Thursday, August 27, 2009

Against all odds...

Despite being locked out of the render farm, losing my M and T drives (even Monty IT couldn't save it, we had to go corporate on its rear), and having a rig completely explode on me...


Nice try, world. But once again... epic pwn.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


OK, we are officially a-go!


Monday, August 24, 2009

Almost a Farm Fail

Wow... so the renderfarm totally just about crapped out on me. Talk about terrifying!

I was trying trying trying to log onto the renderfarm page from the SCAD SFDM page and it kept giving me a page load error message. My file was in, though, so after an hour I gave up and resigned myself to only being able to render out the 20 or so frames my comp would be able to manage before class tomorrow.

I just tried one last time and FINALLY! I'm in!

So now we wait.


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Rig fail


Now is a tumultuous time of troubleshooting (and, apparently, alliteration). I hate this portion of production because it's so counterproductive; you don't ever achieve anything, you barely have anything to show for your hours and hours of tinkering. Modeling, animating, texturing and lighting all have visible resolutions, you can see progress. But the troubleshooting/fix stage is barely visible because its all behind the scenes.

So that 4-7 hours I spent fixing my rig? Invisible. The hours of light and texture tweaking I'm about do embark upon? Barely visible. The endless days of render tests and surface scatter correction? Hardly noticeable.

Thus... I trudge. Oy.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

What happens when fur tests go horribly wrong...

note to self: always remember to link attribute scale to global control

Monday, August 10, 2009

dare I say... background complete?

I don't believe in the word 'final' when it comes to my work, but for the moment I'm pretty content in stating that my background is (for now) complete. The textures are minimal but work with the style, the lighting results turn in very well, I've got volume and depth and to an extent mood (however mood will be enhanced each shot according to what is required). now I have to embellish the scenes specific to the requirements of each shot by adding stuff like ground litter in the wider shots and grass in the yards so its not a concrete wasteland. basically create imperfections in the scenes to bring realism to the piece.

Next step is to bend my groundplane on a lattice after freezing all my geometry and centralizing my pivots so I get that steep world dropoff I'm going for. Then i'll quickly block in a far background to be blurred out in composite and start on my bus model. once that is complete I'll do the UV/texturing on that and go back and rework the truck to be sure its all settled before dropping that into my compositing cue and start doing background test renders tomorrow at Monty through the renderfarm.

I'm gonna crack open my rig files and work on textures there too. Ideally I want to do a dual character pass (one pass per character) and try furring the squirrel, but I'll do that last and only AFTER i finish his animation. I'm so frustrated with him because of the convoluted way his provided character sets make 'easy keying' almost impossible. I basically have to strip his old character sets and create a whole new one, ghost the keys of the current blocking model, and start all over again. oy. so daunting. to be honest, besides continuing to tweak Bloke I haven't been doing any animation at all, only modeling, texturing, lighting, and environment.

I also want to try SSS on bloke to see how that looks. i want to play with light on the second shot (closeup) to really make his tight shots pop.

lots to do and not much time to do it in. YES! what a rush! :P

Friday, August 7, 2009

'set' updates

updated render of my 'set'... still under construction, one more detailed model to integrate (model is almost complete, will be done tomorrow) before I finalize all my textures. I decided to stay 100% procedural, so we'll see how far I can push what Maya can give me. I've never used mia materials before and figure that starting now (with a deadline in plain sight) isn't a great idea. So I'll stick to what I know for the moment and learn mia stuff on my own time.

and now, epic bed. for I have a rigging class to teach tomorrow. oh, if only my professor actually knew how to teach us...