I always intended to share a complete walkthrough of my process for making this image, but I got so wrapped up into making the image that I almost forgot about the sharing part. It's getting sort of late to really be of help for this contest, but this can still be helpful for other stuff. I'll try to do as many of these as possible (even after Halloween if it comes to that)-
Step 01) My Pumpkin head started out as a squished quadball that was smoothed with the sculpting tools.
Step 02) I made a quick spherical UV map for the surface and then applied the wood procedural texture as a displacement to make the ribs.
Step 03) The ribs, while going the correct direction, don't look like a pumpkin at all, so I used them as a driver to a gradient and reformed them with the gradient curve (see my driving gradients and textures
video). I also added a small amount of noise for some surface variation. I over emphasized the texture knowing it would be minimized in later steps.
Step 04) I then saved out the render geometry cache to actual geometry. This created quite a messy, but very high resolution surface, due to my quick UV map and unconcern for the displacement texture lining up. Then using the topo tools I made a quick face for the pumpkin and extruded it to get some depth. Both pieces were exported separately.
Step 05) In MeshMixer
, the two pieces were imported and subtracted from one another. I also used MeshMixers tools to clean up the messy model, filling in the holes and smoothing out the seams.
Step 06) I used MeshMixers tools to smooth over the edges between the booleans, creating a more seamless, believable result.
Step 07) The MeshMixer object was brought in to ZBrush and the QRemesher tool was used to create a subdivision compatible all-quads model from the messy triangles generated by MeshMixer.
The ZBrush model was brought back in to modo where the topo tools were used once again to model a stem that conformed to the top of the pumpkin. Once the base was defined, it was extruded using the Sketch Extrude tool. Then using the multi-resolution sculpting, stem like details were added in. The original undisplaced shape was used to render boolean the pumpkin interior and create the glowing inner surface.
The resulting mesh was surfaced (again) in modo with subsurface scattering and some procedural textures assigned as a bump to create a more realistic surface. Here is the final pumpkin mesh rendered.
Next I'll try to detail the steps I used to model the skeleton as quickly as possible.
James Darknell - MODO Training Manager