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Ruffling the Feathers

Author: moonrancher

Tools Needed

  • Poser
  • Noggin

Support Files

Introduction

Parrots are constantly grooming themselves, burying their beak

into their feathers. So usually they're not entirely smooth.

If you want realism, here's how you can groom your own bird. The trick

is to not overdo it, but to work on one or two areas until they work.

Usually having a small clump or two of feathers lifted will do the trick.

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Step 1 - RENDER THE BIRDS AND IMPORT INTO PHOTOSHOP

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Step 2 - SELECT A SMALL PATCH OF HEAD OR NECK FEATHERS

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Use the magic wand tool. The tuft should be fairly small. Copy the patch

and paste it onto another layer. I use the shortcuts: Ctrl+C or CMD+C,

then Ctrl+V or CMD+V and Shift+Ctrl+D or Shift+CMD+D.

Step 3 - USE THE EYE CANDY FUR FILTER TO CREATE FEATHERS

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Set the direction so the tuft looks like it is lifted at an angle from the other feathers.

Use the eyedropper to choose a color from the selected patch.

Step 4 - CHOOSE ANOTHER COLOR and REPEAT STEP 3

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Vary the direction, density, length and the random seed as well as the feather colors

to get a natural look. I like to use three colors for good depth. You will need to

enter the fur filter each time you want to add another layer of feathers.

Step 5 - ERASE THE EVIDENCE USING A LOW OPACITY ERASER

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If some of the feathers don't look quite right, start erasing with the eraser

setting at 10% to 30% to gradually get the feathers closer to the head to

blend into the original rendered surface.

Step 6 - MERGE THE RUFFLED FEATHER LAYER WITH THE IMAGE

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That's all there is to it. Thanks, Noggin, for these wonderful birds!