Well it was a pretty nice weekend for us here at the Bacon Estate. Thursday night was a good time hanging out with the guys watching the SbiG epic GymKata. lol…All I have to say is Wow. It was pretty SbiG-tastic. Thanks CB for bringing it over. We ended up watching Ninja Assassin afterwards which was pretty fun as well. It’s way over the top visually. There is nothing here to write home about story-wise but as a mindless kinetic action film, it’s pretty cool. Very stylistic and the aesthetics are pretty awesome.
It was a good precursor to Friday which was the EQ2 team’s wrap party for Destiny of Velious. A film, a nice lunch and out early was the day’s event schedule but I ended up opting for just head out early..lol…so I went home and got a head start on the weekend.
Shannie finally got her new Singer Sewing machine assembled and she loves it. She plowed through a dress for her mother in record time. She’s still getting used to the power the thing has, but she’s having a lot of fun with it.
I spent most of the weekend working with Maya 2011 and getting Normal Maps generated out of ZBrush to display in Maya renderings and it all works great. Actually it’s quite awesome really. Normal maps are different than bump maps given that different colors determine direction so the detail you can create with them is pretty remarkable. I built the apartment/warehouse geometry for the “Hero” project as a test just to play around with these techniques and it’s looking pretty cool. I’m ping ponging between this and the Tweekers screenplay when I need a break from it. I ran a test sculpting a detailed wall in ZBrush, exported it out and used it on some geometry in Maya. You have to set the properties of the bump map to use Tangent Space and the Mental Ray Renderer for rendering the image and it looked pretty slick.
I’m going to start normal mapping the environment this week and see where it goes. I am thinking once I get the normal map pass finished and render an Ambient Occlusion pass it should pass as a real looking set piece or at least hyper stylized real. lol..we’ll see. This is just playing around with it working on the technique so the finished product may vary.
Now that I have Maya 2011 at work now, I’ve been having a lot of fun working with the updated interface and new feature set. Not neccessarely good for keeping on task, but learning a lot which will help with everything else. Tweekers has this Doughnut Shop scene in it that requires a character to break into a large plate window and has some stuff going on that will be costly or difficult to do traditionally so I need to come up to speed on the CG side of it. This is a good place to start.
Today I purchased a Canon 5D mk II to pair with the 1D mk IV….so now we have dual camera support. It also has the Full Frame Sensor so Ill be able to use my lenses 1:1 on it. So my 24mm wide will be a 24mm wide again. I’ve been debating getting a second support cam for a while now so I finally pulled the trigger on it. I have the grip from the other 5D so it keeps the form factor the same as the 1D so all my rig stuff works on it just the same. This should definitely speed up dialog shoots.
And last but certainly not least, I have my monster Dell machine coming on Wed!
Still moving forward on Tweekers. Got a little more writing done over the weekend as well and and it’s coming along.