Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Odd faces in Maya

So I thought I'd get a tiny bit of Maya practice in with spheres and cylinders when these odd faces creep up on me. It's on a sphere that has been scaled, extruded in places and had a few faces deleted off. Just before I notices this I had to flip some normals that got confused after an extrusion.

Any ideas? I tried deleting them and using the Split Poly/fill hole tool to remake the faces but the same thing happens (O,o)

Life Class - Cancellation Tuesday 30th November

First year Life Class is cancelled tonight in anticipation of freezing weather/travelling conditions later.

Would all first years please pass the word around to each other as soon as possible.

Many thanks


Lifedrawing Cancelled 30/11/2010

pretty much exactly what it says in the title, really ^^;

UCA Rochester Open!

I went on my UCA, and Checked my email and receive several messages from the University saying that UCA Rochester is open on Tuesday, 30 th November! However, I guess if it is too risky to come in, maybe I would give it a second thought in whether to come in or not.

Snow Update

I was just wondering what the snow is like in Rochester, here in Sittingbourne it isn't looking too good so I wanted to make sure it was actually ok to get into Rochester before leaving in my tin can of a car.

Problems with My UCA

I don't know if it's just me, but I can't seem to log on to My UCA to check whether uni is open or not... I'm guessing it's because loads of students are doing the same thing... It would be cool if anybody could reply on the situation so I know whether I have to brave the cold, or spend one more day in my warm bed (which I'm rooting for).

Monday, November 29, 2010

'1 Becomes 2' Winners Announced (Finally!)

As the snow begins to fall and Christmas looms, summer 2009 is but a dim and distant memory - likewise the '1 Becomes 2' competition brief. Lots of (now) 2nd year students made a start and got some fascinating entries underway, but only 3 got their submissions over the finish line. How fortunate then that we have 3 prizes to award!

So, in 3rd place, with her rather wonderful 'Ivan' character design (which I hope might soon find its way into a fully fledged animated short...), is Jolanta, who receives £25 of Amazon vouchers for her trouble. In 2nd place, it's Jordan, for his pre-production work on his Chicago-inspired cockroach animation, who receives an Amazon voucher of £50, and in 1st place and recipient of a brand, spanking new Intuos tablet, is Leo - in recognition of the ambition and professionalism of his 'Art Of...' publication. Well done you lot - come and collect your prizes from the office - and apologies for the long (very long!) wait for the results!

What I'd like the 3 winners to do is share their winning pre-production work with the cg community by posting a selection of images on the group blog at your soonest convenience!



As promised at today's Unit 3 briefing, I've put together some examples of previous first year digital set + matte painting final scenes. I have included the final scene and digitally painted backdrop so you can see the relationship between the two components. I have also included links to the final scenes as posted on the respective student's blogs back in January 2009. What I want ALL current first years to do is take the time to browse backwards from these final scenes and take a really good look at the bodies of work created by each of the featured students in response to the brief. It will give you a clear idea of our expectations for your semester 1 'finale' and will clue you in to the challenges ahead - and the creative and technical ambition necessary to meet them. Viewing these blogs should also make clear that some of you are simply not working hard enough yet - or engaging as effectively with the blog/feedback forum as you could and should. Don't be intimidated folks, be inspired! In common with many of you, the featured students had no prior cg experience before starting the course back in September 2009 - they achieved these results after just 15 weeks, having followed the exact same curricula as you...

This is Jolanta's final scene: everything is modelled, apart from the back wall.
Begin browsing Jolanta's Unit 3 work here!

Next, is Ruben's final scene - an abandoned hospital, and here a matte painting completes the far end of the corridor. Begin browsing Ruben's Unit 3 work here!

This is Leo's final scene and matte painting - Jonny already featured it in a previous post.
Begin browsing Leo's Unit 3 work here!

Apologies for those expecting to find the 'podcast' from today's briefing on myUCA - slight technical error! It will, however, be available tomorrow evening (30/11/10) alongside the second briefing, as delivered tomorrow at 2pm. See you then.

