This is the fifth of a series of weekly posts that covers my efforts to learn and create with Smith-Micro’s Poser application. I’ll share the information I learn, any tricks or tips I come across, and my thoughts on Poser as a creative tool. My goal will be to follow my interests as I become more familiar with the program.
In this fifth week, I’ll try to solve some fitting issues I had with clothing for my Poser figure and work on improving the rendering quality for my Poser scene. Before we begin I want to clarify that I am using Poser Pro 11.1. Smith-Micro created two versions of Poser: Poser 11 and Poser Pro 11. The difference is that Poser Pro provides advanced rendering, a fitting room for clothes and more. The price for Poser Pro 11.1 is $349. Upgrade from Poser 11 is $110. Full details at this link.
The Fitting Room
Hours after I posted last weeks article, I realized that I could fix Pauline’s clothing problems in the Poser Fitting Room! (duh). So, for a few days I watched Fitting Room tutorials and worked on getting Pauline’s bikini bottoms and blouse to fit her figure.
One thing bugged me though: I had chosen clothes that should have fitted Pauline from the get-go, but they didn’t. Why was that? After research in the help section of Poser 2014, I discovered that you could “conform” clothing to your figure which should fix the problems I was having.
The Fitting Room is powerful, but the complex and badly organized interface in Poser that enabled me to finally get the blouse and bikini to fit perfectly. I used the official Smith-Micro tutorial to learn the Fitting Room which requires you to create a new fitting scene, choose the object (bikini or blouse) and the goal (Pauline figure). The basic default fit works very well right out of the box. I exported it as a figure and chose to include morphs that relate to the clothing piece. This is so the new clothing piece will automatically adjust to any poses you may create for your character.
Everything worked fine until I tried to find new clothes in the library. I couldn’t. Even with a search for the specific file (new bikini Pauline) it didn’t show up. After half an hour of searching, I gave up and decided to just start with a new character.
Fitting Clothing for a New Poser Character
This time I decided to use one of the main Poser male characters. I chose Paul/Asian and decided to put a suit on him and some glasses. All of the clothes fit perfectly except for the pants which seemed to be posed in a 90-degree angle to Paul’s body. I used the “conform to” command and the pants adjusted perfectly.
Now it was on to improving my render.
Getting a Better Render in Poser
Mark Bremmer has an excellent tutorial on Superfly Rendering in his Poser 2012 series at Renderosity. He lays out the options and possibilities for the Superfly renderer in a clear and easy to understand manner. I’ve always liked his tutorials. :-)
One of the things I did before adjusting render settings was to add a superior skin texture to the model. I noticed that when I chose the Paul/Asian figure, a better skin texture was included in the materials section of my Poser library so I added it to my figure hoping it would pay off in the render. It certainly did.
Render settings in Poser are much easier to understand and adjust that the Fitting Room. In fact, there are default settings available depending upon whether you are using your CPU or GPU as a rendering core. My workstation has a beefy Quadro 4000, so chose a default high GPU render setting, set the lits to be a bit more dramatic, and adjusted the camera to a full body pose and neck up shot. The results are great!
Note the pose is a little awkward. For some reason the general standing pose applied to Paul made his arms go wonky. I had to adjust them a bit to get them at least in reasonable shape. I need to research poses a bit for next week.
While I’m still a bit frustrated with clothing in Poser, the render possibilities are very encouraging. And as I was looking through the manual for Poser 2014 (via the help menu in the program), I came across a section devoted to the Face Room. I’ve often wondered how Poser artists were able to morph celebrity faces on their Poser figures. Well, the Face Room is the way to do it.