Sunday, 23 December 2018

String Theory by Chris Jones

Chris Jones just published an amazing visualization for his own composition, all accomplished with low end software, LightWave and Hitfilm being the prominent two. At some point you realize that it is all one long take and that the focus of the action is always where your eyes are, not an easy task when moving the camera all over this crazy digital universe. Best to watch from the YouTube source at full resolution.

Monday, 3 December 2018

Goodnight Claire, A break-down. Blender 2.8

This video gives a good insight into the full scene work-flow of the new Blender.

Saturday, 1 December 2018

Blender 2.8 Overview

The fun is back in 3D, so says the heading on the download page for Blender 2.8. Believe it.

Saturday, 10 November 2018

Blender Workflow for Feature Films - Jama Jurabaev

This amazing concept artist explains why Blender is his go-to tool for thrashing out ideas.

Sunday, 14 October 2018

Create a variable line ink pen in Krita

Here's is the promised tutorial.

Monday, 1 October 2018

Vari-line pen tutorial is coming.

I hope to be able to put together a quick tutorial on how to make a variable width pen in Krita. It may be a video, it may just be a step by step on this blog, I haven't decided yet which way to go with it.

Thursday, 27 September 2018

More Vari-line pen drawings in Krita

Still working with Krita using the vari line brush I made, still developing a style. Getting loose and getting somewhere I hope.

Monday, 24 September 2018

More mind blown Speedflow magic.

Cedric Lepiller keeps adding more awesomeness to his Blender Add-on Speedflow.

 I don't think anything can match this kind of non-destructive workflow that results in perfect quad meshes. I may be wrong on that (don't quote me), in any case, Speedflow is the worth it's tiny price.

Sunday, 16 September 2018

Vari-line pen drawing in Krita.

I designed a set of custom brushes in Krita, I wanted that thin quill pen look with an unpredictable variance in line thickness, not based on pen pressure.  The three curly icons are the set, just three different thickness option.

Below are images created using this brush. You can see how it adds a human touch to the line work. I will put together a tutorial about how to make this brush.

Sunday, 2 September 2018

More Krita sketches

I'm determined to get familiar with Krita, some of it's functions are not obvious to a new user and you have to get past that. However the navigation, zoom and rotation of the canvas, probably the most important thing if you are doing hand drawn art on the fly, is very nice to use. These images just developed from doodles and I'm quite happy with the sloppy look for the moment.

Saturday, 1 September 2018

New tests in Krita

Been re-evaluating Krita over the last two days, seeing if I can produce some quick hack comic art with the brushes and get used to the work area. Some of these are referenced from photos, but the idea is to not get hung up on details and just push stuff out.

Still using the bamboo tablet, and still getting used to the screen and pen disconnect.

Tuesday, 28 August 2018

Tears of Joy.

Dreams do come true, you like me, you really really like me! I scored a top row mention in the Blenderartists forum, here's a screen grab before it gets cycled off the shelf to make way for all the brilliant work constantly being shuffled through that thing.

That's me top left. What a hoot to come home and see that there. I guess I can die now.

Friday, 10 August 2018

Easyref modeling result

Here is a render of the hot dog creature, I've yet to decide what to do with this, so it's just the model with no setting at the moment.

Sunday, 22 July 2018

Easyref - A modeling friendly image reference system for Blender.

I'm using the image reference script authored by Cedric Lepiller, the same guy who created Speedflow and Speedsculpt, it's called Easyref and as he would say in his French accent, "this is nice". What's really unique about this addon is it allows you to put the image right into Blender, overlaying your work-space, you then construct geometry right behind it, it's magical.

Above is the model with Easyref overlayed, and below is the  unfinished model as it is, closely matching the proportions of the reference image.

Friday, 20 July 2018

Updated design sketch

It occurred to me to make the hot dog creature a beast with two backs, the bread bun is now a predator and the dog it's meal. Just added eyes and re-positioned legs. This makes the idea a little more interesting for me, I have a natural tendency towards the generic unfortunately, so I hope this adds some twist of meaning to the final image. I plan to make a start on the 3D version this weekend.

One of the strongest features of MyPaint is it's ability to sample a previous brush stroke from your sketch and make that particular brush and all it's settings available to you, so when you go back to a piece of art and make changes, you can very easily be painting with exactly the same brushes without having to recreate them or locate them in a stored menu.

Thursday, 19 July 2018

More character designs realized in Blender

The concept sketch.

The finished model.

A scrappy concept I did in MyPaint.

The more polished 3D version created with Blender.

This might be my next Blender work. Perhaps I'll think of something more interesting.

Wednesday, 11 July 2018

DUIK Bassel, or DUIK 2 released.

The free animation and rigging script DUIK has been updated and is now available. Not only does this super useful script help animators who use After Effects set up IK (inverse kinematic) rigs, it also includes many handy work-flow tools and expressions, for example, being able to select multiple key-frames on different layers, and copy paste them without creating new layers, that is just one tiny thing among others that even non character animators would want.  Sure there are plenty of commercial animation assistant scripts out there, but DUIK is free, widely used and well tested.

