Monday, 18 January 2010

Teresa Green

Lately, I've been looking at... Trees.

After a very informative conversation with a codemasters artist, I learned that the most reliable way into the industry, is environment modelling. From whole maps, to awesome props, its all important, and all goes down well on a CV.

SO, in reply to this, I think it would be prudent to act upon what I've been told, and improve my environment work. And so, I've started with trees, as these are in my opinion, the staple to any environment.

I've spent most of the afternoon running around in Call of Duty, on my own, gawping at the trees and other environment objects, and I've documented some of my findings in the picture below:

As you can see, I've identified three texture maps on the tree (though I suspect there are two different leaf maps, which would bring it to a total of four maps.).
I've also noticed that there are a lot more branches than I usually use, this is a fault on my part, not a more efficient technique. I've also noticed that the artists really know their trees! The placement of the branches and leaves reflect this, the leaves being at the end of the branches, in clusters, and not in the centre of the tree (where there would be no light).
Finally, I noticed the way the artists very rarely used any planes at right angles to the x and y. Almost all leaf clusters are actually two planes at 45 Degrees to the X axis. This means that you cannot 'see though' the planes from the sides.

I've learned a lot from my solo cod game, and will make sure to employ these lessons in a tree project that I am setting myself.

Saturday, 9 January 2010

What I'm working on and other good news

I've recently left a MOD team I was working in for about 5 years, in search of pastures new. To be honest, I was a bit fed up of world war 2.

So, sticking to the game engine I know, I've asked to work with 'Project UKF' (United Kingdom Forces). A modern era mod for ArmA2 that focusses on British forces. This is a fantastic mod opportunity for me as being in the TA means reference pictures are never hard to find :)

As my test model, I've been asked to model an HK417 (new 7.62 assault rifle used by the SAS). I've spent about two evenings worth of time working on the model, and here is a work in progress picture:

I'm moving back to uni tomorrow, and I've got to compile my 1st semester presentation, but I hope to get this baby finished as soon as possible.

On other good news, my very late Xmas present came today (literally, my only present... yeah that was a shit christmas). A nice shiny Wacom - intuos 3. Woot, and my goodness is drawing different with a decent Wacom (in comparison to my old Bamboo)/ I sat for a while earlier today and had a bit fo a shape and form experiment, and ended up re-doing the 2d vehicle project!
Here's a pic:

Its a form of future civilian transport, much like a single person car. Its powered by the thruster underneath, and also steered by this thruster. This means it can traverse almost all terrain; water, hills, even air!

...Oh did I say single seater... there are two seats, you just can't see the second... therefore it falls within the brief :P

I've also found some brilliant (IMHO) that really helps me concentrate when working, get a load of these guys, I bring you Ryksopp:

its safe to say I'm obsessed with this song, and this one by Mind.In.A.Box:

Right.. back to work on that 417