Friday, December 26, 2008

Demo Reel: Boy & Bike WIP

Since a friend of mine requested it, here's some WIP (Work in Progress) of the bike and character I'm doing for my demo reel.

I haven't mentioned this before, but with these screenshots it should be fairly apparent that my reel belongs to the steampunk genre. Anyways, here they are:

Newsie Boy Concept

Head Mesh Shaded

Head Mesh Wireframe

WIP Zbrush Sculpt for Wrinkles

WIP Zbrush Sculpt for Wrinkles

WIP Zbrush Sculpt for Wrinkles

Flying Bike Concept

Flying Bike Wip Geo

Friday, December 12, 2008

Demo Reel: Environment

At VFS we spent the first 3 terms learning bits and piece of everything about 3D, and then we spend the last 3 terms for full-time production of our demo reel (final project). And I've been so busy, now I finally got time to post what I've been doing so far on my demo reel.

I am doing a modeling reel and part of it is an environment. I have been working on the environment since the beginning of term 4 and I tried my best to bring it to full competition before I move on to other elements of my project. It is very easy to lose patience when doing 3D and half the battle is sticking to the plan.

I'm proud to say that I have stuck to the plan til the end and fairly satisfied with the results. Still needs more work but it is around 95% complete. I am just going to post several images of the major milestones I have made, so you get an idea how far I have progressed:

Scene would not render. Rendered buildings in 4 passes with default lighting and comped them together for presentation.

Whole scene rendered after scene cleanup and displacement optimization. Had major gamma problems here. Lighting was affected due to the gamma problems. Bummer.

Corrected the gamma. Near-final render settings. Preliminary test of some dirt layers, water, and plants. Tried rendering the whole sequence and found MEGA displacement popping and final gathering flickers. Bummer.

All dirt maps completed. Fixed the displacement popping. Fixed problem with too much light inside buildings. Still have some flickers but close to competition.

Other Stills:

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Life Drawings

Some of my better life drawing done while at VFS (terms 2 & 3). I've definitely seen a lot of artistic improvement while at VFS, not just drawing, but as as artist in general.

3D Modeling: caricature

This is the second (and last) modeling assignment for term 3 - to model a caricature of ourselves.

I decided to make my Simpson-Me that I made through Burger King's, because I really did like how it turned out. I think it does feel a lot like me, and its hard to draw a better caricature of myself.

I think the model turned out pretty well, nice and simple and clean.

Orthographic views


3D Animation: Stuff from term 3

Long time no update, I'm just gonna slap on a bunch of stuff from term 3 to 4 that I should have posted earlier.

I wanted to set up a local video player so I don't have to post all this bad stuff on youtube, but I just never had the time. So here goes:

Ball Push

Baseball Pitch & Bat

Lip Sync 1

Lip Sync 2

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

3D Modeling: Gastown Group Project

The first assignment for modeling in term 3 was a group project -- modeling a scene somewhere in Vancouver with post-apocalyptic robot remains. Our group chose a spot in Gastown, the thin building is called the "Europe Hotel". Texturing was not required.

Ambient Occlusion

3D Texturing: Skin Shader Test on Jack Sparrow

For texturing class, we get to choose our own project and work on something usable or at least beneficial for the development of our demo reel. I really wanted to test out the SSS skin shader before I use it on my demo reel character, since I have never used the shader before. I used the face mesh of my Jack Sparrow model for the assignment. I struggled a bit with the skin shader but also learned a lot from this exercise, as a result I only got around to texturing the skin and nothing else.

Besides the fact that its incomplete, I am quite happy with the result with using only a bump map. I also got a bit of XSI hair on the face to give it a hint of Jack Sparrow.

3D Lighting: Term 3

It's been a while since my last post. Term 3 was hectic, we did a lot yet it feels like I don't have much to show -- simply because we spent most of the energy on developing ideas towards our final short film the "demo reel". At this point the reel ideas are still in its infancy and nothing solid to show yet, so I am just going to do a quick roundup of the very few assignments we did for term 3.

