusion, it's real ( err, real 3D data that exists as a structural concept), only our perception of it is 2D. But our understanding can be 3D and 2D depending how we are looking at it. Studying how to get a good 2D silhouette and how that shape relates to X number of other shapes is indeed important.
    I can honestly say that studying 3D objects has improved my 2D skills too.
    Last edited by jasonwestmas; 10-27-2016 at 10:20 AM.
    All that is powerful or long standing is first conceived in the imagination; supported by the hope of possibility and then made manifest in our commitment of our current physical reality.

  12. #42
    Yes. Sculpting or building things in the real world is 3D. Working in the computer is 2D, sickly and only, from input to output with some virtual 3D math and feedback in the middle. You move a mouse in 2 dimensions. You draw in 2 dimensions on a tablet with a pen. traditional 2D methods of input. A 2D output.

    That I am saying as completely aside from the other points of discussion about broadening your skills and how those will relate back and forth.

    Here on this point I am saying there is a direct and completely unavoidable context of 2D skill. And most of it is exactly 2D not even 3D. We only actually model for a very short span of the production cycle. Most of the rest of it requires a 2D skill. Literally. not figuratively or even in concept.

    This is just another way I think the argument is absurd.

  13. #43
    Adapting Artist jasonwestmas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Surrealist. View Post
    Yes. Sculpting or building things in the real world is 3D. Working in the computer is 2D, sickly and only, from input to output with some virtual 3D math and feedback in the middle. You move a mouse in 2 dimensions. You draw in 2 dimensions on a tablet with a pen. traditional 2D methods of input. A 2D output.

    That I am saying as completely aside from the other points of discussion about broadening your skills and how those will relate back and forth.

    Here on this point I am saying there is a direct and completely unavoidable context of 2D skill. And most of it is exactly 2D not even 3D. We only actually model for a very short span of the production cycle. Most of the rest of it requires a 2D skill. Literally. not figuratively or even in concept.

    This is just another way I think the argument is absurd.
    It's not absurd at all. I'm speaking in terms of fact from my own experience in my mind. When we understand things in 3D from looking at objects from different perspectives and create them from those multitude of perpectives we build more understanding and the 2D counterpart becomes a reflection of that. They are connected no matter what.
    All that is powerful or long standing is first conceived in the imagination; supported by the hope of possibility and then made manifest in our commitment of our current physical reality.

  14. #44
    Spinny Spinland's Avatar
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    Interesting how some threads gang aft agley.

    Passionate, creative people respond passionately to issues relate to their art. I don't know that you could be one without doing the other; might be wrong, but still awaiting counterexamples. I know I get my knickers in a twist more often than I care to admit, sometimes over the silliest things. You've seen this.

    Thing is, so much of what we feel so passionately can be anecdotal; even when we can point to a greater body of evidence. In this, our craft, I think it's so easy quickly to make it personal. Generalizations can be so bland when compared to the fire that burns within, Just my own observations, of course, but there it is.

    Okay, that's my blathering out of the way; on to the topic: very cool character design, William! I had to chuckle a little at the comment on the production itself. I know, right?

    My own, totally unscientific anecdote which applies to absolutely no one else but to me: I draw. I have drawn all my life (well, since I could hold an implement) and my associated vision completely drives my visualization skills as transferred to things 3D. Again, that is only my personal bias and I am unqualified to declare that someone who cannot recreate one of those silly sketches in the back of comic books could not become a kick *** 3D artist. I cannot imagine how that process would progress, because I do not have said experience, but I cannot deny its validity.

    That's as far as I can reliably go on that topic. See what I did there?

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    Last edited by Spinland; 10-27-2016 at 11:20 AM.
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  15. #45
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