Thursday, 22 October 2009

Provide Proof

Some of my latest exploits.
Team E 32
If you live in the Dundee area you may soon see these appear in the Clear Channel stand alone boxes located throughout the city centre.
More info about Light Night to follow!

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

September

DARE has passed. Awards were won, nominations for BAFTA were given. I’m in one of the fortunate teams to await March eagerly. This chapter closes abruptly and a new page awaits a scribe.

I remain on the job quest – I’ve sent out applications to several companies in the Dundee vicinity. Hopefully they’ll respond in kind.

Until then I shall continue creating artwork with whatever means I have. I’m working on an image I began back at the end of third year, some may recall it. Frogboy chases his dream of catching the inzediddle – I’ve taken it back to the monochromatic stage in order to really focus on the values.

frogboy_progress1

Any criticism welcome.

Also, I’ll be taking part in the NEXT LEVEL DUNDEE event which begins Monday – next week. I’m looking forward to pitching ideas this FRIDAY.

~

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

Story so far…

So I’ve spent the last year (in uni) working toward creating my film, and I’m still headed toward that goal. I’ve learned a great deal of practical techniques and gained personal insight into my work ethic.

There have been times when I’ve lost sight, and stumbled into a little confusion – but the creative ambition continues to live on. I’m going to continue to work on my film, independently for the time being until I can organise some structure – some over arcing plan.

The next chapter in my life is DARE – a computer game competition hosted at Abertay – I believe in the library. I will spend 10 weeks honing my skills as part of the Gents of Fortune (you can follow us on our twitter profile here http://twitter.com/gentsofortune), to create the art assets for the game Quick As Thieves.

I’ll leave you now with a couple of screenshots and poster artwork for the story so far.. the tale of the bumbling hatted ne’er do well.. and his long lost friend turned foe.. I give you, Hatavar and Windbag in an Escape from Common Thought.

michaeldoig_postersmall 

Also – here’s a still from the animation in progress -

motionblurtest7

For those of you who are interested in seeing more – the work is on display in the Hannah Maclure Center – found here on GoogleMap until the 19th of June.

I’d like to thank:

Adam Wyroslawski for Musical Score and Composition.

Martin McCormick for the voice of ‘Windbag’

Martin MacGregor for Rendering/Compositing

Violet for being the inspiration I find her to be.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Updates

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Let’s hit the ground running – hard.

Of late, I’ve been working on the Hatavar model texture – adding improvised details to his clothing.  I’m quite found of the underside of his shoe which I shall demonstrate for thee now.

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Also today I was writing a more comprehensive draft of the beginning narration for the animation. It will feature Windbag recounting his past and present, giving context to the state he has come to find himself. Crest Fallen.

Also – I’ve managed to rig up Windbag’s Moustache in Maya using Spline IK. Each Control Vertice of the resulting spline curve is then applied to a Cluster – these can then be parented to strategically placed NURBS circules for animation handles.

Next step is to link up the Smile/Wide Blendshapes to the appropriate moustache handles with a Set Driven Key – so the moustache will move believably and automatically when he smiles.

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…..

Beard.

Monday, 16 March 2009

Quick As Thieves

Crazy Weekend…

Concep1_FINAL 

Artwork by Jamie Mackinnon and I– we can thank Jamie for the Background Museum Interior – I just filled the Foreground with a Dinosaur and Junk.

Thief’s name is Jean Eric de Fault.

~

Since you can’t reply to comment on Blogger (for why guys?) I’ll reply here.

Martin

Thanks dude, I enjoy character design foremost, but at least I know I’ll have fashion designer to fall back on ^_^;

Visiting D-Con made me realise that if I wanted to get noticed I needed quality to artwork to display. Filtering your work through the criteria of ‘Would I print this out and attach it to the wall behind, could I continue to stand in front of it for an entire exhibition?’ knocked a few holes in my body of work.

So I worked Frogboy up from an existing image applying some more lighting techniques I’d learned since.

Searra

Thanks Searra – you’ll have been able to catch glimpses of him no doubt throughout the years. I’m liking him at the moment.. all Zen Fu, Don’t touch my Bubble Pipe, Fish Master.

