Post-Mortem Blog Post – Comatose Goldfish

Final Product Embedded

Links to all deliverables

Click HERE to view deliverables.

My Contributions to the Project

I modelled & unwrapped assets: three Barrels (one with a tap, two without), a crate, a chest.

To begin, I scoured the web and found some pleasing reference images to base my models from.

Crate refs.JPG

Then, I made a rough first pass at modelling the assets, sometimes a second pass.

To finish, I made the final models and UV unwrapped them to be textured.

Researched and implemented vertex painting for blood splatters/pools.Blood Material

Reflection

I feel because I was limited in the variety and quantity of tasks assigned to me, my contribution to the project was also limited (crucial but limited). This lack of involvement resulted in me being isolated from important events for the team as a whole and mostly being concerned with the immediate issues of the tasks I was working on at the time. Team members were poor with the communication aspect of the project and rarely kept the rest of the team updated with their progress and expectations of other team members. For example, some members, were working quite solo, and would upload their finished assets without any communication to the team throughout their work, or even after they had finished. On the other spectrum, if a team member (sometimes myself), would not attend class, they did not adequately question what it was they needed to be doing, and in turn, were not up to date with the teams progress. Towards the end, the biggest issue with the lack of communicate was there were times when tasks could not be completed efficiently because multiple people required the master-file. However, a schedule was established, in order for everyone to make arrangements to be available to work on the master-file on their given days. This played a huge role in the success of the completion of the assessment in the closing weeks.

I feel like my team as a whole were appreciative of my contributions. Initially, when I was absent at the start, they were fed up with me, understandably. However, as the semester progressed and I began to contribute more, they were very supportive. There was times when I would submit things a few days late, and they expressed to me their concerns, and the importance of dead lines, and together we were able to establish better expectations of one another, so that this didn’t happen again, and everyone felt like they were on the same page.

I feel as though I was not given a long list of tasks to contribute to the group assignment. I understand that this was because I was absent in the first planning week. However, while the list was not long, I still felt as though my tasks were time consuming, and involved extensive research and skill building on my part. A large majority of the time spent on the modelling section of this assessment was used getting myself acquainted with the programme and its functions. While modelling itself did take some time, there were many many hours behind the scenes that took place, including tutorials and meetings with my lecturers that were essential for a successful outcome.

It was overwhelming to start, when I realised that there was large portions of the work that I did not yet feel adequate to complete. It was crucial for me to master these areas before I could begin my work, and while that made me feel extremely anxious, I pushed through, and felt that my hard work paid off.

Plans & Pitches

How effective was the plan as a support tool and guide?

I was absent during the planning process. We did not refer back to the plan as a team since it’s creation. It was not formatted in a visually pleasing chart but a dull to-do style list. I believe that the plan was a failure as a support tool/guide. The team Trello board was used much more and was more visually pleasing and easy to modify than the plan. Although my contribution did look minimal when displayed like that even when many hours of work had been put towards the tasks.

How much the plan was followed? Why it was not followed?

The initial plan was followed, to some extent, that we had assigned roles and tasks and those tasks had to be completed by a certain time. The plan was, however, not referred back to directly and some of the tasks took longer than expected and in some cases I did not spend enough time on them to have them completed when they were expected to be.

How effective were your team’s pitches and presentations?

I was absent for most of the pitches and presentations. When I was attending, I lingered in the back of the group trying to vanish into the shadows or morph into the wall. Even in progress updates with the lecturers, I dreaded my turn to share progress because my input seemed so insignificant.

 

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Reflective Blog Entry 3: Collaborating with Fans

The lecture “Collaborating with Fans” stuck out to me because it allows an alternative to working for a studio or company and lets you work directly with the consumers of the product you are trying to make. This provides more independence and ensures the consumers get what they want. Once the task of building a substantial following is complete, they can be utilised to fund current and future work. This can be done through crowdfunding, a method for fans to contribute financially to a creator to support them in a project or their career and, in turn, receive agreed upon benefits. Websites such as Kickstarter and Patreon and examples of crowdfunding platforms. An example of successful crowdfunding was the Kickstarter game “Planetary Annihilation” developed by Uber Entertainment. It had a strong promotional video and a fun and unique twist on the classic sci-fi game genre which contributed to its success. The company tried to use the same method for their next project, “Human Resources”, another promising sci-fi game but fell short considerably of their target and the game was never made. This example highlights the limits of crowdfunding and while, if you can build a large backing, there are few complications, the potential of not meeting the target leaves the project abandoned.

