Its an incredible time to get into Blender, especially with all of the available learning resources. Lets look at one of these resources. A head modeling training DVD from Jonathan Williamson (aka:mr_bomb) that covers every aspect of modeling the female head. You may remember Jonathan's head and ear modeling videos well this is a leap above that and we'll take an insiders look at what can be found on this excellent resource.
When we first heard about this DVD we pinned Jonathan down to ask him a few questions under the spotlight.
What is the length of the DVD?
Jonathan: Nearly 3 hours of video.
Sections? And organization of the DVD? Menus?
Jonathan: The dvd is cut into sections via the parts of the face. e.g. Eyes, nose, ear, etc. (We'll look at that more. Read below for details.)
In whole the DVD covers? (head, ear, eye...?)
Jonathan: The entirety of the head has been covered. The learner will go through the steps of modeling the entire head, going from the eyes clear down through the neck.
Why did you decide to create this DVD?
Jonathan: Early last year I released two video tutorials, one on modeling the female face and another on modeling an ear. The response I got was incredible, far more than I expected. So, I thought, why not make a whole DVD? It would allow for me to give even more back to the community that has so graciously helped me through the years, and perhaps even make a bit of money on the side. However, the main deciding factor for me was simply that I love to teach.
How did you get into Blender?
Jonathan: My thanks actually go out to one of my dad's old employees. He was an avid gamer and enjoyed playing FreeCraft. He thought it would be cool if I got into 3D modeling and sent some models into the project as the current state of the game art at that time was mediocre at best. After trying out several programs he came across Blender and handed it off to me. I've been hooked ever since.
Any future plans for more DVDs? If so what are they?
Jonathan: Yes, I do plan on doing more DVDs after the completion of this one. I'm tentatively planning doing one on lowpoly character modeling for games, one on clothing, and perhaps one on a variety of various small subjects (trees, rocks, swords, whatever). Although I don't currently have the time at some point I would like to do a DVD over the entire human figure.
Now lets take a deeper look into what you'll find on the DVD. One nice thing is that Jonathan includes all of the .blend files that progress through the entire development of each section of instruction. He also includes Blender installations for all major operating systems and provides the same for the VLC player. That way ensuring that when you buy the DVD you are set and ready to go. A very nice gesture and is an example of the quality to be found on the DVD.
The first video begins with some good discussion on preplanning your mesh and discusses some core edge loop concepts. Then Jonathan shows how to setup background images for modeling reference and begins modeling the eye. You'll find some excellent techniques on getting the proper eye shape on this video, especially in regards to the eyelids.
The videos continue on through the nose and mouth. Once again I was impressed with the detail Jonathan goes into while explaining the modeling process. Down to the subtle realistic ridge found in a character's nose.
The videos are very casual and the viewer can almost feel like they are watching over a friend's shoulder. I look forward to Jonathan's next DVD. For now you can buy the head modeling DVD for a reasonable $30 +shipping.
Make sure to check out the Blenderartist thread about the DVD release and shipping.