Friday, 30 October 2009

Model: Environment Test - Shop

The second part of a week-long project. Part of an interview process, I was given the brief to create two models within a week for a specific game. The above is the second part and instead of being given photos to re-create had to design and build a corner shop based on the previous model's aesthetics. Under a strict 2000 Triangles limit.

Thursday, 29 October 2009

Model: Environment Test - House

The first part of a week-long project. As part of an interview process, I was given the brief to create two models within a week for a specific game. The above is the first part and was given photo references to re-create. Under a strict 1500 Triangles limit.

Friday, 18 September 2009

Model: Finished Alleyway [004]

Final renders for my Alleyway, I experimented with putting my scene in different light settings such as night. I referenced the lighting from my neighboured with the orange glow and bouce lights from street lamps, I wanted to create a creepy mysterious air, hopefully the lighting has helped make my environment more believable.

Model: Finished JingaraffeHouse [003]

This is my Jingaraffe house finished, I overlayed real-life textures of rock, grass and masonary along with my base colours and added shading for the textures. I tried to fit all the textures into one texture page for ease of use and put this through Crazybump to gain a Normal map, I also added an Alpha Map for the straw roof.

The umbrella on the top of the roof is also rigged to open and close and I'm generally pleased with its outcome, however I acknowledge that I'm treading on my strongest style, so I'm planning my next creations to be more realistic/detailed.

Sunday, 6 September 2009

Model: WIP JingaraffeHouse [002]

I've unwrapped the whole asset and manage to squeeze it all into a single texture page. I was trying for bright basic colours that complement the colours of a Giraffe.

To start off the texturing, you can see I only put in basic colours, my next step to implement the shapes and patterns associated with the Viva Pinata series as well as shading, alphas and normal maps.

Model: WIP JingaraffeHouse [001]

I had this idea simmering in my head for a while and since I plan on applying for a Rare Internship soon, thought it would be a perfect addition to my showreel.

Inspired by the Viva Pinata series from Rare. I designed and quickly modelled a cartoony house than would house the as-of-yet non-existent Giraffe Pinata. I wanted the house to reflect the form of a giraffe hence the enlongated proportion, Giraffe Leg Pillars and the Square Window and Stones to reflect the marking of a Giraffe.

There was also the idea that the giraffe's head would poke out of the roof, so an umbrella for shade/rain and Xbox/TV for entertainment sounded logical.

Model: WIP Alleyway [003]

Third WIP gate, I've now added normal maps to my textures and added more objects to dirty it up, such as extra bricks for the wall and scrap heap and planes with dirt and slime on the walls.

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Model: WIP Alleyway [002]

Here's the second WIP gate, where I've applied textures to all the props. I decided early on not to use Unwrapping at all to really hone in my skills at mapping and tiling textures.

I acknowledge that everything looks really clean at the moment, but the next stage is the dirty the scene up with alpha-ed planes to paint in grease and dirt etc.

Friday, 24 July 2009

Model: WIP Alleyway [001]

From various feedbacks, my showreel lacked anything urban, dirty and realistic from life. So I'll try and improve on this weakness in creating a realsitic, slum-esque alleyway.

Here is the latest work-in-progress shot of my alleyway. It's taken a week on and off on 3DSM, as low-poly as possible designed to be part of a game world.

Saturday, 18 July 2009

Drawing: Animation '09

I've finally graduated yesterday, it was a sad and happy occassion, it's been an amazing 4 years (including foundation). And to commemorate, I drew this before the cermony, it's taken around a week to draw, due to time constraints, I stuck to my most comfortable style and includes all us from the course and friends of the course (66 in total) (3xA4). I will colour this in as soon as possible, on top of commission and modelling work.

Monday, 8 June 2009


The above is my latest showreel, the fruitation of three years on an amazing Computer Animation degree. I've learnt so much on the course, learning new skills, meeting amazing people and discovering new things about myself.

Whilst job-hunting, instead of sitting by the phone, I'm planning several ideas and projects that I wanted to build in CG for a long time, using my free-time to increase my repetoire of CG art, so watch this space.

Enjoy the 'reel !!

