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Sunday, 30 August 2015

Queen test Print

I wanted to see my Queen model in the flesh and printed its current stage, also showing a render composite for comparison.  The print was small at 69mm tall, this meant the crown details were to small to come out, but apart from that its always great to get a physical copy of a 3D model!

Sunday, 16 August 2015

Lady in waiting WIP

Test render 02, last stage before adding clothing and detail:

The Tamarind Tree

Final Logo for 'The Tamarind Tree' Thai Restaurant with design development process:

MA Self Negotiated Unit_Hand in Documentation

Here are scrolling design development images showing the work in progress aspects in order of production, from early designs and sculpt stages.  Also showing render tests including BPR renders of poly painted UV's in Z Brush and material / lighting testing in rendering software.

Queen Development to Date:

Lady in Waiting Development to Date:

Castle Keep, Pre Vis Key Frames:

Sci Fi Project, Mining Truck Concept:

Sci Fi Project, Robot Companion Concept:

Sci Fi Project, Character Concept:

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Lady In Waiting_Work In Progress

Lady In Waiting Wip 03 BPR test render composite in Photoshop:

Comparison of Lady in Waiting (Wip 01) and Queen print:

Queen_Test Render for presentation 02

Work in progress, testing the lighting and values for compositing, trying out render combinations for the final mix.

I will create a poly paint as a UV base and render AO, Depth and SSS passes for montaging / Matte painting.

The final shot renders will have a painted pass to match the levels and pick out the focal details.

Critique, Self Critique & test renders...

Queen BPR PS

'Best Render Pass' producing the render, Alpha, Shadow, Ambient Occlusion, Depth and Sub Surface Scattering components. These are imported into photoshop and all elements are then imported as separate layers into the PBR render file, creating a layered psd file for post production.

All Layers are set independently with the exception of the Alpha render pass, this is added into a new 'Channel' layer and allows me to crop the layers to the edge of the model, creating a clean silhouette which makes for ease when importing the composite into another scene. Although the edge will have 'Aliasing'  when its compressed and will need a final clean up with a blur or eraser depending on the required edge hardness.

Queen screen grab zbrush

A still screen grab taken from the sculpting programme z brush, this shows the Poly Paint test which was fairly successful in bringing the character to life.

Queen Render keyshot test W notes / crit...

This work in progress shows the Queen in a basic / test render within Key Shot

The model was broken down into relevant components such as the eyes, face, hair and costume and basic materials were applied.  I used the shot to review and critique the nearly complete character, a few minor tweaks and She will be ready for compositing into the main shots. The next stage would be to create a UV map in order to export and import the Poly Painted face which would carry along the hand painted face texture into the rendering software.

Dave Feedback sk sheet / overview

Leading to my self critique / evaluation / render pass test,
Show Dave crit jpeg +

My queen test renders...

Fully explain each step and process!!!!

Tuesday, 21 July 2015


Something I am thinking about in my practice is 'Innovation', this has stemmed from my further education / ongoing masters degree and the recurring question of 'how' is your practice Innovative? 

One thing that has kept cropping up is how I have evolved my process 'work in progress / WIPS!..

This example of a current branding project for an upcoming restaurant shows how I combine my traditional sketch, digital development and referencing to develop my designs.

Overlaying all components in various iterations to fully explore all the options from the produced content:

07; Line work clean up / Design development #02_Inverse Test: 

07; Line work clean up / Design development #02:

06; Line work clean up / Design development #01:

05: Initial line work clean up:

04: Sketch studies / design development:

03: Traditional Thai style Artwork inspiration:

02: Specific reference:

01: Brief!

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Fibre mesh test 01

My 1st exploration of the fibre mesh  feature in Z Brush 4R7 with my Current female character bust;

Going in with the Eyebrows & lashes. Following the Gnomon tutorial from Madeleine Scott -Spencer, Scott-Spencer refers to experience in 'Real' props for film where the layering of hair was arranged from the lowest point upwards, repeating this in Z Brush gives more accurate and manageable results.  I am also referencing to an amazing artist; Hossein Diba:


Beginning by masking the relevant area and blurring the edge of the mask in a lower subdivision, which then tells Fibre mesh to generate smaller / shorter hairs in the blurred area! Using the grooming brushes and sculpting tools to finalise the overall shapes.

This is a pretty straight forward entry point as I am just sticking to the eye lashes and brows, If I was to create the head of hair I would have to produce several sub tools to build up the hair accurately to suit the desired style. The working screen shot shows the varied modifiers which adjust every aspect of the 'fibres' which are then transformed into subtools and can be further manipulated with the programmes standard sculpting tools.