FAO First Years

Hi guys,

Just wanted to make a post to introduce myself a bit. I gave a lecture at the start of your year so you know about me and what I've done. I've been asked to assist mainly with modelling. This is definately the area that I am more fond of, and most of my work has been focused on that. To me, clean models and topology are important, and I come at modelling from that point of view. So to make it a lot easier for me to help you, please post grey scale models and wireframes of your models. The easiest (and best) way of showing wireframes is through this method :

Also to do a pure greyscale model (without having to replace shaders ) tick 'use default material'. Always ensure you aren't using the default Lambert1 shader in your actual final shaders and textures. Keep it default.

Please give Screenshots that will allow me to understand the issues easily, even if it takes multiple screenshots with scribbles and drawings on them. Just so I can understand and help you guys quicker, without needing to ask for more details.

Whilst I am foremost a modeller, I have a pretty generalist skillset when it comes to other areas, and I can help with things such as UV's, texturing, skinning, rigging etc. So if you can't get hold of Simon or Alan, feel free to drop me an email (Jonstewartcg@gmail.com) or make a post with my name in it. I'm more than happy to help.

With regard too your current project, you have Five weeks to produce an environment with a matte painting. I would advise against coming up with huge scenes which will take a lot of props. Plan sensibly, and let your Matte painting do a lot of the work. The best example of this that I can think of is Leo Tsang's Mise én Scene project, the carnival. It looks very detailed, but only consists of a handful of well made props. The Matte Painting is doing a lot of the work, it is extremely well executed.


Pick your battles, and don't feel overwhelmed. As many people stated at the first day lectures, preproduction is key. Five weeks to produce something of this caliber isn't easy, especically if you don't plan well.

To finish, here's my scene from the same project from my first year.

Good luck guys,

New blog

I've just made a new blog for my random, unrelated to university works. Check it out >>> http://dlchar.blogspot.com/

Maya crashing?

Has anyone experianced Maya crashing whilst doing anything to do with UVs?

For some strange reason as of last night Maya runs into a fatal crash when I project UVs or in the UV texture editior when I clicked a UV the clicked 'select shell'.

I deleted the history of everything in the scene and it still crashed

running it on Windows 7 64-bit with specs that meet all the requirements

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Back Porch Audio Books

On these cold winter nights, there's nothing better than a bedtime story, rich in atmosphere and menace. If you're a fan of H.P. Lovecraft and Poe, visit Back Porch Audio Books for recordings of Lovecraft's The Shunned House (perfect for the first years as they prepare for the 'unhomely' delights of their up-and-coming Environment project!), Poe's The Cask of Amontillado and Coleridge's The Rime of the Ancient Mariner... close the curtains, light a candle and enjoy....

Saturday, November 27, 2010

The Post With The Most 28/11/2010

It's been an intense time for the CGAA community, as week 10 of semester 1 concluded with final crits for both first and second years. The gloves came off and egos got bruised, but for those still smarting from the slings and arrows of summative feedback, I offer this as balm and olive branch:

"We need very strong ears to hear ourselves judged frankly, and because there are few who can endure frank criticism without being stung by it, those who venture to criticize us perform a remarkable act of friendship, for to undertake to wound or offend a man for his own good is to have a healthy love for him ..." Michel Eyquem De Montaigne

For CGAA/Year 1, Friday 26th November witnessed the end of 'Space' - which sounds like a Mayan Prophecy - but in fact relates to the conclusion of unit 2 - the 'concept art project'.

