Visual Effects 1
This month I had Visual Effects 1 and we were tasked to make some pretty awesome effects in Maya 2015. My first project was a Rube Goldberg Machine. We had to practice making rigid hard bodies and passive hard bodies. Along with different fields I was able to make the Rube Goldberg machine work. I then gave the scene some colors and also practiced lighting the bulbs by making the texture glow instead of using a light.
Quick History lesson
For those of you who don’t know, Rube Goldberg was the guy who invented the machines that you already know about. They are the machines where one thing triggers the next and then that thing triggers the next and so on. You probably just didn’t know that was the name of them. Reason everyone knows about them is because he was a cartoonist that drew these wild machines that we have all seen in cartoons and now in modern days people build them, but fun fact, that most people do not know is, he never made one himself.
Rube Goldberg (1883-1970) was a Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonist, sculptor and author. Reuben Lucius Goldberg (Rube Goldberg) was born in San Francisco on July 4, 1883. After graduating from the University of California Berkeley with a degree in engineering, Rube went on to work as an engineer for the City of San Francisco Water and Sewers Department.
More info on Rube Goldberg here.
Here is my Pre-Pro Storyboard with my plan of what I was going to use and how I was going to do it. The fun thing about this class was they made us do our story board and plan before we even knew what we were capable of doing. My guess is so we didn’t feel limited to what we knew how to do and it would challenge us to try to learn how to do what we wanted.
Here is my final project, Please watch in HD if possible for best results.
Rube Goldberg Machine – Lesson 1 – Rigid Body Dynamics
Our second project was a Foundry scene that was given to us and we had to create particles for Smoke, Fire, and Liquid. We had full control of what the scene would look like. We used all kinds of particles to create certain looks. Lots and Lots and Lots of setting tweaks to try to pull off certain particles. My original plan was slightly different then the final project, but sometimes that happens. My original plan was to do Steam, Smoke, Fire, and Sparks. But I changed it up by getting rid of the steam since it was so close to smoke and changing the sparks to liquid to keep the scene short for rendering purposes.
Here is a look at my Pre-Pro plans. You will see how I had slightly different plans then the final project.
Test Renders of my Fire and Smoke
The Foundry – Lesson 2 – Particle Effects
Here is my final video of Lesson 2. I am very happy with the way it turned out considering some of the challenges I ran into on this project. Of course I see some of the errors and things that I wish I would have had time to change. Please watch in HD for best results.
Our third and final project was a super fun one for me. We had to practice creating soft bodies. The first thing that came to mind when the professor was presenting our final project was Jello! Who doesn’t love watching Jello Jiggle? So I did some research and found a video on-line of Jello being dropped at high-speed to give it a slow motion effect. I wanted to try to recreate that look of Jello falling and rippling in slow motion. But how was I going to do it? After many different methods I found one that really gave it a very nice ripple effect. The first few tests made it very stiff and cartoony. Once I found out how to make the Jello look real, then it came to color and trying to get a good look of the surface. I used a MIA X Material and set it to a solid glass, but then tweaked the settings for hours. Below is a few test renders once I got close to what I liked.
My original plan was to try to replicate the video as close as possible with about 12 pieces of Jello all interacting with one another. Once I got to two pieces of Jello I started running into issues where each piece I added after would change the dynamics of the first two pieces of Jello. I knew that rendering was going to take a VERY long time as I wanted to render in the highest quality of mental ray for this final project so I decided to just work with two pieces but make them look the best as possible. With 600 frames it took over 40 hours of render time to produce the quality I was looking for and the final video shows it!
Test renders of my Jello
Jello Simulation – Lesson 3 – Soft Body Simulation
Here is my final video for Lesson 3 and I am so happy with the way it turned out! Please be sure to watch this in HD so you can see the full quality that I put into it. I mean after 40 hours of rendering at least take a minute to watch it in all its glory. I also found a commercial for Jello from the 1970’s and thought it was perfect for this video. Please feel free to comment below and tell me what you think of all these projects.
Hope you enjoyed my 3 projects from Visual Effects 1 as much as I enjoyed making them. Feel free to let me know by commenting below. I sure learned a lot about Maya and how to make things look amazing within it. Excited to continue to learn more. On to the next class!