Friday, 13 March 2009

Revisiting Characters

Frogboy_CloudCloak copy

 

I’ve been touching up a WIP of a Frogboy concept from last semester and creating Portraits of my antagonists, the Obligation Council in order to contextualise my story, and build a believable cohesive world.

This is what my research is tending to lean me towards, and it is what I enjoy doing most. Plus I haven’t updated here in a while.

 

OB_0005_Guilt

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Yo-Yo Ma / Bobby Mc Ferrin / Ennio Morricone

I’d like to guide you on the journey, follow me…

 

I came to question: How deeply do I feel in my art, in my craft, in my life? I don’t have the answers – that’s for my art to tell.

~

This is an audio except from the above videos which really sang to me.

Monday, 2 March 2009

Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Windbag Preliminary Rig Tests

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Above is Ebil Windbag– Looks kinda Satanic o-0

Before moving on to unwrapping the body mesh of Windbag, I’m running some preliminary dry runs with a make shift rig – tweaking it ever so slightly to verify that the mesh will deform correctly and the character silhouette will remain intact.

What I have found so far is that:

  • The arms when rigged in a T position greatly effect the shoulder area, pulling it out and widening the shoulders more than natural.
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      The stretching in the shoulder can either be painted out via weight painting – or I thought perhaps by moving the vertices of the arm into a more natural position before rigging?

    I think it will depend on whether Windbag will raise his hands above his shoulders – I’d however like the freedom to account for this kind of movement, for animating later with him.

    RIGGING THE HEAD

    This rig is really tricky to place right for the head – it distorts it very easily.

    HeadInfluence3 – finding most of the weighting if anchored to this influence is best for the head.

    HAIR

    I’m hoping to be able to create Windbag’s beard/moustache/eyebrows with a Maya Hair Plugin some time in the near future.

    ARMOUR

    Since his armour is quite rigid, I’m considering extracting it from the main mesh and overlaying it – then rigging each piece separate to it’s on controlling joint, and parenting these joints to the controls.

    This will be done for the Shoulder/Knee Pads.

    For all the ways that we’re the same:

Windbag Texture Experimentation

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Spent today working on the windbag model again. After preparing the face for the blend shape process, I decided to unwrap the head, and begin painting in some preliminary  textures, to get a feeling for the overall aesthetic of Windbag’s mug.

I’m tempted to give him the amber orange glowing eyes of a pigeon, since it’s such a cool colour. Makes him look a little scary though? Whaddya think?

Image found at Alberta Classic.

Discussing with Neil the possible choices for rendering – how to achieve the right kind of look for the final film.

His comments were:

1 - fairly flat textures and let the geometry and lighting take care of the shading (this will have least effect on how expressions will read but things like eyebrow placement will still have a big effect)
2 - more dynamic shader setup e.g. mental ray shaders like SSS with normal maps  to give you more  detailed reaction to lighting conditions and give you a more "high-end" look
3 - paint (or bake) some of the lighting into the textures (balance between ambient and dynamic light) . That way will give you quite immediate control over the final look of the model but leaves you with quite a fixed lit look to the model

I’m leaning more toward option 3 since I’m more familiar with painting in lighting by hand, from my concept paintings in 2D etc. However this would limit the models to occupying one manner of lighting environment per texture.

Option 2 – while providing the benefit of using Zbrush (or otherwise) to create normal maps – thus incorporating additional levels of detail. I don’t want to push to far into the realms of realism. This is due to the subjective nature of the content of the film, believability over realism. If I can maintain a stylistic approach it should win out. I’ll need to use Zbrush to convey the cloth, for the Hatavar’s scarf anyway, and I would like to add some tarnishes to Windbag’s armour.

However all of this is post-type work, which can be carried out after the initial preparations have been made for animation. ie. UV unwrapping before Rigging.

Sunday, 22 February 2009

Windbag 3D Modelling Progress

Windbag Facial Topology is almost done – I feel this rushing push against needing to progress, and the caution of understanding that if I rush I’ll more than likely have to retrace my steps later, and this would cost me even more time.

As a record of the current state of the model.

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Without facial polygon topology – I’m still unsure how the facial hair will be implemented. Maybe a whole load of wax and wonderment.

