I have since gotten my AK to a stage of near completion. This has been a long process. I wanted to try and keep the separate components to a minimum and still have it so it would be easier to texture the model. I had finished modeling the base components to the model and it looked alright After I made a few minor tweaks it was close to the original.
I had then decided that I wanted to texture the model properly, by this I mean that I don’t want to use Keyshot I wanted to actually unwrap the model. I had selected each component and used the automatic unwrap feature. This unwrapped the component but it was not perfect with a few faces out of place and not particularly in the best place so I had cut moved and sewn some faces in different locations as I felt it would be more efficient this way.
I had done a basic texture on the butt of the gun this was to learn the ropes so I can refresh my memory on how to texture. It did not look the best but I am planning on upgrading the texture making them match and look neater.
I have decided to try and model an Ak-47 For both my High poly asset for Matt and my portfolio. This is because I feel it is a generic asset which could be used as a base gun in any shooter game I might make in the future. I have been modelling this though the process of keeping the separate components of the gun as separate shapes. this is my favorite way of doing it as it has more of a factory manufacturing process to it.
I had started off by making the wooden parts of the gun these are the; butt, handle and barrel. I then moved onto the magazine this was as it was more efficient to do these components then make the main body of the gun fit these parts instead of the other way round.
I will import this into Keyshot once completed and then add some textures to it. I will use the knowledge I picked up from my previous encounters with the rendering software to make this render better than my previous ones. I will adjust the reflections to a realistic amount as previously it had been too reflective and caused problems when rendering. I did not even know that this was a mistake at the time as I did not know there were so many different levels I could adjust.
For Matt we were requested to make a walking cycle. I was very ambitious about this as I enjoy animating. I immediately started the day after we were given the task, I spent around 4+ hours trying to animate looking for rigs I was stuck it was not happening. Frustrated I took a long break and was given a different character set from Gary, another teacher.
When I got this the due date was on the horizon, now with a working character I went home and worked on making the walking cycle and I under estimated the complexity of it. I had ambitions of making the character do some cool things like jumping but by now even the simple walk seemed to be a challenge so I took to the internet for some help. I found the pose to pose drawings of the walking cycle identifying the key positions and the main movement. This helped a lot but I was still struggling with the timings and speed of the walk.
I then opened the graph editor and realized all of my key frames were all over there was no real consistency to the walk cycle. Put politely it was awful. I then slowly went through all the different components of the player the arms, legs and torso movement were the ones I had focused on. I went though and removed the unnecessary key frames which were causing problems making the curves more fluent on the graph editor. I then opened up both the left and the right arm at the same time because I realized these would be opposite to each other as one arm will be doing the opposite to the other so I aligned these and made it so they were opposite, I made the arm movement the same length and I done the same for the legs.
The torso was all over the place he was so jagged, his torso moved up and down and he looked like he was trying to do a hula hoop. His hips went in a bitty circle motion. This was really bad before my tweaks he was walking like Tinman and now he is at a stage where I am happy with he movement as I refined the curves on the graph editor and got the movement more consistent.
The point of the task was to make a walk cycle, meaning it will cycle though the walking animations fluently. This was a focus of mine as I wanted to get it as wanted to get this as accurate as possible. So when displaying my animation it would not last 1 second as I was working with 25 frames, and this is around 1 second. The graph editor helped with this as well as I could line up the last frame to the first frame if I set the settings to loop I could see the start in a grey box.
After I had finished with the animation I had rendered him out using the batch render on Maya. I then imported the images into adobe premier as an image sequence as if I do it this way premier does all of the work for me and turns it into an animation for me instead of still images. I then added a solid that was a contrasting colour to the character to make him more clear and stand out more. It also meant my final video was a lot less grey as well. I then compressed the video using handbreak greatly reducing the file size as 16 mb was a large file size for a 5 second long clip.
I have been focusing on coding so I have thought of a way to mix code and modelling I plan to use my models I make in unity as a side project I want to make a character shoot arrows in Unity. Currently I have code that shoots a ball into a certain direction. This ball can be replaced with any item so I plan on making it an arrow. This arrow I will model in Maya, I have also modeled a bow to shoot the arrow. I am undecided if I will add the animation to the bow of pulling back the string etc… But my friend has a flashlight that is in his face in unity and is in a position where it looks like its in his hand.
When making the bow all I did was start off with a cube, I then extruded the top and bottom faces and pulled these out. I made these smaller to make it look like a grip on the bow. I then extruded the faces again and pulled them out to a length I was happy with. I then used the Soft Select feature to bend the bow but firstly I added 5 edge loops into each arm of the bow so It would be able to bend properly making it look like a curve after i had pulled the wings out.
This is another side project of mine, it is apparent I really enjoy modeling and I want to push myself using the knowledge I have gained though my other modeling experiences to make this latest model better. I want to render this and have it as a final piece for my portfolio for college. I will be using images I have gathered of the internet for reference instead of drawing but intern it will be the same as drawing just missing this step.
