All boxed up

Working under restrictions can sometimes call for planning, compromise and creativity…

I have been set on a task to create a 3D model as a practice project leading up to the world skills event; a treasure chest is my first and by the time you are reading this I am still making progress with this model, just need to start texturing.with the Uv maps and hopefully learn more about PBR texturing.

The use of spikes and a large set of horns gives a hint of character to this model, but the horns could also be vines or tentacles which consequently can lead to confusion upon the eyes of a player, modeler or mere inspector.

To create the horns, I had a chance to try a new tool which I had looked into. The NURBS curve tool, this tool allows me to draw out a more accurate line for my polygons to follow through elevation. Additionally, these lines allow me to be more interesting with the wackiness of my poly’s…

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moving on to the Texturing in Photoshop… after an hour of unfolding the entire model including the external assets. I learned these new skills/tools;

  • Automatic unfold
  • Sew/Cut UVS
  • Layout
  • Snapshot UVS
  • Unfold
  • Smooth Unfold

After I finished the UV editing, I found that with the new tools and skills I developed during that time and that UV unwrapping doesn’t take the duration that people take it for. It mostly consists of a lot of prior planning and is easier to do when there are external assets which leaves out the worry of having to cut out odd seams where you can alternatively have more straight forward UV layouts.


2D Solo game Week 1

Further venturing through the paths of game design and coding my way through the basics of my top down stealth game.

I start by creating my assets first, such as a protagonist ‘main character’, walls, enemy, a backdrop for my game, all I need now is a goal and I can reach further development. I create my assets all on Adobe Photoshop. By using the brush tool and tampering with the brush settings, I can give out better fake lights on the assets giving out a 3 Dimensional look without altering the lighting of the scene nor the renderer.

Brush settings tool

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Beginning my development on Unity, I made the mistake by selecting the game to be a 3D game, I had to therefore change the camera to ‘orthographic’ so of can therefore render the sprite images all together.

To conclude this blog I have also considered having a feature where the player must collect a specific object to therefore pass except the first stage which the player should be able to get to grips with the controls and the environment around him/her.


This piece of code is for a projectiles script which in simpler terms means ‘When shooting each bullet has two seconds until it is dead’, sounds odd… Bullets don’t die, but it does cease to exist after leaving the screen from source  within two seconds.

VFX – Pulling the strings

Like a puppet, the theory and practice of rigging both in 2D & 3D is basically bringing something to live which has come from a mere idea tucked up in your head.

Rigging in after effects is just like rigging in Maya just without the work of taking it to a higher dimension… picture this if you will; one would need four tires, another would only need two.

2D Side View (2 Wheels)
3D orthographic view (4 Wheels)

For this blog, I will be explaining the process of rigging in After effects alongside the practice of joining through an asset hierarchy method.

Firstly there had to be assets to rig, we started with a robot asset with backgrounds and added effects to add aesthetics to the overall composition. At this point I had a slight idea to the concept of rigging for VFX animation but needed extra insight to come to use it for further projects. I have these few screenshots from the process of animation used in after effects.

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Character rigging or in other words ‘Puppet making’ in my opinion can only really be effective with pictures such as humans or and other animal as long as it has a natural concept to be bent or have joints which can bend, unlike inanimate objects unless an animator is thinking about the fantasia times from Disney where anything is possible.


Robot Design

This blog is to show my current work for the robot design which has also introduced me into more features embedded into Photoshop. I started with looking at specific robot sketches on pinterest and taken interest with the design of which I can bring into my own sketches.

I first started with the basic measurement sketches where I can start looking at how big each, portion of the robot will be throughout the drawing. This can massively help me to plan forward and prevent hitting a brick wall during the main outline of the character.

measurement Sketch


The main outline of the character was filled around the measurement sketches so I can therefore make sure that I can plan out what can be added. This can also give me a guide to what I can exaggerate and keep real to an extent. As you can see the shoulders are really exaggerated in comparison to the feet which looks more relatable to the characters primary mass.


