Thursday, January 26, 2012


Spent an hour or so modeling the toes tonight.  I once saw a news story about how a man lost his thumb in a shop accident, so they sewed a cadaver's big toe onto his hand, and it works perfectly.  Well, I just took a finger and made a toe out of it.  Seemed to work just fine too. :)  Now to just attach them to the feet.  I'm getting REALLY tired of how many times I have to click in Max.  Talk about carpel tunnel.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Attached Hands...

And now on to the the feet!  After a brief respite from the 1am nights, I got the hands modeled and attached to the body.  Max is proving to be pretty good for modeling, if I could just find a tool to "tweak" the verts.  That, and I find that the brushes aren't very good at getting what I want.  Normally at this point, I would export it to Modo or Silo for refining, but I'm going to stick it out.  Hopefully soon I'll be starting the head.  About 6 hours in total at this point.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Hand Modeling Timelapse Parts 2, 3

Here are parts 2 and 3.  There are still some points where I am trying to find the right tool, but again, feeling like I'm getting really comfortable...

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Hand Modeling Timelapse

Here's the video I promised in the previous post.  It's unedited and fraught with mistakes, and keep in mind that I'm still learning 3DS Max :)  There's no sounds and it's 2x real speed.


3DS Max Rambling and Wicked Fingers

So, like I said before, I'm learning 3DS Max.  Yeah.  Who knew that I could be in the game and film industry as a character TD for 11 years and have never used it in production?  Well, it's the truth. I have to say it is different, but I'm liking the tools.  It's going to take more getting used to than I anticipated, mainly because of a couple of things:  navigation that is NOT like Maya, Modo, Silo, or others; and how CTRL clicking is how you add to selections, NOT with Shift.  C'mon, really?  Every app on the planet uses SHIFT to add to a selection.  Oh well, it's a little thing.  It just slows me down a bit but nothing big.  I'm finding that I'm mainly using the same 4 tools: extrude, bridge, insert edge loop, and "Set Flow".  Not sure why it is called that, but okay.  There's a little thing I like to call "Click Rate" for every application, where in order to perform a command or function, how many clicks does it take?  For example, to bevel and edge:

  1. Select the edge
  2. Open the edge menu
  3. Select the bevel tool
  4. Click and drag on the edge
  5. Fit the new edges into place
That was 5 clicks to perform one function.  Pretty horrible workflow in my book.  Here's a possible solution:

  1. Hit a hotkey (ex:  hit the B key)
  2. Click and drag on an edge (or hold Shift while dragging for the entire loop) to bevel it out, and the bevel either interpolates the shape (cubic) or follows the edge directly (linear) according to your tool settings.
That was a hotkey and one click.  A much better scenario for modeling.

So far, 3DS Max is pretty high on the click-rate scale (that's a bad thing).  I think this is what most 3d Software suffers from.  There are ways to do better, and I haven't seen many of the mainstream apps do it very well.  I've been using Silo lately (wish they would continue developing it) and I really love the modeling tools, and how simple yet powerful they are.  They really got it right when they wrote that.

Anyways, I couldn't help but hear the soundtrack to "Wicked" playing while I modeled these :)  3DS Max modeling is getting a lot more I really need to learn the hotkeys to speed my workflow up, but I am feeling like I'm getting the hang of it.  This was about an hour of work.  I'll be redoing the nails so that they look correct, but for now, I think things are looking pretty good.  I did a timelapse video of this process, and maybe I'll post it soon.  Stay tuned!

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Time to Learn Max

Well, I've decided that I need to learn 3DS Max.  I guess it's a good thing since most of the CG world uses it :)  Anyways, I've given it a shot, starting my character for my new project in it.  So far, it's very different than Maya, Modo, or Silo, but I'm liking a lot of the tools in it.  It's coming along quicker than I thought.  Now I just have to keep at it.  Here's a quick shot of my current progress, after a couple of hours (yes, I am LEARNING it...normally that wouldn't take me more than 30 minutes). 

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Sea Tel Christmas Card

This was a quick animation I did for a client.  It took about a week to do, and is all done in Maya and Photoshop.  The sound was done by the great Ethan Halvorsen.  I think it turned out pretty well.