This is my Final Major Project for this course.
It all started with a beautiful (but quite short) trip to Amsterdam. I can’t say that I found any museum there that helped me a lot with my FMP ideas; however, it was inspirational and thought-provoking which was nice anyways.
Here’s a photo at the night bus and a quick overview of a trip with lots of photos from all the different museums that we saw.
On our way to Amsterdam, we made a stop in Ghent where we visited a Design Museum of Ghent and had a chance to walk around the city. Here are a few photos of nice product design that caught my eye (flat lamp out of cut wood is amazing, definitely want to make one myself back at home).
This day we went to Rembrandt museum (there was a very interesting exhibition of Glenn Brown in there) and then had a chance to walk around a city for the first time. We accidentally found the Red Lights street and also visited a very nice church on the road. Last, but not least, we went to the Openbare Bibliotheek Amsterdam. It a beautiful building with amazing architecture and a nice view to the city.
This was a day of endless walking from one channel house to another. We visited Foam Photo Gallery, Museum Van Loon, Tassenmuseum Hendrikje, Museum Willet-Holthuysen and finally went to NEMO Science Museum – we tried to get there a day before as it was very close to the library but it was already closed.
This day we went to Van Gogh museum – it was amazing. I personally thin all museums should be like this and should tell a story of one artist from the beginning to the end. We then visited Stedelijk museum where I found many interesting examples of product design and made tonnes of photos – hope that I use some of them one day.
This final day me and Ira went to the Amsterdam architecture museum which was quite small but contained a very interesting panorama with different architectural styles of the city – it’s the shame that we haven’t got an opportunity to take a look at it during our first day. We also saw how they get bicycles from the bottom of the river.
Our first task was to make a presentation in front of the group to tell about our progress so far and our planning pathway choice. As I was still making my mind, it was quite vague, with no particular idea or timetable just yet. As always, I spoke about the 3d modelling that I was interested in as well as three courses I was mostly interested in.
There was a period of time when I was still thinking about making a wooden piece – and for that I was considering making a bed table for my laptop.
Here’s also my Statement of Intent, featuring my original thoughts and ideas as well as a bibliography and vague timetable.
I started from collecting images and pictures from different games. A lot of the suits in this board are from Star Citizen game, that I’m a big fan of. Here’s some of the Robert Space Industries (a company that make SC) leading artists that I researched – Nathan Blaidsell, Mark Skelton, Ryan Church. This company also has a studio in Manchester, it would be nice to be able to come there one day once I get some experience in 3d modelling.
My Pinterest board with different suit concepts that I collected during the research stage.
Mass Effect: Andromeda space suits
That’s a suit that I was mostly aiming for. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to reproduce this level of detail as I was struggling with the even the simple form for a long time.
This page is a source for the next two pictures that are also very close to what I wanted to achieve.
I had to speak with Tipoo (I’m terribly sorry, I’m probably misspelling the name but I honestly have no idea how to write it otherwise) to chose a software to learn.
The only one I worked with before was SketchUp, but it’s a very-very basic tool. Here’s a model I made for my mom’s exhibition idea.
At the end of the day, I was choosing between Blender and Maya and decided to choose the first one as it’s free and I also had some friends who worked with it before.
3d modelling tutorials
This is just an example of one of many tutorial pieces I made while learning to 3d modelling. I was following this Youtube playlist, making all the things that a person in the video did.
Here are just a couple of sketches that I made for the suit itself (there are two more that are exhibited alongside the final presentation – I just forgot to take a photo of them).
These are all stages that I went through while making a helmet. Since the camera was static, they all were made from the same perspective. I first made a main shape, and then applied “Solidify” and “Subdivision surface” tools to make it have some thickness and to smooth it. I also spent a long amount of time trying to set up different materials for different parts of the model.
At this point, I realised that in the future I might need a better graphic card (which is a tricky part as I don’t think it’s possible to swap it if you have a laptop) as renders started to take more and more time.
UV map texturing – I’m still learning how to do this and I’m sure that these textures are not the best one’s possible – however, they were good enough to make a render picture.
Trying to find a right place on a UV map a hard way, by just painting random parts of the image.
At some point, I also decided to make a 3d scan of my face to avoid making my own model and to try out this fascinating new technology. I had to go to the Game Design course and borrow a Kinect sensor to do this, but it was totally worth it. Scans number 3 and 4 are the one that I made, moving the camera around my head. Other two are a result of me fixing the camera and spinning in front of it on a chair. I decided to take the scan #3 (#7 in the total count) for a model – the one with a floating piece of another person who walked behind me.
This technique though seemed to make a .psy model, which is a vertex model. In order to import it to the Blender and mix it with the existing helmet model, I had to download a separate software called MeshLab that allowed me to create a flat texture for my skin and clothes. Unfortunatelly, the solution that I found on the internet seemed to be slightly outdated and produced some error at one point. I somehow still managed to convert the texture and export it as an obj file with proper materials, but I think I lost some quality as you can tell from the difference between the 3d scan itself and the render with a helmet.
I wrote a bit more about my experience and thoughts in my critique review at the end of the project:
To sum that up, at the end of the project I felt quite happy from one hand (because I started to learn a new skill and managed to make a piece and also had some concept to work with in the future) and somewhat sad from another (as I really wanted to make a full character).
For the exhibition, I decided to use the type of a presentation that I developed when I was making my Metamorphosis project – the one that imitates a sci-fi interface.
As I also had some nice sketches of a suit that I made using the templates for body drawing found on the internet, I decided to include them as well. After all, I really want to finish this character.
Here’s my exhibition statement
And here’s a presentation that I have running on the screen in the exhibition space.