Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Personal Development Project

30th June 2015
So with my current contract finishing at the Serious Games Studio, I wanted to take the opportunity to use this new found time wisely. So myself and a programming friend decided to create an Unreal 4 environment so both of us can do things we did not get the chance to try at the SGS. For me personally it will be nice to go through the whole process of the model rather than stopping after 5 days !
I will be trying to document the assets I create, and render them at each stage, hopefully the pipe line will go something like; 
3D s max > Xnormal > Photoshop > Quixel Suite > Marmoset Toolbag 2 > Unreal Engine 4

This is the piece of concept art I will be working from, I will be trying to stick fairly close to the design but a few things I want to try and implement is snow terrain and snow VFX within the engine, and get a really crisp and effective cloth physics working in the scene. 

1st July 2015

Today I have modelled the basic building blocks of the environment, just some modular pieces I can use to build the shell of the buildings that I can later dress up with additional meshes. 
So you see these are the blocks, I created there normal maps in Quixel's nDo, I did nearly all the detail via normals and very little via the model itself due to these pieces being used a lot for creating the shell all the buildings in the scene, They are very basic but will be mostly covered come the final environment.
 I have textured these and tomorrow will take them into Marmoset Toolbag 2 to touch up, render and test lighting before sending them to Liam the programmer to implement into the engine. 
As you can see this is how I am using the pieces, this is the building that the Helicopter pad sits on in the Concept, i am simply building the foundations to later cover, now these are done I am hoping to have all shells finished by Tuesday next week if everything goes to plan !

6th July 2015
So it is times like this where I can appreciate the time and space I have to think now I have have finished my previous contract, I couldn't do anything Thursday or Friday because I had other commitments, However it gave me the chance once I did come back to look at what I had previously did with fresh eyes. And I looked at the texture I had created and straight away thought, ' No, not good enough'. I thought this for a multitude of reasons, firstly the details where to complex, they look good isolated but these materials are there to create a simple shell, therefore going to be repeated, so I needed a much simpler material.

So again this spare time I have is actually nice, I can invest a lot more time into texturing where previously it would of had to be rushed, so I set out a goal with this simple material, I wanted a collection of surfaces to come together, where light would effect them differently so that instead of using crazy detail to make them interesting simple light would do it for me. I settled on 3 surfaces, concrete, worn steel and a fresh galvanized steel. I was more interested in the worn steel, it would have a very flat specularity but with pockets of tighter highlights where the steel was not too worn / dirty !
Here is warm render produced in Quixel 3Do ! I am really happy how this came out it really achieves all that I set out to do, I added a broad vertical detail to link the vertical wall pieces more so that they don't feel so separated,
Some lighting variations so you can see how the material behaves under different influences.

So once I was happy with the material I built all the buildings which will be using these assets, I then took them into marmoset, I wanted to start to arrange the scene, excuse the white blocks, they are simply a place holder so that I can work out how the level will flow. It was nice to see the scene sort of come together.
Going forward as much as I want my next steps to be decorating these buildings with more mesh's, I need to create the other structures, these are more sheds so they will be unique meshes rather than using modular kits, this will do 2 things for the scene, show my range of modelling skills ( modular / whole structures) and since with structures are wooden it will allow me to show off a different side to my texturing skills. The important thing with these assets will be the little touches, I want these to start to tell a story of who the people are in this world !

14th July 2015

Unfortunately a much bigger gap between posts than I like, had a lot of home stuff to sort out but I am back on track now !

So there has been a lot of modelling going on but I do not want to put them up until they are textured, but however I have textured one of my all time favourite assets.
The Wider middle pillar, yeah I know so what ? I really love this model for some reason and finally got round to putting some respectable texturing time into it. I will be using the slimmer pillar and wall in this project but doubt I will use the crate set, I don't think it will work in this scene.

The importent Render here is the top cold one, that is the sort of hue and theme the scene will be so it is good that the model sits okay in that style. I wanted to get the look of polished stone / concrete with wear and tear on it, with rusted metal attachments, the scene will be snowy, therefore I added a heavy rust top layer to give it the impression of not being looked after much.

I will use this asset mainly for supporting upper structures, but will also try and dot it in where I can, I really do love this asset !

Also got the flooring designed to sit on top of these supports finished.

A office shack will sit on top of this foundation, as an outpost for the whole facility / environment, the flooring is relatively simple to not detract from the more essential parts of the scene, for example the big spot lights that will be on each corner of this platform, and the actual building that will sit at the centre of the platform !
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Monday, 29 June 2015

First 5min attempt at using Marmoset toolbag 2

This is literally a test render, I am going to spend the week creating models especially for marmoset but I just threw an old model in and wanted to see what this software was about, needless to say I am impressed !

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Monday, 22 June 2015

App design !

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