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MikeV

Exercise 11: Geeeeraff!

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So, started on Exercise 11 last night, here's what I got to prior to continuing on it tonight.

 

Hopefully I can have the body modeled and be attaching the legs before I hit the sack tonight.

 

I notice they seem to leave a bit more up to your imagination/discretionin this one, given that there's no front rotoscope and only a partial top one to work with. That's fine, though. Make me think on my feet a bit more :). Going to have to really pay attention when I'm extruding the body though, to make sure I have what I need to stitch the legs on.

 

 

Anyway here ya go...

GiraffeSide.png

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Looks like a giraffe sweater vest!

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Looks like a giraffe sweater vest!

 

Oooh... really?

 

You think I might be on to something?

 

Is there a demand for Giraffe sweater vests? This could be big!

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So I got more of the giraffe done. Got the legs attached to the body. It's a little "crinkly" behind the front leg. I tried re-attaching that bit a few times and it always comes out the same, so it's probably to do with how I placed the splines when extruding. I followed the book closely as I could, but it was difficult for me to make out some of the contours in the rotoscope image. So, I did my best. Altogether not too bad, though.

 

I had a few normals to fix at the front of it, which were causing some shading oddities. So, I've become familiar with what to look for and how to fix them now.

 

Next will be the tail and then the remaining parts.

Geeraff2.png

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Show us a wire frame, that will be illustrative.

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Show us a wire frame, that will be illustrative.

 

Here's a closer shot, with shaded/wireframe mode. I have the trouble-spot selected, so it's the only red CP in the image.

 

I think I've identified what *might* be the problem, which is that the spline running laterally along the mesh isn't continuous. It dead ends at the red point in this image, and at a similar point at the front of the rear leg. So, maybe that explains the harsh edge? Thing is, I've tried to fix it, using techniques I've seen in a video or two, but it always seems to end up the same way. The vertical spline is fine. That runs from the top of the mesh all the way down the leg it attaches to, uninterrupted.

 

Of course, that's assuming a dead-ending spline is the issue here. My knowledge/skill with splines/patchwork isn't nearly good enough yet to readily recognize such things.

Geeraff3.png

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Yes, the dead-end spline is the problem. You can have (and want) two splines go THRU a CP as if they were crossing make an X. Anything more than two splines is trouble.

 

Have you watched my "Three Ways to Eliminate a Dead-End Spline" video? I don't actually remember what's in it but with a title like that it must gold, right?

 

Do the directions really indicate to have so many splines on the body? In general you try to only put splines where you need them to define teh peaks and valleys of a surface.

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Yes, the dead-end spline is the problem. You can have (and want) two splines go THRU a CP as if they were crossing make an X. Anything more than two splines is trouble.

 

Have you watched my "Three Ways to Eliminate a Dead-End Spline" video? I don't actually remember what's in it but with a title like that it must gold, right?

 

Do the directions really indicate to have so many splines on the body? In general you try to only put splines where you need them to define teh peaks and valleys of a surface.

 

Yep, that's how many splines they're using in the tuorial, +/- one or two. I think I just have them spaced apart a bit differently than they do.

 

I had watched your videos on the eliminate a dead end spline, and to the best of my knowledge and understanding (again, still being a novice at all this), I was doing what you indicated. I got one of them fixed in terms of flow, but there was still a crease there. That spline forms a 5 point patch at that location, so maybe that has something to do with it.

 

 

Honestly, I've been thinking I might just start over, use different reference images and work it out myself, using the instructions in the book as a guideline rather than an exact step-by-step walk-through. Exercise 11 feels kinda incomplete to me, compared with other Exercises I've worked through. The only rotoscope image used is the side one. There's a top image, but it's a partial image intended as a decal to hide the seam created by the side decals; it's not a full rotoscope image. So, I have nothing to check my spline layout against from the front or top views to make sure I have things placed correctly. There's no counterpart video for it that I can check either, unfortunately. Those TAoAM videos have been really helpful to me when I was stuck on previous exercises.

