Saturday, 5 September 2009

Gaming fix

Recently I can't seem to get enough of playing games. If I am at home I will play the xbox or pc, if I am out and about I am rarely without my DS. On top of this I play the DS before I go to bed and its the first thing I pick up after my glasses in the morning! It is addictive to play games once you are hooked, and it is all you can think of doing. But it makes me happy and it is about the only thing nowadays that relieves my stress :) I simply love games.

Yesterday I finished the secret of monkey island special edition,
now I am playing through the tales of monkey island,
on the ds I am playing through broken sword directors cut, just played through lego indy and have started lego batman.
To top this off I get the rest of my gamer fix by playing Devil may cry 4 on the xbox 360, along with viva pinata and whatever else is close to hand.

I felt like divulging my addiction due to my recent gaming seesion lasting more than 2 hours solid. Normally I would never play that long in one session but I was hooked on playing devil may cry, the only reason for stopping was due to the cramp in my arms :P

So what other addictive games would people recommend?
what is everyone playing right now?


Thursday, 3 September 2009

Random thoughts for today

I have a lot of random thoughts for today
1. I should learn to get up before midday and go to bed before 12 at night!
2. I should finish things i start.
3. I should do my laundry
4. I should paint again - its been too long
5. I should by nicer coffee in future, I prefer Gold but never buy it because it is more expensive...but it tastes sooo good.
6. I want to finish monkey island tonight, so I can start on the tales of monkey island.
7. I shoudl remember to check my emails everyday and actually reply when i read it, not 'later' which never happens :S

thats all for now.

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

an update?????

Summer seems to be flying by and not a post from me. Obviously my time has been taken up with dare, so I havnt had time to play about and make much stuff in my own time (although I wouldnt mind to :P have some nice ideas, just dont have much energy to put into it right now...)

Anywayz, had to buy a new xbox 360 after a 'you know what'. It reminds me of the time I was playing my good ol' PS2 and knocked it completely off the table, launching it quite high into the air, where it then landed on the floor, knocking the backplate completely off. The amazing fact was not only was I playing a game at the time, which happily kept running throughout the whole experience without a single scratch, but with a quick snap of the backplate back into place and placing the console back on the table I was back into gaming in seconds of the incident. These where the days when consoles where built great! Now with an xbox 360, a slight shudder will scrath the disc making it unplayable and simply by playing and loving the console will cause it to die? This makes me appreciate my lovely blocky, unnatractive PS2 sooo much. * Hugs PS2 and plays it :) * okay so with that said I will leave the subject.

On other notes I have found a new song which I love. Played with my ihnstrument of choice the ukulele :) "Your biggest fan" by Never Shout Never. been tapping away to it all morning :D Sean even caught me dancing secretly while humming it :3

lalalalalalala (me singing in my head) stum stummity stum (me playing my imaginery ukey)

Wednesday, 17 June 2009


cant wait for this :)

Tuesday, 19 May 2009

A bit of fun

so to fill my time I have been dabbling in little things, and the last two days, I have been looking at doing a low poly character - ds style

so here is my attempt so far...

she comes in at 508 tris I think, I am doing the texture at the moment. A simple but fun little character. I will finish the texture, I have only blocked things in right now, but I thought I would share the DS style fun :) enjoy

Random image for today

Monday, 4 May 2009


So next I have been trying different ways of creating ambient occlusion.
- through render layers
- nodes
- and finally baking

So I eventually figured out how to bake the textures (took a while, and even after I had done it right, I couldnt find the stupid thing!!Maya decides if will save it in a completely new folder...didnt spot that one. Thanks to liam who pointed that one out. I was starting to get Maya rage!)

So this is the dice now with normal map, baked ambient occlusion and a specular map.

Sunday, 3 May 2009

And another test

Now I am playing with specular maps. For the dice I wanted it so that the numbered spots were matte. So time to learn about the specular map.

