Here is version 1 of the kitchen. Minus a real fridge with a freezer that opens and stuff that will fall out, (maybe). And minus a cake. So where am I on this project? The puppy Gizmo has, in draft form, a body, a UV map, and a basic skin. A skeleton was made. It maybe crappy... and it hasn't been assigned to the skin. Not that the skin's final, but I haven't done this skin assignment in more than the brief tube with 3 joints tutorial. we'll see.... There's a basic kitchen. None of it has been put together, which usually takes lots of work. I think.
SO what I'm going to scramble for:
(While learn facial rigging for idiots from the book)
do an hour's more touch ups on the gizmo mesh
import the old skeleton to the new Gizmo body mesh
Assign skin to skeleton
Try out that rig
Try rigging the face
If the body and face react to the rig well enough for my purposes,
Skin it, not detailed
ship it to the kitchen.
try to have a basic opening shot or something, have one bit of animation and camera work done.
I'll be happy with a dog done and just scenery left, as that has required very little learning so far... but we'll see. Other than a 10 page paper in one class and the final in the other this is the only thing left. And this is what will get me a job someday, not systems analysis or security. Hmm....
Next week I'll be in portland with the family. This is good and important, but cuts off from the desktop and Maya. I loaded Maya onto the new laptop, but the laptop doesn't have the horses to do work on Gizmo. But it can be used to block out and develop the Scenery (kitchen, maybe the cake).
So here's a rough sketch and initial color palet attempt. not sure what color to do the fridge. The blue isn't working too well, but it should be more interesting than cream... I'll do some image research I guess.
Of the shadow of Time and sleep sucking theatre, I will fear no Freaking Annoying UV debacles; for UV Smooth is with me, and though it cause my CPU great distress, I shall see the light of the end of the Mapping process.
Use 'Edit UVs -> smooth' not the little tool in the UV editor window. Remember the anchor points.
Here's my first shot at painting this guy.
Exporting some how added a lot of other things; maybe my nodes are being messed up. THis was a proof of concept anyway.
Now to see if I can apply my Theatre Tech weekend focus and endurance upon the puppy, so it may be presentable at the end of the term
Spent most of this labbing time working through this again. I lost the flash file to the 0.4 animatic somehow. Hence Completely re-doing the end. I wanted the puppy to get the cake. Not sure about the middle of the end sequence.
I'm learning some of the fun things about rigging. Actually a lot of this makes sense once I figure out what the book is going on about. Though I'm not sure why it didn't work the first time but did the second. Picture shows my little hand rotation controlling the skeleton hand.
(google thinks that 'rigging' means with rope, and puts up rope ads. I laugh)
Yes. I should be working on Gizmo. But I'm not sure what to do. And this is a new toy.
The Autodesk bundle comes with a little program called Sketchbook. This is like photoshop lite for drawing and painting. Big annoyance is that the 'fuzziness' of photoshop even worse. Better side is that I have it at home, and an old Wacom tablet. Much time wasting ensues.
Sketchbook pro (which has things like Layers which are very nice) is about $100 (less for students I'm sure). And feel easier to sketch with (rim shot) than photoshop.
So here's my latest creation.
Still figuring out brushes mostly, finding what I can create well and what the right brushes (and smudgers and blurings) can help me create better.
Just cause it's fun. If I own this program at home I will waste so much time playing with it... I like the trees more, playing around whith what happens when you add something like yellow to a green tree, then smudge it... Wish I could rotate the image while working on it...
Woo copy and paste! I have pulled out the teeth into different objects, as per recommendations. Then I shamelessly copied the secondary teeth, nearly mirroring top and bottom. It will annoy me later and I will tweak them more then, but for now I feel really good to kinda have all the teeth. Add a tounge and that's all the body parts. Wow. Even in crappy first effort form, I'm making strides forward. Or stumbles. Like a drunken sailor. Who should be able to walk well drunk, after dealing with the challenges of walking on a ship at sea... anyway. Gods this all would be easier to do in real 3d. Maybe I'll invent a holo deck where you can manipulate these things in all 3 dimensions at once. Yeah, I'm tired, it's been a long first week. Repeat to do list:
indie study projector thing,
drag myself in here this week end and add the tounge (how many faces should it have? I don't know..)
and start tweaking this model.
Work on psyc ward stuff?
Feels like I'm forgetting something...
Grad Project! sketch sketch sketch ideas. look up and see if I can do it in C# for the learning...