Thursday, 5 July 2018

More Bevel after Boolean characters.

I've been enjoying getting back into Blender to create a series of character designs, making use of the the Bevel after Boolean add-on.

Sunday, 17 June 2018

Bevel after Boolean, a character build.

I made this using the Bevel after Boolean addon written by Rodinkov llya.

The addon allows you to boolean geometry together and then run it to create clean beveled seams where the geometry meets.

I wouldn't normally model an organic character this way, it was a test see if I could use it for non mechanical subjects, you couldn't comfortably animate this creature because of the polygon flow, however for a still character sculpt of this type it's viable, and you could re-topologize to get better poly-flow. 

Friday, 8 June 2018

Tree Creature - Blender 2.8 development test

No comment, I'll let the video speak for itself.

Saturday, 2 June 2018

OctaneRender for Blender review by Lino Grandi

Lino Grandi, formally an official spokesman for LightWave, provides a concise review of the Octane plugin for Blender.

Friday, 1 June 2018

BlenderPro - A template for 3D creatives who might want to try Blender?

There's almost too many things going on with Blender these days, it can make your head spin.

Having given it a spin, I really appreciate the ease of use here, however, there are some functions of Blender that seem hidden away by the template, or perhaps I'm not clue-y enough to find them. I look forward to more tutorials from the author, especially about modeling

Thursday, 31 May 2018

Saturday, 26 May 2018

Heavypoly workflow for Blender

It's a schizophrenic time for me and Blender at the moment, with Speedflow up-dates and the new 2.8 version in the works, I probably shouldn't look into this alternative workflow tutorial by Heavypoly.

If you go to the video on his channel, you are given the links to a bunch of config scripts and a startup file to install into a current daily build version of Blender. This is his own unique layout, pie menu tools and other nifty things to get even the newest Blender user up to speed. I'm new to Blender myself so I'm interested in trialing this cool work-flow to see if it fits.

I'm only a little into the tutorial as of this writing, but so far it's been nice. His teaching style is very clear and the pie menus, tools and layout make Blender feel like a new software.

Monday, 21 May 2018

Simple talk test

Because this particular drawing just uses strokes for the face (eyes, nose and lips are all just strokes), it was very easy to move them around and create face animation.

Saturday, 19 May 2018

Reproducing character designs in MOHO.

I'm considering doing a new animation project in Moho, it's been a while and I'll be re-learning yet again the whole process.
The animation will illustrate an old pop song (yet again), and I've had it on my mind for a few years actually. To that end I doodled around to get some character designs up, and have chosen to do all my concept art in MyPaint. I choose this program based on it's simplicity, it may lack certain tools but it is also easy to navigate and work in. I wanted to use Krita but I'd be expending a lot of time learning that program when I just need to pump out artwork and story boards.

Here are some of the latest character designs.

I took one of these images into Moho to re-create with vectors. I want to keep this entire thing bound within a tight color palette, and Moho has the capacity to let you import your own custom swatches,  so I created 2 swatches based on old illustration I found online.

Below is the recreated design, reproduced with the two different color treatments. The color swatches allow you to easily eye-drop color and quickly alter the vector art.

It remains to be seen whether I continue with this project, these things take a lot of time and there's no pay-off, I can't even put them on YouTube for copyright reasons due to my persistence of using old songs, but they are the only things that inspire visual ideas in my head.

Saturday, 12 May 2018

LightWave 2018: More render testing.

Just in the interest of keeping up to date I have included another test render I did with LW 2018. It's just an old scene updated with the new shaders and lighting. I've included the older version done with LW 2015 for comparison.

LW 2018

LW 2015

Blender 2.8 development.

There are quite a lot of videos circulating, previewing various aspects of the new Blender user interface. It's all rather exciting and a little bit scary (some users really like Blender as it is), yet we can download the very latest beta builds of 2.8 and play around to see how it fits. I think this is a real effort to make the interface easier and faster to use, and Blender starts to look less like the ugly duckling of 3D programs and more the swan.

The video below demonstrates the new ability to edit multiple separate objects at the same time, which is surely going to speed up many an artist's's workflow.

Keep an eye on these new developments as they happen, there are interesting new features being added also, the future looks very bright for Blender.

Saturday, 10 February 2018

Blender Rock; DEATH VAN (animated space-rock adventure)

As if we needed more examples of what an amazing software Blender is for the artist, but here comes Death Van by Michael Enzbrunner anyway.

Friday, 26 January 2018

LightWave 2018 render tests. My Verdict.

I downloaded the trial version of Lightwave 2018 and spent about a week doing tests and renders. Here are some of them.

Yep, if you play around with the settings and materials you can get some decent renders out of it, but it's not as cool to work with as I'd hoped. Antialiasing isn't a strong point of this renderer, and noise is something that shows up a lot, requiring heavy sampling to clean up, indeed, there was noise that I couldn't get rid of at all.

I'm disappointed to say that my week working with LW 2018 was a week I could've been working with Blender, and having said that, I think that ends it for me and LightWave.