Students were challenged to generate 3 digital paintings transcribing environments from classic adventure stories written by the likes of Jules Verne, H.G. Wells and H. Rider Haggard. Projected large on L1's silver screen, Dayle's evocations of scenes from The Neverending Story hit big; mysterious, immersive and filmic, his concept art for Grogaman's Tomb particularly impressed. In getting to grips with the temple of the titular She, Domantas gave us this ethereal vision, while Jono and Molly took us deep into King Solomon's Mines. Kolade took us deeper still - 20,000 leagues deeper - with this impression of Verne's view of a ruinous Atlantis, and Kay offers up an alternative vision of the same scene. Indeed, one of the true excitements of working with CGAA students is the way in which one idea is taken in so many different directions; consider Andriana's take on Poe's forlorn House of Usher and compare with Sean's interpretation of the same location. Likewise, Well's subterranean moon adventure is given very different treatments by Katy, Lyn-Dae and Naomi, while Nat and Alex 'imagineer' Gormenghast's bright carvings. From decrepit castles to state-of-the art submarines and sci-fi utopias: Justin steampunks a deep-sea library, Sam cuts loose with Nemo's quarters, and Ryan+time machine arrive outside the White Sphinx. Elsewhere, in a land that time forgot, Paul gets Turneresque and Jonny Sharples gets to grips with his pen and tablet.

CGAA Year 2 had their character design crit on Thursday 25th - the culmination of 10 weeks of design workshops with Justin Wyatt - our 'guy from Disney'. It was a marathon session characterised as much by home truths as by 'heroes, villains and sidekicks', but alongside all the bees in bonnets and fleas in ears, there was Jordan's Arthurian trio, Ruben's Robo-Pirates, JJ's Monsters & Aliens, Ethan's Greek-inspired sci-fi stalwarts, Alex's Arabian 3, and Kin's Malik & Co.

With just five term-time weeks remaining before hand-in, pressure mounts for CGAA Year 3, as production on their respective minor projects changes gear. I recommend anyone reading today's PWTM take the time to browse Raj Dhillon's blog - in terms of 'unpacking the pipeline', it's exemplary and illustrates exactly what your tutors are looking for from your creative development blogs. Elsewhere, Zack's rat makes his blog debut and Gary pays £25 for some professional polish.

It's been a tough old week.

It will get tougher too before semester 1 is over, but put aside your fatigue, say "no" to burn out, procrastination and petty resentments and do something incredible instead. Be Amazing!


For All Students: Please Read the Following UCA Assessment Regulations.

Assessment Regulations
Common Undergraduate Credit Scheme

Assessment Procedure
* Unitised Assessment with one or more components
* Assessed against the learning outcomes (see unit descriptor)
* May be several components (see unit descriptor)
* Percentage mark
* Marks subject to moderation by External Examiners prior to confirmation by Unit Assessment Board
* End of Stage Assessment
* Progression and Award Board confirms progress to next Stage

Deadlines and Non-submission
* Work will not be accepted after the submission deadline unless there are previously submitted extenuating circumstances
* Must be an attempt at showing at least one of the learning outcomes
* Must submit all parts

Remember failure to submit at the initial attempt, without previously declared extenuating circumstances, gives one more Retake opportunity only

* Overall mark for a unit of 0-39.99%
* Can be retrieved through Referral or Retake
* Non-submission at initial attempt - allowed ONE Retake only
* Partial non-submission leads to Referral

* Follows a failed assessment through academic failure or partial submission
* Could be additional work or repeat of failed assessment requirement
* Only once for each failed unit
* Failure of Referral leads to Retake

* May follow failure of a Referral
* Follows initial non-submission without extenuating circumstances
* Maximum mark of 40%
* Failure at Retake will result in termination of studies at Progression and Award Board

Extenuating Circumstances
* Exceptional and unforeseen circumstances including illness warranting a medical certificate
* Separate form for each unit to be submitted in advance of submission deadline unless there are exceptional circumstances
* Supporting evidence must be submitted with form
* Associate Dean may grant up to 3 weeks extension or reject request
* Forms to Faculty Office

* At the end of Stage assessment
* Maximum of 15 credits
* No compensation for:
* Marks below 30%
* Where unit must be passed
* Failure through non-submission
* Failure through academic misconduct

Final Awards
* Certificate of Higher Education
* Diploma of Higher Education
* BA Degree (non Honours)
* BA Honours Degree
Lower level awards conferred only if study at the University is formally ended

