March 5 2022

Staff Model Progress – Main Body

Starting my Model and Studies Advice for 3D Literacy

During my studies advice on Wednesday with Mike, he went through how he would go about making the basics of my staff in very low detail, like the actual staff part and a basic skull, to show the techniques, like the curve tool and the extrude tool. This was helpful for building up the base part of the staff.

I used the EP curve tool to get a basic shape of my staff and then used a sweep mesh and used the taper graph to help add some more diversity and a little bit more of a warped look. To get the shape more detailed and exact, I used my reference art as an image plane and moved the edges and vertices around to get the exact shape I wanted. I also used the extrude tool on a face to get more edges, like the little ridges coming out of the basic staff shape.

For the branch coming off of the main question mark, scythe-like shape, I used the EP curve tool again, but selected a face and the curve and extruded it along the curve, then repeating this process with the extra small branches coming off the design.

General Studies Advice

I had made some progress on my staff model when I was doing the general studies advice with Henry, so I ended up showing him the parts I had done, although very little. He recommended removing some edges from certain areas, as they weren’t really needed, which you can see in these two screenshots. I can see why, I think I was going a little overboard with the edges at the beginning because I was still lacking in experience with topology, which I had never really thought about up until this point.

The Bottom Of the staff

I then started modelling the bottom part of the staff, which I did by filling the hole left by the sweep mesh there and then using the multi-cut tool to divide it into sections, ensuring they stayed polygons as well. Then I extruded the faces individually, moving them and continuing to extrude them to form the sort of shapes I was looking for in the branches coming off of the main body. 4

The bit underneath this was made from an EP curve as well, then joining the faces from the extruded branches to the multi-cut faces of the bottom part.

The target merge tools proved to be very useful here, for merging vertices and edges to ensure there were no random floating parts.

February 20 2022

Animated Narratives – Production

I already had a group set up for this assignment sorted out, as I’d been asked over discord a few weeks prior if I’d like to work with some other people. My group includes Charley, Charlotte and Jack.

We used this time to come up with a plot and basic storyline, although no name for the short yet!

We ended up deciding on using mushrooms and other plants as the characters in our short, with the mushrooms being the main ‘good’ characters and using carnivorous/creepy plants as the ‘bad’ characters. We have; an Inky cap mushroom, a Fungi mushroom, a Venus Flytrap and a Snapdragon flower.

The basic storyline, which we ended up changing after more discussion over discord is that the mushrooms are entering a forest and encountering the creepy plants, therefore getting scared and running away. However, they realise that the other plants were actually just setting up a party for them.

This was the basic storyboard Jack created for our short for us to continue to develop.

We were asked by Alec if Alexander could join our group as his last group weren’t communicating with him and he wanted to move groups. So after adding Alexander to our discord server, we arranged a discord call to figure out how to add Alexander into the storyline and get him a character. We settled on him being another of the ‘bad’ plants that could be used as a way of forcing the mushrooms to turn around and realise that it was a party. We looked at a bunch of different creepy plants and settled on a Dracula orchard.

We realised that the storyboard needed more camera angles after feedback from some of the lecturers, and Charlotte had drawn up a version with camera angles, also including Alexander’s character this time.

We then combined the two in another digital storyboard.

February 16 2022

Smash & Grab Presentation

My Presentation

I was a part of the group that was tasked with analysing the Smash and Grab short film. This is my section of the presentation, although it was handed in the week after as I asked for an extension due to me testing positive for covid a few days before the deadline.

The rest of the group’s Presentation

My Notes

I thought I would include my original notes here, as some parts had to be cut out to try and make it a reasonable length that would’ve fit into the original presentation.

February 16 2022

Week 3 – UV Maps

Despite me being behind and having time constraints, I knew I needed to get through the UV map tutorials and listen to the recorded lectures about it, as I had been off with covid that week so that I would actually be able to understand how to do it on my final model. So I completed the basic UV tasks with the recorded walkthroughs, which was very helpful for me to build an understanding of the process of UV mapping the 3D models, and to start thinking about what edges to cut when doing so for a clean look.

I definitely need to brush up on my understanding of photoshop, as despite having used it for education before, I couldn’t remember how the keyboard shortcuts and felt very slowed down by having to manually select everything.

