If you’ve noticed I’ve been updating the site a bit less frequently of late, this (and busy times at Gecko Animation) is pretty much why. Along with the talented and patient folks at No Starch Press, I’ve been writing a book about creating art with Blender and GIMP. It covers everything from modeling to sculpting, through to textures, materials, lighting and rendering.
The book takes you through three different projects: a gruesome bat monster, a robotic spider, and an overgrown temple deep in the jungle. But this isn’t just a simple step by step tutorial. Whilst you can use the book that way, I chose each of the projects to provide a unique set of challenges, and I use the projects to help explain how to use GIMP and Blender in your own projects. The book is filled with examples from my other works too, as well as detailed descriptions of blenders tools, and guides to getting the most out of Blender and GIMP with your own custom UIs, Brushes and Materials.
Plus, the book comes with a DVD containing all of the project files and resources used in creating each of the projects, plus some extra goodies like brushes, mat-cap materials, textures, and sculpting alphas.
Here’s a more detailed breakdown of what’s covered in the book:
- Introductions to Blender and GIMP for new users.
- Working with reference images and concept art in Blender and GIMP.
- Modeling, from blocking out basic forms, to creating complex meshes.
- Sculpting both organic and hard-surface models.
- Retopology to turn complex sculpts into simple models with good topology.
- Creating hair and fur with Blender’s particle systems.
- Baking textures (Ambient Occlusion, Displacement, Normals, Colours) from models.
- Painting textures using both Blender and GIMP.
- Creating materials for Blender Internal and Cycles renderers. Creating materials for BI with the Properties editor, and building up complex cycles shader with the Node editor.
- Lighting, again with both Blender Internal and Cycles renderers.
- Rendering and compositing the final scenes, adding post-processing effects with compositing nodes and adding final touch-ups in GIMP.
The book will be published in February/March. You can pre-order it now from Amazon, the Blender.org Store or from the No Starch Press website. If you order from No Starch, you get a free E-Book edition of the book when you purchase the print edition.
It’s been a big project putting the book together, and I hope it’s resulted in something really useful. So if you’ve enjoyed the tutorials on this site I hope you’ll give it a look.
Hmm, maybe it was a power station, maybe a factory or a warehouse. All we know now is it’s falling apart. A project I began a long time ago, which has been gathering dust on my hard drive, so I thought I’d post it up. At some point in the future I might resurrect it in its originally intended animated form, but for now here are some stills.
All the modelling was done in blender 2.49, with some sculpting and texturing in blender 2.5. Most of the texturing was done in GIMP, with a whole bunch of textures from CGTextures.com. Rendering was done in V-Ray, thanks to Andrey Izrantsev’s fantastic blender 2.49 to vray exporter (though the newer 2.5 version is even better). Compositing was done in blender 2.5.
Click images for full size (1920×1080) versions.
This was my entry for the current CGTalk Harcore Modelling Challenge: Comic Book Masters. The aim was to do a character in the style of a favourite comic book artist, and I decided on doing Inspector Gadget in the style of the fantastic Jamie Hewlett, of Gorillaz and Tank Girl fame. Anyway here it is, along with some WIP/making of stuff after the jump.
After learning so much from last year’s blending life competition, I couldn’t wait to test out what I’d learned since in making my entry this year. It was tremendous fun to do and I had great feedback from the BlenderArtists community as I went along. Anyway, I thought that as the competition still has a few weeks left I’d do a bit of a making of/tutorial type blog post along with the final image, to hopefully give some tips to those still working on similar projects. More after the jump.
For my fathers birthday this year I created a model of my family crest and had it printed in 3D by Shapeways. The final model arrived the other day and I’m pretty pleased with how it looks. Unfortunately I only have a point and shoot camera with fairly limited macro capabilities, so the photos don’t look that great, but I include a Vray render to show the details too.
A while ago I had a project to create a steam punk style android in Blender. I’ve decided to revisit the idea with an oriental twist, and thought I’d share the process. (more…)
I participated in the current CGSoc Hardcore Modelling Challenge, in which the aim was to create a single model and then create 15 different expressions on that model. I used Rowan Atkinson as a reference, and whilst the resulting likeness isn’t 100%, I’m happy with the range of expressions in the results.
And here is a video of the model morphing between the expressions (Click to visit vimeo for correct aspect ratio and larger size):