I’m excited to join this challenge. Since the deadline is pretty short, I want to focus on making just one asset, but try to make it well.
The asset I chose is a Flintlock, a recognizable and elegant weapon often associated with pirates. It is not a very original concept, but I don’t mind – my goal is not to make a breakthrough, just to create a hard surface asset for my portfolio and challenge myself to a set theme.
I will start by researching the parts and functionality of a Flintlock, and collect some references, including variations on decorations and inlays. Thank you 😊
I did a bit of research and decided that the weapon I’m modeling will specifically be a Flintlock Pistol from the late 17th century, in an ornate style – either Silesian, Austrian, Turkish, French or Punjabi (it’s quite a wide selection, but I am still making a decision. The blockout is similar either way, the surface ornament really defines the origin). Since I imagine pirates robbing ships from all over the world, it could be a weapon pillaged from a rich baron or sultan, or a well-known merchant.
I took references from The Met, because they are public domain, huge resolution, different angles and details, and have descriptions (it’s one of my favorite resources). I also have a book on firearms that has good images and descriptions, as well as the history of these weapons! Of course, I checked Artstation for good presentations and other artists’ interpretations. At this point I usually check Pinterest too, but I have enough images to start.
Out of the references, I picked my favorite design – the museum website calls it “Possibly Albanian”. It’s actually all the way from the 19th century, which surprised me because the later centuries have more plain-looking weapons. But something about this pistol caught my attention.
Blocking it out in Maya! Trying to make sure the topology flows well for further work in ZBrush. Still some parts left to make, but it’s starting to look like a gun.
Thinking about composition, camera, lighting, presentation in general. At first I was compelled to make the guns be the crossbones of a skull painted on the flag, but I think the layout of them laying next to each other without intersecting looks better. I added the coins for storytelling reasons and will adjust them compositionally, so that they help lead the eye across the scene. The fabric is a pirate flag – I learned that some of them were red!
The clipping is due to fabric being straight from Marvelous, I wanted to test it in the scene before I add any detail and fix it in ZBrush.
A Jolly Roger background prop. It’s red because I found out some pirate flags used to be the color of blood and they were seen as menacing. The skull is painted and cracking, and the pirate who painted it wasn’t an expert in human anatomy.
Thank you everyone for support. This was a very fun prop to make and an awesome challenge to participate in. A lot of really great entries, and a very engaged community on Discord. I learned much about guns (and even some about pirates) and practiced my hardsurface modeling and presentation.