The final model I have created can be viewed on the 123D Creature Gallery.
The final model can become a 3D print, for example with IMaterialise or a cardboard print with 123D Make. These can then be displayed on the wall as a Halloween decoration.
Step 1: The Skeleton
Once I decided how I wanted the design to look I began with selecting the 'create new' button and altering the skeleton. To begin with you are given a very basic shape to play around with. You can create and remove appendages and manipulate these by moving , shaping, posing and scaling, however the symmetry of the skeleton cannot be changed/removed.
For this design I deleted the legs first before using the shape tool to increase the general size of the model. At this point you do not need to worry too much about finer work, such as the eyes, ears and nose, as this can be accomplished later.
One must keep in mind that if you make this too complicated to begin with it can limit the sculpting detail and may even refuse to 'bake' at the next stage of development.
It may seem obvious but remember to keep saving your work or you may be disappointed to find your work is not up to date.
Step 2: Sculpting
At this stage you have the options to paint or sculpt first, but at this point it is best to concentrate on the shape first and paint later. The tools available are sculpt out, sculpt in, smooth, sharpen, flatten and grab. You can imagine the model as being comparable to a block of clay which can be shaped with these tools. You can also change the size and strength of the tool.
At this point it is worth mentioning that you can now turn the symmetry off allowing you to move parts of the model at one side without interrupting the other. This is why the model has different features on the face and back. The jaw is also moved to the side. The same applies when painting.
When beginning the sculpting it is best to keep the symmetry on and create finer individual detail later.
Step 3: Adding More Detail
Once you have sculpted on details such as the eyes the grab tool can be handy with moving pushing and pulling detail closer together or apart to gain the desired effect. Be careful not to drag parts of the model too much as this can cause the polygons to stretch and become rough around the edges.
For a sharpened effect it is best not to rely completely on the sharpen tool. For details such as the claws and teeth I usually sharpen slightly before using the smooth tool. To exaggerate the features further use the grab tool on maximum strength and minimum size.
Sometimes finer detail cannot be made successfully whilst sculpting, so it is possible to achieve a similar look with paint and textures.
Step 4: Paint and Texture
When painting you can chose to paint with a 'paint brush' or 'air brush'. I prefer the airbrush tool as this gives a much smoother look. Like the sculpting tools the size and strength/opacity of the brush paint can be changed.
For fur or skin I use the minimum size brush possible but this can be a lengthy process. Sometimes using textures can achieve the same or an even better finish. There are some textures already available which can be accessed by going on the 'image paint' button. You have nearly everything you need but for a more specific texture I look at images on the internet. Save them to your photos folder and these can be located on another photos folder in the app on this section. The colours of these can also be changed which is really helpful.
When painting it is good to think about a fake light source for shadows and highlights and the placement of the pupil on the eye can change the expression greatly. Highlights on the eyes also help achieve the final look.
Step 5: Render and Export
Another thing to mention is once you have completed the model and saved it you can share this with the community. You can download my model from the community and it can then be found in your 'my projects' section. This then gives you the opportunity to have a look and make alterations if you wish.
At this point you can export your work to another program such as 123D Make to make a cardboard sculpture. This can be done by accessing the menu options. This will change it into a obj file. You can 3D print the file with IMaterialise also in different materials. You can chose to print them with the existing colours or as a blank paintable resin. You can export files for 3D printers at home by selecting the 'export mesh' . This can be found when you select a project.
You can order a 3D print on the app. The 3D printing is provided by Sculpteo. On the app you can choose how big you want the model and get a price quote.
The most important thing to remember when making any model is have fun and that there is no right or wrong way to create them. The more you do the more you learn. :)