Note: this list of steps is a bit outdated now. I've already learned how to do this faster, easier, and better.
First, I analyze references and think about what would be the best way to print your desired model. This can take more than a week for challenging commissions.
I make the topology in Blender. A very rough model, without much care for anatomy.
Then I align the model to references and fix anatomy issues.
I add details by editing and sculpting.
I send you updates in video form, so you can see it from all sides.
Once you're happy with the model, I start preparing it for printing. This means cutting it into pieces as planned, adding custom supports, rafts and helpers if required, adding attachment cubes or holes for screws. Also test prints to check if screws fit fine. I usually need to make small changes on the model to make it more printable.
I send you my .blend file and all the .stl files needed for printing.
I print in PLA. For extra price, I can print individual parts in PET-G (a stronger plastic). However, keep in mind that the print quality with PET-G is somewhat lower.
I dehumidify my filament to make it like new, right before printing.
I print commissions in 0.08 mm resolution. For large models, this can take a week or longer.
Chance of failed printing attempts is included in the base price. You won't need to pay extra for my failures.
When prints fail, or even when they succeed, I might get ideas for how to fix/improve the model. These improvements are included in the base price. You won't need to pay extra.
I remove strings and wisps from the prints and sand down any imperfections.
I assemble everything with screws and/or glue.
I capture the print from all sides. You will get a link to a turntable like this one.
I intensely sand down all surfaces to make the plastic surface smoother. I use sandpaper, dremel and other tools.
I add wood filler to fill in gaps, cracks and unwanted holes, and to smooth surfaces which will be spraypainted.
I repeat the wood filler step until I'm satisfied with the smoothness of the model.
I glue the parts of the model that were not already glued (because I wanted them accessible from all sides). But in some cases, I leave parts separate until after painting.
I fill and sand the new seams between the glued parts, multiple times.
I spray the entire model with filler primer and sand it again. This fills in small cracks that wood filler couldn't.
Then, I start spraying layers of base coat.
I use an airbrush or spray paint for painting the main color of your model, other than white.
I use traditional brushes and acrylic paints for painting the remaining colors of your model.
This requires a lot of layers before it looks good.
I make digital prototypes of eyes and eyelashes before painting them.
I paint eyes with glossy acrylic paint. I always make sure the surface of the eye is as smooth as possible.
You will get many updates during the painting process.
Cutie mark is usually last. I will try to match references as closely as possible.
Once I finish painting, I spray the model with some transparent protective layer. This makes it somewhat scratch-resistant.
You will get another turntable link of the finished product.
Then I pack and ship the model. Models with detachable parts are usually shipped disassembled because it is safer this way. Some minimal assembly might be required. Assembly instructions with pictures will be in the box too.