I thought I share some test renders from the current state of texturing the dragon and already playing around with the material/shading setup.
The basic building blocks are done with quite some polishing work still left. Doing the test renders, helps me to better estimate which changes are really necessary.
As already mentioned before, the dragon will mostly be seen in total and the body/wings texturing should be optimized for this. Here are some renders showing that setup.
I already discovered that I had spent to much effort on details which will never be seen. It just carried me away, which is a nice experience but in no way efficient :). See here for a more closer shot. This part will never be seen in such a closeup and all the details you see are mostly lost on the viewer.
There is one shot in the movie where the neck is shown in more detail. The following render tries to catch this.
What took me a bit by surprise was the effect of the displacement modifier on the dragon mesh during animation. This is an area were I have to add some corrective shapekeys to prevent strange distortions, especially in the chest/shoulder area.
This work so far was again a precious learning experience. I have now a better idea how to texture the head, how the tools work for me. With the head I can then go on quite unrestrained in regards to detail, as there are closeup shots of the head and one extreme closeup shot of the snout.