Sunday, 7 June 2009

Model: Major Production, Whale AirShip

The last element of my Major Production, again, taking around a month from start to finish. (1 week to model, 2nd week for the balloon and main structure, 3rd week for the cabin and the last week was for props and normal maps.) Again I found building the AirShip challenging and exciting and just like the Chinese TeaShop, the AirShip was filled with many different props and elements each requiring my attention and detail.

During this element I learned more techniques to add to my repetoire, such as rendering to texture for the planks of wood going along the under-hull of the balloon, aswell as enhancing my other skills such as time-keeping, material and texture manipulation and shading.

Just like the Teashop, I worked on the main focal points of the ship (such as the Balloon, largest area to be viewed, and the cabin, which arguably the player/audience would see the most and closest. I really enjoyed making this AirShip and glad that the final look totally exceeded my 2D drawings plans but my expectations, in fact I'm proud of all three creations, but the AirShip is my favourite.

I even set up the AirShip's pivots for that I could animate the propellers, ropes and cogs.
Inspired by Final Fantasy, Golden Compass and Stardust.

Made in 3DSM.

Saturday, 6 June 2009

Model: Major Production, Scene

The next element was my Chinese Tea Shop scene, it took around month to complete, one week modelling and three weeks to texture (1/Architecture 2/ Props and 3/Props, Normal Maps and Extras.

I found this element incredibly challenging, one not ever creating a scene before, but also because my scene had so many different elements that needed attention as well as keeping the poly count down.

Through this scene, I learned how to using tiling textures and IDs (As I've only done UV Unwrapping before) and techniques to make recurring objects look different, such as tranforms, turning them around and posing them assymetrically.

As there was so many different objects in the scene, I had make a clear plan on how to tackle this. Not only did I take poly counts into account but also theortical player paths and focal points, and plan to focus the most time on texturing up these viewpoints. I then decided to texture the architecture first, such as the walls, floors and shelves then working from largest props to smallest texture each of the props in turn (Large table/Chairs to negligble teacup). I also used CrazyBump.exe to create quick normal maps.

I loved making this scene, as it was like creating a world for others to see, a 3D painting, dressing the scene so that every corner had a story. I also learned a lot from tackling this scene, such as handling large workloads, learning what I could/couldn't get away with and continuing to enhancing my artistic skills in portraying materials and co-ordinating multiple objects that would sit well from any view. I also found it a great help having plenty of textures on hand from my recent trip in Hong Kong, taking real texture from an actual teashop and Asian temples.

Created on 3DSM.

Model: Major Production, Character

The first of three elements to my Major Production. I decided that to speed-up production, I modelled all three of my elements at once, then continue with each element by normal mapping and texturing then moving onto the next element.

I started modelling on my character as a warm-up. Unlike the other two elements, I've done characters before, so this felt most familiar and an excellent way to ease into the other more difficults elements later on.

This element took around 3 weeks to create. The first for modelling, second for mudbox/normal map and the last week for texturing and specular/alpha etc.

Inspired by Tim Burton's Corpse Bride, I tried to emphasise the lanky proportions and rigid angles and using normal maps create extra details such as the scar, buttons and clock designs.

Created on 3DSM.

Model: 2 Hour Speed Modelling, Bamboo

In between finishing my collaborative project and starting my own Major Production, I decided to create a quick model. Using only two hours to model and texture a prop that could appear in a game, I wanted to test how fast and efficient could model and under stressful time limits to see if I could cope.

I found the experience a great challenge, testing my time keeping and forcing me to make snap decisions as well as to see how much time it takes for me to model things, giving me a greater knowledge in time prediction for future projects.

Inspired by Viva Pinata, intended to fit in as a Bamboo Plant asset.

Created in Maya.

Model: Collaboration Project, Kangaroo

Within our Major Production we had to include three weeks worth of collaborative work and from previous experiences, modelling is always needed around the beginning, so I decided before starting my own work. I conduct my collaborative modelling element.

For this I had three weeks to model and texture a Kangaroo for it to be rigged, animated and compositited into existing footage.

