I decided to take a break from skinning today and work on the creature's textures. Originally going for a kind of skin, the outcome of the current texture has made me rethink the approach.I may add a few scales to it, perhaps on the back or thighs to give it a little visual diversity.
I included the above image as one thing that is cropping up is the display of muscle, and I felt this small section was one of the best outcomes, as it looked like definition and not a seam or a cut. So what I have tried (still working on it) is replicating this effect elsewhere on the model, although that is proving easier said than done.
The texture is made up of several layers. The first is a pair of photographs of skin found online (I kept a record on a notepad document, but their licenses allowed for use and modification), combined them, tiled them then applied them underneath the UV map. The high-contrast outcome is what is making me rethink of doing only skin, as there are a few mottled patches that resemble perhaps crocodile skin, and that could reintroduce some of the reptilian quantity I was going for.
To preserve the skin texture underneath, I made layers for the shadows, highlights, and the red tinting. Once these textures are complete, (the torso segment looks asymmetrical because I plan to mirror the highlights and shadows later) I will use these for the creation of normal and specular maps to give the proper 3D texture skin.
I'm getting a feel of H.R. Giger from these textures.Particularly the torso and the rear leg.