Measuring + Outline


I then move on to colouring, I start with the primary colour of the robot covering the entire drawing. By doing this, I can overlay this colour and not needing to worry about asking mistakes to the base colour of the robot, to make sure I have no mistakes and I can go back to where I have come from. I make external assets such as eyes on different layers and the shading on another additional layer.

Colouring & Shading

The 12 principles of animation ‘Illusion of life’

I have just watched a clip of the 12 principles of animation from Disney. I have also taken into account the vast range of different ways which an animation or a real life object can be altered to either look more fluent or fun in a way.

Click the link to watch the full video: The illusion of life

Extract from Illusion of life ‘Secondary action’

Squash and Stretch

This principle delivers weight and volume to an object as it moves throughout a scene.


Gives the illusion of preparation through movement prior to the objects main movement


The presentation of an idea so it is therefore clearer to the audience what is being shown.

Pose to Pose and Straight

The idea of animating through two different methods which give out a smoother animation.

Pose to Pose

Charted with Key drawings so you can therefore plan out what will happen through the timeline of your animation.


Working the animation from frame to frame/drawing to drawing to complete the overall animation.

Follow through and overlap

When the main character moves from one space to another and suddenly stops, the rest of the body continues to follow through. Therefore nothing stops all at once.

Slow in and slow out

When the action starts, less drawings make the animation go faster. On the other hand, more drawings make the object move slower.


All actions tied to an object give out a round or arc movement, it gives out the perception of natural action and better flow to an animation.

Secondary Action

It’s an additional action which therefore creates additional supplementary actions to give the main action more dimension and interest within the scene.


More drawings make between poses make the animation slower yet keep the animation smoother yet less drawings present the animation with faster movement but with a more static movement.


Keep the common views of reality yet come across that view in a wild and wacky view.

Solid Drawings

The practice of drawing out three-dimensional objects taking into consideration their weight and volume.


It is the charm and the personality/charisma of the character action which is aesthetically pleasing to the audiences eye.

All of these principles should be able to alter and improve the way we animate anything from 2-dimensional drawings to 3-dimensional models and drawings. There is a book which can help any aspiring animator hoping to make a mark on their work. This book is called  ‘The Animator’s Survival Kit’ by Richard Williams. It can be bought online and contains everything which you would need to know about any form of animation within the creative industries.


City Scape Final piece

Finally finished the city scape art piece which I had to complete and this is the final version.

Final Version

My final changes such as adding more depth into the clouds and randomized windows had been recommended by my tutor so I went out and done exactly that alongside other additional re-adjustments. Firstly I added many more adjustment layers to make some extra effects especially one with came across as a surprise to me as I applied the adjustment layer with the mask over the top of a specific layer.


This small screenshot I took is a representation of what had been done to the adjustment layers to create this surprising new effect making the lighting of my City scape a lot more cartoon like, now… as you can see, both of the layer masks have been edited with the black brush tool to act as an eraser to wipe away the effect in a specified position. This has been used to create the semi-transparent smoke effect about the city.

The image on the right shows an outline effect which can be seen in video games such as Crackdown where the outline cartoon effects is shown which may infer that Realtime Worlds wanted this effects to make character and buildings easier to see.

Overall, I am really proud of this project as I can advance on my Photoshop skills to further become better at concept art in many other art styles.


Now this is going to be a brief blog but ill keep it to the point of what I’m trying to show. We have started using Autodesk mud box, one of the many sculpting tools used by any game developer and we were told to sculpt a face of our choice using a simple primitive tool… a sphere. Firstly we grabbed the sphere to build out the basic face shape and then moving on the basic features of a face such as the mouth, eyes and nose. Below shows a starter project for a face sculpt of game of thrones ‘Jon Snow’.


Not the best of course but the model will develop over time furthermore I will take the model home with me to therefore continue enhancing my skills at sculpting and making better models beyond faces.capture2