Most comic fans already know who Power Girl is, but just in case you didn’t know, she’s essentially an alternate version of Supergirl. Meaning she’s a Kryptonian, but from a parallel universe alongside the main DC Comics heroes.
I’m not a huge fan of this character, but I came across a fully outfitted Power Girl costume while I was looking for Daz Studio compatible 3D props for another super-hero. It was so well done I decided to give it a shot, and you see the result above.
For those of you looking to make your own Power Girl character, I’ll run down the props I used to get the look you see above.
As is usual for my female characters, I started out with the Victoria 4.2 Base model (I’ve only just now started using Genesis so most of the work you’ll see from me up until now will be Daz Generation 4 characters).
Since I usually avoid the default textures provided with the base characters, I used the V4 Elite Texture Lana. This applies upgraded skin textures, and I also employed the Victoria 4.2 Morphs++ to do some small tweaking to the face and body.
I tried out probably eight or nine different hair props, but the one I settled on was the Cindy Short Hair. To me, it seemed to fit the character better, based on the comic hand drawn reference I’ve seen over the years.
Ok, so what about the costume? Well, this is obviously the make-or-break part of the whole deal. I came across this Power Girl costume on ShareCg.com. If you check it out you’ll see it will also work for the Aiko 4 Base as well as the V4.
As you can see from my image, I didn’t change much of anything, only the color of the belt from blue to red. I only did that because it seems like she had a red belt in most of the classic shots of her that I liked.
I had a little trouble with the cape. It does indeed pose, but I don’t think I nailed a very convincing “flowing” cape in this picture. This is fan art that I can’t sell, so I decided to not worry about it. Of course, I always want to do my best work, but I’m not going to go overboard on a fun project that’s really just for myself.
Aside from that, everything fit perfectly, and I had no trouble making adjustments in Daz Studio.
The background city is a Daz prop you’ll see me use a lot called Urban Sprawl 2 The Big City.
This thing is amazing, and very, very useful. The buildings and the props all the way down to stop signs and mailboxes are fully selectable and move-able. Because of this, you don’t have to load the whole darn thing every time you want to show a city. You can either load one quadrant at a time, or even load the individual buildings, cars, etc.
The price may seem steep, since many of us are used to using free props, but I’d advise you to put a little bit away each month until you can grab it. That, and keep track of the Daz Sales and coupons so you can be ready to pounce!
Depending on what my project is, I may or may not render the scene from Daz Studio. In this case I decided to render it out of Blender using the Cycles rendering engine.
I was a bit afraid that Blender would choke on all the building points, faces, nodes and such, so before I brought it into Blender I deleted every single last building, car and prop from the city that wasn’t visible on camera.
It was still a bit of a bear to deal with, but some of that will be dependent on your computer’s processor, graphics card and ram, so your mileage may vary.
So at that point, with all the posing done, I set up lights in Blender and adjusted some of the Cycle’s nodes for greater effect.
An example of this is the city windows. Since I was in Blender, and not Daz, I was able to grab the individual mesh faces of the windows I chose, and assign an “Emission” texture to them, meaning I turned them into lights.
Since this is a semi-night scene, I wanted a few glowing windows in there. I also used the Blender compositor to add a glow and a small blur to the windows.
Honestly, it didn’t come out exactly as I wanted, but again this was a fun render done just to do it, so I wasn’t too concerned. I actually have new projects coming up where I’m refining that technique.
Anyway, the final render was at 2400px x 1600px, which my machine took about 3 hours to do, if I recall correctly.
In Photoshop, I mostly just added some solid color layers to adjust the overall hue of the image. I had adjusted some of the color in Blender, but I prefer to do it in Photoshop, since it’s easier for me.
I also used a background image of a city at night to fill in the spaces left by the actual city prop. Unfortunately, the more I look at the final image now, the more I see that I have the angle wrong by a couple of degrees. It really bothers me now but oh well, I won’t make that mistake again.
Finally, I used a render of just the windows I wanted to glow (you’ll see them below at the end of the gallery) as a way to get a quick mask in Photoshop for the glowing windows. There’s no way I was going to manually select all those windows, so this was the best way to pull it off. Then I could adjust the color, or even add to the glow effect.
Gallery of Shame
Oh, the renders left unchosen…
I’m not really ashamed of these, but I’ll just throw these in here for fun, and you can see some of the early attempts at rendering this thing.
If you notice, I didn’t make the figure too muscular. In the comics these days, it’s sort of the style to make Power Girl (and sometimes Wonder Woman), completely hard, ripped and muscled up. I don’t really care for that look, so I left her looking (mostly) like the default V4 shape.
The breasts were made a little larger, but I tried not to go overboard. Actually, this is one case where’d you’d be right to go overboard, since Power Girl is actually known even within the story to be very large-breasted. Other characters have been known to comment on her physique (although this usually does not end well for them).
All in all, I was pretty happy with how it turned out, even though I see things I might have done differently. Most artists are that way after the piece is revealed, though. It’s just part of the game. I’ll take those lessons on to the next project.
So that’s all for this piece, if you have any comments or questions, just let me know in the comments below.
Until next time..!