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James Russell Barton

ZBrushCentral username: RBARTON

SAVAGE BEAUTY I started in ZBrush with some base meshes that I modeled in Maya. I always start in the "A" pose and sculpt with X symmetry on for my basic block out sculpt. I prefer to sculpt in the larger muscle groups for figures and work my way down to the smallest details. Generally I sculpt in passes; once I have the general sculpt done and all the other subtools to equal quality I move on to the pose. I spend a good amount of time on the pose to ensure the weighting is correct an that I have a good silhouette. The pose to me is just as important if not more important than the actual sculpt because the pose is the first thing to register and if that is off the viewer has to over come that before they can consider the quality of the sculpt. I always put my pose on a layer and name it so; any other sculpting is also put onto a separate layer, generally I add folds and muscle deformation to reflect the pose of my character. I do this because I like to texture in my original "A" pose, by having my pose on a layer I can just turn it off to restore my default pose. I save my hi frequency details to the very end. Texturing is was done using photos for the figure and a combination of photos and hand painting for the other assets. When the texturing is complete I remove any shadows and highlights from the texture so the texture is as flat and clean as possible. From the cleaned color texture I create an inverted desaturated  HiPass filter to generate my skin pores. The most common brushes I use are Clay, Clay tubes and smooth.  Clay Tubes set to a very low value used with a quick criss cross motion with the smooth brush set to a low value gives me that sort of soft tissue quality to the skin that give that subtle realistic quality. Rendering was done in Maya using the miss fast skin shader and mental ray with an IBL and 3 spot lights. I enjoyed trying to make a female that looks both sensual and tough. The face was very difficult to do with this idea in mind but it was an enjoyable learning experience. I enjoy working in ZBrush it has a certain freedom that other software packages does not have. However I still prefer to poly model all my art pieces, it may not be as fluid as ZBrush but also like the creation process of planner modeling. ARTIST'S PROFILE I grew up in Greenwood South Carolina where I had several factory jobs. That was all the town had to offer and I started working after graduating from high school.I did try graphical engineering at the local tech school but it was a nightmare. Most of my free time I had during those days was spent painting and drawing. I would always get asked the question " Why are you working here?" After about 10 years of hearing this comment and a very supportive wife, we decide it was time to take a step of faith and see if I could get into computer animation in one form or another, whether it be movies or games. So we moved to Florida and I attended Full Sail. Graduated two years later with a BS degree in computer animation. I got my first industry job at EA Tiburon as a character artist 2 months after graduation and it's still my current place of employment. I enjoy working on personal projects even though they some times take several months to finish due to the limited amount of time I have to work on them. But you learn to find the time on things you enjoy doing even if it's only an hour or two a week. Speed sculpting is always fun when I don't have a lot of time to do a completed piece. Email: rt_barton@yahoo.com OR rbarton@ea.com
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