Classification of Honours
* 70-100% 1st Class Honours
* 60-69.99% 2nd Class Honours (Upper)
* 50-59.99% 2nd Class Honours (Lower)
* 40-49.99% 3rd Class Honours
* 0-39.99% Fail
* Normally 25% of End of Stage 2 mark plus 75% of End of Stage 3 mark

* Individual units
* Progression from one Stage of a course to another
* Final award

Grounds for Appeal (see Student Regulations Handbook)
* Performance affected by undisclosed (for valid reasons) mitigating circumstances
* Significant and exceptional administrative error in assessment
* Assessment not conducted in accordance with current course regulations

Appeals Process (see Student Regulations Handbook)
* Talk first with Unit Leader or Course Leader
* Time limit of 15 days from notification of assessment outcome

Student Regulations Handbook 2010-2011 is available on MyUCA
For details of Submissions, Failure, Referrals, Retakes and appeals against assessment outcomes

Remember failure to submit, without extenuating circumstances, gives one retake opportunity only

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Urgent! Lost Sketchbook!

When in the CG Art Computer room, I have accidently left my sketchbook there that contained my life drawing sketches that were used in charcoal and pastles, and thumbnails of my Unit 2 Project. The thumbnails contained sketches of plants, rocks, crystals and such in my sketchbook and sketch scenes of sceneries on what I thought it would look like from the book called "The First Men in the Moon". When you open the book, it will have a page with a bunch of pink pigs on it which I haven't taken out.

If anyone finds it, bring it to a girl that wears a black hat and red glasses.

Unit 2 Chinese Meal Fest

After a couple of discussions we ended up settling for the Chinese place again.
same deal as last time:
                                 .meeting by the lecture 1's door after crit
                                 .Minimum of £12 (for all you can eat)
                                 . (single meals do cost less than £12)
                                 . water's free ^-^

(The place should still be open by the time we're done, hopefully)

Hope to see you there~

One day to go..

Hello all, if anyone has a few spare minutes for finishing touches to their final concepts, here's what I recommend. Now, a final pass can always be made to improve the work. Save a copy of the final image flattened and use your; colour balance, hue and saturation and levels to refine the over all feel of the image. Also don't forget that all important final paint layer into which you can add finishing sharp highlights, atmospheric specs and rimlights. If you think your work is finished always do another half an hour on it, it really works..Work is looking really good.. Good luck and see you at the crit.. Photoshop Phill..   

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

FAO CGAA YEAR 1 - UNIT 3/ENVIRONMENT - Brief/Timetable Available Now on myUCA

Your new Unit 3/Environment brief, film programme and wks 11 - 15 timetable are available now on myUCA. Go to Environment/Unit Information for hyperlinked preface, timetable and 'The Unhomely Cinema' film programme + trailers. Go to Environment/Unit Materials for brief.

... oh, and this time, ladies and gents, there's no 'mysterious blue box' ...

IMPORTANT! CGAA Yr 1/Unit 2/Space/Submission Requirements

As you complete your finishing touches to your Unit 2 work, I wanted to remind all first years of the required content of your 'Space' submission disc:

  • Your 3 final digital paintings
  • Your definitive influence map
  • Your essay file (use .doc or .pdf)
  • Your pdf blog Unit 2 archive (go here for instructions)

Please write your name, date & unit title with permanent marker on your submission disc!

Take a moment to double-check the submission criteria and specific requirements; i.e. 16:9 aspect ratio, 1,500 words, up-to-date blogs, powerpoint presentation & pdf 'failsafe'...

Looking forward to it.... Be Amazing!

2nd Year Thursday Character Crit....Suit Up!

A few of us are going to suit up once again, this time for the crit, any feel like joining in lol?

Maya Issue - Yellow Selection?

Hey guys.
Just a little Maya hitch has pooped up and I was wondering if its happened before.

