Sunday, 20 October 2013

Interesting normal map technique

Interesting technique! My computer cant handle Blender in sculpt mode for any useful amount of polygons so this technique looks like it'll be useful for one of my projects.

It looks especially useful for making stylised normal maps which is perfect for what I want to do.

Monday, 7 October 2013

Sunday, 6 October 2013

5 simple steps to making a clean cut in Blender

In this post I will outline the method I use to making smooth cuts (or spaces) in my meshes. It's pretty basic and I'm sure you'll find examples of this elsewhere.

While I admit its not completely perfect because of the introduction of ngons and triangles, the result seems to be quite good and the amount of polygons required is quite low which is great.

The following images show what I'm talking about. The second image uses the same method to achieve the opposite shape.

The result of this tutorial

The following steps assume you have a mesh with a Subsurf modifier.

Step 1 Position where you want the cut/space in your mesh to be.
I usually use the Edge loop tool (ctrl+R) to set where I want the loops to define where the sides the thole will be. It helps reduce unwanted distortions. If your mesh happens to have edge loops already there, use those.

Step 2 Make some lines 
Draw an edge using the Knife tool (K) around the area that you want to become a hole. Ensure that when you change direction you leave a triangle between the edges as shown in the picture. Make sure the edge you are drawing is close to the existing edges you defined earlier.

Step 2 Make some space
Delete the polygons where you want the space to be. Notice how the mesh is being smoothed. This will be fixed later.

Step 3 Extrude
Select the edges around the polygons you just deleted and extrude downwards (or whatever direction you want). Again, notice how the mesh is smoothed. The next step will resolve that.

Step 4 Add lines
Creating these lines will make the corners sharp. Use the Knife tool and cut from the outer edge of the mesh up to the corresponding vertex of the triangle mentioned in step 3 making sure to cut as close to the corner as possible.

Step 5 Add sharpening line
The purpose of this line is to make the edge sharper as well as producing smoother geometry where the triangles are.

Done. I hope someone found this useful.

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Unearthly challenge: Day 1 & 2

Well, I just got sucked in to a challenge. Game Artisan are hosting the Unearthly challenge. Me having a bit of spare time and being a long time lurker of the 3DTotal forums I decided to join.

Out of the four categories I went for the 3D vehicle as I already had an idea I was pretty interested in trying out.

The Bullfrog

"The Bullfrog is an Oceanic planetary explorer. With its powerful hybrid engines it can cross vast oceans either above or below the waters.

It can be dropped from orbit and land using parachutes. Once on the water its hydrofoils deploy and off it goes.

Massive waves? No problem, using its small wings to provide lift, it can hop over them and its computers can even map a route allowing it to jump from wave crest to wave crest resulting in more efficient travelling during planet wide storms.

If needed it can dive up to 100 metres under the surface and provide life support for a crew of 3 for up 24 hours."

During the first day I quickly blocked it up and added a subdivision modifier because I wanted some nice smooth curves.
Image showing some sketches

Image showing the model from various angles

Day 2: Added more detail and finalised main sections of the model.
Image showing the improved model in perspective view

Image showing the back perspective view of the model

Image showing the front view

Image showing the improved model from a side angle

At this stage I am almost satisfied with it. I'm still working on defining certain areas.

Comments are welcome!

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Lester Animation Project

I'm currently playing around with my rat character with the goal of making a short animation with it.

This is just a WIP shot from the viewport. I will post something more interesting soon. I am experimenting with different looks for the final look of the animation. To do this I will be doing some renders of various poses of the character along with props.

Soon I will also post some (bad) story board of various shot ideas along with some plot stuff.

Anyhow. More to come.