“How to Create Graphic Novels and Anime Style Art with Poser”, a live Digital Art Live training webinar. 25th November 2017, using Poser 11 Pro.
For the benefit of Poser and DAZ content sellers, here’s some market insight into my thinking on making store purchases.
$3.95 or less:
If a very nice new (or a Wishlist) item is reduced to $3.95 or less, then it’s almost certain to go in my Checkout basket without much thought. But then I’ll go and see what else on the same store I can find for $2-3. Because if I’m going to do the hassle of Checkout and download, then I might as well do it for a couple of items.
You do have to wade through a lot of fluff at that low end of the price range (brushes, 2D backgrounds, and naff items), but there are some gems down there . Especially for people who over-paint renders, or who intend to make comics using Poser 11’s Comic Book mode. So long as the geometry is still OK, then muddy old textures can be replaced by newer ones.
Getting two quality items for less than $8 thus feels about right, and there’s always the chance of finding a couple of nice $2 items (such as the former RuntimeDNA content) and/or finding that the same vendor has more sale items available. Of course, this “two for $8-$9” impulse will be moderated if I’ve done the same in the past month. It’s certainly not a weekly thing, more like a six-weekly thing.
$4.95 – $6.95:
At $4.95 – $6.95 a desirable item is far more likely to go into my Wishlist, rather than the Checkout basket. The exception would be if that price is a result of a 70%-80% reduction, in which case it’s almost certain to be purchased (so long as I have a reasonable PayPal balance). Because the price is never going to get better than that. But even then I’ll think hard, harder than I would at $3.95 or less, about if I really am likely to use it at some point in the future.
Those who have less of a content collection may think differently, as I tend to think “I already have content X”, so the new content will fit well with “content X” in a future picture. That’s especially so of poses. If I have a creature that’s difficult to pose — a Bolladon for instance — then the Bolladon’s dedicated pose set is a no-brainer purchase even at a discounted $5.95. I also tend to have more of a future-sense than most people do, thinking years and years ahead to when I have far more time for digital painting in my retirement (and when the 3D content I’m considering buying may no longer even be available). In contrast many people will only be focused on “what’s my next picture, next weekend”.
$8.95 – $20:
Generally, I don’t like to spend more than $8.95 on any single item. Anything over that amount, no matter how nice, will almost certain go into my Wishlist long-term and just sit there. I’ll wait to see what happens in a big sale or the sale on Cyber Monday. In the hope of eventual big 65%-80% discounts. The exception might be certain types of software add-on, such as Netherwork’s Thumbnail Designer for Poser (currently stuck at $15) or the Scene Optimizer for having multi-character DAZ Studio iRay pictures render much faster (currently $25). In such cases even a 40%-50% discount might entice.
But having potential buyers add an expensive item to their Wishlist, and then leave it there long-term, poses a risk for the vendor. Because some months later the item may be reconsidered by the buyer and removed from their wishlist. Thus if the seller priced the item at $20 and stuck there, they might have sold it for $7.95 with a 60% sale discount, but then all of a sudden… they get nothing from that buyer. Because the buyer doesn’t want the item anymore. And there was no way the buyer was ever going to pay the full $20.
Poser 11’s service release patch is out, the eighth such. To get it, launch your Smith Micro Download Manager, switch to the Updates tab. There you’ll see 11.0.8…
There appears to be no accompanying Content update pack this time, as there has been in the past.
If you run a 64-bit instead of a 32-bit install of Poser, then you need to make sure to uncheck the 32-bit check-box when the installer runs. Otherwise it may look for both 64-bit and 32-bit installs of Poser, and may then get confused when it can’t find the 32-bit.
Changes with the new patch:
* Queue Manager Installer now works on Windows 32-bit.
* Sketch Render no longer crashes or hangs when using Make Movie.
* Master Control light burning issues were solved.
* Graph Editor opens with last window size. [meaning: the Graph Editor no longer opens at a tiny size].
* Area Render fixes.
* Direct Manipulation Tool is now being rendered as intended.
* PNGs with alpha are now supported. The alpha is discarded, and the PNG is looked as a 24 bit image. [Poser can already output alpha-masked PNGs, so presumably this has to do with input of PNGs].
Here’s my pick of this month’s new content, released for Poser and DAZ Studio. It’s slightly early this month, as I wanted to get the Halloween items in before Halloween is over and gone.
Sayomi Anime Outfit for G3F looks fabulously detailed and designed. I presume it’s fairly close to some famous-in-Japan anime character outfit, but I can’t immediately find which one.