As you can see, when I select a face in this case (it happens with verts and the like as well) it gets this yellow outline with by itself isn't annoying, but when I try to move or manipulate what is selected:

It seems to move around a defined pivot as indicated by the changing colours as I move it.

How do I turn this off and go back to normal?

Monday, November 22, 2010

Question about Character Design Project- Using traditional media

For my character design project, I was planning to add some colour to the characters, though I realised to create a good texture, i wanted to do some mark making with traditional media. I just wanted to check with Alan and Phil if it is ok ?

Surely, I wont put the messy drawing on the design bible, they will be scanned in and if smudged around, I will clean them.

@Alan re Tuesday..

Hi Alan, just wondering if the film we missed last week is going to be shown tomorrow...and if so, at what time?

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Kris 'Class of 2008' Savona Speaks!

Every now and then, I invite one of our alumni to share their post-grad experience with the CGAA community. Kris Savona graduated in 2008 and this is his story so far...

"Being from Malta, my experience at UCA was, let’s say, interesting, - mainly because of the lack of sun, the cold, and the rabid foxes…*

Living in Chatham was definitely an experience!

Most of my time was spent behind my reliable laptop HP - which I could always rely on overheating and shutting down. The rest of my time was spent hunting down Phil and Alan to discuss the direction my project was taking. I'm quite sure they stayed up at night thinking about how they could add new twists to the project and piling on more work.** Every time I thought I’d finished the project and met all their demands they would change something.

In that respect things haven’t changed; clients are still changing stuff at the last minute, but unlike Phil and Alan's changes, the client’s are usually for the worst! It was one of my first lessons in the workplace: don't get too attached to your work!

After graduation, I moved back to sunny, hot Malta, where I started working at Blaze doing adverts. I handled all the 3D work from beginning to end, which was fun at times but when combined with a tight deadline, you’re quite limited on what you can deliver.

Having worked for the "Man" for the past two years, I am finally at a stage where I can leave my full time job and start working freelance and on a start-up audio/visual company – FKAC - I’ve been working on for the past 6 months: www.fkacmalta.com***

This move will give me more creative freedom and time to do the things I love. Balance and variety are a priority as they help with all aspects in life and work; to be creative you need to be inspired, and inspiration comes from experience and taking on diverse projects... (an example of which will soon see me searching for and filming great whites sharks!).

It is important to take the attitude that we work to live and not live to work."

* !?

** not true!

*** WIP

For previous post-grad stories:








Tuesday 23rd November - Baseroom - FE 'Show & Tell'

Just letting everyone know that @ 10am in the CGAA baseroom on Tuesday, a 45 min presentation is being made to Foundation/NDD students by CG Arts, Creative Arts for Theatre and Film and Broadcast Media. If, on Monday, students could ensure that the baseroom ISN'T a bombsite of pencil shavings, energy drink cans and abandoned thumbnails (drawings!), I'd appreciate it. I'm not sure of the numbers of FE students expected at the 'show & tell' session, but I'm assuming the room will be quite busy for that 45 min period. It doesn't mean you can't be there working, it just means there might be some disruption for a short time. Thanks in advance - and please tidy up! :-)

Problems with the Rig/Geometry

What was done wrong in riging  for this to happen with  geometry. What’s the problem and how to fix it? Or is this  the case of redoing right leg’s rig over?

Monday 22nd November - Graphics Tablets

Both Alan and I are not in the CGAA office tomorrow: you'll be able to borrow graphics tablets from Jackie Andrew (faculty office, ground floor) after 10am. You'll need to sign them out as usual. The faculty office closes at 4.30pm.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Harvard Referencing

Just found this brilliant site that is very informative on how to go about referencing your sources in the Harvard method. As some of you may have trouble with the Harvard method I know I have this works well explaining how it works and I believe it should be pointed out hence this post.


FAO CGAA YEAR 1 - SPACE CRIT/Friday 26th November @ 9AM/L1

With one week to go before your Unit 2/Space crit presentation, there's lots of creative activity on the blogs and expectations are high that Friday's crit is going to be something special.

