Tuesday, 24 December 2013

British Armory Museum 

 The British Armory Museum in Leeds was very helpful. It has the only full suit and horse of this Mongolian era in England so was great primary research. The only problem I had was taking photos that I could use down the line for textures as  the mongol suits were behind class cases. It still give great reference and will help a lot in concepting my characters. The other cases were open so i did mange to get some textures photos. Some of the photos I took are of a different century  but the museum curator explained how little would have  changed over that time period.
 One of the main things I got from the museum was how different to what I thought the Armour was. It seems that did not use as much metal because it slowed the mongols down too much. Instead they used really thick weave to try to stop arrows penetrating and it is lighter to wear in weight.

 Also looking around at other parts of the museum  I noticed the big difference between British horses and the Mongolian horses. Mongolian horses were bred to be a lot faster and leaner when  compared to the bulky muscular English horse's.
 I also got to see lots of difference weaponry and accessories that they would of used. One of the most interesting of which was was the shields that used, Very little metal just really thick leather with stitched on really thick weave, which I think I could produce some really good assets and textures with these.
 The mongols biggest asset was there ability to fire at high speed from horse back. They had  long curved bows and furiously fought with curved blades and some even with punching knifes. These are just some of the photos I took. I did get some of close ups for texturing and to supply starting points for my models and concepts.

Saturday, 21 December 2013

Mesh Construction

Once I finished my orthographics I quickly moved on to my base mesh. Not being too careful with my topology as I will be retopologising it. Anyway I started by just building the body and using symmetry to make it easy for me to sculpt on. Then I can make the character unique in zbrush and then build the clothes base around the character so  i can start getting some good folds in the thick cloth.

I'm not very fast in zbrush yet so it took me a while to sculpt through the different levels of divides. One of the main issues I had with my character was trying to get her to look oriental. Her nose and mouth looked very western to begin with. I then took some reference photos of clothes and used mirrors to see how the pressure would pick up the cloth, especially because I wanted to make gathered.
I would of liked to have spent more time detailing the mesh and focusing on more of the textures but ive been spending too much time on it and really need to push it onto the retop phase. I did some research on different ways on how to do it and there is a new plugin in zbrush , zremesher. I tried playing around with that but it still made my model too dense and was catching the vital areas like i needed it to like the nose loops eyes and mouth. I can see how it would be very useful but for what I want I think the best route is to manually retopologise it. 

final sculpt
zremesh topology 

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

fmp research

It seems that the actual Mongolian era artifacts are hard to find. I started off by googling Mongolian museums and exhibitions in the UK because i thought it would be very beneficial to find and take reference images of real life Mongolian Armour and weaponry. I wanted to give my project a lot more authenticty. I couldn't find much online so I rang the Natural History Museum in London and asked to speak to Asian department. I spoke to the curator in Asian history who explained how there are none in that museum and that there is actually very little in the UK altogether. This is due to  the harsh climate they lived in and how far back Genghis time was (1162) and there's not much left in the world. The climate caused natural disintegration and very little survived over time. Much of what did survive was purchase by US museums and can be seen in the States. However they recommended i try the Royal Armoury Museum in Leeds and the British Museum in London. So i rang the British museum and the Curator there was unable to help, so i rang the museum in Leeds and left a message with there curator who rang back and said they have the biggest collection in UK for Mongolian artifacts and the only real sword in the UK. Much of what they have dates back to 14 century but she explained that not much would have changed in the things they wore and how they lived. She also told me they have a mouted suit of armour on a horse which will be ideal for my project.

royal armary muesum 0203 166 6660
curator:0113 220 1868
British muesum :0207 323 8000
theme,character bio 

The scene i want to portray is when Temujin and his family have been thrown out from his fathers tribe,the wolfs. 6 years ago he's had to fight the harsh climate and live for his family to keep them alive but now Genghis is 20 and started to  survive and prosper. Now he has built for himself and his family 

a small home for them. He has fortified it in-case they ever get rundown by a mongol tribe. 
The current leader of the Wolfs that outcast temujin when his father died sends his right hand man toe a lui the big wrestler to see if temujin and his family are still alive and if they are to capture them and kill them apart from temujin who he wants brought back alive to be torched and then killed. toe a lui finds temujins camps and gets more then he barged for but in the end temujin sacrifices himself as decoy so his family can get away he gets captured and beaten and tied up while toe a lui rest for the night .

