Sunday, 30 September 2007

Day269 Ballistic Char Mod 2 & Ep51 animations

Ballistic's Character Modeling 2
I was in the city and found myself in the Kinokuniya Bookshop (huge thing in the Galleria Victoria). The bookshop has a huge range of books across all manner of areas including technical, reference and asian languages. One of the nifty things is that they have the full range of Ballistic publications, store-copies so we can see inside and to top it off all the computer books were on sale (20% off).

So I could have burnt alot of cash, but walked away relatively unscathed with my first Ballistic Publishing title - Character Modeling 2 (yes they spell it with one L).

Onto the book itself - I am looking forward to devouring it over the next few days - appreciating the wonders within. First impressions are a very high production and print quality that really shows off the work. Unlike the Expose series which gives us the final product of a large array of digital artists, this book delves in detail into the work of 3 masters - Kevin Lanning, Kevin Petroc and Timur Baysal (plus the 3 artists themselves). Right off the bat we are treated to a huge and detailed 70 page article on Kevin Lanning and his character creation for Gears of War. The CG models are quite extroadinary, not just in their character and detail, but also in their alignment to the technology of the mighty Unreal3 engine.

[cover and artwork sample from the Ballistic site for Character Modeling 2]

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Photo Fall Animation
Some refinement of the Photo-fall animation was fun today. I did some tests with sheets of paper to see how the rotations and dynamics worked. A normal piece of paper is actually pretty wild as it falls and a postcard fall is pretty subdued. So for the animation I picked something in between. One things both did was slide nicely after hitting the floor, so I incorporated this as well and it really helps.
I loaded the current test into Youtube after building a mov with Fcheck. FCheck is a nifty, yet strange little application. I am now pretty much ignoring the speed/framerate that it shows as it doesnt seem to have much bearing on the final qt movie result.

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Bimbo Walktest Rigging
I created a test rig for Bimbo to test her walk - I dont have the hang of dealing with paint weights yet though. Despite my keeping her mesh in separate parts and skinning each bit to a bone individually - the skinning still 'leaks out' on me. So now I have to tidy it all up ten test out some animation on her.

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