From time to time, I think to myself: “Man, I wish I had kept up drawing. I’d have been really good by now if I did it more consistently…” And so for a while every once in a while, I get the urge to draw or paint. It usually lasts for a bit, and then I become distracted by something else and all that effort is lost.
But regardless, here’s something that I started working on recently. I’m not sure how much further I’m going to get with her, but I’m happy with the way it’s turning out so far. Note, of course, that I suck at pretty much everything that’s not presented. My colouring skills are grossly pathetic. My shading is fairly poor these days. My speed can only be described as slugish. Even drawing faces, which I did a ton of, is somewhat lacking for me lately.
I like to think of skills art in terms of leveling up. It is very much the case in art that you can obtain a basic education, and then you must only practise frequently for a long period of time to become a skilled artist. Sure, there are always more art programs to learn, more filters to experiment with, new materials to manage, and new styles to solidify. Ultimately, though, I feel like I’ve got the foundation that I need. Can I simply just “grind” enough to become very good?
In other news, I’ve ordered a copy of Chaos & Evolutions from blender.org. If you’re unaware, Blender is a highly respected open source 3D modeling program. A couple times a year, they make open-source short films and sell them online. Regardless, the concept artist for the latest film, Durian (ie. Sintel), has published a DVD describing his workflow and showing off some 8 timelapses of himself painting. I was extremely impressed by his free timelapse that you can see the announcement/link for here. I’m hoping the DVD (which I think is some 10 hours by the way) is similarly inspiring.
Another thing that impresses me about David Revoy (the aforementioned artist) is his use of open source tools. I know that there are many Adobe / Autodesk fans in the artist community — and there is much merit in these tools — but I’m extremely impressed at the quality of open source tools these days. I think David Revoy very much shows that it’s possible to produce extremely good artwork using an entirely open stack. In particularly, I’m involved in the community surrounding the open program, MyPaint (I offered to host their wiki and am currently doing so). For the interested, I used MyPaint exclusively in the production of the above sketch and the previous blog post about the new Dragoon concept art.
Good day! No, I’m not dead, I’m just lazy when it comes to blogging. In fact, I’ve actually been considerably more active than ever recently. I will attempt to update my blog from time to time about my activities.
In this post, I’m showcasing a wildly different style for Dragoon that I came up with several months ago. I think it’s rather nifty.
Tell me what you think
Risujin and I have gotten together again to make a small sidescroller on the side. This is being actively worked on. Have some concept art:
I’ll fix this post up later probably.
Hello, I’ll make this relatively short. Basically, Risujin and I have been thinking about switching up the theme of the game a bit. Caribbean is boring. “Lets go for something space-y and imaginative. We’ve so lost our rocker,” we said. Oh boy. Anyway, so as a first order of business, I’ve been redesigning how a ship should look.
The textures will be roughly:
Some ship features:
I think I put too much thought into textures. I need to remember that this ship will be tiny. Anyway, this design solves some issues:
I’ll still have to figure out how buildings fit into this kind of style, but I think I have some pretty good ideas there too.
Construction of the Aurora ship shown above has begun. She’ll be game-worthy as soon as possible.
Hello there, I would like to publish my concept for how an extrude tool / system could fit into the Inkscape workflow.
First of all, I think it would be extremely useful to have an extrude system for Inkscape. It would speed up a lot of the issues related to adding nodes to an existing curve. In Blender, I spend a lot of time making low-poly models where I have to pretty much build them vertex by vertex (or node by node if you will). In Inkscape, to do the same kind of thing to extrude just one node, I have to:
I would much prefer to just select a node and hit e to make a new node near it and put select that node.
Similarly, the process I described above gets much more lengthy if I need to extured a line or a more complex shape where I have several nodes. As such, I’ve created some mockups for how this could be done better. It all hindges on the idea of select a node and hit e to duplicate the node near it and put the node into selected mode.
So, here, first of all, is how this would work with a line:
Secondly, here is how it would work with a line or a more complex shape:
I think this system I’ve divised here both fits well into the existing Inkscape code and makes a lot of sense. Thank you to those Inkscape developers and that take the time to read this and consider it.
As it happens, a good friend of mine runs noticiaslinux.com.br. He’s currently doing some work on it and didn’t mind if I came up with a variation on the current design. The site actually has quite a few visitors and subscribers. I’ve done a quick first draft that has only minor layout improvements and not real art.
Grab the SVG source from http://garoth.com/Images/BlogImages/noticiaslinux.svg.
Anyway, I’m certainly willing to polish up my idea and make it really shine. Hope you like it. Sorry that I didn’t end up having as much time as I hoped to work on it tonight.