I was within a team of three (Ruth Leggett - Rigger/Animator, Nicky Rhodes - Lighting/Compositor and Myself.) Though I've worked in a team before, I found working in a team a great experience learnnig to accomodate other people's views and restrictions, Ruth being acting leader, with constant internal deadlines and daily feedbacks really helped the team move forward and would be pleasure to work with them again. Though the kangaroo will be composited I went with a Digital games mentality, not using excessive polys and noting contours and quad polys.

Created in Maya.

Sunday, 31 May 2009

Drawing: Major Production Final Designs

For my final major project in my last year of Uni, we were asked to design and model three distinct elements. In the end I decided to model a scene, a character and a vehicle to give myself as much variety as possible.

During the design process I was very inspired by my own culture and remembered that I actually rarely base my work squarely at Chinese culture, hence the idea of a Chinese teashop came into my mind. I was thinking it could exist in a digital game as an item shop or in the case of GTA, as a teashop where missions or meetings occur.

The Character was inspired by Tim Burton's art style in particular Corspe Bride and the Victorian fashion. I wanted to create a flawed character, whose fronting as a Vicotorian Gentleman but is also an investigator searcing for vengeance.

My vehicle was the last to be designed and perhaps the hardest as I was least familair with designing vehicles. I was inspired by one of my earlier works, the underwater city Aquapolis (posted earlier), and thought that marine shaped vehicle
was interesting and didn't even need to be in the water, but in the air. Also inspired by Ghibli's Howl's Moving Castle and the AirShips off Golden Compass and Stardust.

Saturday, 30 May 2009

Drawing: Landscape - Part 02

The second part of landscapes that I drew during my second & third year of Uni and since I've previously drew landscape elements of Fire, Earth, Air and Water, I expanded this by adding four more elements of Wood and Metal (Chinese Classical Elements) and Ice and Electricity (RPG staple elements). I gave each a backstory and perhaps I'll eventually develop these drawings into full CG models.

Brown Landscape: Wood, Baobab Village
After numerous attacks from the savage wildlife, the people of Baobab took refuge by spending their entire lives on the tree-tops, building huts, platforms and even village squares among the acacias and since most of their needs came from the trees, only the hunters ventured onto the savannah floor. When more space was needed, trees were grown in advance, choosing different trees regarding in crop, strength, space and the type of spirit the tree will pocess. The Baobab also built watchtowers and rope bridges to link them all. Giraffes were tamed and broken, and with a bit of acacia feed bribes, were used as quick transportation between tree hamlets.

Orange Landscape: Metal, Via Palindromius
Built on top of rich iron reserves, Novella Napolis attracted scientists and smiths from across the globe, with so much metal around, the town soon grew into a soaring monolith and the city was coated in metal, which proved useful against the attacks other its marble-cladded neighbours.
Many discoveries of metallurgy were discovered, especially magnetism and soon discovered magnetic sandals and thus the metal city became a space playground, with upside-down townsquares and piazzas on the side of buildings. Palindromius stations and cog transportation system were built to tranverse this sprawling city.

White Landscape: Ice, Pirtu'Vak
Clinging onto a side of a glacier, Pirtu'Vak marks the last human settlement before the North Pole Mecca, but between here and there, lies the dangerous Tundrake Sea, riddled with numerous ice shelves, flows and Krakens.
The only safe passage, is to purchase one of Pirtu'Vak's renowned IceBerg Boats. Generations of craftsmen and women gathered here, all helping to construct these ships, which can easily carry 10 people whilst camoflaged from the sight of the Kraken, from the carvers of ice blocks from the Glaciers, Igloo Builders, NarWhale Hunters and Artisans, as well as Engineers, Pelt Tailors and cooks to feed the army of shipbuilders.

Purple Landscape: Electricity, RahdMahjd
A major energy source of the world, RahdMahjd was founded by emissaries travelling through the desert, the climate and terrain meant that there were constant thunderstorms at night. Soon colossal metal rods were erected to capture the lightning and below, glass domes were added to store this power. Soon a whole metropolis sprang underneath the shelter of the domes, each connected to the myriad of wires and lightning stations, enjoying the abundance of electricity. So much electricity was captured, that the majority had to be exported.

