Blog - Even with no post-processing....
It still looks incredibly great. Prepping props for the painterly is quite gratifying as soon as the shader is applied.
December 9, 2021
Weekly Sprint Stats:
Points Velocity per day
Lately I've been pushing many assets for the test video, and also the larger music video that it has been really fun. The reason I partially developed this material and NPR system was to not worry about UV's, not worry about topology, and also not worry about hard surfaces or bevels. Also, not worry about textures, nor baking. In general, I can take any asset, remesh it, make it smoother, then it would be setup for the painterly right off. The addon also sets up the vertex groups. I should add more funcitonality to also auto-colour the pre-made vertex groups, and mayb auto unwrap with a single click on all selected. But for now.. the workflow still is relatively quick.
Here is an example, taking the model then prepping it for the painterly. The process is this:
- Seperate or remove tiny details, and organize parts
- Remesh with voxels or sharp
- Apply modifiers
- Join the objects (unless rigged)
- Use the addon to generate the vertex groups and custom properties
- Apply the material
- Smart Unwrap everything
- Setup UV seam materials to none (generates white, which is on - hmm... maybe I should just default to invert in the material, this step is eating time)
- Scale UV's and set colours to taste
No clean UVs, no need for clean geo (because of the style), no need for hard surface edges and bevels for preservation nor any textures. If I want a cool colour, I can paint or bake dirty vertex colour right into the shadow or colour vertex groups and.. I'm good to go. It's extremely liberating to not have to prep assets to be used.
Take a look below, this is a rigged asset so had to work the assets one by one, but after they were setup with the system, painting in toclorus and getting the look was immediate.
About Kitbashing and premade assets
Today also was about working the ship silhuettes and designs. This means... getting some good shape language and kitbashing it. So I have taken the key hero ship into a 3 stage rocket, with a booster to get into orbit, a lunar booster to get to the slingshot, then the actual orbiter - which is a converted freighter head catcher.
This project has had a lot of kitbashing from CC0 and CC-BY assets. I will have to dig a little to log all the names of the artists who made these meshes - but having a lot of the models already made has been a huge time saver. I usually model all my projects from scratch, even hiring other artists to get the work done, but this time around I'm cutting corners for time and quality. Even with pre-made assets there is some creative liberty to change things up though - but man, having a good solid base mesh to work with is massive concerning time saving.
It is still art when you use blocks of lego from elsewhere. In fact, when you work in teams, this is what you do. You use other peoples work and carry it forward to something new. In fact, being a director or supervisor, you whole job is making all the pieces your team has made into a big whole like one big game of Lego. Team work is learning to take the best, and making it better. Being a good artist is taking what is good, and making it better also. You don't have to always create from Zero, or else we could be goat farmers - the parable of the artist who decided to make his own paint, but that wasn't original enough so he decided to make his own canvas, but to make the canvas he needed to grow his own trees. So he got the wood, made the paper, and made the canvas. He also made his own charcoal to make his own paint, found the spices, grew them and made the pigments. He was nearly ready to paint, but then he thought of the brush hairs. He had the wood, he needed the bristles. So he took the bristles from a goat. He realized even then it wasn't original enough, so he decided that to really be a true artist, he would need to even eat his own food. He started to recycle his feces, grow veggies for the goat, raised a few, even started making goat cheese and yogurt to live. The canvas he originally built, inspired by the original idea of the sunset he wanted to paint.... now collecting dust. Sitting in the middle of the field, he eventually realizes that at the end of the day, he now is a goat farmer, and no-longer an artist. It's a dangerous game striving to be original and "creative" in a vacuum. Don't be that guy. Save time. Make what is great even better if the license allows it - this is why I love CC0 and CC-BY.
About the blog
This is my first more at length article about my day. I think I want to keep pushing these out - specially since this project I can share and track the progress. I love this client so much, and the project. It will have a huuuge bucket of love because of that patience and opportunity. Hope he does well with the final products for sure. So, here is my plan: I will publish to my socials, but link back to this blog and the patreon so that you can get an in depth look - but on the socials we can work minimal posts about exactly this blog post. I have also... tried to activate the RSS, to see if that can be a thing. I hope to really put a lot of love into this central space, document the career, tips, ideas, business and more. It has been a wild ride, but now to log it and share it with you is the next step of my dream.
I personally have been sitting on my butt for a very long time about my dreams, thinking that they should be done tomorrow, or when I'm ready, or after this client... but now it has been more than 10 years since starting the dream. I have realized, the dream is today. Death is tomorrow. Why not now. So.. even in this unfinished state, I will publish and share what I have.. because I know.. maybe someone out there will enjoy it, or learn from it, or be inspired. I do want to make the world somewhat enjoyable for someone, even if it be for my self - so I hope this gets somewhere and the work I do inspires as much as many many pieces of hard have inspired me. Time to give back, share, and give - because I have loved everything in this day and age up till now.
Enough gush! Enjoy the image gallery from captures taken from today.