(My current Grad project is a 2-d game of this Corgi versus the forces of evil squirrels. Pretending this game is commissioned by a dog treats company, the corgi gets dog treat power-ups to overcome obstacles. Maybe there should be a goal different from the squirrel chasing.)
Oh, and the Corgi may get named "Gizmo." It sounds better in my head than it looks on paper.
Also I may think about doing the game in 3d, over the shoulder like the old Spyros. Hmm concept theft....
p.s. yes I'm re-posing this Grad stuff where it belongs, in the other blog.
Learn the technical processes included in such, and have something to show for it.
Make it fun to watch.
2. A project description:
A 3d modeled Welsh Pembroke Corgi of about teenage years making various attempts to get at a cake on top of a fridge. And it's funny.
3. Specific products of study or deliverables that you will be creating for your project.
The finished, polished movie clip. The corgi model which can be re-used for other projects. The 'story board' which is really a "low production quality" 2d flash video, but shows I thought it out before doing it.
4. Visual and/or written research for your project. Stuff done by other people.
Lots of picture of adorable dogs. Lots of tutorials, several books I actually paid for. Disney's "Bolt" as an example of a 3d animated dog whose teeth don't scare little children.
5. Treatment visuals for your project. This is stuff done by you. This can consist of links, a bibliography, images, etc.
All those photos (see tag 'puppy refs'), the story board anamatic.
6. A written description of specific technical and research issues you will need to address during the course of your project.
Modeling organic things accurately-ish is hard, and requires trying several things before finding the right way to do it.
I've never skinned something like this (or anything other than a box).
Rigging? What's that?
Animating a complex model?
Capturing it (woo render farm nights...)
Polishing the final capture is really beyond my current experience. I'm sure I can figure it out with help from resources, I've just never even used any of that software.
Finally, my creative adviser (My girlfriend, who, when I mused last year "I should do an animated short..." immediately shouted out "Make it about a puppy!! Trying to get food!! from the top of a Fridge!!"), anyway she still thinks I should try to get fur on the dog... which would be better but more work.
7. A timeline of your project. When you will be doing all of this good stuff. You must include specific DEADLINES (for example: "January 27th", not "some time in January."
Working on the model 3 times a week,
Work on the animatic for 2 hours a week or more as sanity allows.
Finish the teeth and tongue Wednesday 10-14 (2 weeks from today).
Finish the eyes/forehead the week after that (10-21)
Final touch-ups by the following saturday (10-24)
Rig it for 2 weeks (Nov 7)
Skin it for 2 weeks (Nov 21)
Test drive it, start animating.
Honestly... I would like to keep to this schedule but I don't feel confident that I can. I need to schedule regular work time more than goals; if I work it then it will get there. My schedule as a 1 year CS Masters student is a little rigorous. And not completely to my liking. But this is my year, and i will do with it as I want to.
Now up to 8 somewhat-questionable teeth. I'm not sure how accurate I should be going here... I like the idea of Simpler, Blockier teeth more than realistic scary wolf teeth. Somehow I'm seeing lips being even harder with the poly smooth...
First I was wanting to sketch out some teeth ideas, in photoshop. I've been doing paper drawing off and on over the summer, and have made progress with my technical drawing and shading skills. It looks like they've transferred well into photoshop. The light stuff isn't bad, though it's harder to get the even field. Also it's harder to get the solid dark shading. I should play more with size of brush and such. Sigh, to own these and play with them at home... buy anyway. Here's my little sketch.It would benefit from a border, at least in the editing view. And the eyes are weird. But it's SO nice to be able to have a big digital paper and zoom in and teak the little things. like the fore-paw bottom shading.
I take a moment to ponder. What do I want to do? Is coding really my forte? The security sequence sounds interesting, but is it for me? SOU's master's program has assistantship money but no mentoring in the field I've become so attached to: 3d art, game creation- stuff. My corgi is cute, I hope the video will be good too, and I hope I finish it. This summer wasn't nearly as productive as I hoped it would be when it started. Time off is good, playing games is good too, but only after work has been done. But back to the subject.
Is this masters degree pursuit of a year or two going to be what I want to do, help me get to where I'd like to go? Making video games is a strange, vague, nice-sounding fantasy to me; I don't know what it's really like. Imagining is all I can do and that worries me. But it sounds better than the other stuff I've thought about pursuing. Is 'it sounds better' sufficent to choose a life-changing path?
It's time to leave the rogue valley, maybe to leave Oregon. Rather, it kinda feels like it maybe time. Time to find a city and place with learning available in person as well as from books and the web. I found relative success in Theatre by the help and door-opening of the faculty here, by proving to them that I got it. Then proving (kinda) to those they introduced me to.
