Shawn Driscoll's Computer Graphics Blog

Object modeling, texturing, lighting, rendering, etc.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

What's Old is New

That would be cool if one of these was ever built. Oh, wait! One was built. It's in Pueblo, Colorado.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Vintage Rohr Aerotrain

Found this old publicity photo of a vehicle from the past. It's not in the best shape.

FotoSketcher only made the image worse, I'm afraid.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Luxology Is Twisting My Arm (Again)

In a good way though. Uncle! Uncle!

I got an email from Brad, hinting that I haven't bought modo 601 yet. So I waited, just like I did when my trial of modo 201 for being a Carrara user expired. And sure enough, I get another email just now saying that the modo 601 upgrade is 40% off. And since I've been wanting that new SSS shader editor, I PayPal'd him back.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

I Forgot the Sheep

Back in the Sinclair ZX81 days, one of my favorite artists was (and still is) John Harris. This render is very much based on his mural proposal for Sinclair's building.

Modeled in Hexagon.
Textured and rendered in Vue Infinite.
Birch trees by Martin Frost.

Here is my '70s illustration version.

For fun, someone should color in this one.

And a hand-drawn version.

And no. I didn't trace it. :)

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Extreme Postwork on Vue Infinite Render

After rendering a realistic scene in Vue Infinite, some extreme postwork can make things really interesting.

Moving a Building in Vue Infinite

Just me goofing around at modeling a house from a photo and moving it from Detroit to the desert. The forced perspective render is done in Vue Infinite to match the angles used in the original photo.

The final image with sharpen filtering applied can be seen at Renderosity.

Texture Studio 1.14 can be found at this site.

Polygon Smoothing (using baby steps)


Three polyline edges placed near each other will create a curved surface when smoothed. The closer the edges are placed together, the sharper the curved surface.

Ayleid Ruins (HD full version)

This is a video of my modeling of an Ayleid ruin from Bethesda's Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. Several of these are found in the RPG game, but in ruined condition. My model is in a little better shape, I hope.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The Cantons of Vivec

I've been flying around the cantons in Vivec, taking pictures of the architecture. It looks like a cool modeling project to do for a scene in Vue Infinite.

These fascinating buildings are found in the game, Morrowind.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Leaving Las Vegas

I had to learn some Photoshop to mask out the motion blur for this Aerotrain render. I thought I could use the z-buffer to get a better result. Will keep trying.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Los Angeles to Las Vegas in 2 Hours via Aerotrain

A tracked hovercraft vehicle speeds across the desert at 150mph.

Aerotrain and track modeled in Hexagon. Painted in 3D-Coat. Rendered in Vue. The mirage effect was me painting a mirrored surface across the Vue terrain so that it would reflect some of the sky during the render.

This render shows the elevated track. Desert shrubs were created by Martin Frost.

Moved the Sun for this shot.

Friday, June 1, 2012

The Rohr Aerotrain Travels Through Escondido, CA.

Here's one visualization I did so far of the Rohr Aerotrain for Shonner. I'll do more renders if I have time tonight, depending on my schedule.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Version 2 of my Rohr Aerotrain

Version 2 of my Rohr Aerotrain, modeled in Hexagon 1.21. I've added some door details and used 3D-Coat 3.7.11 for its new paint job.

This is just the shell of the vehicle. The rest of the Aerotrain parts will still be the same.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Safety First

Finished work on half of the concrete yard. The figure is just for scale purposes. I may end up changing some scales now that I think about it.

Maybe this ramp area could be used as a jacuzzi?

Thursday, May 17, 2012

'60s Modern

This house popped in my head while I was looking through screenplays yesterday. I quickly modeled it in Hexagon and did a quick concrete paint job in 3D-Coat. This is a test render in Vue.

I'll work on the landscaping and swimming pool for it next.


Here is the pool so far. It will be half above and half below ground level, with a glass wall facing the house. Steps will lead up the sides of the pool from either end.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Should I Begin Sculpting or Continue Modeling?

What the heck is this?

Just something that certain TV watchers saw 45 years ago for the first time.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Another Reason Why I Like 3D-Coat

Another reason why I like 3D-Coat is because when I report a bug to the programmer, I see this posted a week later on Twitter. There's no arguing involved about possible end-user mistakes. There's no blaming of what hardware or OS is being used. There's no, "Oh, it will be fixed in our next pay-for release."

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Just How Big Were Their Brains?

My first time playing with Sculptris for a semi-new project I thought I'd start on next. Yes, it has something to do with Nazis and aliens and the Great War (1915 - 1945).

Monday, March 19, 2012

Did the Germans Use UFO Technology?

