My primary task this afternoon was to get a working system for having a set of alien scales grow from the body of Ravine's main fish characters. To do this it was suggested to use blend-shapes, which I spent the afternoon working on in order to get the transformation right.
The core idea was to create a layer that would go within the skin. This layer would fit to the body by being wrapped around using a lattice deformer. A rough shape for the fish's body was used in palce of them odel itself for the time being. The final setup would need more precise positioning as the scales would grow from around the eyes and sweep towards the tail as they spread.
Because blendshapes were used, the 'duplicate special' tool was used. particularly useful when duplicating large grousp of objects.
This is the UV map of the scale. Structurally it appears simple but detailed enough. Woudl lower-polygon versions be useful? Perhaps on more distant shots