DSFA Assignment 1 Pop-up Me _ Wentao Wang

Pop-up Me

These are the mugshots I used to start modeling my face. 

This is the final product of the model of my face. The top of my head looks a little bit too sharp, and some muscles on my face need further adjustment. But overall, it looks kind of like me.

The following section is how different parts of my face are modeled during the process.

The nose started with seven pieces in the front and adding more structures and details later on. Using face extrusion to make the structure of the inner part of the nose.

This is the structure of my mouth, one important part is to form several layers of the lip to mimic the actual mouth muscle structure of a human.

This is the structure of my eyes. Similar to the mouth structure, the structure of the eyes are also loops of faces to make is similar to the real eyes.

This is the structure of my ears. To make the ears, first form a question mark shape to make the outline of your ear, and then use extrusion tool, append to polygon and multi-cut tool to add details to it.





These are the screenshots of my mandala, and this is the link to my video documentation.



This is the PDF of my presentation.


These are the screenshots of my model after further adjustment, more details are added to the ears and the whole skull is completed.



DSFA – Assingment 1: Pop-Up Me



I took mugshot photos of my self from the front and from the side view. In Photoshop, I aligned the images and by using guides to make sure that the eyes, ears, mouth, and essentially the most important features of my face were align as best as possible. Once my pictures where ready, I imported them into Maya and used camera objects to project them on the center of the Scene, forming a cross so that I could use those images as a guide and start 3D modeling my face.


Nose & Nostrils

The first thing I started modeling was my nose and nostrils. The first model of my nose was divided into 7 different pieces for the front part and 4 pieces on the sides. Here is a drawing of this:


I went through many different stages modeling my nose, so here are some pictures of the process and the final version of it:




For the mouth, I had to use nine pieces around the lips, in order to create a circular shape. I started on the outer part on the lips and extruded inwards forming rings, until I finally had the shape of my lips. But I made sure not to close the mouth completely so that I can later animate it.




To model my ear, I focused on creating a question mark shape divided into 10 pieces. However, my ear is not exactly shaped like a question mark. Instead, it is more like a half ellipse, so that is the main shape I ended up modeling.


I first created the main outer part and then continued to close the ear and join it to the skull of my model.




The structure of the eye is similar to that of the mouth, but instead of being divided into nine pieces, it is divided into ten. Thus, I first created an ellipse shape of the squares around the end and continued by working inwards. I also tried to create my doble eyelid.



For the skull, I started by creating a column from the top part of the nose to the top of the head and to the back of it, and similarly the side part of the eye to the ear, and from there, again to the top and to the back of the head. Each quarter was divided into five parts.


Neck & Torso


For my Mandala, I mainly used spheres and cones. I placed them in form of rings and made them rotate differently around the x, y, and z axis. I also made the radius of one of the rings translate along the y-axis while having it change its radius.

Here is the video of my mandala in motion:


DSFA|Class 8|Case Study(Yi Shan)

Bharti Kher | “The Skin Speaks a Language Not Its Own”

It is my first time to know about Bindi. Bindi can well connect different parts and depict the detail of the sculpture. It makes the skin of elephant look vividly. Also, this artwork has some cultural meanings. What makes the sculpture interesting is that the white elephant has special meaning and it is dying. I prefer this kind of sculpture which is meaningful and creative.


Hindu Hand-Drawn Type In a Root Rectangle Space

This series is quite interesting. The complicated motif is drawn in the same hand shape. It makes me think about the poster we have to do in the assignment two. We should change our head’s texture. In this example, I find that some drawings’ motif is really similar to each other, while there are also some small differences between them. Maybe I can try this kind of change in my work.


animation | The Carousel Family / Inside Man

I can just find the movie and TV episode of it. There is no animation version.


Yuichi Ikehata

This artist’s work is mainly about the human body. There are many holes on the sculptures’ surface that they look like broken parts. From the body structure of some of his work, I think it is like a struggling person. And there is also the mixture of sculpture and colored painting. For example, there is an artwork of the leaving feet and head. There are many holes on it and most of the sculpture is white, while the nails are like real human body’s color. These artworks inspire me a lot.