that's the chapter, chapter 6 of the book is want i want to display because i think it has very interesting theme behind it and there's lots of things i could build in my fmp to show through this story. there's a few different points of the chapter i could make my characters from i could do when toe lui fight against temjuin where they'd both be in good condition or where temjuin has bean beaten to a pulp which i think could look very interesting in my finished piece but i think ill make these choices through my concepting process and see what looks best next to each other. 
temujin the future Genghis khan: would be aged 20 and described in the book as bein tall and strong wirey muscle with long hair and scared body. he has described at this point in his life of just having the essintial of life no fancy armour strong rugged cloths to keep out the cold but no luxarys apart from a strong bow matching as good as any top grade bow.

toe lui: is the right hand man of the khan of the wolfs so he is in very good condtion and has the best of everything big thick fancy armour on his already large frame from being a wrestler also around 20 years of age 

war pony: in the book the mongols steeds are refered to as pony not horses from what i can find out is because there better suited to harsh climate but these would be very strong thick muscle fast horse's if i chose to toe lui horse it would be covered in Armour from head to toe where as temujins would just have a sadle.

small environment: would have a small gare (large mongol tent) with a tree line and fortification's 

Monday, 16 December 2013

Adam osbourne
Fmp draft

Platform: Xbox 360/ps3

Technical spec: 30,000 tries per character 2x 2048 per character
15,000 tries war horse
And small playable environment fitting the main pieces
To design a scene from the book and redesign the characters with some historical accuracy
Outline: design the characters from conn iggulden book on Genghis khan and to design a set filled with characters, environment and animals.
Temujin / Genghis khan. Toa lui / the big right hand man wrestler

  War pony. Small playable environment of the plains
Assets: two characters a war pony and small environment
 Tools: 3ds max, zbrush, udk, Photoshop

Sunday, 8 December 2013

FMP Genghis khan

wolf of the plains ghengus khan i chose to this book because it has some really interesting characters that look very dynamic and think it if the idea had a team behind would be a game i would be very interested in. i would of like to have worked on a group project so that we could of had elements to work on and build some really interesting work because although i want to do characters for my project i like the idea of working with some environment in the project and  maybe some animals instead of a character like one of the war ponys that are covered in thick Armour and the red eagle ghengus father has but i realize that that is alot of work for my time period so i think if gave two months to two characters , ghengus khan before he was khan aged 20 and toea looey  the big young wrestler and then two weeks to the animals and two weeks to a small playable environment.
i want to build a sort of set with rigged characters i think that would give me a really good project with alot of interesting elements i think ide rather have a brief where i could exell at depending on the time frame.


carrying on with concepting i moved on to some thumbnailing for different ideas for a character painting i want to keep the painting quite minamalistick so i can focus just on the character. but i do like the idea of blossom tree for my final scene even if it is abit cliche  i think it will look good if i do it to a high standard.  

i think this quick painting has given me a better understanding of my character style but i really need to get on with some modeling so i drew out some orthographic just starting with the base mesh and then ill build it up after with the clothes.

i also did a quick 3d sketch so i can get some color idea out so its all planned for when i get to that point at the movement i quite like the simpler color scheme as it seems more realistic to my character  and seems more like what i  imagined for my housewife samurai .

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

ubisoft character brief 
female warrior 

my task is to produce a female warrior, from India, Africa, China or Japan. She can originate from any point in history up until the present day.

my initial thoughts are that alot of the characters i want to produce of from the same background as what i want to do for my fmp Asia near so im not sure yet whether to do something very far away from my fmp or something slightly similar to give me an idea of what im up against.
but first things first moodboarding. 

i started by moodboarding women warriors from all the different areas we can work from the ones that really stood out to me are the Japanese women i realy like the idea of really elegant warrior. so i did some research into female warriors culture and found the onna-bugeisha known as women samurai but i dint really like the idea of doing a heavily armored women as i will be making allot of Armour in my next project and i wanted to stick to this idea of elegant silent warrior but i kept on reading and it seems that onna-bugeisha  were over exaggerating samurai and really were house wife's taught from a young age in combat to protect there households. so i really like the idea of these quite lightweight warrior protecting their home so i moved onto so thumbnails.  
if my samurai is is house wife as well i need to design a mutli-purpose outfit one she can fight in or look after the house in im thinking heavy cloth / thick kimono but i may change it to something more elegant i want to design a beautiful hard faced woman. i moved onto some alternative hair design because will make a big difference in my character i did some more outrageous hair design but i like the first few as there quite simple and have a more every day look to them.
as my character is not of the geisha there wont be any white makeup or to clean which i think will help make her look like an authentic warrior. 