Here are the finished versions. I honestly found it quite easy to understand the theory behind the UV unwrapping, although I’m worried that when it comes to UV mapping my final model it’s going to confuse me a lot more. Hopefully, that won’t be the case.

February 16 2022

Week 2 – Modelling Challenges

I didn’t have a lot of time to do these tutorials, as due to covid and moving house I’ve been a bit behind. Though I really didn’t want to go straight into my final model without trying more models so I decided to have a go at the two with tutorials, which proved to be majorly helpful with certain parts of my model.

Milkshake Tutorial

This week’s class had tutorial videos on how to model a milkshake and a vase with a flower.

I don’t quite know why the rendered version of the milkshake looks so bad, but I don’t know what to do to fix it either.


Flower and Vase Tutorial

February 16 2022

Week 1 Modelling Challenges

I decided to try and make a slightly more complex version of the table and chair models, although I found this extremely difficult to do with my limited understanding. I feel like it’s slightly better but I’m still not very happy with how it turned out, the chair looks too thin compared to the chunky table. However, it’s better than the last one.

I also tried to use some of the other slightly more complex tools like the extrude, bevel and smooth tools.

I wanted to make a more complicated glass, that wasn’t just like the umbrella in my original scene, but for the life of me couldn’t figure out how to do it. So I have found myself in the land of tutorials for help again. The Tutorials are at the bottom of this post.

I wanted to try actually texturing a glass so I followed a tutorial on it, and I think it looks really good! Though it was all done using Maya’s rendering engine. 😀

I used the method I learned from the video on how to model the glass to create the vase on my own. It’s not quite as complicated, as I was trying to replicate the image of the vase provided in the modelling challenges exactly. I’m not sure if it’s the perfect method or not, but it’s working for me so far!

This is all of them put together, the table and chairs definitely look very different from the rest.

The Tutorials Used:


February 16 2022

Staff – Further Concepting

I ended up quite liking the shapes of some of the concept sketch staffs, and the aesthetic of the skull, chains and things put together. After I had drawn this concept, I had a talk with one of the lecturers, Mike for the Studies Advice, as I was still incredibly behind in work. He liked the design and thought it would be alright to continue with it, though I needed to clean it up so it would be easier to continue from.

So I attempted to clean it up a little and add some extra details to get a final design.

I still intend to include the flowers on the staff, however, I didn’t add them onto this reference sheet so that I’d be able to see the shapes of the staff and bandages for the base modelling. I also tried to add in some little aspects of the original idea, just as a small thing to appease the part of me that still wanted to go with the original concept more, like with the poker chip that’s hanging there.

I also collected some reference images to put into PureRef, so I could try and keep them accurate.

February 16 2022

Concepting for Assignment model

owith the help of fFor this assignment, we have to create a model from the following list:

  • Windmill
  • Cuckoo Clock
  • Treasure Chest
  • Sword and Shield
  • Sci-fi Helmet or Radio
  • Old Well
  • Magic Staff

I was pretty much immediately drawn to thinking about the weapons in the list; the staff and the sword/shield combo. I made a list of some various ideas that came into my head while brainstorming concepts, with the help of family and friends, so I could have a few options or themes to choose from.

Then I made some interest boards for the two ideas I liked the most;

The time themed sword and shield

The Gambling/Risk Staff

I started to sketch out some very rough basic staff concepts to try and get a shape and some ideas I could put together to form or inspire some aspects of my final design.

However, halfway through this process, I ended up moving a little bit away from the original gambling theme, as I started to find pins with raven feathers, chains and darker inspired aesthetics. I decided to allow myself to continue following the new line of thought, as I was struggling to concept design a gambling staff at that time and was quickly running out of time for the assignment, due to a lot of personal issues and moving house.

February 16 2022

Getting to Grip with Maya

I was feeling a little overwhelmed and unconfident in my ability to even try out some of the 3D models we were to make as practice, as I was really struggling with breaking down the objects into primitive shapes so I could model them. So I decided to do some research on 3D modelling, and watch some tutorial videos first.

I found these videos were very helpful to me as they helped me develop more of an understanding of how 3D objects are built up, and how to think about what shapes objects are built up from, although more complex models still confuse me a little.

I also tried following another tutorial video, to build my confidence a bit more with the program and try to settle my nerves about working in 3D, as I just couldn’t make myself create models because I was feeling so far out of my comfort zone.