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Using an image reference plane –

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This may look familiar – modified Hatavar hand has been grafted to the Windbag model, altered where approproate.

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Wind intake system has been hella fun to develop and adds a nice edge to the overall character appeal. It’s unfortunate that the device doesn’t feature too heavily in the planned sequence – but the foreshadowing of it’s appearance will serve as precursor to the events later.

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Steel capped boots? Capped in some way – booyah.

Beginning tomorrow I’ve got to:

  • Align the eyebrow topology so that it matches the shape of the face.
  • Smooth and re-shape the nose
  • Create the inside of the mouth (inner lip), mouth sock.
  • Create the teeth - (Modify Cadeaux’s?)
  • Unwrap the head/figure.
  • Begin Blendshaping (Outlined later)

Night all.

Saturday, 21 February 2009

0001 of a Thousand Faces

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Quick Self Portrait study – prompted by watching some Gnomon DVD’s – Visual Storytelling with Iain McCaig.

One of the lessons he kept returning to in each DVD was the importance of reference, but the kind of referencing which goes beyond the initial gathering and sourcing.

Useful processing of reference material by observational sketching, and emulation so that the reference material has a chance to flow through you on it’s path to the paper.

So I moved the mirror from the adjacent wall to my desk and began doodling in this portrait, attempting to remain fresh and loose.

Light source was an Ikea table lamp cast from my right, additionally there was some natural light from a setting sun being cast from a window from behind me (to the right).

I’d like to do more of these – they’re an invaluable learning aid. And Free.

Tuesday, 17 February 2009

Week 6 Project Supervisor Meeting

Contents Outline for Dissertation:

Abstract

Introduction

Establishing the concept of ‘metaphor’ for the reader - (to contextualise the project) –

  • discussing the traditionalist views of metaphor and its place in philosophical thinking.
  • introducing conceptual metaphor and its influence particularly on communication, understanding and derived meanings.
  • Allegories/Myths

Visual Metaphor in Art/Animation

  • provided case studies of particular use of metaphor in visual arts – examples of strong use of conscious visual/conceptual metaphor. Te resulting impact of this on an audience.
  • Focusing more on the use of metaphor within animation – narratives etc.

Arguing the effectiveness of considered use of conceptual metaphor in Animation.

  • Methods – signs to look out for.
  • Learning the structure – the conceptual framework within which to attribute metaphorical connotations. Being aware of them is the first step.
  • How this structure can then be applied. What are the results?
  • Negative effects? Creative limitations?

Conclusion

~

Action Point – 3 Paragraph Summary of Dissertation

If metaphor is to be taken as a process of thought, rather than a derivation of language we must cast farther back than the abstraction of metaphor through written work. Such realisations will be evident in other aspects of human expression. Indeed- in science, in order to explain some kind of computational process, metaphors are used to guide understanding.

A framework must exist on a primary of thought and idea. Discovering this in Lakoff and Johnson’s Metaphors we live by, this gave cause to investigate conceptual metaphor not as a (cognitive) linguist but as an artist, working primarily in the visual domain.

Animation has a history of utilising metaphors in order to convey significant meaning to an audience. Through metamorphosis in particular, characters can literally portray the visual characteristics of the comparison being drawn. But – is there another way?

Sunday, 15 February 2009

Sleep No Evil

Started reading, the Killing Kind by John Connelly.

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Twisted blogger word verification – is this some kind of subliminal force clinging to the backend of Blogger? Is there something sinister lurking behind the rss feeding, and wysiwig wonder.

Who knows, do you?

I’ve been watching bits of the storyboarding DVD held in Abertay’s library. The Eggsucker is quite cool, and I’ve been experimenting with the author’s technique, wish I’d tried it out ages ago.

Saturday, 14 February 2009

Gods of War

Ariokh posted this in his DA Blog. All in game he claims -

http://uk.ps3.ign.com/dor/objects/886158/god-of-war-iii/videos/god3_trailer_021209.html

Yeeeeees. I really must play this series o-O Especially on the back of this interview.

Windbag’s Airbag Suit

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Air Bag Suit -

While concept-ing for Windbag today I started adding additional elements to the back of his suit – namely an whirlwind intake system, built into the dimensions of his clothing.

