For my final project at Ringling, I’ve decided to create a little Italian Deli. The goal is to generate all the assets and get everything integrated into a UDK level by graduation in early May. However, as a form of risk-mitigation, I’m focusing exclusively on generating the props for now so that, in a worst-case scenario, I at least have a page of props for my portfolio if not the whole Deli Level.
I’ve got a couple learning goals in mind with this project as well, things I’ve unfortunately scraped by without learning to do through my 2.5 years of using the Unreal Engine. I haven’t touched Zbrush yet, so I intend to get acquainted with the program to sculpt the organic stuff in the deli, the meats, breads, cheeses, bowls of pasta salad etc. I also had a bad tendency in earlier projects to push modeling and texturing to the last minute and never have time to learn to make any shaders more complex than just a diffuse, normal, and spec map. This project will require shaders like glass and convincing metal, wood, and food. That should enable me to finally dabble in materials like I’ve wanted to for a very long time. I’m also looking forward to re-learning lighting.
Mid-res Deli Props as of 4/9/11. The ticket counter and the scale are probably hi-res enough for the level of detail they’ll need baked down. The Meat Slicer is still very far from done; I’ve had a hard time wrapping my head around how all the different parts would need to work together so that I can figure out how to model each chunk. I’m reasonably happy with the cooler and the counter, but because they’re the big props of the environment, I expect I’ll give them a bit more polish before I go into getting them game ready. They also need to be filled with food and drinks. Currently planning to fill them with contents in Maya and just export a couple different versions rather than trying to place food inside the counters in Unreal.
Mid-res Cash register 4/11/11. Took longer than I expected, primarily because I was having trouble finding reference of the crappy, old, 80’s/90’s cash register I was looking for. This especially made the printer difficult, as I was basically working off just a front view and eventually had to reconstruct it from a functional point of view to figure out what it should actually look like.
Progress has been slow this weekend while I work on trying to get my portfolio ready for recruiters. Also, a lot of my “working on this project” time has been spent watching Zbrush tutorials and trying to get familiar with the Interface, neither of which lend themselves to good images to post on my process page.
Mid-res props as of 4/19/11. Generated the Base mesh for the Butcher’s block that will be taken into Zbrush once I’m a bit more comfortable with the program, as well as lights, shelves, and the first round of bottles and cans. Also, not pictured, the rough base-meshes for the meat that I’ll be sculpting.
First-pass on sculpting some of the meat as of 4/19/11. Pretty much my first foray into Zbrush. Adjusting the basic shapes and working on laying in some of the base textural detail. Need to push those details further. Need to figure out how to make the string that’ll be holding it up in the final deli.
Meat Progress as of 4/28/11. Figured out more of the medium details, such as muscles and tendons, wrinkles, and veins. Being the end of the semester, I think I’m calling the meat done (except for getting the string in place, but that’s a Maya task).
Butcher’s Block Process. Skewed the legs a bit (figured they would be on pegs and likely to rotate when you weren’t expecting it), knocked the pegs it together on top around a bit, and added some bolted-on plates that will be holding together big cracks that I haven’t figured out how to do in Zbrush yet. Been playing around with trying to figure out good approaches to this asset in Zbrush, since it needs a combination of soft and hard edges that I haven’t been able to satisfactorily pull off with subtools or creasing.