The project Ramarro Resin Kit was born as a personal FAN ART WORK and only later it became the result of an intense experience during which I experimented different techniques, both in digital and practical.
During a session in Zbrush I enjoyed to experiment the functionality of Dynamesh, SO I made a first sketch of Ramarro, which gave me the inspiration to create a second version of it with a high polygonal detail. From this last version I realized an image in comic style using techniques of rendering and compositing with ZBrush and Photoshop. Finally I sent this image to the author of the character, to get his opinion and the consent to the publication in the forum.
The response was unexpected, because he asked me if it was possible to obtain a resin version from the 3D model, excited by this request and since it has long wanted to delve into the issues of 3D printing, I jumped at the chance and I immediately set to work.
Preparing for 3D printing
First I started with some formal modifications of the model thanks to the supervision of the author, and then also topological , adhering to the guide lines related to 3D printing process adopted, in this case the SLS (Selective Laser Sintering).
I had to make the model hollow to optimize time and cost of printing, trying to comply with the stipulated minimum thickness and resolution in terms of the details that the technology and materials can support.
To make it printable, in Zbrush I decimated the final model trying to get a good compromise between complexity and polygonal detail, then I made a low-resolution adaptive mesh that I added as SubTool , so with the help of the transparent mode and the ghost mode I shaped so as to obtain the shape of the "Empty" . In fact, I exported the two tools in obj format, I opened them in Blender and I run a simple Boolean operation by subtracting the detailed model of the form "Empty", by obtaining such a model hollow and "Watertight" as
required by the specification of 3D printing.
Keeping working in Blender, I used the new features developed for 3D printing, which, thanks to the color codes give immediate feedback on any problems that may present the model and intervene where needed. Sometimes it is enough just to move a bit some vertice , other times in sculpt mode I make the changes required by the printing parameters, in practice it is drawn above all to respect the values of the wall thickness.
I decided in accord with the author for a solution with traditional techniques looking at "Garage" production of Resin kit once received the prototype, and after having examined several options for the reproduction in a series.
The following steps were those of a practical and manual nature, realizing the silicone rubber mold or rather the matrix, from which we have obtained the resin copies by means of casting.
So we thought to release two editions, the first called "Garage" because it reflects the spirit of this type of product, and allows the most creative customer to personalize it, operating on the model and on the base for the finish, and with the coloring. However, the edition "Deluxe", is already colored according to my personal interpretation and skills in this area.
Back to the computer ...
I returned in the digital environment to create a promotional version "lowpoly" model viewable from common web browser using the service provided by Verold.
In Zbrush I took the high detail model, I made a copy of it and I have decimated up to about 2000 polygons, getting a few kilobites .OBJ file and I exported them both. I uploaded them in Blender, I run a manual Unwrapping of the lowpoly version decimated, so I baked the "Normal" and "Ambient Occlusion" maps, obtain them from detailed version, and using the Paint module I created a first color texture, which I then touched up in Photoshop. Finally, I uploaded model and maps on Verold, setting the various parameters of materials and
I hope that sharing my experience has been interesting for you as much as it was for me, thank you for your attention and I invite everyone to post any questions in my thread where I can be more specific about the details that I have mentioned here only.
Before leaving I suggest some links where you can find more information about Ramarro, Giuseppe Palumbo, and Zogh arToys.