Techno Render Room and glass throne.
Dushka Machine Gun by Cybertenko, for Poser. Would suit a steampunk makover, but that shouldn’t be too difficult to do.
The Silent City, with a nicely subtle retro-future edge to some of the details.
R2R Crash Landed by Coflek-gnorg, for Poser. A quick setup for a spaceship or UFO crash site in a desert, with a lot of presets. If you want a non-crashed version of the ship, the older Fighter Spaceship by Coflek-gnorg is very similar to the crashed one, but with non-crashed textures.
Coflek-gnorg also has R2R Thunder Road, which may interest Poser users who don’t have access to Vue’s atmospheres, and who don’t want to get into multi-pass renders + Photoshop in order to do depth-fogging. 16 presets plus terrain.
Power Board is a powered super-skateboard by The ArtFarm, with poses.
Tactical Mask for Poser.
Fantasy / adventure:
Body Hair for G8 Female, for DAZ Studio. Each hair is geometry, so I’m guessing it may impact render times.
Kitty meets G8F: the poses, for G8F and the HiveWire Housecat.
Scythian Archers for Genesis 3 and 8, for DAZ Studio.
A free Fantasy Harp, with commercial use.
Villainous Lair, complete with V2 rocket.
Old Theater Changing Room by Cybertenko, now upgraded for Poser 11’s SuperFly renderer.
British railways expert DryJack has a warmly Autumnal GWR Bloater Fish Van, made with his usual high level of detail.
HiveWire Whisper is a baby unicorn for the HiveWire Horse. For Poser and DAZ Studio.
Flinks Scary Forest for Poser.
Sayuri Hair for V4.
Fairy Shroom World from HD scenery specialist ShaaraMuse3D.
Catula, a Dracula-style semi-toon for the HiveWire house cat. With a texture fix, could also work as an alien sci-fi cat. I like the Disney-ish side-profile too.
For matching fur types, look at the CWRW Black, White & Tuxedos for the HW House Cat.
Baby Barry, a kiwi-style baby bird for DAZ Studio. Could probably use a set of feathers.
Precious Lynx, which doesn’t appear to need a base such as last month’s Precious Deer.
GroBot, a super-flexible super-morphable new Poser character. In the large mix, there’s a nice cat-bot.
Sharks by AM: Hammerhead for Daz Studio.
PterodaustroDR by Dinoraul, for Poser. A sort of ‘demon pelican’.
Landscapes and sea-scapes:
Need a home for your wyrms? New from Stonemason, Misty River Gorge, a gorge system with river and foliage.
Pitts Special Stuntplane for Poser, with extreme HD dashboard and other textures. Perfect for flying over your landscape renders.
Prefer to stay on the ground? Try The Private Garden by Stonemason.
And finally, I see there’s a new version of SeaVue for Vue, SeaVue 2017 which supersedes the previous SeaVue ‘second edition’. Same price, $20. It’s a collection that helps you make classic surface seascape pictures with Vue, with crashing waves and swirling foam.
That’s it. More next month.
Graphic Medicine : the interaction of comics & healthcare. A very vigorous and dedicated website complete with: an occasional podcast; a blog; a long-running “This Week in Graphic Medicine” news/link digest; reviews of strips and graphic novels; and even a long-running annual conference (2018: Vermont, east coast of the USA / 2019: Brighton UK).
The new relatively-affordable 10-inch tablets with 1920px screens are going to provide an excellent platform for such comics. Add to that Poser’s speedy comic-book rendering abilities and vast royalty-free content library, and there seems to be a huge open opportunity here for talent to get into creating healthcare comics, and then to teach others to make them. That would have to be about teaching people to make them in a non-naff way, a way which meets the high 2D standards which both kids and regular adult comics-readers now expect. Ugly grainy 3D textures with a few toon lines over the top, and “wanna-be-3D-really” shadows, are not going to be acceptable in a therapeutic context.
I picked up Rift Guardian for Poser, in a recent DAZ sale, and I’m pleased to say it toons up beautifully in Poser 11’s Comic Book mode, without even having to change any textures.
Left figure: my custom ‘2000AD’ Poser sketch preset, run on the Comic Book mode b&w lines only. (12 seconds render). Right figures: Straightforward Comic Book mode (flat lighting, one extra light for brightness), default 3D textures. (5 second renders at 6000 pixels).
I discovered that Darkseal’s standalone characters take Nursoda character poses, though of course not all suit Rift Guardian.
