Making of The Last Elf by Piotr Fox Wysocki, Poland
Hello Everyone, I am Piotr Fox Wysocki from Poland. After receiving lots of mails I decided to write a making of The Last Elf in an interviewing way. Hope all of you will like this and if any questions or suggestions have then don’t hesitate to mail me.
大家好，我叫 Piotr Fox Wysocki，来自波兰。在收到很多邮件后我决定以访谈的形式写下最后的精灵制作过程。希望各位喜欢，如果有任何的问题或者意见请给我发邮件。
Q. From where you get the concept of creating The Last Elf?
There was no concept. I decided to do something crazy and like to check how much simple workstation can handle. The idea was to create exact models just like in a real life. That means no displacement, just pure geometry. And it was a modeling experiment, to see if it’s worth to suffer so much. I realized it would be too simple to create a character.
Later when I finish modeling head, I realize so maybe it is not enough…And I go for Lord of the Rings elf. I liked there elvish helmet shape, but for me there was not enough decorations. I saw concepts of those helmets and they was awesome, finally in movie they looks poor. This idea didn’t fit to my imagination about elves. I didn’t want to do anything new compare to LOTR; I want to just improve a bit, to fit my vision of elvish culture.
So I asked my wife, Marta Wysocka, to make an amazing helmet based on LOTR movie. While she was working on it, I was working on clothes, shader. She spends lots lot’s of time on researches for decorative motives. Finally she found Celtics motives which she adopt to elvish ones. Finally we end with designed motives for at list 5 helmets. After 4 months of researches, modeling, redoing we have helmet done.
我问我的妻子 Marta Wysocka。怎样在指环王电影的设计基础上来创建出令人影响深刻的头盔。然后，她开始工作，设计角色的头盔和衣服。她花了很多的时间去研究装饰的主题。最后她发现凯尔特人的装饰风格很适合我的精灵角色。最后我们至少设计了5个不同风格的头盔。在花了4个月的研究，建模，修饰后，头盔制作完成了。
And I realize there was something missing in the fabric but when I saw her helmet I had to do something like she was doing. So I did the brooch. And it was a really small object compared to her helmet.
Q. You have taken any references for this character and from where?
References for helmet from LOTR, for decorations it was Marta design. For brooch – I based on Gandalf brooch from LOTR movie. For elf – I took some pictures of Marta. And finally I change a bit something’s. Those pics were with large amount of painted dots on her face. To have exact proportions later on modeling.
Q. Which modeling method and software used in the making? Have you faced any difficulties?
Everything has been done in Maya and used polygon modeling. We like polygons because of good modeling control and UV’s. For the elf face I use Zbrush, for lips and eyes, to give them some fine details.
For Marta this helmet was a good show off modeling skills, and some kind of protest against Zbrush and Mudbox. Where you can do something very similar in one or 2 days. And it was cool to see everything modeled. It gives an illusion of having real object in 3d. You can take look from every side, and see how it was made. But most of all it was something crazy, something what you can’t do at regular work.
I think there was only one difficulty, The eyes… finally they don’t look as I want. I just give up, when I saw some decent result.
Q. Will you tell me something about texturing, lighting and rendering in this scene?
Texturing – I create all the textures alone and I use few pictures from different directions and after UV’s job, I just project them on to the face, bake them to the texture and stitch them in Photoshop. Clean, remove shadows, etc… As I remember I had 5 or 6 projected pics. I used mental ray fast skin shader. To create cloth I used Maya cloth, and Maya fur. As far as I remember there were 1300 000 small hair in the fabric. Also tiny hair on the face, but I don’t remember right now how much.
贴图-我自己创建了所有的纹路，我使用了几张不同地方获得的图片，UV编辑完成后，我把这些图片映射到角色的面部，然后烘焙成纹理，接着在 Photoshop里面进行修改，清除，去掉阴影等等……我记得我用了5到6张的映射贴图，我使用mental ray 的fast skin shader来作为皮肤的材质。布料我使用MAYA的cloth系统来创建。我记得在衣服上使用了1300 000 根毛发。在面部也用了很多的小的毛发，但记不清数量了。
Lighting – There were 2 spot lights. One on the face, with leaf gobo. Second light, from behind as the back light. For HDRI maps I use just jpegs, on box. When I was working on it was winter, so I couldn’t do my own pics. So I found some pictures of forest and I place them on cube.
灯光 – 我用了两盏聚光灯。一盏打在面部，并且使用了遮光补。第二盏灯从后面打过去，作为背光。对于 HDRI 贴图我只是使用了 jpeg格式的图片，使用BOX方式。我在制作的时候是在冬天，所以我不能制作我自己的图片，我找到一些森林的图片，然后把他们放置在CUBE上。
Rendering – I use Maya mental ray, with final gathering. To have quick feedback I just project rendering result on cloth and bake it to the texture, for faster rendering in high resolutions.
渲染 – 是使用MAYA的mental ray来渲染，开启了final gathering。为了快速反馈结果，我把衣服的纹理烘焙出来，然后在高分辨率下渲染结果。
When I finish face shader setup I bake it for the face so I could work really fast on eyes, brooch, helmet, eyelashes, cloth fur, peach fuzz on the face and also I freeze final gathering results. For final rendering I leave just backed cloth, and rest was calculated. Final rendering in 3k takes around 2 hours on my system (Pentium 4 3.4Ghz HT, 4GB RAM, ATI Radeon x850xt, Dell 24 inch monitor). Have a look at my rendering settings.
当我把面部材质设置好后，我把效果烘焙出来使用，这样我可以在眼睛，胸针，头盔，睫毛，布料的毛发，面部的柔毛，最后冻结 final gathering结果。最后渲染时我把布料烘焙后使用，其他的都是渲染出来的，最后花了2个小时来渲染，得到了3K的结果，我的电脑系统（Pentium 4 3.4Ghz HT, 4GB RAM, ATI Radeon x850xt, Dell 24 inch monitor）下面是我的渲染设置。
Long story short, I tried to do everything exactly as it is in the real life. Hope some of you enjoy this making.