|Floating Island Mk.I|
There are some minor issues with the UV's which, while they work, they are the default cube UV's and there are some lines appearing in the displacement where the seams are. I've re-unwrapped it with RoadKill (the wonderful UV unwrapping tool, it uses Blender's open source UV algorithms so its free!) and luckily Mudbox allows you to import new UV's onto the base mesh whilst hopefully maintaining all the sculpting I've already done.
|Floating Island Mk.II, fixed UV's|
|Background now shows through but no image yet for night lighting.|
|The physical sky makes a nice caramel effect for some reason when no image is provided.|
|This one has the correct colouring, shadows, and background matte.|
|The shadows no longer fall across the trophies on the wall which I might have to tweak but otherwise this feels close to completion.|
On top of all this we had Double Negative give a talk to us about their role in the visual effects industry (which is pretty integral seeing as they have worked on all these films and are in talks with the various software vendors to get their tools to better meet their needs). Some of the stuff they showed I'd seen on the Inception bonus features but other bits were totally new and it was fascinating hearing it explained by their head of 3D Alex Wuttke, I got to ask why they use Renderman, and whether they've overcome UV's yet and both questions yielded informative and entertaining answers. We even got to chat to him in the studio briefly along with their recruitment manager, it was surreal and humbling.
|Me: pointing a gun at something...|
Nelson my beast PC has opened new doors into the gaming world and I've finally managed to complete Half Life 2, Episode II. For a four year old game, damn is it pretty, makes me realise what a big deal resolution is when it comes to showcasing a game's art, everything sparkles at 1080p. Also in terms of storytelling I just continue to fall more deeply in love with Half Life's style of unrestricted player movement during key plot sequences. It goes some way to diffusing the conflict between authorial intent and player expression. For example the player can interact with the environment in fairly limited ways in any game, most of all first person shooters, so when the player is constantly pointing a weapon at what's in front of him its hard to create emotional experiences when the protagonist is a mute who points his gun at everything, psychopathic right?
|Me: pointing my gun at something else...|
My one find recently has been series of blog posts by the founders of Naughty Dog on the making of Crash Bandicoot. It's a great insight into the process of squishing a hugely ambitious game into restrictive hardware, and then knowing when to battle with the corporate machine, and when to submit to it.