Monday, February 28, 2011

I'm going to Toronto!

I got the official letter today! I've been accepted into the University of Toronto's Biomedical Communications Master's program.

I believe in the very first post of my blog, I said something like "Anyway, what's this all about? Well... not a whole lot yet, but I have big plans which are yet to be disclosed." So... yeah, this is what it's all about. I'm going to be a scientific animator in the future, so I've been learning Maya to get towards that goal. I didn't know about this program from the start, but after a false start or two, I stumbled on this program which combines art and science (or computer animation and biology in some cases) and realized that's where I wanted to go. This was what my portfolio and demo reel were for and they liked what I sent them I guess, so I'm very proud to say that I'm going to be starting school again this fall. Can't wait!

Oh, and I suppose biocinematics might make more sense to you now.

Here's a showreel from a studio founded by three graduates of the program: AXS Studio Showreel 2010
I love the stuff in this video; it's my aspiration to be doing something similar in a few years.

I'll be definitely keeping this blog going while in school, so stay tuned for more medically oriented posts, I suppose.


Sunday, February 27, 2011

Sandraker modelling done

Well I guess I'll call the modelling more or less done now. I've got to smooth certain areas so it doesn't look all blocky, but hopefully that shouldn't take too long. I think I forgot to add lights and stuff. Might as well incorporate that into the "backstory". This thing drives through the desert, so obviously night driving is a no-no. Yeah, that'll do.


More sandraker

Finally had some time to do more modelling on the sandraker vehicle. Might be able to "finish" it by Monday night (at least with a basic level of work and detailing).

Hope you like it so far.

Thursday, February 24, 2011


That's how you say warthog on a safari.

Click for larger... I'd be flattered to have it used as a desktop background ;)

Garden video is close to done; I'll get back to the sandraker this weekend.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Garden video

I know I haven't updated with more vehicle modelling because I've been having to edit together a short version of a documentary project I was filming all last year, so that's been taking priority. Our church has a community garden that produces food for a local food bank, so I filmed over the course of a whole agricultural year, and now it's editing time. I probably won't be able to upload the video here, cause there's people in it that I don't yet have permission from to display on the world wide web. Anyway, I likely won't have time to finish my model the way I want, but I'll give it a shot over the weekend.


Friday, February 11, 2011

Sandraker Blocking

Hey, I'm on a roll this week! Lotsa posting ;P

Blocked out the vehicle using primitives and rough geometry. Next I'll refine the shapes and make sure the main body has the right sort of topology. I tend to get a good ways into shaping things and realize I don't like where the edges are... so it'll be interesting to see how this goes. I'm pretty noobish at topology in general. But I'm looking forward to adding more detail on this one; I'm kinda liking where it's going so far.

Let me know what you like/don't like about the design so far. It's early enough to change.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Vehicle sketch

Here's the photoshop sketch of my fast sand-vehicle:

I should be able to get going on the modelling tomorrow, so hopefully more updates in the next few days. February is a short month, so I need to get a move on. :)

In case you were curious how orthographic reference images get used in Maya to help with modelling, here's my image plane setup after breaking apart the top and side references, applying them to planes, and making them slightly transparent so I can see what the model looks like too. They're also on an unselectable layer, which I can hide easily too.


Lightroom is awesome

Gotta say, in the two hours or so that I've actually been working with Lightroom, I really really like it. It's intuitive, whelming (i.e. not overwhelming), and has some really neat tricks. I frequently find myself criticizing or praising software on its ability to accommodate fast workflows with shortcuts, batch processing, fewer keystrokes, the ability to setup macros or presets so I don't have to do the same things over and over. This has all that. It's great. And I haven't even touched most of the program, so I'm looking forward to reading up on it more and exploring the different modules. Yeah, it's built modularly too, so that's another plus in my book.

So enough of the advertising, here's finally an Africa photo. Some sort of egret (cattle?) at Lake Naivasha in Kenya.

Click for the larger if you don't know the drill ;)


PS I should have a concept sketch for the vehicle up in not too many days, but LR has been a lot of fun, so I may get sucked back into it for a while.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Lightroom and fast vehicles

Small (pictureless) update... I bought Lightroom 3 today, so I'm now trying to get a handle on a good workflow for organizing and processing photos. I was going to try to post an Africa photo, but I haven't gotten to the importing stage yet, let alone exporting with watermarks, resizing, and sharpening.

I've also started another challenge at SimplyMaya, the topic of which is Fast-looking vehicles. I've sketched out my concepts, and I'm trying to get a photoshop version sketched out so I can take orthographic drawings into Maya to model off.

I'll certainly have images next time I post, so stay tuned.

In other news, I haven't been reading much... I need to get a February book going.