Imagined Worlds Project- Week 15: Group assessment

So, last week was the MVP deadline, and we received some fair feedback on how to improve what we have!

It has been a week, and over this past week, our group has worked at the best of our combined ability as possible. In truth, we spent a lot of this last week working on our Creative and Technical Models in attempt to catch them up after mostly devoting our time to the Imagined Worlds Project.

Ebonny has worked hard on the house textures, because this is her Creative and Technical Model, so this is also useful progress for our project, because the house is a big part of our world! It will feature a lot because the same houses are used to make all of the houses in the street! She has been  productive and communicated well, and just been a perfect team mate!

I feel like I have let the side down a little this week, because I spent a lot of this week on speedily catching up my Creative and Technical Model, however everything left that I have had to make for my model has had absolutely no use for the project, because texturing overall has been Ebonny’s job, so it feels like I haven’t made any big useful contributions this week. I have made a small amount of progress on the animation, but it overall feels like I just haven’t been productive, because my time management feels bad. Hopefully this week I will redeem myself and be more productive!

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Creative and Technical Model: Rendering!

It has been a long journey, but today I finally got my renders sorted! I spent all of today making some renders of my model, trying to get some cool artsy renders. Since she is a rigged character model that moves, I decided to try some poses out so that if I had the time, I could maybe make some professional renders with action poses!

 

I then put them together in some professional looking renders! I wanted to make a set of action poses, and an artsy set with textures maps and aesthetic render zoom ins, but unfortunately I had to scrap the action pose set because I ran out of time! Anyway, here is what I have!

Lilith professional render + text

I also took some time to render out my model spinning around as a model turnaround. I keyframed her rotating around so that she would do a full spin in 4 seconds, then looped it for 20 seconds and added a fade out effect in Adobe Premiere. I also uploaded it to Youtube, so you can check it out here!

Overall, this has been a pretty arduous days worth of rendering, however now that it is done and out of the way, it feels like a big weight off!

Creative and Technical Model: Schedule week 4 – Last remaining week!

Today marks the fourth and final week of model production in my last month until the deadline.

Lilith production schedule 5.12.17

So over the last week, I had planned to sculpt my model in Mudbox, however, Mudbox kept crashing, and I eventually lost patience with it and decided to keep my high poly model as is, because with having a small amount of time left, I didn’t want to invest lots of time into something that might crash again and waste limited time.

I decided to focus my time into baking and texturing. While baking my model, I encountered a problem. The smoothing on my high poly model changed the shape and silhouette of the model. It only made small shape changes, but the changes were too significant not to cause baking problems. It was a badly informed decision, but I decided to just use that high poly version of my model as my “low poly model”, and make a model that was slightly more smoothed as my “high poly”. I checked through my models, made sure the naming conventions were correct, made sure that everything had the correct materials assigned for texturing, and everything looked right. This too caused baking problems for some reason, so I decided to stick with my higher poly “low poly model” and just keep it as is.

I then started applying some textures to my model! I added some base colours to each necessary part, then added some more specialised textures, like specific material textures, to each piece of clothing.

lilith_tpose_render.png

Overall, I am very happy with how she looks. I’m annoyed that I couldn’t put much else into the high poly model sculpting wise, and that my baking didn’t really work, however I like how it looks now, and I’m happy with the texturing!

 

Imagined Worlds Project: MVP Deadline!

Today is the day of our minimum viable product deadline! We were evaluated by some of our lecturers on our group work so far! Unfortunately we didn’t have as much animated as we should have, which is entirely my fault for struggling to keep productive, however never the less the feedback we recieved was good!

The first part of our feedback was about the texturing, which is mainly down to Ebonny! We were told that our world will look more interesting when the textures are applied to the environment and characters, and that the texturing so far is looking really good, so that part of the feedback was super good.

The second part of the feedback was that we need to look more into and work on the digetic and non-digetic sounds within our world. This is another task that is mainly Ebonny’s, and so far she has been greatly focused on making the textures look awesome, so she will probably handle this in the next week or so, in time for the actual compiling and editing.