Above are a variable of these designs, if anyone would like to say which aspects they like in accordance to the letter denoting them, that would be awesome.

 

Also I procrastinated and drew this for a friend while in Whitespace -

HorridForm

It was based on Mihai’s original drawing found here. Be sure to let him know what you think!

REFERENCE LINKS

Art Director for the recent Prince of Persia series’ and Assasins Creed - http://raphael-lacoste.com/ – Thought i would share.

~

This is a follow up link posted on one of Gurney’s blog posts, reflecting on how Sargent paints and taught his students.

http://www.goodbrush.com/misc/painting_lessons/sargent_notes.pdf

I’m enthralled.

Last semester I was keeping an online journal in the form of an adapted wiki page. In order to retrace some of the research steps I had undertaken, I’m going to revisit this page and source any important information which I had gathered in my quest, and repost it up here.

At this juncture I’d also like to extend a request that anyone knowing of some interesting material concerning conscious realisations of Visual Conceptual Metaphor, it would be cool to see what was out there.

~

http://www.metaphorik.de/02/mittelberg.htm

I’ve been reading this paper on the links between conceptual mappings and the effects of synesthetic links.

http://www.sjsu.edu/upload/course/course_4406/sample____TermPaper2.pdf

~

Searching for beards -

http://www.monster-munch.com/images/BeardAlphabet.jpg

Thursday, 12 February 2009

The Narrator

I woke up trying to remember the film I’d watched the last night – only to realise that the film had been a dream – a terrible, brilliant, grotesque and fascinating dream.

Patrons are led upstairs to an abandoned top level of a bar/restaurant – of the group there is a gentleman resembling Dylan Moran somewhat in appearance and in nature. He is seated across a rectangular table, diagonally from my left. A skeletal woman, swathed in greys to my right. An overweight balding black man across the table from me, there are a couple more but they are shadows in this part of the game.

A serving woman is cutting a pie to my left. Dessert is being served. She’s making a cumbersome awkward job of it – attempting to cut the pie equally into 10 pieces, so there must have been 10 of us, sitting at a table for some unknown reason. She’s making a complete mess of this, the pie is indistinguishable now.

‘Dylan’ performs some feat of magic, in a blink he has replaced his chair by an assortment of suspended abstract shapes. His chair is gone.

The hostess has managed ‘9 pieces’, and this is when she apologetically asks me to leave. I look up and the whole scene ‘cuts’. Daylight is gone, the whole room is wrecked in a green tone. All of the patrons sit dead at the table. I feel like an onlooker now, I’m out with the scene.

The overweight gentleman is seated in his chair, his bowels are entwined in the chair legs. Faeces is visibly dripping from his groin, and piled on the floor. The rest are in much the same way – bloodshot eyes, indeterminable scars.

Death by neglect? The hostess– seeming more so young, is caught in the midst of this. Terribly frightened, is she to blame? A voice, a narrator speaks from nowhere.

He explains that the guests have no purpose now, they are the husks of their former selves. The only use they have now is for the insects – and the scene develops as human sized insects break through the windows, and inseminate the cadavars. Before flying out to join their brethren. The corpses undergo a pupating larval stage – yet all this passes by in an instant. The guests emerge from their sacs, and trudge out of the building, disguises for the insects. Masks.

Barely reaching the exterior before the matured insects burst from their hosts, implosions of blood as their wings beat hard, and lift them into the sky.

I’m looking up at the guests in the sky, each bursting in turn. It rains blood.

Cut.

I’m back at the table – everyone is there again. The hostess is gone. I see a horned gentleman smiling at me from another table.

Cut.

Everything freezes. The Dylan character is performing his feats again. Shaping light into tangible panels, 3D planes of spectral light. Conjuring form from nothing.

The horned ‘Narrator’ is speaking to him.

Cut.

The skeletal woman is sitting naked and alone in an oversized bathtub, the water is cold. She is shivering, but besides that she is not moving.

The Narrator is pacing around – walking around. Around.

Cut.

We’re suspended from a window ledge – staring into the eyes of a man through a camera lens. They have written something on the ground below. This feels like a prank. They’ve made a mistake, the writing is in the shot too soon. They have to re-set up and re-think this.