 

So, I found a site with some good reference images (3D renders, no less - go figure eh? :P), from multiple angles. There's no top image, but the light and shadow in the 3/4 view images do a good job of implying the overall contours. So I think I'm gonna start again using those instead and see how I fare.

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Post your model and i'll take a look at it.

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Post your model and i'll take a look at it.

 

Sure thing... Have at it!

 

I won't be able to do anything for another 9 hours or so, though, 'cause I'm headed off to work. I should be able to check the thread, though, during breaks.

Giraffe.prj

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Awesome!

 

Gah! I didn't even notice the 3 splines in one CP issue lol. I was so focused on the "dead end" part. Forest for the trees and all that.

 

I agree with simplifying the geometry on the giraffe, too, incidentally. I was wondering about that myself at one point; "do I need all these splines? Couldn't I get the same effect with fewer?" I've just been following the manual verbatim (more or less), and that's pretty much how they have it set up. The way I see it, the people who wrote the tutorials are better at this than I am, so I should do as they instruct. Or try, anyway.

 

That I ran into that issue with the 3 converging splines at all tells me that I made a mistake somewhere during the extruding of the body and then attaching of the legs. My CP placement is a bit different from what's in the tutorial, so I was doing my best to work around that fact, which is probably how the issue happened in the first place.

 

So, similar to what I did with the "It's A Pitch!" exercise, I'm gonna go back and re-start the tutorial; try and correct the error I made the first time, and get it right this time - at least that's the plan.

 

Anyhoo... Thank you so much for taking the time to put that together.

 

Also, I like the whole "Yep! Still looks like a giraffe!" bit. Point taken :)

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Okay, quick update before I have to head off to work...

 

Got the body fixed, copy/flip/attached and the antlers attached. Just need to add the tail and the ears and then I can decal it and it should hopefully be done!

 

Wanted to be done last night, but I layed down to "nap off" a headache, and woke up several hours later at 1:30 AM. O.o So yeah, evening didn't go as planned lol.

 

Should be done with this one tonight.

 

Anyway here goes..

AlmostDone.png

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And now for the conclusion of Exercise 11: Geeeraff!

 

Can't say it came out exactly as I'd have liked. There was some weirdness with the decaling. Had to do it a few times because some of the tries, it wouldn't "take" to certain patches on the Giraffe's body; they stayed the base white material.

 

I was a bit thrown off by the weird texturingn on 5-point patches, but then realized it looked fine in a render.

 

You can see where I didn't quite match up the decal to the model perfectly and you get that "blank spot" with the ugly pixelation on the front of the chest and the end of the tail, but I think it's good enough to call this lesson "Complete".

 

Now to figure out what exercise to do next...

GiraffeFinal0.png

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A fine looking Giraffe.

 

In production situations there's quite bit more unwrapping and flattening that goes on to apply a decal but this exercise gives you taste of texturing.

 

I'm always impressed at how much the decal adds to the giraffes. You really can make minimal meshes in A:M and texture them to appear as complex models.

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A fine looking Giraffe.

 

In production situations there's quite bit more unwrapping and flattening that goes on to apply a decal but this exercise gives you taste of texturing.

 

I'm always impressed at how much the decal adds to the giraffes. You really can make minimal meshes in A:M and texture them to appear as complex models.

 

Thanks!

 

Ah yes. UV Mapping is a whole other deal unto itself. The decal system is very handy though, and I can't say enough about the "auto UV" bonus of using patches.

 

Speaking of which, I don't think my version has UV Unwrapping in it. I think I have to upgrade to get that. I intend to upgrade to the latest version as soon as I can. I have a 64-bit CPU, running Windows 7 64-Bit, and have 8 Gigs of RAM. Would be awesome to take advantage of that with A:M... nevermind all the other improvements and additions that have come down the pike since my version was released.

 

As appealing as the subscription is... I dunno, I kinda like having a full copy of software. Call me old-fashioned. Though, my understanding is you don't get a disc with the full install anymore, right? It's download only now?

