Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Been busy,,,

Well I've been pretty busy with the model over the last few days. Managed to sort out the neck, arm and head! Here's the torso minus the head.

The head is a something that I struggled to do without any triangles at all. Still it turned out quite nicely. I decided to model it by strip modelling - simply extruding edges from a 1x1 plane around an eyeball. It turned out pretty well.

Here is the start.

And after a few hours, I attached the head to the neck. Just need to do the ears on the head.

Friday, 17 December 2010

Triangles, triangles, triangles....

Had a good chat with Daryl Marples, a colleague at Huddersfield Uni and he advised that I really try to eradicate ALL triangles. So that's been my mission the last few times I've worked on the torso.

First of all, I sliced the bottom portion of the torso as the streetfighter will be dressed in jeans or trousers. But it created more tris for me to sort out. The bulk of the problems are on the back. So tris are being turned into quads with the insertion of extra loops. Also added a suggestion of serratus muscles on the rib cage.
The shoulder needs work - the flow of the polys from the pecs isn't working very well.

Smoothed version.

Resculpted the shoulders so that the edges from laterally from the pecs. Also added a bit more detail on the pecs themselves. Tris on the back turned into quads by the addition of extra loops.

Smoothed version.

Am happy with the overall shape of the torso now. Even managed to eliminate ALL tris apart from a few on the central seam. These will disappear later. At the moment I am working on one half of the torso, applying a symmetry modifier and then a turbosmooth modifier on top. Once I'm done with half of the body, I shall collapse the stack and make the body assymmetrical and sort the tris on the seam.

Do need to work on the neck - at the moment, there is no shape to define the sternomastoid muscle or the larynx. Also I need to start on the arms.

Have been reading quite a bit on modelling and topology. It's amazing how much is written on tris, quads, loops and poles. I think that these articles will really help with my Literature and Contextual Review.

Sunday, 12 December 2010

Started to model the torso

Well I started to box model the torso as an editable poly. I thought that I'd model a generic muscular body and then adapt it to get the proportions of Brad Pitt later when it's completed.

Started with getting the main chunks of the torso - pecs, delts, rib cage and stomach muscles.

Adding a little shape to the trapezius, rib cage, delts and pecs. Decided to take off the arms too as they were getting in the way.

Refining the traps, pecs, stomach and back of the lats. Need to get the definition of the side of the lats here.

Only occurred to me that perhaps I should use a skin tone! More general refinement here. Not happy with the clavicle area and the pit of the neck needs more work.

Neck looks better. Back of the neck - the trapezius muscle is too sharply defined. Needs to be softened. Also the rib cage looks too sharply defined too. Again needs to be softened. I've found the relax tool within the editable poly - very useful!!

I'm happy with the look of the traps, pecs, delts and lats. All coming together rather nicely. I think that the proportions of this torso are a little chunky compared to Brad Pitt, but it's not critical at this stage. The bit I will need to look are the muscles on top of the scapula - infraspinatus and teres muscles. Not sure if they are essential to define or whether to show a small bump will be sufficient.

Must admit that I've been really preoccupied with making sure the topology is correct. I'm trying my best to work on the edge loops of the muscle groups and to avoid 5 sided polys and triangular polys as much as I can. I've had to do obliterate big chunks of the torso - esp around the abs/obliques to get the topology just right.

I think it's looking okay so far.

Some sketches...

Well, I've been looking over the various anatomy books and have even done a bit of sketching. Picked up quite a few tips regarding proportions and the set up of a male character.

I've never really properly studied the anatomy of the abdomen - rectus abdominus, obliquus abdominus and serratus anterior and how they all fit together with relations to the rib cage. So the study has been a really useful exercise.

In order to place the serratus muscles correctly, a line is drawn from the pit of the neck through the nipple to the base of the ribs.

The arm is going to be a tricky body part to model and getting the rigging right will be tricky.

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Well I suppose the Masters begins now! I popped into UCLAN this morning and had a good chat with Josh. I explained that where I’d like to direct my Masters - concentrating on CG characters. I explained that I was particularly interested exploring

      1. How musculature and fat was controlled with character rigs.
      2. The perception of CG characters in terms of how we process the visual cues to come to some internal determination of the nature of a CG character.

Josh said that for first semester research perhaps tackling both threads would be overwhelming. He suggested that I look into modelling a high poly muscular character and a matching low poly character. Also Josh advised me to create a character that was pretty stripped down without capes, armour and clothing that would hide the muscles. He said that Brad Pitt’s character Tyler Durden from Fight Club or the Gypsy bare-knuckle fighter Mickey O’Neil from Snatch would be great characters to model. Josh said that a lean, muscular but wiry character would be challenge.

So that’s my modelling task to perform - to create a high polygon CG fighter based on Mickey O’Neil with a custom rig and deforming muscles. The hard part would be to create a low polygon counterpart. It would be certainly interesting to see how low I could go and create something that had a semblance of functionality in terms of muscle deformation in the low poly version.

I had a quick search online and found a few references to polycounts of in game characters for various consoles. Couldn’t find any definitive sources but lots of input from games artists working on the particular consoles advising newer artists. One of the articles was by Rick Stirling - an ex-colleague I worked with at Runecraft and Gamezlab. He’s now a Technical Artist at Rockstar North.

  • PS3 - 8k - 10k
  • Xbox 360 - 8k - 15k
  • PSP - 700 tris
  • NDS - 350-450 tris
  • iPhone - 500 tris

So armed with that - I guess that my target polycounts will be initially 15k for the high poly version and 500 for the low. My guess is that at 500 polys, it’ll be hard to get the polys to deform enough to show musculature.

So I took a walk over to the library to have a look at some books on anatomy first and foremost and managed to track down a number of interesting books.

  • Dynamic Anatomy by Burne Hogarth
  • Drawing Cutting Edge Anatomy by Christopher Hart
  • Force Dynamic Life Drawing For Animators by Michael D. Mattesi
  • Anatomy For Fantasy Artists by Glenn Fabry
  • An Introduction to Functional Anatomy by David Sinclair

The library was a very swish affair that seems to be packed to the gills with lots of students busy working away - a great sign - and lots of Macs and PCs. I’m impressed!

I’ll need to find out if I can access the library resources - electronic books and journals using the internet from home. Just did some sifting and it seems that I can indeed access the library services including electronic published journals from off-campus.

Now - where do I take my Literature and Contextual Review? I need to engage in research to support the development of my practice work. Well my practice work is the modelling of the 2 characters - so is my research of anatomy sufficient? I must check with Josh. Well it seems that technical modelling involved in character creation is where it’s at. I’m relieved to have a strong positive direction to go in now. Phew.