The new Cinema 4D is out, Cinema 4D 19.
* A new viewport with… “Results so close to final render” that they can (apparently) be show to clients.
* 360° Virtual Reality output.
* “New Polygon Reduction” functionality, while preserving details.
* BodyPaint 3D. “Now uses an OpenGL painting engine, giving R19 artists a real-time display of reflections, alpha, bump or normal, and even displacement”.
* LOD. “Level of Detail (LOD) Object – Define and manage settings to maximize viewport and render speed, or prepare optimized assets for game workflows. Exports FBX for use in popular game engines.”
I wonder how automated that last one is? Auto LOD loading for distant objects? To speed up render time?
There’s also support for AMD’s various innovative new graphics power-ups, recently introduced.
Poser Pro 11 users should be able to send their Poser scenes to Cinema 4D, via the plugins that ship with Poser Pro. Though I’m guessing there will be the usual short hiatus before Poser supports the latest Cinema 4D 19. Although Vue is probably your better option there, unless perhaps Cinema 4D’s new “Results so close to final render” viewport is real-time.
Here’s my pick of September’s new content, released for DAZ Studio and Poser.
Prototype-X: Synthetic Limbs for G8F. An unusual cy-body makover for G8F.
Morphing Regenerator for G3F and G8F. Could probably also be re-worked as a cyber-vehicle, by adding a hover-ski beneath it.
A chunkier charger is Charger, an unusual power charging-station for your Genesis-based robots.
Ultimate Shower, a sort of future-shower place.
The shower and loungers probably a base area for a team of Dolphin Island-style High Tech Scuba Diver for Genesis 8 Female scientists.
Totte’s Flyfishing set for DAZ Studio. Might be adapted to become part of a steampunk scene where an inventor of tiny mechanical bots is readying a fiendish micro-army.
An authentic recreation of the Herculaneum Theater at Vesuvius, for Poser. Complete with interior spaces as they were when the volcano erupted.
Medieval Dinner Hall in the Beowulf mead-hall style.
A freebie canoe, Kanu. For Poser and M4. Commercial use.
Biomes01: Forest to Desert for Vue. Three different landscape zones which shade into each other, and with the sort of enormous scale which Vue does so well.
Dryland Expanse for Poser, another photoreal set from ShaaraMuse3D, this time with 8192px textures! Plus Dryland Oasis. Lots of uses, from lizards and dinosaurs to desert warfare and Biblical scenes. Also likely to interest Vue users.
If you need something that’s similar, but looks more like The Hulk just visited, there’s also the new Demolished Aftermath for Poser.
Flying Carpet by Cybertenko. Your classic racing rug from the Arabian Nights.
The Legend for Genesis 3 and 8 Female from Aeon Soul. Reminds me a bit of the bonemold armour in the videogame Morrowind.
Celestal HelmetHair for Poser, a helmet-as-hair that looks suitable for dragon-riders and snake-surfers.
Cave & cobwebs from 1971s. With a slightly stylised feel that should suit many semi-toon characters such as those of Nursoda.
1971s also has a new Swamp tree, which could form a centre-peice of the cave…
Also, the new Teen Josie 8 for Genesis 8 Female, suitable for storybook pictures and tales.
Precious Deer for DAZ Studio, plus (or course) a lot of add-ons and morphs to make dragons and suchlike.
AnnA HD for Genesis 8 Female, gives G8F a Pinocchio-ish semi-toon face.
Fishes of the Ocean for Poser and DAZ Studio. With morphs, schools presets, and several species and sizes. Lightweight, so you can have large schools of them.
That’s it. More picks next month.
The newly revamped Content Paradise store now has a “Sale” page linked, from the top of the front page. 40 pages of sale items, headed by a Poser 11 sale. Upgrade from Poser 6 or above, to Poser 11 Standard, for just $60…
There’s not a lot to get excited about on the sale items, as the reductions are quite modest. But right at the end of the pages there’s a Vue freebie, a cat-lady trailer ‘Granny’s Trailer – Mobile Park’, and it also has a furnished interior. It’s from Meshbox, but a glance inside the .zip shows it has multiple textures rather than a single texture map. Which means you can easily re-texture it…
I also spotted a good amount of NearMe discounted outfits and morphs and even a pose pack, which will interest those using NearMe + Poser to make comics…
The DAZ Store also has a big sale on now, mostly 40% discounts and a few 66%. Most of my Wishlist is discounted, though lacking the 70% discounts that would be really tempting.
