Aug 5, 2011

The Race Begins...

Scott Person's has sent out a call for artwork for a talk he is doing. As it requires only Dinosaurs I've already built I figured I would try to help out.

This is what I ended up with after 2 or so hours of playing around. Not a terrible start, but it needs work. From a story telling aspect I'll probably have the Hadrosaur in a more half taken off pose. This was just a good starting position I stumbled on playing with the rig in this first pass.

To all the "Craig do something about your lighting!" crew, I anticipate your appreciated advice in advance. I haven't touched the lighting beyond placing my usual single distant light source. I do plan on seriously tackling the lighting issue once I'm back in Hobart.

The work time on this piece might seem low (comparatively) to what one might expect, but that has been what is appealing about working on this for Scott. It is not really taking up too much of my time (and I do have a Turtle to do for the end of the month too!). I have all the elements for this series already created in my machine, so throwing them together isn't really all the much trouble.

There has been some interesting discussion so far among the ART Evolved admins about creating work for free, of which I shall not ramble here (expect a post or ten about it on AE soon). During it I realized I'm in a unique situation as a 3D artist. My start up investment into a creation is rather high, 30-100 hours these days for a single Dinosaur's model, textures, rigging, and extra bits like feathers or spines etc. these days (this time cost being way up from the lowly 5-10 it used to be in the early Traumador days...), Once I've made this creative investment, unlike a traditional medium artist, I can use my work unlimited amounts fairly time efficiently.

Had Scott been asking for Dinosaurs I didn't already have built, I won't be going near this project (at a time cost well above 50 hours... when it might not get used). As it happily coincided with materials I already have pre-made it isn't too much of an expenditure to throw something together for my shot at some free publicity (though I have another project in the works to do with this conference... but you'll have to wait to hear about that). I'm interested to see if and how many other people take a shot at this project, and what they feel a good time trade off is for free publicity (free in ever sense)...


optimisticpainter said...

Hey Craig, nice stuff!
I'm finding your Tyrannosaur's camouflage a little too effective though.

Is there a way you can knock the background a bit more into the background? Maybe a little mist or the like?

You might find you can reduce production time by modifying existing assets rather than starting from scratch.

Weapon of Mass Imagination said...

Thanks Matt!

On the modifying existing assests I totally agree on it being a time save. Sadly on Dinosaurs it only saves me modelling time. Textures have become the real time consumer as of late, and typically I want my Dinosaurs to have drastically different colours if I can.

Good spotting (or lack there of :P) on the Tyrannosaur camouflage... While this is a fantastic proof of concept on the shader, for this particalur piece it is going to be a problem.

This is where I think lighting is going to be key. I have tinkered with specific lighting individual elements in a few pieces, so hopefully I can manage something here that brings him out a bit. Fog/mist being a last resort. Alternatively I might just pop into the shaders and darken them a bit.

How is all your stuff going? August still absolutely nuts?

davidmaas said...

Craig, do something about your lighting!

optimisticpainter said...

Hey Craig,
I agree with David and your own assesment, lighting is key here.
At the moment it looks like you have a single light coming from high behind the camera?
This effectively washes out the scene.
Before trying to light things individually try shifting your main light to another angle. Then adding another one or two lights only to help lift detail and simulate bounce. I suggested a bit of fog as you could tint it blue/grey and use it very subtly to push the vegetation back.
August will be busy but not as crazy as I first thought... Hopefully!