Friday, August 5, 2016

Stylized Planet Material

 For the first time in a long time, here's something that I made just for me. It's an Unreal material for creating stylized custom planets. Everything - the continents, the water, and the clouds - are all contained inside one material.

This is probably the most sophisticated material I've made so far. It was a nice exercise as a sort of synthesis of a lot of different material techniques. This was also my first time generating and using flow maps (to control the clouds' movement), so now I can add that to my skill list as well.

The material is procedural and highly customizable.
You can use a height map to add a stronger relief, if you're going for an especially exaggerated look.
Tweak various colors and properties to your liking.
Or take it to the extreme to create an alien world.
And of course the shape of the continents and clouds can be changed simply by swapping in your own textures.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Computer Device

Here's one of my latest models. This was done as an art test for Digital Extremes in Canada:

 It's a futuristic computer-type-thing, based off of this concept sketch which was provided for me as part of the art test:

Saturday, April 30, 2016


I finally got around to setting myself up on Sketchfab, and now you can view my models in the glorious THIRD DIMENSION!

Saturday, January 2, 2016


This is an animated hypercube (a three-dimensional projection of a four-dimensional object) I was commissioned to do for a trailer for a mathematics book (I'll add a link here once the project is public).

This was a really interesting and weird project to do. I'd seen similar sorts of animated images before, so I had some idea of how to go about it. But making an object that can fold itself inside-out posed some problems.

Initially I tried putting it together using regular geometry, but the polygons would get twisted around themselves and make an ugly mess, so I had to switch to using NURBS. The tubes stay oriented with a ridiculous number of look-at constraints, and, thanks to the greater mathematical precision of NURBS, they keep their shape.

Building the rig was a fairly straightforward, if tedious, task. The needs of the rig were simple enough that I probably could have skipped using bones entirely, and just mapped everything to the Controllers directly. But this method was what I was more familiar with, and it helped me keep everything organized, both in the scene and in my head. Ultimately it worked out, and I don't think I would have saved all that much time doing it the other way.