The assignment for lighting class is fairly self-explanatory, we had to light the same room (provided by the instructor) in a daylight setting and a nighttime setting. I did learn quite a few things from this assignment regarding choice of lights and settings, so here they are:

Daylight Scene

Night Time Scene

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

3D Animation: Baseball pitch

This is the first half of a baseball assignment, the pitch (the bat will follow later). I have to say I am fairly happy with this because this is probably my best animation assignment so far (I'm still learning of course....).

3D Animation: Term 2 Round Up

A roundup of the 3D animation I did for term 2, these are not very good but I decided to post them anyway. The pose-to-pose are modeled from actual people posing in the classroom.

Pose-to-Pose II

Pose-to-Pose I


Box Lift

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

3D Lighting: Bright & Dark Scenes

For our intro lighting classes, we had to light a given scene to match a given reference by using as little lights as possible. I paid special attention to this assignment as I want to excel in lighting, because bad lighting can make the best model with the best textures look like bad 3D.

I used 4 lights in this scene (all spot): 1 main light, 1 rim light, 1 fill light, and 1 extra fill light for the character.

I used 4 lights in this scene also: 1 main light (spot), 1 fill light for the atmosphere (infinite), 1 fill light for bounced light (infinite), 1 extra fill for bounced light from another angle (infinite)

3D Texturing: Airplane (Part II)

My unwrap and texture maps for the airplane I posted earlier.

Link to the original post:
3D Texturing: Airplane (Part I)


Diffuse Map

Bump Map

Reflect Map

Spec Map

Transparency Map

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Classical Animation for Term 2

Just thought I would post all my term 2 classical assignments at once. The requirements for these assignments were quite simple, just make the actions work (cape jump, swing, box lift, reaction). I always added extra imagination to my animations just to make the assignments more interesting to do. As you can see, I put in a cameo of my killer rabbit for assignment 4.

Assignment 4: Reaction

Assignment 3: Box Lift

Assignment 2: Swing

Assignment 1: Cape Jump

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

3D Texturing: Airplane (Part I)

These are the final renders for my unwrapping / texturing / lighting assignment for term 2, everything is based upon real-life reference. I think this is not a bad attempt considering its my first time unwrapping something more complicated and textured with only simple shaders (blinn). Plus its my first attempt at lighting.

The plane was not modeled by me, I only did the texturing. It is textured according to an actual surviving airplane (a Mustang) from WWII, the "Old Crow". Reference photos of the actual plane can be found here:

P-51 Mustang Survivors: "Old Crow"
P-51 Mustang Survivors

Saturday, June 14, 2008

3D Modeling: Jack Sparrow

It's been a crazy term so far -- we have a big presentation coming monday so I have been pulling off around 10-15 hours at school almost everyday trying to polish up my stuff. As a matter of fact I would still be working at school right now if I didn't already have a previous engagement. All my computers are either broken or malfunctioning this way or another so when I am not at school I have nothing better to do but to update my blog.

Anyway, this Jack Sparrow is for a 3D modeling assignment where we have to model our own superhero. I was going to model batman for a detailed muscle-anatomy study, but I really like Jack Sparrow way more than batman. I took this assignment further (as a challenge to myself) by rigging, lighting and rendering it. This is my first time modeling a character, rigging a character, lighting stuff, and rendering sequence.

The youtube video turned out kind of small and blurry, but this is the actual rendered size of the video.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Photoshop: Editing & Compositing

Our last photoshop assignment with 2D compositing opened up a complete new realm to me in terms of 2D, because I did not know this was possible before.

Basically we start with a rendered image of a 3Dmodeled room. We take that into Photoshop and layered "textures" on top according to the room's perspective, with very very flat lighting. Then we take pre-rendered lighting "passes" and use that as a base for lighting. The resulting image looks to have the illusion of 3D and looks very realistic.

Below is a breakdown of the different stages:

This is just another assignment for our photoshop class where we had to remove the background from a photo and do color adjustments. Was a piece of cake for me since I used to do image editing all the time, so I went a little stylistic with it:

3D texturing: Spacefighter

This assignment is just an exercise to learn unwrapping and practice texturing with diffuse, bump, spec, and transparency maps. Since this is not about copying references, I exerted random creativity and had a little fun with it.