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As appealing as the subscription is... I dunno, I kinda like having a full copy of software. Call me old-fashioned. Though, my understanding is you don't get a disc with the full install anymore, right? It's download only now?

 

It is my understanding that the difference between the two is expiration.

We get the Extras DVD and TaoA:M manual when we purchase the big package too which for someone starting out might be a big deal.

Of course, we can also access/downlaod the manual in PDF format.

 

Note that both are the same 'full version' of the program.

 

I'm a fan of the subscription for a lot of reasons but one is simply to save money.

If I expect to upgrade every year I can do that for $79 or $299. (right now I don't need any more manuals)

At the going rate, I can run three 'full copy' subscriptions for the price of one 'full copy'.

As one might expect, where this becomes a factor financially is in the long run because I plan to upgrade every year.

With the subscription I just resubscribe and move on with life.

 

The $299 deal is particularly useful for folks who want to stay on the same version for a very long time.

Studios and those with long term projects should invest in this option.

 

A pretty good gauge would be that if you expect your project to span over one year's time then you may want to lock your investment in the current version down. This helps to prevent feature creep and any workflow/interface changes from finding their way into a production.

 

Someone in full out production should likely have a combination of these. Those who this applies to, schools, or those who are purchasing extended licenses/multiple copies should contact Hash Inc. (They're likely to give them a really good deal!)

 

As a for instance, if you are working on a project and have hired several modelers, riggers and animators to work on your team.

As long as the artists are working on your project you could cover their subscription.

Once they are no longer working on the project, they would be responsible for their own subscription.

 

For someone that is just learning A:M or experimenting with modeling, animation, rigging etc. etc.... the subscription is really hard to beat.

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V13 has "UV editing" already. RMB on the "stamp" for your decal and choose Edit.

 

that will present you the image and the splines it is projected on to.

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As appealing as the subscription is... I dunno, I kinda like having a full copy of software. Call me old-fashioned. Though, my understanding is you don't get a disc with the full install anymore, right? It's download only now?

 

It is my understanding that the difference between the two is expiration.

We get the Extras DVD and TaoA:M manual when we purchase the big package too which for someone starting out might be a big deal.

Of course, we can also access/downlaod the manual in PDF format.

 

Note that both are the same 'full version' of the program.

 

I'm a fan of the subscription for a lot of reasons but one is simply to save money.

If I expect to upgrade every year I can do that for $79 or $299. (right now I don't need any more manuals)

At the going rate, I can run three 'full copy' subscriptions for the price of one 'full copy'.

As one might expect, where this becomes a factor financially is in the long run because I plan to upgrade every year.

With the subscription I just resubscribe and move on with life.

 

The $299 deal is particularly useful for folks who want to stay on the same version for a very long time.

Studios and those with long term projects should invest in this option.

 

A pretty good gauge would be that if you expect your project to span over one year's time then you may want to lock your investment in the current version down. This helps to prevent feature creep and any workflow/interface changes from finding their way into a production.

 

Someone in full out production should likely have a combination of these. Those who this applies to, schools, or those who are purchasing extended licenses/multiple copies should contact Hash Inc. (They're likely to give them a really good deal!)

 

As a for instance, if you are working on a project and have hired several modelers, riggers and animators to work on your team.

As long as the artists are working on your project you could cover their subscription.

Once they are no longer working on the project, they would be responsible for their own subscription.

 

For someone that is just learning A:M or experimenting with modeling, animation, rigging etc. etc.... the subscription is really hard to beat.

 

 

Hmm, that's an awesome explanation, Rodney. Thanks!

 

I hadn't thought of it like that, but it makes sense. I think for me, then, the subscription probably would be the best bet, as I'm currently early in my learning. The biggest project I can imagine myself doing, outside of things from Tutorials or TAoAM are small animation tests and the like; probably a lot of modeling of props and various objects to build up my skills and efficiency with modeling.