Another class is in the books. I had a great time in CAN1 this past month. Learned a lot more about animating a character. I do enjoy doing it, something about making it precise and getting the character to look fluid when they move appeals to me. I feel like I did a real good job on all of my projects and of course there is always room for improvement. Feel free to take a look at my projects below and comment on what you like or what you see I could have changed. I love to get hard critiques on my work. It helps me become a better artist, so feel free to nit pick.
Return to the Walk
Our first project was to make a character walk again to get us back into the groove of Maya and doing animation again.
This was my project that continues the walk from earlier in the month. This time we had to make the character turn around. This can be a little tricky because now you are moving on many axises not just in one direction.
We had to make strong silhouette poses with Bugsy to try to concentrate on making strong poses
Our final project is we had to make Bugsy walk across the platform from a standing position or a relaxed position. He had to take 5-6 steps then once he reached the button, do a turn around and then anticipate and hit the button,then make a strong pose. I choose to add a little more and make the elevator go down, for a little added bonus. This was good practice. Grades will soon be posted.
CAN1 Media Center Activity
For Character Animation 1, we had to go to the Library and choose a book with some famous artwork and then re-create it in a drawing. Then we had to insert Bugsy, Our Character Rig for CAN1, into the drawing the second time. I choose François Boucher’s Odalisque simply because I thought it would be funny to see Bugsy all sprawled out looking like a 1749 French nude model. Sure enough I think it is pretty funny looking, Don’t you?
This was only worth 1% of my grade, and I feel I went way above and beyond what was even being asked for this assignment, but I was having too much fun because most of my work lately has been in Maya, and I have not had a lot of time to get back to drawing. So I decided to do my best. Feel free to tell me what you think in the comment section below.
WOW! I can not believe we have made it to the future!
I am very excited that it is 2015 because this means that I only have just over a year to finish my degree. I had such a wonderful year in 2014 and I have learned soo much. The year flew by which means I must have been having some fun. When I think back at the beginning of 2014 and now I feel so much smarter when it comes to my field. Classes are really ramping up when it comes to difficulty but I feel I am still keeping up and getting A’s.
Character Rigging 1
I made a few tiny mistakes in this class which gave me a %99.20. I am extremely proud of myself for this grade. I really enjoyed doing rigging a lot. I had heard from a few fellow students who had already taken it and they warned me and some down right hated it. That made me a little nervous that it might not have been such a fun class, but they were all wrong. For me, this was my type of class. My teacher, Mr. Clavan, was a wonderful instructor and was able to teach us the basics or rigging very well.
Character Animation 1
I have started my next class and it is going to be a fun one. Character Animation 1 is a continuation of Fundamentals of Animation. I am looking forward to using what I have learned from that class and adding more knowledge to create some fun and exciting animations. I will keep you posted.
Discussion: Blog Post
Well this is a first… I get to use my blog as one of my assignments for class. All month-long I have been learning Rigging in Mr. Clavan’s Class. This has by far, been one of my most favorite classes so far. For some reason rigging just appeals to me. I think it is the precision of it all. Everything has its exact place and it just feels good when everything is perfectly lined up and precisely in its spot. We also got to do some coding in the last week of class. It is fun to see how you can make a code that literally does things that took me an hour to do and now I can do it in a push of a button. I am not sure if I will become a rigger, but it is definitely at the top of my list of things I might want to do when I get done with Full Sail.
Part of my assignments this month is to make a post on my blog once I am finished with my Rig showing off my work. So here it is Mr. Clavan, hope you like it.
Prior to this class we had done very minimal rigging so this was kind of our “real” introduction to how full rigs work. We learned from start to finish how to rig a character, but of course each one will be different, but the basic principles should remain the same. Here is a few shots of the progression of my work.
Video of my Rig in action, Enjoy.
I am very happy with the way he turned out and apparently so was my teachers. I received a 100% plus got an extra 10% for doing extra credit with the fingers having their own separate controls. Below is some screen shots of the finished product showing off some of the controls that I made and how it was rigged.
