Project Skyward: Krell Fighter

 

Modeling in Houdini

So far, it’s a lot slower than modeling in Maya.  The procedural workflow forces you consider every step you make, but it also allows you to backtrack up through your history of steps.  So you can jump in a start throwing down polygons if you please, but you’ll end up with a very cluttered workspace.

 

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Krell Fighter – Not much to look at.  Yet…

I’m creating the Krell model in Houdini because I plan on taking advantage of it’s procedural capabilities to create a large variety of Krell fighters.  Sanderson, the writer of Skyward, described the Krell ships as being hastily put together.  Therefore, the model above needs some messying up.

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Project Skyward

I’ve recently began to learn the 3D animation software Houdini, and in an effort to learn it more effectively I’ve given myself something that resembles a long-term project.

Image result for skyward book
Read this book!

Brandon Sanderson’s new book Skyward now sits atop my electronic shelf of conquered Kindle books, and like most of his works I finished it wanting more.  So, to keep myself in the world of Detrius, why not use the story as a vehicle for a 3D animated project?

As always, I’m biting off more than I can chew.  I have a 5 1/2 month old baby, more work than I’ve ever been given, not to mention lame attempts at living a semi-regular life in Spain.  Yet, I’m looking forward to see how far I can get before life forces me to throw in the towel.

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Poco-class fighter

Fortunately, the book has orthographic views of all the different space jets and enemy vehicles.  That’s a huge load-off when developing these models.

 

 

Don’t worry, take the small job.

    As mammals we’re attracted to shinny things, which explains why doors to the entertainment biz are crammed with talent.  We look at working on the set of Iron Man as a dream or goal, but what happens when you arrive and your job is to mop up the blemish on Robert Downey Jr.’s sweet face?
    It’s not success that we want, it’s recognition for our hard work.  This is why Disney movies in the 90’s had penises to and fro.  People worked hard but got no recognition, no praise.  Thus, hidden dick.
    It’s not money we want, we just don’t want to worry all the time.  It’s not absolute freedom we want, it’s a worthwhile challenge.

LiveStream Analysis – May 30th, 2017

Like night, I made this live stream:
I consider it a failure   But, like all failures, we have an opportunity to learn something.  When something doesn’t work out, it’s always best to take a step back and reason out its shortcomings.  Otherwise, you’re doomed to repeat the same mistakes over and over again.
So, let’s commence the flagellation!
  • Composition was not solved.
    • Very early on in this painting, I arrived at a composition that I liked, but I settled too quickly.  The buildings on the hill were not solved early on, the sense of scale could be pushed further.
  • No Reference.
    • Civilization does not start abruptly.  A town does not just begin all of a sudden, there’s a progression of buildings on the outskirts of any town, which lead into a denser packed city.  If I used reference, I would have figured this out sooner.
  • No Reference!
    • The desert sort of looks like a desert, the town sort of looks like a town.  The lighting kind of looks correct.  Not good enough.
  • Did not solve color or light.
    • Before I jumped into painting finer details, lighting and color were not solved.  I fought with it in the beginning, but never quite figured it out before I moved into painting if further.  This led to a backwards approach, where I’m trying to fix my mistakes as I move forward   This is a bad workflow, because it does not allow for what Bob Ross calls “Happy Accidents.”
I could go on, but this is a sufficient scolding of my efforts.  Looking at the painting now, I should have stopped 20 minutes in; that at least could have served as a decent sketch.
It’s the Backwards Approach that always gets me, and we all encounter it in our work.  We push too far ahead and leave a mess in our wake, only to have to back track and clean up after ourselves.  I’m quickly considering this to be the death knell of a painting in progress.  If you’re detailing a painting but it feels more like a punishment that meditative pleasure, maybe you should set it aside and work on something else.