As well as looking at your Wishlist, also sort-the-store by price, and then skip to about page 5 in. From there onward in you’ll find pages and pages of older RuntimeDNA items for $3 to $4 each, and lots of toons suitable for use with Poser’s Comic Book mode…
The new Content Paradise store is here.
It’s a simple and clean look, akin to the Hivewire 3D store. The thumbnail previews are larger, but store index/selection pages load just as quickly. The font size on the individual product description page might also be a size larger, and I’d prefer if it all the panels on each product page were opened up by default. Sign-in is as easy as before. The change doesn’t appear to have broken link URLs to specific content pages.
On the downside, it’s a tablet-tastic scroll-down layout. On a desktop PC this means that big wide spaces are wasted on each side of the main content. The header graphic is probably a step backwards, and perhaps they should run a competition for new ones. You still have to hunt for the tiny plain “My account” link, in order to reach your Wishlist from the front page. Personally I would have put a big Wishlist button/panel on the front page. No big sale, or newly rendered product renders, to accompany the makeover and encourage new sign-ups. Though Poser 11 itself does get a discount, as you can see in the above picture.
Overall, though, generally a welcome improvement.
Looks like the DAZ Store may have a big September sale slowly getting underway? A chunk of the tooning/overpainting-suitable Poser stuff on my wishlist is suddenly at 40% or 66% discount.
There also news about a revamp of the Content Paradise website, home to a zillion bits of Poser content. The revamp should launch around the middle of September. You might want to get a screenshot and/or refresh your WishList there, just in case of glitches in the swop-over. Hopefully there will also be a sale to accompany the re-launch, but that’s just a guess. Certainly vendors who have content there might consider taking advantage of the impending traffic by offering 50% to 70% discounts.
Slightly late this month, my survey of the new August 2017 content produced for Poser and DAZ Studio.
Base figures and content:
The flagship Genesis 8 Male base (G8M) is out, and should be available for download from inside the Library of the latest DAZ Studio version. Key store add-ons are: Genesis 8 Male Body Morphs, Genesis 8 Male Expressions and Head Morphs. Of course, built on top of G8M there’s also the new Michael 8 base and a Michael 8 Pro Bundle.
Also in the ‘must have’ category is DA Rust and Grime Shaders, to easily lay grime and rust over the top of any existing materials.
Also fairly vital — for Look At My Hair users — is the new LAMH 2 Iray Catalyzer. Note that… “All Alessandro_AM’s animal libraries have been updated for iRay/Catalyzer compatability. Make sure to download the free updates!”
MDD Nymia for V4.2 for Poser, from quality character-maker Maddelirium.
VYK_Teyla for G8F for DAZ Studio.
Ghost, wireframe, and Cortana for Pauline, a set of free hologram MATs for the flagship female character which ships free with Poser 11.
Single Man Light Aircraft for DAZ Studio, from a new name to me, Sareth. Nice, lots of details and moving parts, quality texture sets. I hope we’ll get more sci-fi from him in future.
Man-Tank by Cybertenko for Poser. Which also integrates with his RetroBot character to create an unusual Tankbot.
Ragnarok Mask for Genesis 3 and Genesis 8 Female. Poser creatives have had this for many years, but now it comes to DAZ.
Need steampunk or similar tattoos in DAZ Studio? How to Create Outstanding Skin Art Tutorial.
Orkz: Triceratox for Poser, a sort of cross between a giant pig and an ox. Complete with war-gear.
Hordor HornsHelmet for V4 looks like fun.
A cute-but-robust small shield, though to get it you need the whole Dragon Guard Outfit for Genesis 8 Female.
Lernaean Hydra for DAZ Studio, with poses.
MortemVetus’s Dream Arborum figures. They appear to be static sculpts which were designed to showcase the TerraDome 2 plugin, but apparently they don’t require that. Another Runtime DNA carry-over, but new to me.
MS17 Tudor Room for DAZ Studio from London224.
Authentic G3M Minoan era Mycenaeans and Sea-people for DAZ Studio.
The famous Trojan Horse from London224, for DAZ Studio. It’s been available for Poser for a while now, but this version appears to be new for DAZ.
Slavecloth for G3M in DAZ Studio. A free outfit and chain.
Smoking paraphernalia for Poser.
Inhabited Island by 1971s, for Poser. Vue users may also be interested in this.
Autumn Lamp by 1971s, for Poser. A simple idea, but done well.
Town Crier for Genesis 3 Male for DAZ Studio.