I encourage you to take a moment to return to the brief to ensure you've ticked all the boxes and generated all the content requested - and in the format specified. For example, your final three images need to be at 16:9 - no exceptions.

In terms of the content of your presentations on Friday, 26th November, I only want to see the following:

1) Begin by showing a single definitive influence map that explains clearly your 'visual concept' for the production design underpinning your 3 scenes. (The 'why').

2) Organise your work into a Powerpoint presentation that begins with your definitive influence map. Next, present your first final scene, followed by its 'build-up' sequence (the 'how'). Repeat for remaining 2 scenes.

3) As a precaution create a PDF version of your Powerpoint as a 'failsafe'.

4) You DON'T need to include research imagery or preparatory sketches. This information should be clearly presented on your blogs.

5) L1 will be open at 9am - students are to copy their work onto the desktop of the computer in readiness for the crit to begin PROMPTLY at 10am. Please note - another group has a booking between 2-3 - therefore we will be breaking for lunch at 2pm and resuming at 3pm. Come prepared for a long morning session!

6) As promised, the order of presentations will run z through a, which means we're starting with Alex at 10am

7) Remember - Unauthorised non-attendance at a final crit = non-submission. If you're running late, please let Jackie Andrew know.

8) Do NOT leave printing your essays to the last moment! I want paper copies from everyone on Friday + signed plagiarism forms.

Any questions, drop a comment here.

Good luck!

Be amazing!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Ink monsters!

I thought I should share this since it's a very fun way to make 'inky' characters! :)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Autodesk Products Free for Students

Over 25 products available for free* download—all with a new, extended 3-year license

Autodesk Education Community Benefits

  • Download full-versions of Autodesk software for free
  • Find training materials to get the product know-how to design, visualize, and simulate your ideas
  • Get access to the design showcase, career center with job listings, discussion forums, and more

Register by clicking on 'Get Software' at the top of the page.

Maya 2010 and 2011 is on there for Windows and Mac OSX, Enjoy.

Character Design Submission

Ok Ladies and Gentlemen it's almost that time!

The final critique will take place:

Thursday 25th November
9am - 1.30pm in Lecture Theatre 1
2pm - 5.30pm in the Base Room


Submission Rquirements:

Creative Project Parts 1 & 2: Completed Character Design Bible (As a .PDF or .PDF's) Containing:

1) Three fully resolved characters – Hero, Villain, & Sidekick
2) A synopsis of the show
3) Expression Sheets
4) Turnarounds
5) Completed weekly tasks

Creative Project Part 3: Blog & Development Work (Online & as a .PDF)

1) A fully up-to-date blog containing your research, development, methodology, sketches, and finalised designs.

For details on how to turn your blog into a .PDF click HERE

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

R.I.P Base Room Lights

A number of the Base Room lights have joined the computers in electronic heaven, god bless em'! :'( It's like The Descent in here now and people keep walking into walls!

What To Do When A CGAA Computer Isn't Working...

Alan & I have no jurisdiction over the computers/software etc. in the 2 CGAA rooms.

The University's IT Dept. are responsible for the resources and they only respond to a problem if it's logged in their system via their helpdesk.

If there's a problem with a machine, or scanner or software, you have to TELL US so we can TELL THEM and get the problem on the system and dealt with asap. Frustratingly, I keep learning of problems with the CGAA resource via an overheard remark or sarky comment. If a machine isn't working, or if software isn't available when it should be, please do the community-minded thing and let either Alan or myself know.

If WE know, THEY'LL know and something can get done.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Apologies & Thanks & More Apologies!

I just wanted to apologise to the first year for this afternoon's rather inauspicious screening of Avatar. I was besieged by gremlins - and then by fashion students, who I'd unwittingly rendered homeless after switching from Lecture Theatre 1 to 2. I was unable to view the film with you, as I was defending L2 from further interruption and absorbing the aftershocks created by the location-change.

