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Thread: Squirrels

  1. #16
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    I can only aspire to be as good, very very nice.

  2. #17
    Profesor Pixel Poo Mr Rid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cageman View Post
    Nice!

    How long time did you guys spend on it?
    I never know exactly as I am usually flipping back and forth between different jobs, but it went pretty fast. Tim Albee has spent more time with fur than any human probably should. It maybe took him a few days I guess to make fur. UV maps came with the Daz model so they only had to be tweaked. Mike Ash used the 'push' tool in Modo to shrink the torso of the squirrel a bit to compensate for the fur that would be added, otherwise the squirrel would look a little too well fed. I spent about an hour lighting. Sean Scott nails animations like this overnight, and I cant praise his brand of mojo enough. I recall that Sean first did a rough, then a final animation for each shot, and then there may have been one more minor tweak version. Most creature animations I see even on big features, suffer from that telltale, spliney, floaty feel. Sean just nails performance and physics right out of the gate. But then the devil is always in the details.

    A snag was that Tim Albee was hired to provide the fur and only temp lighting apparently. When I applied final lighting, it drastically ruined the way the fur looked (squirrels turned black and bright orange). Sas is so finicky, it takes light differently than geometry, and settings are intimately tied to the lighting.

    When I asked Tim for final lighting, there was some confused communication as I gathered that he had moved onto another project and we were only able to communicate with his 'agent.' The agent insisted that the lighting Tim provided should be good enough, but it was certainly not, I sent concise examples of the problem and wasted time debating with him. Tim had only suggested we bake the fur which I had already planned to do, but that was not at all addressing the issue. The employer was not going to pay any more money, and Tim was not going to do anymore work.

    I had other things to do and was not too familiar with Sas, but was forced to sit down and spend a couple of days figuring it out enough to remedy the problem. At the last minute, Phil Giles added the leaf, pebble motion and little dust poof. Then the comp was straightforward with only a few CG elements for Brad Moylan to integrate.
    Last edited by Mr Rid; 12-02-2009 at 08:21 PM.
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  3. #18
    Super Member geo_n's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Rid View Post
    Using the surface baking camera, I first rendered the model without fur, which yields a trippy UV sequence-
    http://www.box.net/shared/static/ig1gt9u0rn.mov

    The UV sequence is then applied in the fur's color channel. This way, shadows are already baked into the fur color, thus avoiding the need to render shadows in the fur pass, saving a great deal of render time.
    Amazing work again from your team. Always looking forward to your posts.
    The fur's color channel is in sas and sas will make hair color from uv sequence so its possible to turn off sas shadows completely? That sounds simple but result is realistic.

  4. #19
    Profesor Pixel Poo Mr Rid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by geo_n View Post
    ...
    The fur's color channel is in sas and sas will make hair color from uv sequence so its possible to turn off sas shadows completely? ...
    Yes, and radiosity may be disabled in Sas as well since GI color and shadow are also already baked into the fur color. You must also apply the color UV sequence to a channel somewhere on the mesh (unseen/disabled), otherwise the Sas Color Image will not cue LW to load beyond the first frame as a sequence, for some reason.

    It would have taken several hours per frame if Sas were tracing GI with self and receive shadows at 2k, but only about 45 minutes a frame when baked.

    You should be able to do the same with FiberFX using Textured Color Mode.

    I could not get this to work properly with a subD mesh- another one of many problems I run into using subDs.

    I used the squirrel mesh to render the separate cast shadow pass and it was not necessary to have Sas cast shadows since it would have been unnoticeable with the fast motion.
    Last edited by Mr Rid; 12-03-2009 at 01:13 AM.
    "O K, so what's the speed of dark?"

    Demo reel 2017
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yOOixvRhcs4

  5. #20
    Which app did you use for animation? For sure not LW?!

  6. #21
    Almost newbie Cageman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas M. View Post
    Which app did you use for animation? For sure not LW?!
    That is a pretty weird comment, if I may say so... LW can be rigged to animate those, and it isn't that much harder compared to using Maya.

    Have you seen this shortmovie? Completely done in LW6.x.
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  7. #22
    I know that you can do almost everything in LW, but at what cost? My mental sanity is of utter importance to me.

  8. #23
    Almost newbie Cageman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas M. View Post
    I know that you can do almost everything in LW, but at what cost? My mental sanity is of utter importance to me.
    Well.. at the cost of learning. =)

    I'll recomended Rebel Hills riggingtutorial, since it goes deeply into the why and hows, and also explains alot of the pitfalls and how to avoid them. The funny thing is that most of it isn't hard or cumbersome, and most of it is pretty logical. Short description: It makes sense.

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  9. #24
    Profesor Pixel Poo Mr Rid's Avatar
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    The squirrel rigs are rather straightforward. The main motion path is animated with a null (actually 2 nulls to avoid gimbal lock) to which the squirrel is parented. The feet are IK. The tail is manual.
    Last edited by Mr Rid; 12-04-2009 at 02:43 PM.
    "O K, so what's the speed of dark?"

    Demo reel 2017
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yOOixvRhcs4

  10. #25
    Sinner Saved by Grace Larry_g1s's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas M. View Post
    Which app did you use for animation? For sure not LW?!
    Dude, you doubted?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Rid View Post
    The squirrel rigs are actually very simple. The main motion path is animated with a null (actually 2 nulls to avoid gimbal lock) to which the squirrel is parented. The feet are IK. The tail is manual.
    ha! I love it. A solid app in capable hands.
    Last edited by Larry_g1s; 12-04-2009 at 12:59 PM.
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  11. #26
    Almost newbie Cageman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Rid View Post
    The squirrel rigs are actually very simple. The main motion path is animated with a null (actually 2 nulls to avoid gimbal lock) to which the squirrel is parented. The feet are IK. The tail is manual.
    Well... there you go. Thanks for clarifying!
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  12. #27
    Very nice work. And thanks for all the extra info!

  13. #28
    That is a very slick way to deal with the shadows/lighting and the fur. I will be steeling that effect... thanks.

  14. #29
    Uber Noob IgnusFast's Avatar
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    That's awesome, man! Looks just like the little idiots in my back yard, though they're much more brightly lit.

  15. #30
    Profesor Pixel Poo Mr Rid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IgnusFast View Post
    That's awesome, man! Looks just like the little idiots in my back yard, though they're much more brightly lit.
    Its astonishing how fast those things can move. I sometimes see my neighbors cats try to chase one in my backyard and its hilarious how the cat doesn't have a chance.
    "O K, so what's the speed of dark?"

    Demo reel 2017
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yOOixvRhcs4

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