This is before the map was added.

and this is it after. Notice that now the spots are now matte, and not reflecting anything. Yet the dice themselves remain reflective, although I made them less so.

more learning

Today I was playing with ambient occlusion, here are the results...

without ambient occlusion

With ambient occlusion

Saturday, 2 May 2009

New things

so I decided I wanted to learn something new today, so I learned how to make a normal map in Maya. I have attempted it before in zbrush, but never really finished it. So I killed some time today to learn a little bit.

Friday, 17 April 2009


It had been a while since I have drawn anything simply for drawing. Out of boredom, and because I can't be bothered getting lunch, I began sketching random things. So here is one of the countless drawings I did. 10 minute drawing.

I scraped the rest, mainly because I was drawing on top of drawings... this is the only one that I didnt do this to.

Quieter Days

Ok, so now that hand-ins are done and dare is over for the moment, I would think to be having some quieter days. But I feel like life is a never ending cycle of things you have to do, giving you very little time to do the things you want to do.

Essay writing for one. I don't mind writing them, actually they can be quite enjoyable once you get into writing one, but they are time consuming, and I often find I get a numb bum from all that sitting around, and my fingers get sore (because I have to retype so many things, since I am a terrible speller at points!)

Recently what I have wanted to do is model, texture, rig and animate a small character for fun, and have not yet found the time, to properly commit myself to my small project, but I think today may be that day...I hope, but I must write some essay stuff first.

Yesterday I did look back over what I had done so far, but did not really do much more. This was due to a complete and overwhelming tiredness. After almost sleeping in yesterday morning, luckily Liam woke me up, I was in a total panic to get to the hospital for 9am, I wasnt surprised I was knackered, but I had been hoping I would get more done, so today I am going to be PRODUCTIVE! (o and btw I want to have a quick moan about the parking at Ninewells and hospitals in general. I think it is awful making people pay to park at a hospital. Especially if they have an appointment, I know this is all been discussed before, but really...Also the cark parking at ninewells is extremly confusing, last time I was there I was there I left at night and wasnt paying attention to my surroundings, but it is all over the place, literally!)

Anyways, I think I am actually trying to avoid work now, so I am going to stop moaning...

Saturday, 11 April 2009

Dare continued

ok so the next day i pick up my purse from the lovely dare staff and they still tell us that we wont hear back for a while, fair enough.

Liam bought me viva pinata!such a nice game , thank you Liam :) so I play that when I got home.

Liam went for a nap, and I was playing games. I went down for a drink and hear my phone ringing, most unusal, I dont normally get a lot of calls, unless its serious! So i ran to get my phone, before i missed it. It came up unknown number, which I get a lot so still answered it.

O gosh, people from dare?? I almost peed my pants!!They couldnt get hold of out team leader , murray, so i was next on the list, We had got though! i didnt know what to say, i think i just said, "really wow!" Afterward i check my phone, murray had called me 7 times!!! hahaha he must have been stressing! I went up and told liam who got in contact with murray, and calmed him down! Me and Liam were like YEY!

I cant believe we heard back so soon, after been told so many times, we wouldnt hear back till next week!

Anyway so there is out little dare story, told by me!

Congrats to all who got through, I am sure you are all just as excited as me :)


Ok so after many days slaving away on coursework, then straight on to slaving away on dare presentations, it was finally time to present on wednesday. so off we all trooped (most teams having to travel to Galsgow from Dundee, how irratating, but a nice day out!) to the BBC Scotland to present our teams and ideas.

I have to say i was extremly excited, even though i did doze off on the bus. When we finally got there it was all about the wait, seeing the other teams come and leave, I too just wanted to present.