https://ksr-video.imgix.net/projects/270437/video-151103-h264_high.mp4

Link to promotional video of Planetary Annihilation

https://www.gamespot.com/articles/amazing-looking-rts-project-human-resources-cancel/1100-6423073/

Link to article based on Human Resources

References:

Planetary Annihilation – A Next Generation RTS. (2012). Kickstarter. Retrieved 18 August 2017, from https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/659943965/planetary-annihilation-a-next-generation-rts

Haywald, J. (2014). Amazing-Looking RTS Project Human Resources Canceled by Developers. GameSpot. Retrieved 18 August 2017, from https://www.gamespot.com/articles/amazing-looking-rts-project-human-resources-cancel/1100-6423073/

Reflective Blog Entry 2: Inclusive Design

I enjoyed attending the “Inclusive Design” lecture as our lecturer was engaging and was passionate about the topic. Because of this, I reacted to that enthusiasm and she piqued my interest. In order to make a piece of media inclusive, the artist must think about target audience and how they can make the media accessible and more appealing to everyone, challenging audience beliefs. When thinking about inclusive design, some points to consider, to make a colourful cast of characters, are race, gender, class, age, religion, disability (mental/physical), sexuality and body types. To make the media accessible for people with disabilities, there are other things that need to be considered. Animation being a specifically audio-visual media, people with blindness or deafness of some kind are at the greatest disadvantage. Some solutions to these barriers are: altering the hue & contrast of the visuals for people with limited vision and adding audio descriptions for blindness and, for deafness, adding closed captioning. The virtual reality game, “Moss”, features a sanguine character, Quill, a mouse who is mute and uses sign language to communicate. This allows the character to ensnare a larger audience and makes the game more inclusive to deaf and hearing impaired players. As well as introducing people who would otherwise not be exposed to sign language and deaf people to the community. However, he only signs in ASL (American sign language), therefore deaf people who use another form of sign language would still be excluded.

https://vimeo.com/228262502

Link to promotional video of Moss

Reflective Blog Entry 1: Social Media & Your Career

The “Social Media & Your Career” lecture was particularly intriguing because this is where I am currently in my career. Social media has become a massive game changer for creatives to showcase their work and network with others from their field. There are currently many social media outlets available such as Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr and Youtube to name a few. As a student studying animation, it is important to start promoting myself and networking with people within the industry to enable opportunities to establish a positive reputation. Showcasing my work will allow interaction with my online audience and enable feedback to improve my practice. As more people discover my work on social media, they may be inclined to promote and share my work for me to increase my fan-base/subscribers. One way of using social media to promote one’s practice is to take part in art sharing groups or competitions. This can be a great opportunity to go outside of your comfort zone and experiment with new mediums or concepts as well as gaining feedback and presence. Realising that now is the start of my career, I need to utilise friends and family to use word of mouth to promote my practice. Although, since I have already gotten my name out through illustrating a children’s book, that may be enough to secure a position in a studio or within a company.b2b social media.jpg

:Image from http://www.generationnext.com.au/2015/05/finding-psychological-insights-through-social-media/

3D Production Pipeline: Pirates Gold

I modeled the chest using 3DS Max. I UV mapped the chest base and the side of the lid and did not complete the texturing so I used the colour palette as my texture. I used keyframes to animate the various components. I added lights and cameras to make the animation functional. I rendered the animation to jpgs and used Adobe Premier and added text.

pirates guld0283

3D Production Pipeline, Continued 2

Animation

The rigged 3D model is now brought to life. The most common method of animation is key-framing. This involves an action starting at key-frame A and ending at key-frame B using a timeline; for example, if you wanted to have a cloud move across the sky, key-frame A would be the cloud at its starting position and key-frame B would be the cloud at the end position. The animation software fills in the middle section, which can be edited such as the time taken for the cloud to move. This technique can be used for many different actions from facial expressions to explosions. Many individual key-frames can be used simultaneously to produce a complete scene by layering them together.

rabbit walk via 3d-animated-gif.com.au.gif

Rabbit Walk gif obtained 6/3/16, via http://3d-animated-gif.blogspot.com.au/2011_01_01_archive.html

References:

Boudon, Grant. “How Does A 3D Production Pipeline Work”. Digital-Tutors Blog. N.p., 2013. Web. 6 Mar. 2016.

Wiesen, G. “What Is 3D Computer Animation?” wiseGEEK. N.p., 2016. Web. 6 Mar. 2016.