Neuro Momento Mori

In this sculpture, the woman’s face is cut into two halves. The left half is a living people while the right half is the skull and human brain. From its name, I guess that it may have the meaning of life and death. But why it is about neuro? Maybe it is related to the brain on the right half. And why the artist thinks it is a contemplating of death? I am wondering about this and I will keep thinking on this topic.

DSFA | FA18 | Extended Reading – Miki Bin

Class 1:   


This invention is definitely great for those artists who make animation. The immediate feedback is very helpful since the animators can user pens to tweak around on the screen.

This is a great software, but probably it will take a lot of time before people who just get started to know the drill of the software.


Class 2:

Ron Mueck: The Most Realistic Sculptures (I, II, III)

I was very, very amazed to see how his work came into being.

During the summer I visited the Shanghai Power Station of Art, where the Cartier Foundation showcased a lot of works. One of my favorite sculpture actually is from Ron Mueck. He was doing a super big scale sculpture of a woman lying in bed, staring outside as if she was thinking. The unrealistic scale and the super real facial expression deeply impressed me. I think not only his skill made him stand out, but also his ability to capture the specific moment and expression of human beings.


Class 3

Behance Portfolio

I didn’t really look into Behance until this was introduced in the class. I took motion graphics design last semester in New York and got to know dribble.

I think Behance is a great platform that allows artists to showcase their works. Even though most of them are flat graphic design or motion design, I still find the architecture design and product design page interesting. They have good render, lighting, and form.

Probably by the end the semester I can have some interesting stuff to put on there too!

Class 4

Normal vs. Displacement Mapping & Why Games Use Normals

This article explained in detail how normal mapping differs from displacement mapping. I found this quote well explained the difference:

“Normal and displacement maps are special kinds of image textures that influence how light is calculated across a surface. They create an illusion of depth by telling the light to bounce off simulated features of the surface, even though those features are not actually there.”

It is incredibly smart for people to come up with the solution to best visualize the visual outcome while minimizing the cost of computation. Using angles is very smart.

I also read the three types of Normal maps, including tangent space, object space, and world space. I would assume that the tangent space will mostly be the type of normal map that we use in class since our model uses a lot of symmetry and duplication. It also required the model to be flexible.

I am glad we just need to use the Maya software to achieve all the facial sculpture. It is indeed a lot of computations!


Legacy Effects

I was completely blown away by the great works from Legacy Effects. I notice that they have such a wide range of work that makes their every work complete and professional.

There are three points that attract my attention:

  1. Mechanical Movement

I visited the moving picture museum this summer and see the exhibition from sesame street. They are really interesting, because I see the correlation between Legacy Effects and Sesame Street, how they excel in using mechanics to simulate the previously “puppets” that were mostly manually animated by hand.

  1. Super Real Facial Sculpture

Having gone through their work, the one that struck me at the first sight was the “GIANT ANIMATRONIC HEAD”. I watched their youtube video of behind the scenes and realized that there are actually a lot of similar procedures overlapping between Ron Mueck’s sculpting process and theirs that they all started with physical sculpting, and then digitize them, make them mechanical, and do further polishing.

  1. Rapid prototyping: 3D printing

I realized that one of the greatest tools they have is 3D printing, and watching their videos I realized that their 3D printing machines are so good, that they can print things really fast, and ranging from small-scaled objects to gigantic objects.

I watched a documentation a long time ago about the technology used in NASA, and back in 2000, NASA was using this kind of 3D printing. Very impressive.


First Assignment, Pop-up me, Olesia Ermilova

This is the link to my presentation on my project:



Here are the initial photos of me, the process that I was going through. As I said during presentation, I had a smooth process as I simply tried to follow professor’s lead and guidelines. The hardest part to model was probably the nose. My mistake was to model it the way I wanted, instead of simply following professor’s suggestions. Once I realised I had to follow the instructions, I quickly polished my model which made it much better and defined.


I still have to model the ears and make the model look more like me as our faces aren’t symmetrical at all. It was also a nice discovery that our faces are COMPLETELY unsymmetrical which makes them more interesting and “deep” I guess. I especially love the way my lips and skull look like. I think it’s really close to my real face and skull structure. I was very happy when I pressed “smooth mode” and saw how almost impeccable the model looked like.