I will be attempting to model Iron Man as it is one of my favorite marvel characters and i feel it will be an enjoyable task at hand. I got an image of the front and side view of his head and opened this into photoshop. I then made this image to the size of 1920×1080 as it is the generic A4 size. I then made a blank Photoshop document of the size 910×1080 this was half of the size if it were in landscape I then put one view of the head in one document and done the same for the other view of the head. This meant I was keeping to the scaling of the images that I have uses as an image plane for my model to make it a lot easier to model as i have actual guide lines to follow.
I have finally made something move! After all of the struggling for Matt’s animation project I have persevered and covered some ground. I literally had to google how to set a key-frame in Maya cause I could not remember the key-frame hotkey. After I had found out the key-frame button I started working out how many frames I was going to used and the key poses in each frame. I had decided to stick to a limit of 25 key-frames. This is going to limit how much I can do.
I went though the animation doing it in passes. I had first of all set the key positions for the leg movement. Then I went and set the key positions for the characters hips as the move up and down with each stride you take. I then moved on to making the back/ upper torso move back an forth with corresponding to his leg movement. He also leaned side to side. Up to this point he had been walking like a robot, I was not too happy with the result but I still went on.
Adding pieces of detail to the movement each time I went through it I then started to add the movement in the ankle controlling the foot as he walks making it look more realistic. For the lean i wanted to make sure people would notice it so I used the principle of exaggeration for this. I then added some simple arm movement, I found this very hard to get it to match with the leg movement as you can see it is awful and needs some work. I have left it at this point and plan on doing more refining after a short break from this task.
For Matt we were given the task of creating an animation. For this we were given a huge range of things we can choose from. I was originally excited about this project as I like animating. I had immediately set my self a challenge. I started looking for a rig to use. I did not want to use the simple human like rigs so I went for a dog. This was a bad idea. I had opened this rig in Maya and well, its safe to say it was a bit more complicated than I had originally thought. There were so many errors with the rig which I alter found out was due to my Maya. After leaving it for a few weeks I went back to it and used a different rig out of the selection Gary had given us to use.
On the left is what it was supposed to look like on the right is what it actually looked like in my Maya. This began to cause issues so I downloaded a different rig and once loaded in it had the same issues. Until I used Gary’s which worked so I stuck with Gary’s.
I had originally had big ambitions for my animation task but after I started doing it I realized how much I had forgotten since last animating. Things such as setting key-frames and setting a character set and even enabling auto key are all things I had forgotten how to do within the space of me last animating. Once I had relearned the skills I needed I just decided to stick with the simple but not so simple walking cycle. I had under estimated the challenges making a walking cycle.
After I had decided I was going to do a walking cycle I started to research and found some pose to pose drawing I had used for guidance. This is what I had used as a concrete ground for my animation.
I had imported my model into Keyshot using the plugin I added to Maya to make the process easier. after I had done this I searched for the relevant textures I had decided I wanted beforehand.
Textures: Leather, Silver, Gold and Steel
I literally dragged the textures onto the pre colour coded locations, the only minor difference is I settled for blood red leather instead of regular as I felt it suited the time period better then conventional brown/ black leather. I added a bump map on the silver blade this was to try and made it look worn as it was a scratched texture, it looked terrible so I removed it.
The leather texture I used for my bump map:
For the leather handle I added the leather texture onto it which I found in keyshot I had assumed it was going to look like leather but instead it was just a PhongE texture that was brown, in the properties I found bump maps so I added a bump map for a leather texture, this then gave me the leather look I was after. I then adjusted the levels of refraction and scaling to suit it perfectly and I was very happy with the final render.
This is the final render of the whole sword:
Before I add the standard textures preparing my model before I import it into keyshot I always see where I can add detail and fix a few errors I tend to spot near the end of the process. I went around the sword fixing things I had clearly missed during the modelling process such as a few verts were out of place all I did was drag them into the same position they were on the other side. I then proceeded to add the simple textures.
I added the textures, normally I just add random colours but this time I decided to add the colours I had planned it to be so I got a good feeling on what it was going to look like when I was to do the final texturing in keyshot and then finally render it, overall I am very happy with the sword and it is very close to the template I went off. This is a new way/ method of modeling for me as I normally do not use image planes to structure my modeling but I have discovered it made it a lot easier and I will be using this method more often.
I had used a boolean to create the trench in the sword blade, I might add the text their on a later date.
For my sword progress as I have mentioned I have been keeping the pieces separate, this is to make my life rendering a little bit easier. I have been moving the individual verts to create the shape I am happy with. I did not want the edges of the sword blade to be razor sharp so I did not simply merge them into the center I added a sharp curve to the edges. I had also made sure the seam for the handle and the hand guard was as close as possible giving a snug fit.
I have been learning more about high to low poly baking this is to reduce the number of tries used but still maintain the high level of detail. This is to keep the game fps at a high because the lower the tries on a model the easier it is for the game engine to run. You can achieve high to low poly baking via keeping the same shape of the model but adding extra detail such as grooves and lettering as you saw on the concept drawing, you can also do this with normals.
I wanted to have a twine grip on the handle so I have modeled this into the handle so all I have to do is add the texture as the depth I needed is already there. so far I am happy with the progress and I cant wait to continue and see the finished rendered result.