Monthly Archives: May 2015

Reflection of 2nd year

Looking back at the second year of my degree I can see its been a bit of mixture of emotions and circumstances. At the start of the year I had decided that I was going to do my best to keep on track of everything and improve my general skills. The first semester started of well I was in a very good group with people that all worked well together. The sushi animation project and the skillset project went very well and I was pleased with the work the team produced. Particularly on the sushi project, I felt I had the chance to develop my skills in an area I needed to, rigging. I was able to produce a usable rig for the team to use for the animation, even though the rig wasn’t the best I know if I could do it again I would do it a lot better, I am proud of that. It was the next module that I had my first slip of the year, I was working with my friend on a modelling/animation project just before christmas. We started well with a good plan and an idea we both liked, the trailer park. However we left it abit late to get the work done and ended up having to rush the last bit to ensure we had the essential work boxes ticked. The project could have been better, I would have liked to have seen the work if we had managed our time better. After the new year we were starting a new project working with local studios, this was when my second slip happened. I let circumstances get the better of me and missed a lot of work and let my team down. My confidence was on a real low. However I after talking to my tutors I got a pick up and began working on my showreel. Although my showreel will be alot better with alot more work applied to it over the summer, for the hand in I was happy with what I got finished. After I repeat the studio module in the summer I will be able to put the negatives in the past and focus on the future.

My Showreel

This is just the first draft of my showreel it needs alot more work done to it. To start I need to use a better editing software, I was using windows movie maker. It is quite difficult to use and it doesn’t offer many editing options to make your video unique. I think I’ll try again using final cut next time. I also need to re-render my character model turntables with proper lighting as the model is front lit and is very hard to see when the model turns. The walkcycle also needs more work, I am not really happy with the animation. I think more walkcycles expressing different emotions and characters would also add to the look of the showreel.

Modelling a Car

Modelling the Cobra->

After beginning the editing process of the showreel I realized I would have a bit of extra to produce another bit of work. I decided I would finally attempt to model a Shelby Cobra 1967-69. I watched a few tutorials and decided to use the edge modelling technique to model the car.

shelby prog 1

Remembering the tutorial that Conann gave us in class on modelling cars he started with a cylinder cut in half with just the outer edges left as the start point so I began there.

shelby prog 3

I initially wanted to create the car in entirely different panels all connected together. This would enable the car to be rigged with more complex controls.

shelby prog 4 shelby prog 5 shelby prog 6

At this stage I wasnt happy with the way the front piece was looking I couldnt get the shape correct with the added piece of geo. I then decided to scrap that piece and just model the front from the edges at the side of the model. The next image shows the front finished and the entire car duplicated and sowed together.

shelby prog 7

.Below is the final render I have for the showreel. I made the rookie mistake not changing the curves on the graph editor so the camera slows in and slows out. Just another thing added to my alteration list. The typology isn’t the best I could do with starting again and altering it. Conann showed me how to use the new modeling tool kit to make the typology better. I’ll try it over the summer.


Walk Cycle

So I’ve been working on a walk cycle for my showreel recently. I went back and look at the reference I gathered from my earlier attempts. It had been a while since I last used maya. So my first go at it I found it particularly hard to remember basic things, for example the graph editor. I tried using another example of a 2-D hand drawn example from Preston Blair’s book. However I was struggling to get the work done as fast a I used to. So I decided to look for a tutorial video to follow to help me get started.

What differs in the technique shown in this tutorial, was that instead of going pose to pose and using 2D drawings as reference he starts by animating from the feet up, he gets all the movement in that he knows he needs for a successful walkcycle then tweaks the movement later. After following the tutorial I ended up with this.

It needing more work to tone down the movement to make it look more realistic. Below is a playblast and a quick render of the alterations. I still not overly happy with it, the knees are a real problem point think I have applied too much side ways rotation at the contact frames making the knees rotate too much and too quickly.



Showreel reference->

Here are a few of the best showreels I found on YouTube. Eventually with alot of editing work and refinement I’ll be able to create a high standard showreel.