 

Lighting

Lighting is crucial to create mood and realism within a digital 3D scene. It is implemented through various lights such as key light, point light, fill light, and rim light. Mood is created through the intensity, source and colours of the light, for example, a full moon dimly lights up a forest trail in a blue hue giving the scene an eerie feel. Lighting is also affected by the texture and material of the surfaces it interacts with.

watermarked-AV_3-300x222

Image accessed on 6/3/16 from: https://austinvisuals.com/how-2d-and-3d-animation-is-made-at-an-animation-studio-part-4/

References:

Franklin, Curt. “How 3-D Graphics Work”. HowStuffWorks. N.p., 2000. Web. 6 Mar. 2016.

“How 2D And 3D Animation Is Made At An Animation Studio – Part 4 | Austin Visuals”. Austinvisuals.com. N.p., 2013. Web. 6 Mar. 2016.

 

Rendering

 

Rendering is the translation of a shot from a mathematical model of vertices and polygons in a 3D space to a finalized 2D picture by the render engine. The incorporation of layout, shapes, textures, and lighting information establish the colour of each pixel in the final picture. This process can take an immense amount of time.

Best_3d_Architectural_Visualization_3.jpg

Image found on 6/3/16 from: http://www.archello.com/en/project/stunning-architectural-3d-rendering-predsolutions

Video link: http://www.digitaltutors.com/tutorial/718-CG101-Rendering

References:

Slick, Justin. “What Is Rendering?”. About.com Tech. N.p., 2014. Web. 6 Mar. 2016.

 

Compositing

This is the final stage of the 3D production pipeline where all the pieces are put together. This stage is crucial for modern CG animation combined with live action filming where the layers of animated objects and characters, lighting and visual effects, and film footage are fused to create the final picture. Types of compositing include node-based, layer-based and deep compositing

 

 

compositing.jpg

Video Link: https://www.fxguide.com/featured/the-art-of-deep-compositing/

References:

“The Foundry :: About Digital Compositing”. Thefoundry.co.uk. Web. 6 Mar. 2016.

3D Production Pipeline, Continued

UV Mapping

UV canvas is a 2D representation of a 3D model that projects textures on top of meshes. It uses U and V axes, equal to X and Y to plot where the pieces go. A 3D mesh is unwrapped to form a 2D net, then placed onto the UV canvas. UV mapping is like skinning the model and cutting it into pieces so that they can all be laid out on a flat surface, ready for texturing.

UV Mapping.jpg

Image accessed on 3/3/16, found at: http://www.renderspirit.com/wireframe-render-tutorial/

Video link: The Basics of UV Mapping

References:

YouTube,. “The Basics Of UV Mapping”. N.p., 2009. Web. 3 Mar. 2016.

Knowledge.autodesk.com,. “Introduction To UV Mapping | Maya | Autodesk Knowledge Network”. N.p., 2014. Web. 3 Mar. 2016.

 

Texturing and Shaders

Textures and shaders are 2D digital maps that make up how a digital 3D model looks. Textures are image files that cover a model’s surface to create colour, texture and patterns, using the UV map of the model. Textures can be created using digital painting software like Photoshop or by using photographs to fill the UV map. Roughness, highlights and translucent effects can be created using multiple texturing maps such as diffuse, specular and bump maps.

Shaders control how the surface of the model interacts with light, without which, the model would be nothing more than invisible points in a 3D plane. Different shaders can be used to allow different types of surfaces to appear realistic.UV Mapping httpwww.unwrap3d.com-u3d-index.aspx.jpg

Image from : http://www.unwrap3d.com/u3d/index.aspx

References:

 

Rigging

Rigging converts the 3D model for a stagnant statue into a maneuverable figure. The model is rigged with mechanisms that can be controlled and programmed to allow the model to perform actions. Rigging methods allowing the application of these actions include: joint rigging, facial rigging, forward and inverse kinematics, blend shapes, deformers, control curves, skinning, and weight painting. Joint rigging enables riggers to create a “skeleton” for the model, transforming it into a puppet.

References:
Masters, M. (2014). Key 3D Rigging Terminology to Get You Moving. Digital-Tutors Blog. Retrieved 3 March 2016, from http://blog.digitaltutors.com/key-rigging-terms-get-moving/
Slick, J. (2014). How Are 3D Models Prepared for Animation?. About.com Tech. Retrieved 3 March 2016, from http://3d.about.com/od/Creating-3D-The-CG-Pipeline/a/What-Is-Rigging.htm