The third part of our feedback is all about the animation, which is my main task in this project! The lecturers pointed out that it is a good start, but only blocked animation isn’t where the project should be. They said that in order to catch up, the best course of action would be to do some animation every day until the deadline. This sounds like a grueling task, but I definitely owe it to our group to catch up and get us back on schedule, because it’s entirely my fault that we are behind on the animation side of things.

Overall, the teamwork side of our project is still good! We communicate frequently, and Ebonny has been a super efficient and supportive team member. I feel like I’ve let our team down with terrible time management, and this is something that I really want to turn around because it would suck for our team to get so far, then be totally let down by my bad time management. I’m optimistic that we can get the animation at least moving nicely by the presentation, it probably won’t be perfect, but hopefully it will at least look nice!

Imagined Worlds Project: Animation blocking

So it has taken a while, and it didn’t feel like any of the collective small amounts of progress were worth posting about, but I finally blocked out our animation!

 

 

It took quite a while, but by using Ebonny’s animatic as reference, I blocked out where the characters need to be for each part of the animation. Nothing went wrong while doing this, to be completely honest! There was some technically difficult things to figure out, like keyframing the visibility on Zach, and making sure everything was clamped and stepped (because for some reason those settings just wouldn’t stay right, and things kept switching back to splined).

The good news is, the models will definitely be moving for the MVP deadline check! The bad news are that we are not really where we should be, but hopefully it will at least look pretty good for the overall deadline, after all, it’s mostly about the world and sound design, but I’m determined not to let the team down!

Creative and Technical Model: Schedule week 3 – 1 weeks remaining!

Yesterday marked the third week of the model production schedule in this month before the deadline!

Lilith production schedule 29.11.17.png

This last week was supposed to mark the high to low bake stage of the pipeline, however circumstances have made it hard to meet this, so I’m slightly behind schedule!

Currently I am working on my high poly model. This has mostly been a case of adding in edgeloops and using the crease tool so that smoothing the model will work right. So far, I like how this has turned out, because she looks very smooth and nice! It has mostly been in preparation for taking her into mudbox, because it would be nice to sculpt the model.

My next steps are to take her into mudbox to get some nice sculpting on the model! I am hoping to do this tomorrow so that I can start baking and get back on schedule!

Imagined Worlds Project: Models rigged and animation worthy!

Okay, so I wasn’t sure if there would be enough content for this post on it’s own, but decided to make it an individual post anyway!

Today, Matt showed me how to make the control rigs for the characters! It turns out that in the Human IK settings you can automatically make a character control set! This was easy for Lilith, because she originally had a spine created in the HIK settings, but Zach’s spine was copied and pasted from Lilith’s, and he was skinned separately, which means he needed a new character set, and every one of his bones in the hierarchy needed renaming. Renaming the bones and skeleton was a quick fix, because Matt was able to select them all in the hierarchy and rename them all together. The only difficulty after that was defining the bones in the HIK settings. Because the skeleton was copied and pasted, the HIK didn’t know where the bones were, so it was just a case of going through the skeleton definition and defining which bones were which part of the skeleton. Once this was done, it was just a case of hitting the control set button, and it was set!

Unfortunately, I made the mistake of hitting undo too many times after playing around with the controls, and ended up undoing the control set on Zach. This felt like a huge mistake, because the create control set button was greyed out. Matt didn’t know how to fix this, so I saved and then started clicking buttons until something worked. This is usually a bad idea, but in this case it actually worked in finding the solution. There is a padlock button in the HIK settings, and this unlocks the character set. This was a risky thing to just click, but it felt like a good idea at the time, so I tried it anyway, and the create control set button came back! So I just pressed it again, and Zach’s control rig was back!

This was a good learning experience, and overall it feels like it went well. There was technical difficulties with the HIK settings, but they were mostly fixed by fluke, however it means that next time something like this happens, I have the solution! The next step is to block out the animation as efficiently as possible so that we have something for the MVP deadline!