Saturday, December 26, 2009

High Next Gen

The most basic games will I feel in the future require even more detail. Normal, specular, diffuse reflection and parallax mapping are of course the standard mapping available, with new shaders and mapping techniques soon to be part of even new next gen portable gaming systems. Here is the H&K 45 progression this is only the normal map sculpt although it still needs more detail it should work out fine.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

In the Details

I actually believe some handguns are created just on the principal that when it is brandished, drawn or pointed, the look alone can intimidate people. The HK.45 is probably one of the most detailed handguns on the market. Modeling it takes a keen eye ,here is my progress so far.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

fixing uv layout

Optimizing space and organizing UVS, a few program can create your UVs unwrella and textporter but I found that straightening out your UVs prior to sculpting and painting goes a long way. Here is the keeper UVS redone prior to a re-sculpt of the same character with a mini environment scene. I have changed the arm canon,feet and formed out the body a little more.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Weapons H&K 45

Weapons are a must in most games and creating convincing weapons is essential to the illusion the next few posts will be dedicated to weapons creation,uv unwrapping, normal mapping and texturing. Here is a H&K 45 ACP with tris, polys and vert. information When I first started modeling the idea of course was to have everything modeled in quads, however for game meshes the edge flow is more important and quads sometimes do not help the edge flow. Another important thing to remember is smoothing groups putting the identical smoothing group on geometry is not the suggested find areas that will be grouped for texturing then apply various smoothing groups to the geometry to control your geometry also flipping edges can go a long way to creating a pleasing look. I do not have explain how important reference is as you can see the geometry matches the image plane.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Boots and lace

I found it quiet interesting that with the volume of modeling tutorials for so many objects there are not many tutorials for modeling laces for shoes, boots, sneakers etc... I might have to write a quick tutorial to aid aspiring 3D artists in creating an optimal look,using as few polygons as possible. Although I did find a tutorial for modeling a boot in silo at Here is a quick test render for an ankle boot I created with laces in 3Ds Max.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Facial sculpting

The model was created in 3DS Max and the character sculpted of course in Z-brush at 5 subdivision levels. I will take a look at how the normals look when applied to the face and body. but it looks like I might export the character back into Max at sub division level 2 for the body and face since they carry a more pronounced silhouette of the character, however the lower one is great for LOD applications or low poly game work as originally started.

Funny thing is when you try something different it can be fantastic or blow up in your face. Here is a test I tried sculpting half of a face for the supporting body below. I thought I would try my hand at creating an afro for the hair but it seems that the effect works better when you use individual planes for the hair and duplicate the hair and use alphas. But since this is to be an in game character I went with the easiest and fastest approach. i will have to see how this goes as it progresses.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Sculpting from low res mesh

Here is the sculpt of the character shown below @ what was around 1,200 plus polygons. Personally I like creating a low res mesh or even a higher res mesh and sculpt for the details this is the progress so far done overnight. I think I might take this higher and now I like the high res better than the low poly but high and low all depend on what platform you plan on running or using in game. I will start work on the face and hair today sometime.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

uv and checkers

I love the look of checkers when they line up on the model correctly. Here is the low poly model with half uvs the other of course will be duplicated after the texturing process.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Low poly

Low poly characters are still used although with the advent of next-gen high resolution characters it is still possible to create a low poly character and a mid or high poly character for the use of animatics or still frame in game sequences. This
model was inspired by the movie resident evil extinction. I will continue this piece in all the appropriate workflow to create detail maps and normals to overlay for the texturing even with all weapons this character comes in pretty light.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Color maps

Learning how to model and sculpt are only two parts of a three part equation when it comes to creating a next-gen or portable game model, laying down good color structure and reference is paramount to getting the best looking model. Here is the primary texture sheet with a few colors applied no lights and a face reference render to make sure all seams line up, or are not visible.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Sculpts and maps

To create a working normal map of course you need a sculpt from a program like Mudbox or Z-brush I like working with Z-brush and the results seem to do well here are the low res sculpt of this character. I learned that creating good diffuse maps start with a blend of the normal map as well as a diffuse map for a good starting point to apply colors or and textures.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Finished Auto Model

The advanced design police car model is done weighing in at 6,209 polys without interior and 9,453 with interior, sub divided it weighs in at 19,091 and mesh smoothed at 28,195. The entire mesh is one piece except for the interior which is another entire separate piece that totals 3,244 polygons including back seat front buckets seat belts steering wheel, pedals, cab divider, and accessories. The interior of course can be separated from the mesh to save on polygons in areas where a full detailed view is not necessary, with texturing soon to follow.

Finished Base Mesh

here is the auto with full interior and exterior I have decided that the car will be an environmentally friendly car, that runs on hydrogen and solar power it has a rear side port inside of what looks like the gas fill compartment. The top engine, roof and hood areas are covered with solar panels that are used to run interior equipment and accessories as well as charge non-lethal stun guns, emp devices and other electronic devices. The rims are a forged steel alloy while the front bumper is reinforced with a push bumper with other details to come.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Police Vehicle

Here is the auto with full interior that was created as a separate mesh to assist with close ups and full shots that can be utilized by simply using only the outer body without the interior core.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Interior auto