Drawing: Landscape - Part 01

Here is the first part of landscapes that I drew in my spare time, during my second & third year of Uni. I tried to infuse a classical element them into each landscape, giving each a backstory and perhaps I'll eventually develop these drawings into full CG models.

Red Landscape: Fire, FuegoMinas
An abandoned subterranean cave where lava and water are channeled into pools and cooled to form crystal farms. The mines suffered from constant earthquakes and eruptions, hence the eventual abandonment, but many sacrifices were given during the mine's productino to appease the gods.

Yellow Landscape: Earth, Linderbloom
A steampunk Victorian metropolis, with its vertical boutiques and galleries, the Earth element being the idea of segregation and that the rich would live at the top of these 'mountains', while the poor live descendingly lower with all the pollution and less sunlight.

Green Landscape: Air, Himalayasia City
An Asian inspired city clinges onto the peaks of mountains, the remnants of a drowned world. Each of the mountains are considered districts, in turn inspired by a different East-Asian culture. In this city wind is the main source of power and lantern balloons, kites and bridges are used to tranverse the different disctricts.

Blue Landscape: Water, Aquopolis
A underwater futuristic city, where all the buildings are inspired by marine forms, the centre being the Cephalo Station, a huge squid-shaped building where all the tentacle-like glass tubes converge and spreads across the city, linking each of the buildings.

Friday, 27 March 2009

Model: Mudbox Intro

My next brief was to model an existing character, whom only exisited in the realm of 2D. I chose "Shiki", from the Nintendo DS game - "The World Ends With You."
Again, another 3 week project, she was low-poly modelled in a week and one week was spent on Mudbox, sculpting detail and the final week was for textures.
Using another program I never used before, this project was challenging yet giving me the ability to really sculpt in detail and textures etc. was invigorating and fun. Also this project has helped me understand normal mapping much more, what I could get away with, and what I couldn't.

Model: Maya Intro

Using 3D Studio Max for the majority of my Uni course, we were given a 3 week modelling brief in Maya, in order to broaden our software repertoire.
Converting from Max to Maya was easier than expected, with many of Maya tools more or less the same as Max. I found the customisable shelf, simpler connecting edges tool and UV unwrap aligning extremely helpful.
The concept on the right, was a druid temple ruins, I tried to go as low-poly as possible, with bump and alpha maps to fill in the ruin details and the effect of glass and clouds.

Drawing: Animation Class - Part 02

The second part to the animation class series, missing from the first part.

Again, I've given each of them a personal unique superpower, shown by their actions and the insignia on their shoulder and hand.

Drawing: Animation Class - Part 01

Drawn and set within my first year of university, it's a classroom scene with some of fellow first year animation students, (CG, 3D and 2D Animation). Plus, I've given each of them a personal unique superpower, shown by their actions and the insignia on their shoulder and hand.

Model: Sports Day Characters

These were most of the characters from my 2nd year film.

Starting left to right;

Bella, Simon, Ruth, Nick, Matt, Alice, Oliver, Lee, Kim, Tariq and Chuck.

Hopefully, you can see the kid's personalities and art style inspired by Japanese Chibi, Powerpuff Girls, Fosters, Rugrats and My Sims.

Saturday, 21 March 2009

Film: 2nd Year Major - Sports Day

This film was my Major Project for my second year of university.

It's loosely based on the Aesop fable of the Hare and the Tortoise, and I was greatly inspired by cartoons like Foster's Home of the Imaginary, Powerpuff Girls and Chibi Anime. And from my research tried to emulate a kiddy, geometric world, colourful and crayon colourings.

I came up with the idea, art concept & storyboarder and played the roles of director, main modeller and animator.

All the characters and props in the film were modelled, textured and rigged by myself, whereas all the scenes were modelled by my coursemate, Sarah Crossman and some of the shots were animated by my other coursemates, Ruth Leggett, Kim McCubbin, Darren Froggatt and Tania Vincent.

This film took around 5-6 months to complete, from intial idea to final render, and despite looking back on the film and spotting numerous mistakes, am very proud of it, being my first film, learning so many different disiplines as well as working with others, keep things organised and on schedule. It also got nominated for an internal award at my Uni, but alas, it didn't win.

All sounds were either created in the university's own sound recording studio or taken from royalty free websites such as