More positively, I want to thank Chris Rogers for allowing us to break the seal on his brand new copy of the Special Edition - and big thanks too to Dan Rolph who leapt into the breach and deputised in my absence. The irony of showing the world's most technologically advanced film on a wonky projector wasn't lost on me - or you, no doubt! You were all really patient - and I hope you were able to enjoy the film after all!

There's lots I wanted to say about the movie in light of your current project. The biggest message I wanted to give was 'be inspired'! It's the penultimate week of your Space project and I know your energies may be running low, but I'm genuinely looking forward to the final crit and seeing your own 'Worlds Apart', so dig in, make work, be creative and do something extraordinary!

Apologies too to Alan and the second years: another consequence of Avatar's location switch, late start and epic running time was that Alan was unable to show 'Mars Attacks' as scheduled.

Monday, November 15, 2010

HELP! I need the book on the art of avatar

Does anyone have this book from the libraray? If so, may I look at it? I need it for reference on my space essay.

Sunday, November 14, 2010


Minor Project Hand-in - Friday, January 21st, 2011

The Post With The Most 14/11/2010

It’s Sunday evening, it’s late – it can mean only one thing – time for the PWTM.

If there’s an abiding theme in the cgaa blogosphere this week, it’s ‘environment’, with all years engaging in ‘world making’ of one sort or another. As the first years move into the penultimate week of Unit 2/Space, exciting glimpses of their ‘worlds apart’ are filtering through.

Lyn-Dae - the girl with the feathers in her hair - has a breakthrough on the moon, while Andriana fuses Caligari and Van Gogh's Starry Night and takes a bold step toward stylisation. I disagree with Domantas - his 'horrible thumbnails' are anything but; they are energetic, dynamic and speculative - all that a good thumbnail should be. Elsewhere, Max moves away from realism toward something more illustrative for this early concept piece for his re-imagining of The Lost World and Dayle's pipeline delights with fauvist pen and acrylic experiments and a knack for the fantastical. Paul-Arthur trips the light fantastic, and Jono hits his stride as he approaches Haggard's Hall of the Dead.

Lots of sensual life-drawing this week, as charcoal loosened lines and softened shapes - though Nat appears to have taken things too far...

Second years are similarly in the business of giving life to new worlds, as their Retrofest studio projects move further into production. Ruben gives us another view of future London, Simon at Lucid Studios offers us a glimpse of a martian landscape, Sam at Creature Studios previews his sinister woodland, and over at Void Studios, they're producing matte paintings to combine with modeled sets. Convincing cg worlds are composed of their individual components and attention to detail is essential; consider Kled's cute car model, Inspire Studio's parking meter, and Gremlin Box's derelict church.

In 3rd year Tom's Garden of Earthly Delights, Bosch's canvas-bound fantasias are brought to sumptuous cg life and his 'cast of thousands' are given their marching orders. Zack's protagonist, Castus makes it to the turnaround stage and Raj - though weary - perseveres with his latest animatic in which he fine tunes his pace, sound and ambience.

Meanwhile, in other news, it would appear as if those rumours about students being a bunch of apathetic, de-politicised numpties are unfounded; click here for some peaceful, but no less heartfelt protest!

And finally - Happy Birthday Ruben!

Happy Birthday Ruben!

Have an awsum day.

Student March in London

This Wednesday some of CG AA student joined the march  in London.No,  we didn’t burn any buildings or smash any windows, but we did shout: No Ifs! No Buts! No student funding Cuts!
Unlike it was planned, we stayed in London till late, basically because of the traffic jam we ourselves caused together with the rest of 50 000 other student.

So to make a long day go faster we came up with some brilliant ideas.  We lot had to think of silliest challanges and Godwin would then say: 'Challenge .. Accepted!' And go to forfill his promise.
So that day he.. hi-fived a policeman (sadly I couldn’t catch that moment on time :D )
Huged a random person in the march saying: this is UCA love for you :D :D
And I believe there were ... around seven other great challanges he did. Maybe you (Godwin)  want to name it  here . 

