The fun involved in the eventual render more than made up for a lot of the initial hair pulling. It was more difficult than I thought to achieve the specific texture that I was after. I went through many different types of alphas and depth maps – beginning with tree bark and working my way through different types of cracking concrete and rock. The end result wasn’t the dramatic “shatter” effect I was going for, but something a little more organic. Some textures simply don’t go with certain forms, and this guy screams wood and bark. The problem with using depth maps to texture is that they will have an inherent directionality to their information – one that you might spend more time adapting to the topography of your model than if you just went in and carved it out with a brush. As usual, the key is a degree of moderation; to find a juicy alpha or depth map and then integrate it judiciously. Yes, the face is a rancor.