We’re in the hallway with the window, there is a notice board, which requires 2 massive screws to be undone. The notice board sits on a rack.

Once the two bolts are removed the board sulks out of place. We can’t fix it. In increasing frustration the bald man to my left hoists himself up by the top of the board and raises himself up quickly to smash his head off the ceiling. Again, and again, and again and again.

I pull at his legs and…

Cut.

We’re on a ship, surrounding in the waters by monsters. The bald man says,

‘He is here. Now I am able to do this.’ The Narrator stands on the water beyond the boat.

He removes his lower clothing, and begins to stretch out his legs into the splits. The floorboards of the ship, that his feet are placed upon melt and engulf his feet. He screams. I’m dragged back into the water.

We’re running, running under the surface. I can see one of the previous scenes to my right – playing over. The Narrator whispers in my ear.

I wake up. Not screaming, not suddenly, not with a jolt, I simply wake up. I was not afraid at all.

~

And this is only what I remember… I can’t help but feel I’m missing so  much more of this story now that I am awake.

~

“As we are bound, we are free.” This is and has been the underlying thought behind my work. A tag line if you will, and then I read this.

Jean-Paul Sartre, for instance, famously claimed that humans are "condemned to be free" — because they always have a choice.

Is it comforting to find your idea exists already out their in the spectrum of human minds. Yes, kind of. I’m trying to figure out who/what Windbag represents.

As Hatavar is to Confusion, as Windbag is to…

Chivalry? Nah. Escapism? Wanderlust?

adventure, carry, cover, cover ground, cross, cruise, drive, explore, fly, get through, go, go abroad, go camping, go into orbit, go riding, hop*, jaunt, jet*, junket*, knock around, make a journey, make one’s way, migrate, motor, move, overnight, proceed, progress, ramble, roam, rove, sail, scour, set forth, set out, sightsee, take a boat, take a plane, take a train, take a trip, tour, transmit, traverse, trek, vacation, visit, voyage, walk, wander, weekend, wend

Windbag’s dream is to reach the ‘Boundless Skies’ – a sky bordered by no horizon, no tier above, and everything below. this is quite an escapist vision huh?

His dream is curbed by Obligation, and over the years he has become a rather twisted being. But still at heart, a sky pirate.

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Enjoying this rough thumb nailing technique. Establishing value to create form quickly, important part of working quickly. A lot of the detail is implied, open to interpretation, this is by no means a refined design, but it plots in the major shapes and establishes a foundation to progress. What is left is to create several more and experiment with the main principles.

~

Animatic lies broken… and forgotten – must get to that.

Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Dreamscaping

 

Isn’t this just wonderfully done? The song resonates with me too, in fact most of the songs I’ve heard by Oren Lavie have so far have done so. For instance.

-Locked in a Room-

…Locked in a room that is nothing but walls
And you search for a chair
But there's nothing at all
And the one thing you find when you look at the floor
Is a key, but there isn't a door


Now that you're locked in a room
There is room to assume
You are there for a cause
You're not sure what it was
When you're locked in a room


Locked within a room of memory
Locked within a room you stand
Locked up away with no light of day
Locked in a room you begin
To find your way out
You find your way in


Locked in a room with your memory far
You don't know where it is
But you know where you are
In the dark of a room with a wall out of which
Comes a lamp, but there isn't a switch


Locked in a room it is small it is not
It is empty and cold so you fill it with thoughts
Of a wonderful nature, and various sizes you doubt
You could think your way out


Now that the room 'cause you're locked
And the moon is not lock and nobody's speaking
The silence is ticking
When you're locked in a room


Locked within a room of memory
Locked within a room you stand
Locked up away with no light of day
Locked in the room you begin
To find your way out
You find your way in
To find your way out
You find your way in…

~

It’s almost as if we’d shared a dream and we’re exploring it in our own way. A manifestation of an idea across the globe – or perhaps it’s just because I perceive the world in a certain way, and the meanings I find seem similar because my mind/vision twists them to suit my purpose. Whatever, I’m inspired.

~

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Portrait of a Windbag – I’m having difficulty getting his mouth quite right, his mouth shape is elusive and quite tricky to establish what with all the facial hair. Trying out a new painting technique, doesn’t have a name since it’s just an experimentation.