I am looking forward to CRY2 and I here it is even more fun then CRY1. But until then it is time for CHRISTMAS!!
We had a group project to do in Fundamentals of Physics where we were grouped together with like degrees. I was very honored to get paired with all Game Art Peers and they all did a great job. We had to choose a physics example of how we might use physics in our degree. We choose to do Illumination or Lighting.
I volunteered to do the voice over work on the project and I feel we created a very professional and informative video that explains how lighting is used in todays video games. We used Cryengine to create the video demo and we wrote a script to explain what we were doing in the demo. Today we will be presenting it in class and I am confident we will get an A+ on it.
Only 1 more day of this class and looking forward to some TURKEY!!
I received one of the greatest compliments on an assignment I have ever gotten at Full Sail.
I am officially a Junior at Full Sail University…
Today marks the day that I have made it to the exact half way point of my 3 year Game Art Bachelor Degree. I am absolutely blown away at how much I have learned in the last year and a half. I knew when I started I would be learning some amazing things and would be able to do things that I never knew possible, but I am still amazed as to how much I have grown as a student and an Artist. I have had some amazing classes and some amazing teachers and met some really cool people.
My favorite part of Full Sail so far, is Networking! I have never been a big networker in my previous life because I felt I didn’t need to be. From day 1, here at Full Sail, they have preached to us about how important Networking is. Now, I thought this was just their standard information that they kind of just told everyone until I met Rob Coble. Rob came into my 2nd class and drilled it into our heads of how important this is. He told us stories of former Full Sail grads that got jobs not because of their grades, not because of their resume, not because of their demo reel, but because of the networking they did. Yes, of course all those other things are very important, but the key to all of it is Networking. I made it my mission to take what Rob said and become a great networker. Now don’t think I plan on doing nothing but networking and praying that I get a good job at the end of all this. I am working very hard to make sure EVERYTHING is in place, Grades, GPS Points, GPA, Giving 100% on everything I do, Winning Awards, Being Impressive, and Networking, so that way when this amazing journey ends, I will have that much more over my competition. I will be the best candidate for the position when the time comes.
The best part of Networking at Full Sail is the Events that they host. They bring in industry professionals to speak, do Q&A sessions, and demos, so that way we as students can hear what we will be doing very shortly. I love it when they are Full Sail Alumni too, because I know they sat in the same exact seats as me and went down this same road and had a great outcome. They come in as Rock Stars but are so humble and so willing to help out and share the knowledge of what they did to get to where they are. They also re-confirmed what Rob told us so long ago, Network! Not one person that has come to Full Sail said “I filled out an application, and they just called and I got the job” No! It has always been some sort of networking story of how they met someone along the way and they were able to help them get that job. The best part of networking is, I have made some good friends and it is awesome to see and hear what they are up to in the industry.
Report Card Time!
After 18 classes I have a 3.82 GPA. When I started I did want to try to maintain a 4.0 GPA but Geometry got me. Although I did not reach this goal I am extremely proud of myself for having such amazing grades. To go through Full Sail which is not an easy college to do great, and to get all A’s and one B is insane I think. Most of my grades are A+’s which means higher than 95% and I plan on keeping this up for the next year and a half. I want to be standing up on that stage at the end and them say my name as top of my class. I am also rocking the 100% Attendance record. Have not missed one day.
I want to also take a minute to thank everyone who has been following http://www.MyFullSailJourney.com I am humbled that so many people are interested in my dream that I am making a reality. Looking forward to keeping you guys up to date on all my exciting adventures.
Character Creation and Design
CDC was a pretty fun yet challenging class. It was our first real run at Zbrush. I feel pretty proud of my grades even though it wasn’t an A+ I learned a LOT about Brush and all 1 million of its buttons.
This was my final project. We had to create a detailed arm in Brush and then bring it over to Maya to re-topologize it and create a Low res arm and then place the maps of the high res arm on to the low res. Not to bad for my first run at a fully detailed arm.
Compositing was an awesome class. We got to make movies! Well, kinda, just little 3 to 8 second movies. But we were doing exactly what the industry professionals do and we got to get our hands on Nuke.