Back in July of 2010 I put this model in mothballs. I have some ideas on what to use it for now.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

The Nazi Engine That Could

I'm blowing the dust off this Nazi armored train NURBS model that I want to add to the scene and animate as well. I've emailed the people that came up with the concept years ago and finally got an email back saying as long as I'm not selling it or anything, blah blah. So I will finish this up (hopefully tonight). It's only in the scene for maybe two seconds or three as it zooms in front of the camera.

I'm changing the path of the dirigible slightly for another animation test and I'll turn on lens flares since I forgot to do that the last time.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Building a TV Set

Hak mentioned my missing TV frame. Here is a quick one I modeled just now. I'll render it in modo with different lighting on it for the different brightness used for each clip. Who knows, maybe it will work?

This is modeled from my 1980 13" Toshiba TV (minus the rabbit ears and the UHF ring, since I have something fairly cool and more modern now called coxial cable for my TV channel reception).I've streched the width of the frame though because it needs to be 640 x 480. My TV has more of a square shape to it. Note that TV shows don't even fill the entire screen on my TV anymore. I rarely watch any TV, so this device is more of a museum piece.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

A 2-Second Wipe Demonstration (with commentary)

Just seeing if I could break Pinnacle Studio 12 Ultimate. I'm sure I broke a few Hollywood laws in the process.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Deshaker is my New Best Friend

Deshaker 3.0 is amazing. It even works on CG footage. Why CG footage would have camera shaking in it in the first place is beyond me. Huh, what was that? My last render had what in it?I attempted to remedy that problem here.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Robot Explorer of Alien World

I'm getting better at using Pinnacle Studio 12 Ultimate. Or not.

720 x 480. But can be viewed at 1280 x 720 HD (that's crazy talk!).

CG rendered in Vue 10 Infinite. Lots of postwork. Lot's of free time.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Beavis, I Have Seen the HD Mountains

I've spent the last week taking a crash course in digital video editing and converting. Everything I thought I knew before the training was wrong. I had more questions after finding some of the answers. A lot of trial and error was involved. A lot of Bing searches. A lot of forum reading. A lot of "free" video conversion malware to watch out for.

And a lot of taking notes, so I have a reference to go back to and to add more solutions to that I find from experimenting.

This all started when my dad asked me how to make a DVD using his Mac. I had no idea, but told him to look for something called iMovie or something. Well, he found iDVD in one of his folders. I have no idea how to use a Mac, so he did all the button pressing. I just made suggestions of how I would make a DVD if I was using any generic computer.

Five minutes later, he was watching his burned DVD on his TV.

So then I had the video bug. Only I didn't have any videos to start with. The differences between NTSC and HD and MP2 and MP4 and DivX and DV-AVI and WMV and... And getting the aspects correct and the FPS and the bit-rate and the audio Hz and the audio sync and the progressive/interlaced setting...

It's amazing any videos get made right. But 99% of HDTV viewers at home just press the zoom or stretch buttons anyway when they watch movies. They don't care about people with fat heads on their screen, or tops of heads being cut off. All that money they spend on HD equipment and they just want to watch their DVDs.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Lost Survey Ship Footage

A quick preview quality (some OpenGL quality, too) animation from Vue 10 Infinite. Trying out the cinerama format. A widescreen version can be watched on YouTube.

Yes, I know. It's not quite as exciting as an Underground Racing video.


I tried recording as MP2 instead of with MP4 for this version. It's 720 x 480 instead of the original 720 x 400. So the text came out better at least.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Alien World Outpost Concept

I'm a few hours into the beginning concept for this outpost on an alien world scene I plan to create in Vue. The structure was modeled in Hexagon and then UV mapped and painted in 3D-Coat. A few gravel and concrete textures were mixed with some brown color added for the "base" paint. Then a dark color was painted (by hand) in the concave areas. And a light color (with spec turned on) was painted on the outer edges.

I forgot that I probably could have done this on the fly with 3D-Coat's new concave painting. But I wanted to see if I could do a more sloppy job of applying natural wear to the walls. This is a screenshot taken from 3D-Coat. This will also be the first time I attempt a Vue animation that's longer than five seconds. Ha ha.

There may be some match-moving involved if I have the right footage of desert landscape.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Focused Vue

Used a ray-traced blur in Vue to allow for the eye to be in focus. Lens flare done in Vue.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Blur in Vue

The blur was generated by Vue during the render.

What the heck. I had to add some postwork. Lens flare done in Photoshop.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

An Alien World to Visit

I keep having visions of an alien world landscape for the last few days. I will have to make some models for it and see if I can recreate the scene in Vue.