I’ve started working on models that are actually usable in game today. We have the exporter and loader working very well now, so I have no excuse not to.
So, model one is mostly done. I’d like to cut down on the complexity a bit and it still needs textures. Obviously, it doesn’t come with water included in game This is actually a model that we can more or less use, considering we decided that the amount of faces we have per building is 500. That high of an upper limit makes me happy.
Meanwhile, Risujin has drastically improved the exporter. It’s about 150x faster than it used to be. Good progress around the board.
Oh my goodness! We have islands! Lambda came back from visiting his parents part way through Sunday, and whipped up an awesome random island generator. Words cannot explain how brilliant this is… we have islands. Observe!
Also, Lambda set up a clever way of making it so that it generates a number that represents the noise that generates the islands. Long story short, sending the map to everyone from the server will be about as much effort as sending a small number. Maps would download just about instantly. Amazing.
Nothing too much to report. Today, I stayed late at work. Not for work, though. Thanks to my awesome boss, Avery, I am allowed to come in in my spare time to use their computers. This is nice, because they are a lot better for rendering than my laptop is. Also the monitors are bigger, so I have more working space for Blender. Anyway, while testing out how much the computer could decently handle, I created this image. It took only a couple minutes to render, which is amazing beacause those circles have some 30,000 faces each. Anyway, what I quickly threw together looked somewhat interesting, so I decided to post it. It really requires no effort to make something like this in Blender if you know where the buttons are
Have a good time.
Well, I’ve done as much of the ship as I care to do for now. Sheesh, modeling is hard work. It’s taken me days of work to get this far. Thankfully, the actual in-game models don’t need to be nearly as complex. Speaking of which, I hope to adapt this model for in-game use in the future. For now, though, I’m somewhat sick of it and want to work on a different model.
Regardless, I’d like to show my “finished” product. (I put finished in quotes because it still could do with a lot of other stuff.)
On the other fronts, Risujin has been working hard on the model loader, the new animated model format, and the Blender exporter to aforementioned format. For the curious, Risujin has named the new format “Plum.” This is actually very witty in that it is a real word and also the combination of “Plutocracy” and “model.” Clever.
I think Lambdanaut is still working on the globe generation stuff. Complex math goes on there. I’m rather happy that I don’t have to worry about it too much. It’s nice living with the knowledge that the project will get a good, fast method of generating the globe without me even having to know how it is done. Phew . Thanks.
As for me… Next, I think I will make some kind of structure for the game. I’m thinking the dock is probably a good place to start. Luckily, I have a weekend coming up. Those are always good for giving me a lot of time to work, and an adequate amount of sleep. You’ll be hearing from me. Cheers.
As usual, I’m running out of time. It’s not my fault today, however. I’ve spend like 2-3 hours of the time I wanted to spend working tutoring people about stuff and chatting. I also spent 1 hour in Tremulous after I came home. So, I’ve only had like 1 hour to work, no time to eat, and no time to play Fire Emblem . (Mind you, I already work 8 hours a day + 1 hour to walk.)
Anyway, this is the limited work I did today:
As you can see, since yesterday, I have put in sails, angled one of them a bit, added some cords, and some more poles. There is still a lot I want to add. The ship is starting to take shape. It’ll be ship shape in no time.
Also, Lambdanaut has improved his globe generator. It now makes triangles that are almost all the same size. He’s done nice work here. The next step is adding heightmapping to the globe to make the islands. It’ll take some work, but should be cool. There are some algorithms that Lambda is investigating that should help decide where the islands go and what shape they are.
Risujin has been doing me a great favour in the meanwhile.
(His coding/writing has been slow lately because we convinced him to try out a different (and more efficient) keyboard layout. He’s settled on Colemak after some searching. It should be considerably easier to pick up than Dvorak (my layout) because about half the qwerty keys are in the same places.)
Anyway, the favour he’s been doing me is creating more or less a new file format for animated meshes. What he is doing is taking the .OBJ exporter than Blender uses and modifying it to also export animations, not just static meshes. This means some of the work is done for him, but it is still pretty tricky. The end result should be that we have a new format that we can use. The current selection is somewhat grim. If you remember from before, we settled on .OBJ for static meshes. Blender does a good job there. Now, hopefully, we can do animated meshes as well, with a similar format. Thanks, Risujin.
Anyway, sorry if this post has been messy and not particularly grammatically sound. It’s been a rough day in terms of distractions, and I want to catch a late dinner for once. At least Vim takes care of the spelling for me.