Hey there - it’s been busy here the last little while…I was redesigning and putting together our new AREA newsletter, talking to Nick Gaul at Weta, and most recently, the cool guys over at Warhorse Studios.
Scouring through the online forums, I came across an interesting set of tools for Maya. froTools and froRetopo are a collection (or consolidation) of existing Maya tools with added custom functionalities that the author, Froyok aka Fabrice Piquet, had written for himself. Now, his tools are used by everyone from his classmates to artists at Blizzard. The following is our conversation about his motivation for writing custom tools, juggling his time between his personal game project 'EXIL' and keeping up with an intensive games-focused school program, ans well as what new ideas are cooking for future fro- tools.
British animation studio The Line produced an animated short titled "Everything I Can See From Here". Traditionally reliant on 2D graphic applications, The Line experimented with 3D and used Maya to help bring part of a character to life.
In my daily AREA activities, I get to come into contact with lots of talented artists, high-end technical users and hear about some pretty interesting projects. One such project is The OceanMaker, headed by Lucas Martell. To sum it up, The OceanMaker is an animated short film that is looking for some online love (and funding). Nowadays, with crowdfunding being so ubiquitous, it is hard for everyone to get an equal chance under the spotlight and make cool things happen. I was able to talk to Lucas about The OceanMaker on what it is like to pull together a team of people and jumpstart an idea.
So you are looking for a tablet that you can doodle with using a stylus, but you miss having a full PC behind it. Why not combo them? In this blog entry, I take a look at the Lenovo ThinkPad X230T...which is pretty much that combo.
Last month, Pedro Conti released an animated short "One More Beer", which featured a large and hairy Viking (a beautifully rendered one, that is). I tried to get a hold of him, but he was finally kicking it back on a trip across Thailand and China. Pedro is back in Brazil now, and we undoubtedly talked about the Viking, past projects, collaboration with Dario Picciau and life-changing work with a 5-man studio out of Sweden called Meindbender.
Wes McDermott (aka the 3D Ninja) created an iPhone app – CameraMan for Maya - that allows you to drive a Maya camera or any object, via the gyroscope in an iPhone (or iPad). CameraMan was nominated at the 3D World Magazine CG Awards 2011 for Software Innovation of the Year. I had a quick chat with Wes to ask him about CameraMan and how he got started with the idea for it.
Got to catch up with Mashru Mishu on his latest work, the HAWKEN MECH! In addition, Mashru shares some useful modeling techniques in Maya (just noticed he's still using MJPoly Tools!) and talks about stuff he's been working on lately (Hawken, Dishonored, VERTEX, etc.).
So as it turns out, living in the countryside is not without benefits -- for example, I got to meet Paul Neale in his home! Paul lives in Uxbridge, which coincidentally, is a shorter trip than going to the Toronto office (the former Alias HQ). Anyway, we had a good chat and here is the edited version ;-)
Luis Santos, the Portuguese artist behind the Mudbox splashscreen image featuring "Edsel Flat", has been using Mudbox since the days of Skymatter.