Overall it was interesting but tiring experience. Lee Gavin said it’s definitely not the last march. So hopefully more students to join there  next time.

How to make Water...

Hello CG world.
I'm looking for a helping hand from someone really. For the current Group project, I trying to create a flowing river. I've tried a few things, such as RealFlow, Ocean/Pond Plane and the Ocean shader to create a realistic river with varied results.

I'm sure some of you third years have tackled water at some point, so does anyone (from any year :) ) have any tips or a link to a tutorial I could follow. This way I don't have to constantly go through trial and error to find a working water look.

Friday, November 12, 2010

FAO CGAA Yr 3/Dissertation Hand-in Dates

Now that your minor projects are fully underway, it's easy to lose track of your dissertation schedule; so, here are 2 very important dates with which you should familiarise yourselves!

Dissertation Draft Hand-In : Monday 22nd November/10am - 1pm/Faculty Office

Final Dissertation Hand-In: Friday 28th January, 2011 (details to follow)

Warner bros. news

Found this news article on bbc website. Looks very encouraging for the future of CGI in Britain! Take a look!


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Phil - Urgent - Space and Perception Essays

For my space essay, I was thinking of doing Pan's Labyrinth or Avatar. Also, I need a question for it. Can you help me which one I should do and what question I should have for it?

Also, for my perception essay, I have no clue on what to do on it. All the things that was told about it in the lectures and seminars have just slipped through my mind.

Maya 2011 Trouble: Mirroring


I want to mirror one piece on my town house, which I can do fine, but I also need to change the threshold? or the distance between the pieces.
The tutorial screen shot shows the box im in need of. Am I being blind or is mine missing? Any help would be good please :)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

First Year Roy Re-Booted!

CGAA First Year Roy has reset his blog - follow him @ http://cgaaucarochester.blogspot.com

photoshop question

This might sound stupid but ..does anyone know why photoshop won't allow me adjust the hardness of my brush? any help will be great.. :)

Want to embed flash files?

I found this helpful bit of code to embed your own flash files into blogger due to lack of blogger's ability to natively do it.

Just simply copy the code below and paste your file's web address in alter the size and there you go!

onedotzero_adventures in motion November 10-14

Hello all CGAA students.  You may already know this, but there's a film festival called onedotzero just about to start at the British Film Institute in London - check it out, plenty of interest on there, with an over-arching theme of 'utopias'.  It's only on until Saturday.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Improving your digital Painting with brushes

OK, this friday we're going to be heading into more complex use of brushes to bring your worlds to life. I created this Sky and rippled sea in about half an hour, using various brushes native to photoshop. Looking forward to the lesson. Photoshop Phill. 

FAO CGAA Yr 1/Unit 2/Space/Written Assignment Criteria Guide

See above - a guide to satisfying the essay criteria; again, I've used The Cabinet of Dr Caligari as an example of content; pay particular attention to the structure of the introduction; take note of how specific it is, both in terms of subject matter, investigative intent and sources used. The criteria is there as a guide to ensure your assignments are content specific and evidence-based. Use the criteria as a checklist - if you cannot approach your chosen example in this way, chances are you a) haven't researched your subject adequately, or b) there's simply not enough reputable/published information available.

Many of you are still submitting assignments that to do satisfy the basic presentation conventions of a written essay - see below:

  • Title Page

  1. Essay title/question
  2. your name
  3. Course and year
  4. hand-in date
  5. word count
  6. lead tutor of unit (Phil Gomm)

  • Contents Page
  • Introduction
  • Essay Body
  • Conclusion
  • List of Illustrations
  • Bibliography

Essay presentation

  • Use only one side of A4 pages
  • In black type clear font, (Arial) size 12
  • Text should be 1.5 or double line spaced
  • All pages numbered
  • Essay should be bound or stapled together
  • Plagiarism form completed

Finally - referencing your sources correctly - including any illustrations - is essential; go here for complete list of methods.