My Bike was the star of my final project and I came up with the idea to put my bike in scenes that I think would be fun to ride in. It was a bit more than just plugging in my bike, we had to tweak so many options to try to make it look like it belonged in the scene. Once again another program with another million buttons to learn.
2D Animation was fun. Lots of drawing which really helped me get back to my roots of art. Drawing the same thing over and over many times can be a challenge even if it is a simple ball. You really have to make sure you get it as close to perfect as you can when you are doing animation because even the slightest difference in size or shape can throw a whole animation off.
Here are a few of my 2D Animations that I made into Gifs so you can view them. Please click on them so you can view in full size.
Production Modeling is a class I really got into on certain projects. This class we really got to dive deep into Brush which is my favorite program so far. Even though we still have our fights, I usually win. I got to do lots of “Speed Sculpts” where we had 25 minutes to try to recreate something. It was amazing to see the different from the beginning of the class to the end in only 1 short month. I feel I really improved on my skills and plan to continue to play in Brush and become great at it.
Here is a bunch of my work in PRM but my Halo Energy Sword is what I am most proud of.
Here are a bunch of the things I made in this months class.
So there you have it. It has been a busy past few months, but I am glad that I can show you why I have been a little more quiet these past few months on here. I plan on making sure I keep everyone up to date more often and maybe even adding some other older work later. Currently I am in Animation Fundamentals, which is taking what we learned in 2D animation in traditional art and applying it to 3D animation on the computer in Maya. It is much more fun as I am not having to draw the same thing over and over and over and over… My next post will be about that. Hope you enjoyed seeing what I have been up to and PLEASE feel free to share any feedback in the comment section below. I love hearing from you guys and also would love and critiques on any of my work.
I am feeling very honored to have been chosen to represent Full Sail for this event.
Full Sail and WWE have a great partnership and for me as a student it is awesome to get to see WWE Wrestlers on campus along with the full production of what goes into tapping a WWE NXT event. Full Sail invited 2K Sports along with a bunch of reporters from all over to come see our campus and show off the new WWE 2K15 Wrestling game. I was invited to be one of 4 students to represent the gaming side of Full Sail. I honestly was unaware of what the event was going to be, or how big of a deal it was going to be, but when Rob Coble asks you to do something, you do it! I know he would never steer me wrong so I jumped at the invitation. Little did I know I would be standing up in front of all these industry professionals with the likes of Garry Jones (President of Full Sail), John Saboor (WWE Senior Vice President of Live Events), Rob Coble (Full Sail Industry Outreach Liason-Game Studies/Career Development), and that’s not all… Chance Glasco (Full Sail Hall of Fame Member, Former Senior Animator at Infinity Ward, One of the original “Call of Duty” Creators). I was in awe standing up there with 3 of my fellow peers.
Afterwards, we got to speak to the media and a very nice man named Jim Varsallone came up to me to discuss my website. I was very honored once again that with all these powerhouse people up on stage with me, and he choose to come chat with me about what I am doing. I didn’t think too much of it until this morning when I see this new article in the Miami Herald and I was mentioned along with everything and everyone else.
Afterward, I got to go hang with Chance Glasco and Will Fitzgerald and some of the other students who were invited to the event at the WWE NXT match and watch some good old wrastling!
It was definitely a night to remember for me in my Full Sail Journey!
Well I gave it my all and did my best, but the record of straight A’s has fallen.
It was the tests that killed me. I have come to learn that my brain just does not work so well with math. Not that I can not learn it and perfect it. I think it just takes me a bit longer to get all the rules down. Full Sail being a accelerated school, we are learning in 4 weeks what most colleges do in 16 weeks. I am sure had I had a bit more time, I could have aced these tests. I am actually happy with my final grade of B+ when usually I would be upset it wasn’t an A. But I know I did my best and I am proud of myself for that. I do have a secret weapon though. Full Sail allows you to bump up 1 grade at the end. So if I continue to keep getting A’s, I can change this B+ to an A.
Next month is Character Design and Creation, and I am looking forward to that. I am sure I will have more to post next month. So keep your eye’s pealed for that.