Surprisingly enough the sun came out. I have never yet been to Glasgow in the sun, it looks nice when it is sunny.

we were not allowed to go up to the proper canteen, which was a shame, beaucse the BBC's canteen is really good :) I guess with so many teams coming, it would dhave been hard to keep an eye on us, they would be worried they might try to use their shed or something!!! To my delight though, theye were offering more choice in their small snack shack downstairs, and even better they had my fav, Baked potatoes, then it got better, cottage cheese too! That put me in an excellent mood!

so it finally came to present, i strangely still felt more excited than anything else, and I am so proud of my team! they were fab. Afterwards we had asked when we would likely hear back, not for another WEEK at least, but I could wait. going back to the bus, our team stopped for something to eat. Liam's phone rings, someone from dare??? Liam paniced, when they mentioned my name, still dont know what he was thinking!!!, but i had left my purse, and thanks to who ever found it, you saved me a lot of worry :) anyway so we finally got home, and Me and Liam quickly headed out again to get to the flock party. We were on the list, and I got a good laugh when we were marked down as: Faye Wright (and Liam :)) , hehe. Anywayz a great night was had, played games, ate, drank and chatted with lots of lovely people, even got a copy of flock! to my surprise. Finally i got to my bed what a long day!

Thursday, 2 April 2009

The Flowers

So my second animation is complete. Im feeling very happy with the outcome. I tried a lot of new things this time, and one of the hardest things was getting characters reacting to one another. A challenge I feel I did well on.

so please feel free to take a look.

Monday, 30 March 2009

A new forum

ok so Liam and I had been discussing the idea of getting a forum going for computer arts, as well as GPM, CGT and audio at Abertay

This would be a great place to show your work, get feedback and ask for help!

Since we asked about it at the rep meeting, we decided to set one up ourselves.

So please if your are on any of these courses you should have received an email about it.

Join up and let us become a community!

The Final Frame

And so all good things must come to an end. Mines is a happy one!

We end the animation with a classic, a kiss.

(all that is left to do is fill in the rest of the facial animation and the it will be complete.)

Friday, 27 March 2009

Animation Progress

This is my animation progress so far.

(pretty low quality, for uploading time, so sorry in advance)

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

animations ups and eventual downs

So I was very happy with the progress I had made with animation and was all set to do the facial aniamtion which is what I had been looking forward to. Then disaster after disaster came.

First I noticed one of my elbow controls had gone, leaving my arm to be stuck in one position, not good for when I want to animate a hug at the end. Then because I had blocked out the animation with the keyframes, I found I was having great difficulties locating what was animated and what wasnt...anyway it turned into a big mess. I thought I was doing the right thing by being organised and blocking out my animation but it turned out I was giving myself more hassle and work. Now I am starting again from scratch because it all just got messy after that. I spent last night trying to sort out everything into some sort of sense.

I now have a clean slate to work on and have started animating from scratch. I am glad I know exactly what I am animating, and what shots I am using, so I am glad I was organised, and if I work hard I will be able to produce a nice piece of animation. I was very demotived yesterday because everything finally seemed to be getting back on track with coursework and life in general, but where things go up they must come down, and it was a nasty shock for me!

Anyway I have picked myself up and have started animating. I have over 2 seconds of good animation so far, so if I keep working hard at this pace, I should have a rough animation by the weekend, which I can then work on nicely. I am determinded to push myself and get this right. Luckily I have finished off most other things, so I can focus on this till it is done.

Hopefully nothing else will happen before the weekend.


Monday, 23 March 2009

O hello!

ok so now I have blocked out my animation up till this point, been working on it on and off, while finishing off the rest of my work. I filled in the gaps where i got bored the previous day. So basically now the man walks up the stairs fully, and the girl walks to the door a bit better, I got the hip rolls in and the arm movement in, but I still feel the steps are a little to big, I would like her to totter on her heels a little more, but I am going to focus on the facial movement now for the moment and i can come back to tweaking and in-betweening after I have the rest in. I dont know how long it is so far, i know there is over 300 frames worth there once it is fully animated, maybe a little that would be roughly over 12 seconds by my calculation (300/24). Once the facial animation is in and the finishing hug, it will definetely be long enough for submission, probably longer than the 30 seconds, but I doubt that will matter. Since Brian knows I am working towards a longer animation that I will finish in the next few months when I am a little more free.