My next task will be to poly paint the face, although I may end up UV unwrapping to create a UV map I can paint and texture in

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Norwich Castle Keep_Re-enactment Visualisation_Stage 01

The first part of my role in this project ( visualisation work for the Castle ) has involved using the clients provided schematics to get accurate proportions, combining them with notes made on photographs taken for the scale model of the keep, which will act as a tool to speed up the modelling stage.

Site survey photos are limited in their use for reference as we are re creating the keep in its original glory, these initial concepts will assist us in agreeing the final direction for the 2 shots we will produce.

These concepts form 'key frame' shots as part of the sequencing for the 2 overall parallax animations. I have tried to innovate my practice by blocking out a base mesh in 3D and rendering the proposed shots in 'grey box' format, making 2D sketch notes over the top to annotate the story board sequence, Also introducing a lighting direction in the second shot.

Shot 1 key frames and shot master:

Showing key frame 1 with an extreme close up (ECU) of the head table, King centred with queen and 1st lady to one side, guests on the other side.  Key frame 2 shows the mid frame revealing the central feature and arched backdrop, with curtain / tapestry behind table. Guards are flanking both sides of the table. Key frame 3 is the full reveal of the rear elevation, hinting at the gallery and roof structure, a servant walks in from screen right taking a platter to the table.

Shot 2 key frames and shot master:

Key frame 1 starts with a close up of the kitchen preparation area and roaring spit roast in the back ground, the servant heading towards the head table with a platter. Key frame 2 pulls out to reveal the gallery and central feature of the space mood lighting poors in from screen right, capturing the smokey / dusty atmospheric effect. Key frame 3 shows the wide shot of the Keep revealling the roof space and head table.  NB this shot will pull through the Bigod Arch in the last frame, not shown here.

Thursday, 18 June 2015

Space Mining Engineer Concept Development

The following images show the start of my process for tackling this specific character development, beginning with collating references and moving on to thumbnail sketches which are diluted to the strongest three, refined and then montaged to a final concept which I will take into 3D and iterate as I work.

The bust development shown in a previous post is the characters bust and will act as a base for the 3D development of the overall character concept.

Mining Truck concept kick off

As part of my self negotiated unit I will be looking to develop my hard surface modelling skills by developing a concept for a giant mining truck based on an alien planet, to coincide with the female character posted below, this will be her vehicle and will help to give a back story to the character.

The reference sheet shows real world earth movers which will form the base for the concept, the idea is that I will use the wheel base for the foundation of the design as a feature production would be able to source one of these vehicles and use it for filming and projecting the CGI concept truck in post production, using a technique called match moving.

The initial sketch concept shown here was created prior to the main brief being finalised as a test piece or warm up for the work to come. The concept requirements are that the truck should have a substantial deck area with a large living quarters to the rear, an airlock must be introduced, but this will need to be at a lower level that shown on my initial concept to avoid having too much climbing to access it in the harsh alien environment.

My next task with this concept is to use one of the references as a base to create a more accurate concept to fir the brief before moving to 3D and blocking out the hard surface model.

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Female lead Character Bust Wip 01

1st post for this current project, producing a 'Strong Female Lead Character' in a complementary acknowledgement to recent classic roles such as Ripley in the 'Alien' Franchise, this bust will be recycled for another upcoming project, the visualisation of the Norwich Castle Keep in its original period setting;

Bust Work In Progress, Z Brush BPR render and Photoshop Composite:

The main forms are in place but the eyes still need further adjustment, once the main issues are resolved I will add skin pore detail, wrinkles etc. I then will be experimenting with the 'Fibre Mesh' feature of Z brush to simulate the hair


Here are some progress sketches and 3D mock up for 'Bertie', pitch work for a small robot companion hand made by a minor based on a remote planet, for his young son back home...

The images in reverse order show a mock up of the head of one of the sketches from the 2nd sketch sheet, this was modelled in Z Brush and rendered in key shot, the final 3 texture variations were composited in Photoshop, balancing the renders with and without lighting in the eye areas. Further notes above each image:

Sketch thumb sheet 02: more specific 'Gargoyle' look explored as requested by the client, reference sheet below.

My initial sketch thumb sheet shows a range of possible approaches as per the reference sheet below, I was aiming for a child friendly companion robot as unfortunately the brief was very vague and had little information on the robots appearance or the child's age etc.

Friday, 29 May 2015

No Cigar...

No posts for a while as I have been collecting myself post hand in / short listing events recently.

I have decided to try posting interesting finds on here as a source of reference for myself as I look back through the blog.

This fractal shape fantasy blew me away: