How to visualize a digital character?

My character called ‘Contact’ is the digital face of the man in the room. Besides just having some fun, I was looking at how to represent a skin of circuits. There is an inner and outer material using the same UV mask which does not always behave as expected. Would love to explore this with more detail but think it might be a bit too much for my current system…

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Getting things moving…

Motion through Model 01 from patdog on Vimeo.

 

This was a test to look at how the model is working with motion and even though it is low resolution does the job okay. It makes some technical issues clear – gaps and glitches – that will save trouble with later renders. With this resolution I am already spending about 6 min. per frame and that is perhaps the most painful issue. The stills I will post later are taking at least 45 min for a HD render. As always, one step at a time….

 

Proof of Concept – Layers

This shot is to test the combination of physical 3D with generated environment. While it is rather flat and dull, it has helped me piece and place the various masks involved and will serve as the basis for further development.

Very helpful for this proceedure was this video from Blendtuts on green screen removal and Blender VFX’s excellent quick tip in masking.

Motion tests with Cycles

The material system in Blenders new render engine ‘Cycles’ works differently and was eager to try some things out – particularily the reflective & transparent surfaces. I kept running into artifacts (fireflies) which could be cured by increasing the sampling rate – the downside of which is it takes longer to render. The test here was done with 720p and a sample rate of 800…