3d Animation: Beluga

On week 2, we went on a class "field trip" (my first field trip in many years) to the Vancouver Aquarium to study the movement of the Beluga Whales since we are going to animate it in 3D. This kind of research is typical for animators.

I found that 10 out of 10 times when the Belugas swam in front of us (submerged window in the beluga tank), they flip themselves around the swim with their belly pointing up. I don't know if they are just showing off or they do that naturally when they dive deeper in the tank, but that's what they did 10/10 times so I decided to put it in my animation.

Hectic Beginning for Term 2

So term 2 has started a full month ago and I've finally found time to do a quick blog update. Not that I was so overwhelmed with work -- more like I was overwhelmed with classes going from 9am to 8pm 4 days a week, and therefore had to sacrifice the rest of the nights and all the weekends for homework.

I pace myself well so I get enough sleep everyday and get my assignments done earlier than the due date, but that only means I have no free time on weekends. All is fine though, no complaints here :), after all I am learning more awesome stuff this term than last term.

To top off the busy schedule, my computer had gone haywire on me so instead of spending hours and hours at home in frustration trying to fix it, I resolved to spending more time at school to actually get my homework done first.

Anyway, I've got only a few things to show so far, since we've been given more complex assignments this term that takes a few weeks to complete, whether than the short week-long assignments of last term. Enjoy.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

3D Modeling: Robotic Animal

The last assignment in modeling is to design, model and rig our own robotic animals. We are free to do anything we like as long as it is half organic and half machine.

We were shown many examples and the animal-side of most were simply an empty shell where the machine dwells. I didn't like that - I want my animal to have a mind and a personality, it is a machine and yet it is not an empty shell. So I made my rabbit the driver of a machine tank.

Concept design:


Saturday, May 3, 2008

Composition: Mood, Movement & Meaning

These are the last 3 composition assignments and the description paragraphs the drawings are based on. For previous assignments, I was always unconsciously drawing everything covered in the paragraphs, making a more complicated yet unfocused composition. As a new challenge to myself, I tried to pick only a few elements to focus on, in order to make a more focused and compelling composition.

The private office was everything a private office should be. It was long and dim and quiet and air-conditioned and its windows were shut and its gray venetian blinds half-closed to keep out the July glare. Gray drapes matched the gray carpeting. There was a large black and silver safe in the corner and a low row of low filing cases that exactly matched it. On the wall there was a huge tinted photograph of an elderly party with a chiselled beak and whiskers and a wing collar. The Adam's apple that edged through his wing collar looked harder than most people's chins. The plate underneath the photograph read: Mr. Matthew Gillerlain 1860-1934.
Derace Kingsley marched briskly behind about eight hundred dollars' worth of executive desk and planted his backside in a tall leather chair. He reached himself a panatela out of a copper and mahogany box and trimmed it and lit it with a fat copper desk lighter. He took his time about it. It didn't matter about my time. When he had finished this, he leaned back and blew a little smoke and said:
"I'm a business man. I don't fool around. You're a licensed detective your card says. Show me something to prove it."

"Don't you know a police siren when you hear one? Get out of that car!"
I got out of the car and stood beside it in the moonlight. The fat man had a gun in his hand.
"Gimme our license!" he barked in a voice as hard as the blade of a shovel.
I took it out and held it out. The other cop in the car slid out from under the wheel and came around beside me and took what I was holding out. He put a flash on it and read.
"Name of Marlowe," he said. "Hell, the guy's a shamus. Just think of that, Cooney."

The first blister popped, bled.
The soil lay rock-like beneath the heavy frost, and his shovel worked scarcely better than a child's toy. Still he kept digging, pausing only when his hands grew too cold to grip the handle, or when a fit of coughing took him, doubling him over to spit thickly on the ground.
His foot brushed against the gunnysack lying next to him, producing a muffled thud. Take a breath, man - don't kill yourself in the doing.
He sat down on the small pile of fresh-dug dirt, pulling the sack closer to him. Gentle, now, his trembling hands doing their best to forget the cold, forget the strain of digging.