Monday, 5 December 2011

Reflection on year one, and ambition for year two

Having had a few months to get myself together over summer, I must admit I never used all of my time to learn which I partly regret but it has allowed time for me to finish some games I was meaning to complete ages ago, come out to all my friends and family 0_o, find a wonderful bf (let’s see if anyone reads this and catches on) and enjoy days out and so on. Reflecting on year one I really wanted to improve my visual design skills, having learnt the methods and techniques and such. I want to, in the second year maintain the standard of my understanding and begin to define my own personal style. With thumbnails building up to my final I need to be more specific on what I want to achieve in my composition and start whacking out those small studies meaning, spending less time faffing on them.

Another thing is my learning to digi paint using a graphics tablet on Photoshop. So over the break I barely picked up my tablet pen but when I did, I was frustrated at how, even as I tried to develop my paintings like all these good tutorials were showing me, something wasn’t right and my results came out a disaster. I currently have a discontinued (in other words, ooooooold) Wacom A6 Volito2 tablet and pen which, before this course, was given to me by my best mate as he hardly used it and wanted a tablet laptop eventually. I never used it up to this point even though I was meaning to at the beginning of the first year of uni. Anyway, stupid flipping me never realised that, even though tablets are basically more accurate versions of a mouse or laptop touch pad for drawing, they have PRESSURE SENSITIVITY LEVELS!! And I obviously didn’t install the software to activate this because the cd it came with never worked and I thought I was all okay because plugging it in made it work. I eventually installed the bamboo tablet software from the official website and all is well. I have a few studies below that show my progress during the disastrous period and I will eventually show my progress as I improve over the second year hopefully. Once I get the hang of it I want to make my very own style, even though it may be similar to others I need to find my comfortable point, stick with it and work on it to create good shit.

First study before i knew about pressure meaning it took long as i kept pressing down on the tablet to make darker values.

Before i knew about pressure, my failed desperate attempt (on the left) to paint an apple like the tutorial version on the right.

Finally when i installed the proper software, file name: ICANBLEND.psd 

So basically colour studies with watercolours, Photoshop and fast efficient thumbnails are my main focus points for the second year as I hardly did any in the first.

I am happy with my critical studies work over the last year but it became a rush towards the end and I had NO personal or progression posts meaning nobody knows about me and what I do or feel about specific work so that is a must this year, even if I make just a few blogs.

With game production I believe I can do well once I figure out good topology then good UV building techniques as I’m not entirely confident with my character design even though I would rather be an environment or asset designer. I need to be in the know and get over those hurdles in my mind so I have a method for everything then I can start speeding up and experimenting different techniques within 3DS Max. Good textures will come with my improving digi painting skills.

Lastly I want to develop my “Cool Shit” folder into a reference learning experience. Meaning folders within, specifically showing pictures I have gathered of inspirational 3D topology and paintings all included with text files explaining tips and tricks and things to remember. Hope I can do well this year J.


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