I will be working on the later today so hopefully will have up so of the facial shots later.

Saturday, 21 March 2009


I have not posted in a while, so I will do a bit of an update on what I am currently working on.

I am almost finished my film, added the last of the sound effects and music today, all that is left is some minor tweaks will colour and highlights and recording my dialogue :)

so that is all uder control as far as I am concerned.

I have also been blocking out the final scene for my animation, so far I have the man walking up the stairs and ringing the doorbell waiting, checking himself, while the girl walks into view on the other side of the door, fixes her hair a bit and opens the door. Ok so its not much and its not good yet, i need to get smaller steps in for the girl, because Its not how i want yet, but I have the main bits in with timing so thats good. I had to do more tweaking to the weights on the girl because one of her arms and one of her ankles were doing a little bit of a funny bend, which was only noticable from a different angle from the one I was using, but it annoyed me so much i had to fix it. Hopefully its all under control now.

My new task is to key out the main facial expressions, with the appripraite pauses and reactions, and think about what secondary animation will be hinted at to make it work well. The last thing I want is the facial animation to look good, but looks still because there is no other movement. So I will plan out what else will animate when. So no pictures for the moment but hopefully a blocked out animation will be coming in the new few days :)

Thursday, 12 March 2009

Painting weights and creating backgrounds

So I have finally started painting the weights on the character, took a while to get to this stage but I am finally there, its a great relief to final be able to move her about without it looking very weird indeed.

So now I can finally begin work on the pre vis of this scene, which is the one i am msot interested in animating right now. A lot of this scene will involve the facial expressions of these characters, so it will be very important that I plan out the exact emotions and reactions of the characters concerning the situation and each other throughout the scene.

Apart from animation work I am creating the backgrounds for my film piece, it is going very well so far. I was having a few problems at the weekend with finding the best way to put across my point and found I was not saying what I wanted to say at all, with that in mind I started again and found the words which conveyed my idea fully. I am much more happy with it now.

With all that going on and putting in an application for dare, it is surprising i find any time to do anything else, but recently I have been very keen to get cracking on fully understanding and implementing all the different mapping techniques on to low poly models, so i have been doing a lot of research into that, and practicing a little, but have not creating anything yet. I want to have at least a few hours to myself to actually do it properly, then I will try creating my first piece, I am sure it will take a LOT of practice to get right, but that is why I want to do it now.

Sunday, 8 March 2009

Thank you

so recently i have been working on my persuasive narrative piece. Its a bit of a secret until it is done (then i will decide whether it is worth peoples time), but thanks to somebody on friday i was able to get the inspiration and jump start i needed.

so thank you.

i wrote down the initial stuff i want to tackle, and outlined a story that will be contained within it.

I then went into PS and did a basic backdrop that will be contained within it.

and lastly did the awful, recorded my voice, just to get an idea of speed and such, and how it would sound. My voice has changed a bit since the last time i heard it - which was when i was mid teens i would presume. still sounds stupid though in my opinion.

anyway that is all i wanted to say, a little thanks to the help offered to me

Friday, 6 March 2009

more blendshapes

And here is some eyebrows to go with those lips :0

Thursday, 5 March 2009

Blendshapes yey!

So today i finally get to do my blendshapes!yey!

I absolutely love doing them, because then you get to play with them!
I'm working on her lips first (both sides together then I will do split ones for differing sides) so I have a few already, I'm just testing at the moment but here is the few so far.