I guess I could take that success and go with it, and keep games as a hobby.
Mom and Dad say 'find a job that makes you happy and has health insurance.'
I'm inclined to be quiet, stationary, an introvert. Sometime I feel the need to break out of that shell, then I go back in for a stretch. It takes a lot of hermiting to build up the break-out energy.
A data point that is solid is the joy of a progressing, well done model. I haven't done many but they've been fun.
Project idea: find an excuse to make something in Zbrush. Just play with it. Maybe make a squirrel for the 2d game Idea, or just make a thingy.
And I ought to exercise more. And Draw too. And scan and post the drawings.
Ok, moving on. This is the part where I make a to-do list for the near and long term, of which I'll follow a little then get distracted playing Braid or something. -Finish book work like I should have at the start of the summer. -Finish the puppy, and try Rigging then lighting. -Maybe ask someone if they'd let me play with their models to do lighting... -Hike/run. -Draw. -Find myself and my center.
-This term, Schedule out and stick to a work schedule. Drop one of the classes if need be. Try them first though. -Talk to Pete about System Analysis and if it really is worth the time/money to me. -Stretch.
And here are some websites to look at more: http://www.gamecareerguide.com/
In an effort to make the teeth/mouth section of this model go faster than the toes, I'm actually studying the subject a little first.
Real do teeth are scary, pointy things that remind us that dogs are decended from carniviorus wolves who figured out a good way to stop the deer/caribou/moose from running away: tear out the hamstring.
Looking at a few images from Bolt shows a specific choice: blunt the incisiors and other teeth so we don't scare the kids. Much like the Monsters Inc. characters tended to have large 'pointy' teeth, but in a rounded way. Also bolt's other teeth appear far more uniform and less pointy. The overall effect is more of a cross between human and dog, which helps Bolt look reasonable when talking human words.
So what am I gonna do? other than the feet I've tried to stay very close to realism so far. I still wonder if that is a good choice or not. Maybe I should have pushed more and scaled back later. I'm too used to doing lighting in the theatre, where we usually are going for a "realism that lifts slightly into theatricality" effect. Lessons learned: think more about and sketch more of your character. (Character design becomes more and more an interest to me...)
ANYway... It would be easier to model blocky teeth that have few gaps between them (like Bolts) rather than the strangely spaced out reality. Also it's just weird doing teeth with Polygon Smoothing involved, but I'm still hoping that'll save me in the end.
I guess I should keep sketching before trying... teeth are hard to draw too. Fine distinctions of shading have never been my strong point. The technique being the hard part. I guess start with a bigger image (I still do tiny thumbnails far more often, so I can work on the spacing of stuff and easily start over when I screw up. I should scan some of this stuff...)
Blah. It's a partly cloudy warm saturday. I should enjoy the out of doors a bit too.
I didn't bother to poly smooth because it's very early. Theatre took up all my time recently, so yeah excuse. It's about as tall as I'd like, but is actually too thin. Being thicker will make it less menacing I think/hope.
The toe saga continues. Yes I copied and pasted for the back feet, but they are bigger and elongated. I might tweak a little bit more, the heights of the two big middle toes should be the same I think, but it's difficult with polygon smoothing to achieve. But anyway, this is generally what they shal be.
Stepping back and looking again, they look large and cartooney. Kinda like the bolt feet I've been referencing. The cartooney is fine, but they may be too big. I'll check them versis the archive photos of corgis, I remember a certain petite-ness... Oh yes, and I added nostrils. The nose may need more work, but that's touch up. Oh and I grew the ears, need to see how huge and goofy they can stand to be. (The seam in the middle is an artifact and won't be there when I really 'bake' the final product)
These represent a big shift, with many thanks to disney's Bolt's toes. The actual digits are shorter, but there's a crease (for the middle two) suggesting longer. I think. And I hope it works. The 4th toe that you can't see in either is half/morphed, and so I tried not to show it.
So I've frankly sluffed off the whole working on Psyc ward props thing. Then there's a meeting on Thursday or so about it, and I'm suddenly inspired to put in some work. re-learning and hammering on skins mostly, with a little model tweaking that you can't really see here. Next up bump map I think.
More toes work. I'm departing more from realism with these; real dog toes are skinny and hinge oddly. Animated dog toes are fat and stubby (I would post more examples from Bolt, but they are on a different computer). This example shows that even really tired you can do some good work.