My plan for the vehicle project was to make a a future mustang focusing mainly on the shaders and creating a simple scene and vehicle and looks like my idea of  a hover car , and I think I did achieve what I set out to do . my main goal during this project was to try and show lots of different materials with gloss paint metal combined with future elements mainly showed through in my emissive map which I have done to a good standard. However I did encounter lots of problem’s on the way and had to learn a lot of new things I hadn’t tried to do before im glad I got the environment and vehicle pretty much sorted at the half way stage because the shaders where the part that I had the most problems with  and I had to do a lot of back and forth with my textures to get what I wanted which come as easy as I thought it would my model started of looking far to glossy then for to grimy then roughly in the middle where I wanted it but this project did show me a lot about how important different types of maps work with shaders . and gave me a feel for what professionals project brief have to stick to.
The main thing I would improve of if I had more time would be the overall scene because for me it still doesn’t feel very alive and little plank even with the last minute revision but I understand that wasn’t the main point of the project. I also would of liked to make a better model because in the end I only used 5000 tries only half the amount I could of used so would have been good to build a lot more of the detail then rely on the bump maps details to bring out a lot of things but again ten thousands tries wasn’t what we had to use.
For once during a project I haven’t been really rushed to finish the project I think what really helped this time around was getting the mesh done and environment done very quickly because the second half of the project was the long bit but I think this also helped me to be a lot more productive and speed up my work flow.
I dint relay come into any massive issue just lots of little things I had to try and fix like for about two days I couldn’t figure out to get my materials not to be pitch black and someone showed me it was just the ambient in the material need to be white. Alpha for the glass also gave me abit of trouble I couldn’t figure out to get my interior to show through the glass in the end I found that it was just the order of the id the glass material needed to be a high number id to show the lowered numbered id, a lot of the problem’s I had weren’t really problems just things I need to figure how to do like cube maps and reflection maps and light maps ive done light maps before for engine work but dint realisee I could do the same thing to get nice shadows in 3ds max files once ide figured out how to do them there seem quiet straight forward and are easy to do again so I think they will be useful later but initial figuring out had issues and time consuming.
Overall I learnt a lot of new skills during this project  and I handed everything in on time and completed everything on the brief I could I really wanted to on this project not just to fill in the basic requirements but apply all thing in the brief that were slightly harder and would get me better marks. I did enjoy this project I think I built a good project I would of like to change some things in heinsieght but as learnt of new skills and finished it on time and met all the critea so im happy with my project.

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

glass and interior

been trying to get my glass material where i want it and trying to get the interior sorted so i started by playing with the alphas for glass i wanted a sort of tinted feel to the window so i painted in the alpha to show more transparency at the top like a limo window to give a more pimped up look.

i also needed to change the material of the interior because at the moment the seat inside were showing high levels of reflection which isn't what i want to show i want me seat to be quite a flat leather look with just small bits of reflection. i couldn't figure out how to get the material to show up on the interior without using the first id i manged to figure out that it needed to be under the glass id and after that it worked fine and gave it a much more realistic look.

i think my vehicle materials are nearly done now  ive manged to get the right level of reflection i wanted but at the moment my metal is still looking flat so ill need to tweak that some more.