Morphing Wide Brimmed Hat for G3F/G8F and 12 styles and presets. Usefully generic, and especially so for storybook illustration. Doubtless there’ll be a ‘cottage garden and Edwardian styles’ set of morphs and textures soon.
Boku No for Poser. Possibly of interest to those using flat lighting + the Comic Book mode in Poser 11, to make comics. Requires Anime Girl Sinon for Poser. She’s a standalone, so you may want check if she can take V4 or similar pose sets before investing.
CWRW Orange Tabby for the HiveWire House Cat for Poser and DAZ Studio. In DAZ Studio it works with the free House Cat LAMH plugin preset.
It’s interesting to see that Dinoraul, famed for his high-quality dinosaurs, is now doing OBJ terrain sets fit for giant dinosaurs to roam across.
ShaaraMuse3D’s Olive Grove, a high-quality scene for Poser which may also interest Vue users. 4k textures and subtle/believable tree design. Just add processional figures from classical times, and a dozen goats.
Flink’s Instant Lake for Poser and OBJ. Rather expensive, but I guess you’re also getting a lot of plants and materials in the bundle. Might be re-worked and given a materials makeover to become a shoreline rock-pool?
ShaaraMuse3D’s 3D Scenery: Oceanic Submersion, a big pack of quality Poser assets for shallow waters and rock-pool scenes. Not well served by its main promo picture, but it has hi-res textures and is also likely be of interest to aquatic Vue artists. Note also that “Some of the items also come in a down-scaled, lower resolution mesh (3-4k polys and 1k textures). These can be used to populate the scene with more detail.”
Luigi Marini has a new coral reef for Vue users.
That’s it. More picks next month!
How to stop Poser 11 from spending ages automatically searching the hard-drive for “missing textures”, while at the same time preventing you doing anything else in Poser. Most often this happens on trying to load older freebie content that was poorly-installed via an ‘un-zip and manually install’ process.
Go: Top menu bar | Edit | General Preferences | Library | File Search | set to Shallow (or None) | OK.
Shallow is probably best.
You want to to make this setting after your initial install of Poser, as ‘Deep’ is probably what the software will require for its ‘first pass’ at indexing your runtimes. Once that initial index is built, and only needs to be incremented thereafter, then it can be switched to ‘Shallow’.
If you wanted to make a rock-pool (aka tide-pool) in Vue (or Poser-for-Vue), and you don’t especially want to get into a “model it all yourself” situation, what store content might be useful?
DragonsNest DragonsKeep might give you a quick-start on a terrain mesh, if you were just doing a top-down still-life view into a circular tide-pool. Drop a sand-textured bowl to cover over the volcanic cracks.
500 years of rolling around in the ocean? That’s going to make a rock rather mellow and smooth. Photo Props: Sea Washed Beach Rocks are modern high-res 4k-texture props for Poser by ShaaraMuse3D.
There are also Photo Props: Weathered Rocks from the same content maker, again with 4k textures. These could be suitable for making the rock-pool edges, especially if your pool is prehistoric.
And a big 60-prop Oceanic Submersion set.
Also needed would be whole lot of fine half-buried grit and small shell-flakes, bits of tiny organic debris, but that’s possibly best layered in afterwards with Photoshop or done as a 2D texture.
On the Cornucopia store there’s a nice tiny seaweeds pack for the temperate zone, at an even nicer low price. They are also ecosystems for Vue.
There’s also a free starfish there, but it’s a bit simple and naff. There’s a more impressive paid-for one Starfish by Barry Marshall plus a very lovely small Sea Crab of exactly the sort you’d see in a temperate rock-pool.
If you wanted to do a prehistoric rock-pool, Cornucopia has a number of authentic small prehistoric sea creatures that are not 400-foot dino-monsters.
Sadly the best crab-meat type of crab, Noggin’s Poser Crab is no longer sold. But Terrors of the Deep: Jellyfish is, and might make for a more a interesting picture element, draped over some rocks, and would add colour.
Sea-shells are fairly easily had. But perhaps add a few pieces of Pirate Treasure, peeking out from the sand?
Fast3D has some free Beach Creatures for Poser which are low poly, but could be used as very small ‘micro’ elements in the scene. There’s also a teeny-weeny barnacle you could probably mix into a Vue ecosystem used at very small size. Perhaps it could be added to the Seaweeds ecosystem (see above) at low frequency, to add variety.
Water and sand:
You’ll be needing some suitable water and sand, of course, but that shouldn’t to difficult in Vue. Big 8k sand textures should also be fairly easy to find or make.