 

Sooo... A subscription probably would be the best bet for me at this point. And I can certainly swing $80 a year.

 

Thanks again!

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Brief tut on basics of using AMPaint

 

http://www.hash.com/forums/index.php?s=&am...st&p=356734

 

 

Also follow the link in that post for example of my cylindrical mapping/no unwrapping needed method of decaling complex shapes.

 

That's a very cool tool there!

 

Is that the one that was a separate purchase up 'til a certain version of A:M, and then it was added in with the full program? Or am I thinking of something else?

 

Regarding your other post about the UV editing, I did a quick experiment with that in A:M and I can see how that works. It's interesting. I think I'll have to mess with it a bit more to full grasp how it all works, but it's nice to know that functionality is there. It basically gives you full control over your decals.

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Is that the one that was a separate purchase up 'til a certain version of A:M, and then it was added in with the full program? Or am I thinking of something else?

 

A:M Paint is a separate product.

It's a little buried but we do have a forum area for it.

 

Link: A:M Paint

 

A:M Paint also has a website: http://www.3dpainter.com/

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Regarding your other post about the UV editing, I did a quick experiment with that in A:M and I can see how that works. It's interesting. I think I'll have to mess with it a bit more to full grasp how it all works, but it's nice to know that functionality is there. It basically gives you full control over your decals.

 

(I didn't review Robcat's video again to see what all is included there so some of the following may be repeating what he demo'd)

 

The UV Editor in A:M is largely undocumented (and recently got a few productivity enhancements in v17!).

One thing that has proved very useful to me is to have several windows/views open at the same time while editing.

For instance, you might have the UV Editor window open and an Action Window so that you can see the results of your tweaking in real time.

This speeds up editing/placement/alignment of details/geometry considerably and eliminates guesswork.

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Is that the one that was a separate purchase up 'til a certain version of A:M, and then it was added in with the full program? Or am I thinking of something else?

 

AMPaint is still a separate purchase. $99, but it doesn't expire like a subscription.

 

 

You can still do a lot with a conventional paint program, too. Rodney do you recall who did the tuts on decaling and painting a face with Photoshop?

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Rodney do you recall who did the tuts on decaling and painting a face with Photoshop?

 

The classic video tutorial on decaling a face is by Jim Talbot

Four videos as I recall, all of which should be on A:M Films.

 

Edit: Link: http://amfilms.hash.com/video/145/Decaling...ace-part-1-of-4.

 

There have been others... the Cooper tutorials, by Colin Freeman, for instance.

I seem to recall others by Charles Babbage, Patmals (SonofPat?), Rusty Williamson, Mathew Krick, etc.

 

Edit!: I would be very remiss not to mention William Sutton's decaling tutorials as he not only covers decaling with A:M's UV Editor but also has videos on decaling with A:M Paint! ( The link is available via Will's Zandoria blog. )

 

Look for the decaling video link to Youtube at the bottom of this page: http://zandoria.wordpress.com/tutorials/ )

 

and...

 

http://zandoria.wordpress.com/tutorials/uv-tutorial/

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Is that the one that was a separate purchase up 'til a certain version of A:M, and then it was added in with the full program? Or am I thinking of something else?

 

A:M Paint is a separate product.

It's a little buried but we do have a forum area for it.

 

Link: A:M Paint

 

A:M Paint also has a website: http://www.3dpainter.com/

 

Very nice! It looks like it supports normal and spec maps as well? Some of the images give that impression. I was looking in features list, but didn't' see any mention of it; might have been looking at the wrong feature category, though.

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Very nice! It looks like it supports normal and spec maps as well?

 

in AMPaint (or any paint program) you paint in color or grayscale as appropriate for the kind of map you are creating.

 

When you take the model back to A:M, that's where the color or gray scale is interpreted as bump or spec or whatever

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That was awsome Thanks just started Animation:Master A complete guide and i know they will talk about it more later in the book but this made it understandable

 

Thanks again

 

Welcome back to the forum!

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