Working through the interior of the car was created by duplicating the original car portion from underneath, then creating the main interior parts such as the seat and rear seat, the dash was created by simple extrusions as well the wheels that have been created as two pieces the rim and tire with idea that it could be animated and during a crash it could fly off or blowout. at its current weight of around 4,000 polygons per side, I hope to keep this model in at around 10,000 total polygons for a simple base, accessories and interior police equipment will push the count higher of course for closeups of the vehicle. For distance the entire interior could be deleted and with rim tweaks stay in at 5,000 polygons easy. I plan on continuing the interior and then begin on the accessories, smoothing groups and a normal map for finer details. Remember this is more of a prototype car of what it would look like in 3 to 5 years, so it is getting a Green Face-lift along with other tweaks to make it environment friendly by utilizing pre- existing and emerging technologies and recycled products.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Auto Interior

I believe that next generation games and animations will ask for higher and even more detailed autos and interiors even if the game is not a racer. From animatics, in game A and B button press load screens and game play. The automobile will continue to take the stage as one of those things that we will have a fascination with until auto manufacturers build flying cars. The seat is a little big and I will continue working on matching this model to the original project reference car. The hello kitty car seat reference is for the ladies.


Here is the auto model subdivided in the program this model is still weighing in at 1,490 polygons. I am hoping to keep it still under 2,000 for the shell of the car itself.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Futuristic Auto

I like to create inorganic and organic modeling my goal here is to create a futuristic police vehicle from a current vehicle type in this case a Subaru Impreza WRX-ST used in Japan, I have taken the current blueprints and will create an idea of what this vehicle might look like in 5 to10 years in the future. The current model half is a minuscule 414 polys, that will be mirrored or completed by the symmetry modifier, my goal for the completion of this model is 1500-2000 polys or less. These cars could literally litter the screen and through animations scenarios be set-up for multiple crash and chase scenarios.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Geometry Match

It goes without saying that the most important part of modeling for animation is using reference, however the one thing to remember is that you must try to maintain solid geometry with no overlapping and keep the polygons to a manageable number, lastly do not feel that once you have finished model that you can not dissect, reduce or reform the geometry of the model. Pride is a luxury you can not afford when it comes to your models if you have to rework it rework it.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Going out on a limb (Rigging)

Optimization I really had to bring down the detail of the mesh to allow for a more stable geometry base for rigging. A lot of models with really high polys are just show pieces for demo reels and have no real deformable geometry, this won't do.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Completed Box

Next Generation is really about pushing textures into the area of realism. Here is the finished box rendered with scanline, normal, specular and diffuse maps in 3DS Max it looks OK and should maintain the same look in most game engines. I might work on it at a later date.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Good Wood and a Good Box is Hard to Find

Well the truth of next gen texturing is in the details with this one side you can see that the use of baking in AO (ambient occlusion) is the key. Later I will add dirt and dust layers a normal map and specular map and lighting to bring this out to the next level. I really love the idea of the create it has been around in games film and generally everything in between. The iconic box gets a revamp with Next Generation Texturing , hopefully designers find even better usages for this faithful and unsung hero of gaming history.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Next Generation Texturing

Next Gen textures will by far be one of those things that help to pull in the casual and hardcore gaming crowd, as much as game play is the fundamental draw the second is how good the game looks. I have seen lots of well textured crates but many of them forget to chamfer the edges. To pick up subtleties of light the edges can not be hard they have to be well constructed before you even begin to texture. Here is a crate that I started with a chamfered box in 3Ds Max many people think of some of the prefabricated elements in Max as a cheat, but they allow you the opportunity to create realistic geometry without a lot of work. Here is a crate with a test pattern applied to start the proper work-flow prior to texturing a crate, the crate also has the appropriate areas chamfered. The wood base was created by duplicating the original image and changing the blending modes and tweaking the image itself to give it a richer look.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Hair optimization (reduction of polygons)

Here is the finished face and hair optimized and separated. This head will be merged with the current female body that I have been modeling. This model looks pretty close to the reference image.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


Hands have to be modeled two fold one for easy, UV unwrapping and also for rigging, no overlapping and troublesome geometry.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Image planes and edge flow

The female body is ripe with lot's of curves small nuances and varying specific edge flows that should start in the modeling phase. The model can not be to detailed or the sculpt in Z-brush will not follow the contours of the body correctly. Now I will model the hand and attach this to the body.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Breasts modeling the new way

Breasts were always added after the torso was done, then by creating an opening in the geometry and placing a circle type piece of geometry into the cavity and moving vertices accordingly. I have found a way that can produce breasts through modeling them with the torso by following the edge loops of the bodies geometry. This can been seen in the WIP image which also incorporates the shoulder blades, hips and other essential body components into the working geometry by modeling the back then modeling the chest area (breasts) using back, front and side reference images. the image shows the breast area ready to be modeled. The second image shows the breats created with the edge flow using a small amount of polygons but in quads. I have also found that it is not neccessary to model the aereola and nipples in the base mesh, these can be added in the normal map or the texture, which is a good idea since the breast usually carry the most polygons in the chest area.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Modeling the Base

When I first started modeling the first thing that was done was to create the foot and model up. Most
of those early models never included the toes and details of the feet or toes, only blocking the base and creating the shoe type. My purpose here is to create feet with as few polygons as possible to compliment the head model for rigging and animating, additionally this character will be wearing sandals so detailed feet are still important.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Modeling for Rigs

This is a female character I am working on with the intention of rigging and animating for a short, I am working on. The eyes, teeth, tongue, hair and mouth need special attention to deform properly for animation. Included in this model is a mouth cavity to hold the teeth and tongue. Texturing should include use of SSS (Sub surface skin shader) that creates translucency for the skin to achieve more realistic results. The overall head model is only with existing geometry is only 2,112 polygons the image posted had some previous geometry now deleted. The polycount I am aiming for is 7,000 polys give or take.