Then I did the fun part, I played with my little limited selection of lip gestures, hehe


Just the one though, i want to do more to play with!


although i did do this one of course


I think it's great! At least i can laugh as I work :)

Wednesday, 4 March 2009

The final scene

My early test shots for the final scene...

cant write about it now, but will later

Monday, 2 March 2009

Scene 3

and this takes us up to the end of scene 3. The next part i need to tackle involves the girlfriend. I need to model a simple scene for the characters to be in. Im thinking doorway, so then you can have that nice kinda sectional view from either side of the door. He rings the doorbell on one side and the shot will encompass her flat and we will be able to see her walk towards the door. Just thinking out loud here.


so i was thinking last night, and at first i thought there would be three scenes involved in my animation, but now im thinking it should really be split into 4!

the fourth scene comes into play when the Girlfriend(still unnamed, i just cant name my characters for some weird reason!i normally name everything, even unsignificant things) is involved.

the third scene would be about how his clothes got dirty and how the flowers get ruined, right at the end of the scene.

it's no extra work for me, just a better strategy plan of how to split up the workload, the parts i am most interested in animating first will be the buying of the flowers and the ending scene. i intend to work on these first most likely, unless i have a specific reason not to!

Apart from that i have just been re-vamping my site . it was looking tired so im trying out a couple of looks, im just unsure what i want, i think i like how i have it now, but that is likely to change!

Sunday, 1 March 2009

Crit week

ok so next week is crit week, and now i need to pull all the work I have done so far together.

alot of the work I have planned for is research for essays and my persuasive narrative piece. I intend to come to a final decision on the information I want to use for my film. as it is a very personal piece i wish to do it justice, so i am being very careful in what i choose. i hope to have my decisions made by the end of tonight.

My work on prototype will be coming to an end on tuesday, where our second prototype will be presented. There will be a final presentation on the 16th...i think and then that will be over! I was very happy with what i produced, and i worked very hard in my role as art lead on this project. This was decided in a coin toss! But i think i took up the role to the best of my abiltity. there were plenty of difficulties i had to deal with, and normally i wouldnt have had the confidence to take this responsibitly. But i intended to prove i could do this role, and i think i made a good effort. I am just glad it is coming to an end, i need to focus on my animation and Persuasive narrative pieces now.

So on tuesday morning, the day of my crit group, i hope i will have much more to show, as long as i keep working hard tomorrow!

The car

i quickly modelled a beetle type car. this is for the part of the animation where the man's clothes get dirty. It is low poly and will only be in the animation for sucha short time that it hardly seemed worth doing!

but it is a part of the stroy i wish to have, as i wish to experiment with changing over textures. just to see how well i can pull it off!

anyway, i still need to add this element into my storyboards. I am still deciding on the angle i wish to see the car from or if i should use multiple, so see it come towards and away from the camera... this will be something to decide on when i come to storyboarding.

so here is the car!

storyboard continuation

and this takes the animation up to the end of scene one. Scene 2 has already been animated, and I am now on to storyboarding the final scene.

The final scene is the one I have least thought about, although i know the angles i wish to see the characters from, i wish to show much more of the facial expressions in the final scene, so alot of the shots will focus on the two characters faces... i think.

Saturday, 28 February 2009

my storyboarding

so i have started to storyboard out the shots for the beginning of my animation and I am quite happy with the results so far

I wanted a baisc idea so i can start blocking in the animation fairly soon. The main bits I will work on are the buying of the flowers and the end piece where he presents them to his girlfriend, although I have not storyboarded that part yet!

more to come...

Friday, 27 February 2009

continued work on animation

I have been working on the second character for my animation.

This will be the girlfriend of my first character.

The basic story is that The boyfriend is very excited to be going to pick up his girlfriend. He has an extremely jolly disposition! as he is walking along the street he spots a flower stand outside the florists. He considers buying a bunch of flowers and grabs one and pays for it. Further along the street he passes a suit shop. His attention is grabbed by a suit in the window. He stands there, thinking whether he should purchase the outfit and walks into the shop.

The next scene shows him strolling down the street in his new clothes, looking rather dashing!
But it becomes extremely windy and he desperately pushes forward, only to be knocked down, yet he manages to keep the flowers intact!

as he stands to brush himself off a car wooshes past and splatters his new clothes, he is now covered in mud.

to be continued...

Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Setting up the scene

This is what I am working on currently for my animation piece.
I am setting up the scene for the beginning of the animation, where my character will stop at a florist to buy flowers.