For now, I’m working on the tweaking of the details in order to make the model my genuine copy as well as polishing some inconsistencies that might have occured before.I am trying to finish the ears as well as make my lips look a bit fuller because in real life they are quite different. On a side note, I would say I am super happy about learning a new tool as before I only used Blender. Now I have more tools up in my sleeve which makes me forever grateful!

Here is the link to the 3D model on SketchFab:https://sketchfab.com/models/8c9c1d20a400469f83d4eab4733ca481

DSFA | Week 3 | Extend Readings

Class 1: ApolloDreamworks, Autodesk, Behance

Class 2: Ron Mueck: The Most Realistic Sculptures (I, II, III)

As our class relates to sculpturing a lot, for it’s like to make sculptures in a digital version. This artist’s work really attracts me a lot. Since we are working on the computers, we are trying to show a 3D sculpture in, actually, a 2D environment. As for us, how we view the size, the shape is a little bit different from the real sculpturing process. But there’s still a lot that we could learn from the sculpturing. For example, drawing a draft for the ideal completed work, thus, it could probably help us to transform our plane imagination to a three-dimensional sculpture.

Class 3: Behance portfolio

I read several artworks from different artists or art studio in Behance. One of the works that I’m quite interested in is a work in progress from Ministry of Broadcast Collectable Art figure called The WALL Snow. It is narrative-drive indie single-player 2D pixel art platformer, inspired by some cinematic pieces (ex. the original Prince of Persia).  Differentiating from our topic of class, this work is trying to represent the reality in a 2D way. However, what’s interesting is that, when creating the figure of the Crow, which is the little helper of the main character, they still try to produce it in a 3D sculpture and detailed its features. They replace the realistic figure of normal crows by a more cartoon-like one: use long cuboids to represent its feather, big eyes, humanized facial expressions… I really like this reproduced reality—though you know it is a crow, you will still clearly distinguish it from the real one.

Class 4: 


I read several topics: Mold Making – Replication, Maquettes – Collectibles, Makeup FX, 3D Modeling – Visualization, 3D Scanning – Life Casting… What impressed me the most is the mog make up on Brain in the 3D Modeling part. It is so amazing that they create such an alien creature from a real human skull. Their adaption of facial features and shape of the skull are so clear and detailed. This really inspired me of my potential future project. For the 3D Scanning, the way that they get the real human model is interesting for they directly get the model from the human being, therefore, the model they get (faces on the wall) looks much more accurate and vivid than ours(refer to mug shots). Besides, I also enjoy the Makeup FX part. It’s really interesting to see how they paint and process whether on models or real human faces and end up with the amazing look. It’s so detailed and lifelike.

Normal vs Displacement Mapping

I believe this article definitely teaches a lot of useful knowledge, however, I’m sorry to say that some of them is hard for me to understand. In this article , it shows the effect that different types of maps have on the models. For example, in the normal maps, the different usage of the light tricks on the angel and edges can make the model look so detailed when they aren’t actually 3D stuff. This just remind me of some of the painting skills that I’ve used. But I’m still confused about the Tangent Space, Object Space and World Space. Like, what does the author mean by “Since they are based on global coordinates, the object may not rotate at all in order to preserve the correct shading” when talking about world space.

Understanding Retopology

Sorry, I’m not able to view this.

Retopology by Mudbox

Sorry, I could not open this website. It’s said the page cannot be found.

DSFA | Week 3 | Assignment 1

I didn’t realize before this class just how meticulous digital sculpting is. If you mess up one thing, it could cause an entire project redo. This project taught me persistence and time management.

My presentation linked below goes through my process of creation and bumps along the way. I like to draw out what I’m digitally making, so there are many of my own sketches included. I’ve also included my mandala video below as it won’t run in the pdf presentation

presentation  |   mandala

Once I got the hang of Maya and the basics of the workflow and the tools, progress came faster.

I also realized the importance of accurate headshots. If these are even a little off, things become tricky. The photos also showed me how I hold my head and a few asymmetries in my face. That was interesting to see.

 this is the skull based off of my headshots