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Thrace Kelsick | Student Work 2021-2022
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Thrace Kelsick | Student Work 2021-2022

Thrace Kelsick
by thracekelsick on 1 Jun 2022 for Rookie Awards 2022

My name is Thrace Kelsick, and I'm a CG Student at Think Tank Training Centre. I'm also a traditional artist, and have done airbrush art, comic book art, & traditional oil, acrylic, & watercolor painting. This year I'm submitting the finished projects from my first 3 terms studying Asset Creation for Film. Thanks!

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SMILODON

The result of my Final Project from Foundations Term at Think Tank Training Centre. I wanted to re-create the giant extinct cat Smilodon Populator and pay tribute to Charles R. Knights classic painting at the same time. I started with a scanned skeleton, then built up accurate anatomy sculpting in Zbrush (based on Jun Huang's fantastic reconstructions and musculature sheets from Jun's Anatomy). After that, I retopologized a symmetrical version of the mesh using QuadDraw in Maya, went back to Zbrush for posing and baking displacement maps, then Maya again for the fur groom in Xgen (based closely on the fur of a modern day Bengal Tiger). For the environment, I wanted a very "real" look, so I utilized assets from Quixel Megascans for the plants and grass. The trees are low detail, free assets I acquired from TurboSquid. The cliff was sculpted in Zbrush, with a displacement map from RD-Textures giving the high resolution detail. All the creature texturing was done in Mari, as well as the fur color (Ptex map). I originally created eyes in Zbrush, but felt they looked to human, so I switched to a paid asset (Jerod Bogh's tiger eyes). Scene was rendered in Vray, and composited in Photoshop.

Final Render

Top: Final Render Bottom: Original painting by Charles R. Knight


Sculpt-Wireframe-Final Output

Zbrush Sculpt 8 million polygons

Arkham Knight Catwoman

The Final Project from Advanced Term, and my first CG Character. I was responsible for all elements of this project, from planning to final comp. I chose to take the Arkham Knight game version of Catwoman and attempt a film quality portrait using cosplayer Xenia Shelkovskaya as primary reference. This was a challenging project, and I'm not super happy with the final result, specifically the facial sculpt and topology. Workflow wise, I started from the Genesis8 base mesh to leverage the built in Rig, from there everything was modeled/sculpted in Zbrush and Maya, (except the suit, which was Marvelous Designer). Skin texturing in Mari, all other textures made w/Substance Painter. Lighting, Lookdev and Rendering in Maya/Arnold. All work was completed within an ACEScg color pipeline.

Side-by-side comparison with the reference photo. Cosplay by: Xenia Shelkovskaya. Photo Credit: Aku

Exposure calibration in neutral lighting environment. Thanks to Adam O'Donnell for the Macbeth stand & tutorial!

I added a dirt pass for the face, as well as lowering the goggles to try out some different looks

Clay Renders

Over the course of the project, I created two different sets of eyes: The first was based on Alfred Roettinger's Realtime Eye tutorial. These were simplified, Realtime style eyes, with a transparent outer layer. I wanted a more physically accurate eyeball, so taking the Digital Emily scan data, I retopologized the sclera piece, then used a circular ramp to drive opacity of the corneal bulge. The Iris & pupil were separate geometry, from xyz Texture's HD Iris kit. Out-of-the-box green color was used.

The Xgen process was fairly simple. Three Descriptions were created: Eyebrows, Eyelashes, and Peachfuzz

Texturing xyz Multi-Channel maps were used for skin detail. I used the common workflow of wrapping a plane to my head sculpt using the excellent software R3DS Wrap. Once wrapped, the stacked displacement was brought into Mari for cleanup and splitting out R, G, and B channels, which were then brought into Zbrush as separate layers.


Skin texturing was completed almost exclusivity in Mari. Eight different channel maps were created following Adam O'Donnell's workflow.

Arnold Render Passes

Reference used throughout the project. Like almost everyone, I use PureRef.


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