 Now at the end of the project I actually have a little time to really polish things up i deiced to make a lightmap I did that and then painted over the top of it to get soe soft shadows once did this I wasent realy happy with my cube map so I redid it with the lightmap and came out a lot better. Finishing touches I went back and added in some posters to the environment and opened the garage door so you can see out into my level and I think  just those litle things added more divesity to my level which was looking abit bland.  I also went in and did some finishing touches on texures and emissive map realy trying to get the vehicle to pop out the scene.

maps and shader's

finaly have all my shaders working together fine recently ive just been trying to polish up all my maps seeing how they work with the shaders i decided to take my bump level down abit because it was making the light bounce to cracked and not smooth enough i still want the water stained look but it was to much at the time but with abit of back and forth ive got alot closer to how i want it to look. i also moved on to making my own cube map with my strip lights i may have to redo it but for now its working how i want it to showing the long lines of line which is what i wanted in my scene. it took me a while to figure out how do a cube map because the shaders make the renders gray-scale in the end i saved of a new version just for the cube map and used normal material just for the shaders. 

 i also played around with my alpha in the cube map to see what results i could get for the high dynamic range i tried doing different lines across it to get a galvanized look on my car paint but i dint like how it looked so i tried to focus on simple lights and i think it cam out alot better. 

putting some time into my emisive map i think really made my model pop out abit and makes it alot more interesting especially since its mend to be a hover car. i still have abit to do with the environment light maps and such but im happy with the rate its going and im on schedule. 

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

fmp ideas

my fmp ideas hace changed alot my mind seems to go through so many idea i cant stick with one but i did come across the idea of a bigger gang character project i relay like the idea because the characters are so cool and thought about i could get alot reference through tattoos shops i could make alphas which could look really good. but i was getting ahead of my self before ide even started the main problem was i dont the think the project had enough direction or design to just go of and design biker character seemed abit pointless with no story to so after feedback i did some research and found a book about biker characters called under and alone about a biker enthusiast working for the ATF and goes undercover and SPOILER ALERT takes down multiple people in the biker gang  i like the idea and thought i could take it somewhere but after feedback it was pointed out that a game just came out about a biker gang which put me of slightly was also pointed out that all the character are quite similar in build  and age.

so i went away brainstorming new ideas i like the idea of doing something real like a culture in history biker gang or much father back so i did some research and tried to find some good book about famous empires and i found a book called wolf of the plains, about the story of ghengus khan which really intrigued me because the mongols are very interesting people especially around that time. 
i started reading the book and its very good and has allot cool characters with alot of diversity more that i originally thought . before getting carried away with the story i did some moodboads to try and get a feel for the characters i could design.

after mood boarding i found there's alot of room for me to concepts some really interesting characters and after going through more of the book there's alot of very descriptive text.
i have a few different ideas for my project revolving the book there quite a few scenes and characters i could pick from because to book ranges when ghengus khan is 10 to 20 starting from his childhood to when he concurred the plains and made the mongol nation. i really like the idea of modeling a scene from the book so i wouldn't just have characters for my fmp but 1 or 2 characters and environment work of about a months work's, or im also considering doing one of the war pony's fully kitted out instead of character. 


finaly starting to get somewhere with the shader's the past couple days  ive been working with the vechile and environment shader's and focusing on finishing texturing mainly for the environment so its out the way. so far my main thing is lots of litle tinkering with the textures and shaders ive found you need to do the shader's in quite specific way otherwise i struggle to get it working. the main thing i need to rember is that all the screen shots will be taken in side my scene and not from above view because its confusing with the shader's focusing everything one sided but once i got my head round that and flipping some stuff and re ranging the scene so it works better its ok. 

also struggling to get my speculer map to work braking down the example scene there is a spec map in the level but when ticking on and of doesn't make a huge difference so i do need to tweak around with that now ive added my first draft bump map i can see how it changes the reflections im trying to use the bump maps to help get the light to bounce of it like dirt or galvanized metal look and trying to keep the gloss down.  

 i also decided to use long strip light because i think it will give me some lone nice reflections rather than two detailed squared reflections.at the moment my scene looks pretty bair im hoping i can get a big bulk out of the way this weekend depending on how many errors and tweaking i run into so i can flesh out my scene more. because its a hover car i want some neon lights like the example scene so looking how the example scene was made i made my own alpha glow with some ilimuention i may add a light in as well to make it bounce of the environment more as well an emisive. 
 i also decided to block of the environment so its a closed garage i did this because i want to give the impression of dinky rundown garage if i have time i want to add in grime alphas and maybe some water puddles from a drip roof. but i think for my car to fit in im going to have to mess it up some more still far to clean.

the bump map brings nicer light reflections then before but i still think it needs alot of work it still to me coming of as very plastic also once ive got my own cube map in there i think my scene will look allot better.