What would the pursuit of Freedom be called?

TED

PROJECT SUPERVISOR MEETING – Week 5

Brian Robinson suggested today that we write out 3 paragraphs summarising our Dissertation – so let us begin.

How do you define metaphor without comparing it to something else? That is in part the nature of metaphor as it exists today. metaphor is the glue between ideas. Pull the idea far enough apart and you create a strand, a tangible link. A causeway for meaning to travel the distance of perceptible thought.

All the world’s a stage – thank you Shakespeare. i really must read more of his work – I feel like I’m missing out, so

If anyone knows of a great source for Shakespeare writings, throw it may way!

I aim to seek out examples of particular use of conceptual metaphor present within the visual medium – still paintings, graphics novels, refining more to its’ expression throughout animation.

I’m approaching this from a structure of building story – I’ve been reading Robert McKee’s book based upon it and it is insightful – I just wish I could quicken my reading pace, as there just isn’t enough time in the day to feed my head.

- Brian suggested also at each stage of my design process, each element could be accompanied by a written description of how metaphor has informed my work. It’s tempting to do so – but that feels like a magician explaining his tricks.

As in the Prestige -

Alfred Borden: The secret impresses no one. The trick you use it for is everything.

Also on the matter of jumbled words!

~

How to draw? When asked, 'how do you draw?' I freeze. Mind blank. Vacant stare. The muttering of consonants.

And then I think. I walk home, I reflect on everything I didn't say, and I forget everything I did. So for those of you at my 'clinic' this evening, here is a more comprehensive answer to the question.

Ask the right questions.

For instance, rather than how to draw, let's consider 'Why to draw.' What motivates you to express yourself visually?

What it the reason you wish to place a pen/pencil/chalk/brush/conte to paper/canvas/board/tablet in the first place?

Find that, hold onto that, it’s your reason. With a force to move you, let it be guided by your curiosity which is the most important aspect to nurture. An artist is lost within limited horizons, just as a writer has little to write about when they’re stranded in nothing.

Learn the basics. – ConceptArt’s Wiki will jumpstart you – look beyond this.

We see by light. Without light, we would have no perception of form. Learn light. I’ll try to build up a resource of links for my personal use and share it.

Still stuck?

~

This is my search result for Conceptual Metaphor on TED -

http://www.ted.com/index.php/search?q=conceptual+metaphor&x=0&y=0

Whoo – none! But what does this mean, really is that TED isn’t a place to dabble specifically in Lakoff and Johnson’s works. That or the way they organise their talks, it doesn’t describe all the things going on in them yet. This’ll take more work on my part.

This was all I got coming up for ‘Metaphor’

~

Also today I’m installing ToonBoom Animate PLE version, just to see if it’ll be any cooler than Flash for what I’m wanting to do. It was featured in my latest issue of Imagine FX – however the disc I got from them was malfunctioning so I downloaded it from ToonBoom themselves.

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Week 5 Day 29 Continued

I found out today through trial and error that Abertay has Adobe CS3 upstairs in the new open space labs, but this computer does not recognise the Wacom Tablet as a wacom, instead a human interface device, and subsequently responds to it as it would a regular mouse.

But hoorah – 1546 computers do have the drivers installed, they do not however have CS3. Instead they’re still clutching to Photoshop 7.0 like it was rare obsidian or something.

In true Abertay flare then, they’ve segregated the two aspects of my workflow, stranding me somewhere in between.

Why not just use 7.0 then? You may ask. Well, I can, and probably will – only I’ve recently been investing some time into experimenting with custom brushes, and my particular favourites function only in CS1 or above.

-

I’m going to mix it up a little – I feel like my competence with drawing in photoshop has improved a little in terms of my coordination and ability to quickly realise form a little more.

Try some storyboard panels based solely in photoshop – see how it goes.

Oh and El Coro’s TRANSIENT!

~

What is wrong with this picture?

Scene1-TrainExterior

And for a fresh view.

Scene1-TrainExterior copy copy

Hopefully this will make more sense to my eyes in the morning.

Monday, 9 February 2009

Week 5 Day 29

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Tinkering in UVLayout led to this – the process is a little draining, because I’m not even sure if this is the final model. I’d just like something I could play around with textures with.

Anyone know any good tutorials on lighting within Maya? I really need to learn this more effectively.

By the end of this week, I would like Hatavar to be completely animatable and ready for animation. This includes facial rig set-up. Anyone who is interested in helping out with his hat/scarf set up is more than welcome to pitch in.

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Next up is the hat! I’ve been thinking that the model is a little small in comparison to the reference drawings I’ve become accustomed to pouring out (due to storyboards). So I think before I get down to the nitty-gritty decoration of said hat, I’d best attempt to get the proportions correct.

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I’ve arrived at this manner of absurdity – it is a little narrow at the base, but part of me likes it. That same part will probably wake up tomorrow with a complete reversal of opinion and bitch slap me into pro-active backtracking but for now I’m content to unwrap and set up the texture maps for this. It will be an alleviation to see the complete Hatavar get-up soon, in near to as full colour as has been found outside of Photoshop.

Haven’t slept yet and I ended up widening that narrow neck of the hat. Just going to apply those preliminary textures to the models before finishing up for bed.

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I think tomorrow (today) I’ll try out some alpha mapping on the hat brim to give that some character and drag it away from looking pathetically geometrical.

Now, to the land of dreams!

Sunday, 8 February 2009

Future

It’s occurring to me that I should probably put into place a manner of a plan for the future. Beyond the walls of whitespace and the halls of honours. Whatever they are.

2 things strike me clear in the face. I need a CV, and I need a showreel/portfolio of work. Now. Oh and Business cards, seem like the essential thing to obtain for myself these days.

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Began modelling the interior of the Seating Compartment aboard the train. I’m fortunate that this environment is particularly modular, and thus can be instanced where appropriate.

I feel that the design is lacking something in the area directly behind the seating, I’m not sure yet though it could be some manner of Greebles. (I recommend anyone to read Gurney’s blog, artist or otherwise.)

I’ve still to work in the REVELANTERNS which will occupy the space between every seating arrangement. For now I feel the model is remaining close to the original design, which may not necessarily be a good thing, it would be nice to invest some fresh creativity into this.

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I have to apologise for this – I really do, but I couldn’t help myself – a re-evaluation of an existing mascot known as Rumbel, found over at Rumbel Subs. It’s a little sketchy, but on second viewing, i should probably give him more of a torso of some kind - ‘weird’ limb ridden kitten head is freaking people out.

To the point Will compared it to this MECH mixed with Fox McCloud.

I’ll be continuing to work on the train interior, I hope to have the environment completed and lit by the end of this week.

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

So today I…

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Behold the fortune of Abertay -

I happened to be sitting in Lab 1546, ground floor whitespace Maya lab when Gregor White strolls in gregorly, and announces there will be a lecture at 3 in the not-so-big, big lecture room.

I bide my time and eventually make my way there. I arrive to find someone giving away ice cream. Yes, ice cream. The guys in the row behind me, pictured above all departed in unison and returned with this bountiful arrangement.

So even though the lecture was about to begin, the lighting was crap, and my hands were shaky – I took this picture of the beautiful moment. (Sorry for the crappy quality, but flash would have drawn too much attention.)

~

During the lecture I drawed some Obligator concepts – my scanner is broken somewhat so I’m having to capture these with my camera for now.

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Think I’ll edit these in photoshop so they’re not as greyed out and obscure.

Using these as a reference, I set about modelling the Obligator(s) which will symbolise the real threat of harm upon the train. They’re deliberately convoluted machinations of Fear, trundling the carriage ways at nigh break neck speeds!

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Quite enjoying this 3D puzzle, just trying to sculpt something that I’m not familiar of doing before. – still in the early stages. I’ll probably be working on my Hatavar texture again tonight, so I’ll post that up some time tomorrow.

Oh and I’ll also be attending the First Thurstday event being held here in Dundee at the DCA. It’ll be an early start, but hopefully worth it so I’ll be taking my sketchbook along for kicks.

Remember kids - ‘Just turn up.’ ~ Woody Allen

I also had Pitch, oh-wasn’t-that-exciting-news.