Category Archives: artwork

Show Reel August 2016

[Coursework]DJ52026AdvancedProduction(DegreeShow)Posters(A1)01Ragnarök Poster For DJCad Masters Degree Show

[Coursework]DJ52026AdvancedProduction(DegreeShow)Posters(A1)02(DevelopmentProject Development Poster For DJCad Masters Degree Show

I’ve completed my course work and am now on Job Hunt 2016. My feelings are extremely muddled to be honest and I don’t know what to say and how much to say. This is my first show reel and one that I edited for my Msc Animation & VFX degree show. The quality of the work I did in it is not to the standard that I want. That said, I am quite happy with how the demo reel turned out. I have a base format that I can refer to when I polish up on an updated version of my reel. Or reels, because I think I would need more than one to cater to different job positions and applications.

Show Reel August 2016


Going Live (Guess Who Face: Bertha)

I did some completed facial painting expressions for a Guess Who face whom I gifted with a severely shaped bob haircut suffering from bang trauma and named Bertha. I think I am going to have a lot of fun painting different characters and naming them. Considering how the Guess Who board will be in the background of the project and hardly ever in the main focus of the animation, I think it would be interesting to paint portraits of myself and the others in the class. I just hope they don’t mind that I’d have to plump their faces up in keeping with the chubby visual style.


Guess Who Face: Bertha (Neutral, Oooh, Ahhh and Judgemental Booo Expressions)

Bertha Animation Test

Going Live (He-Man On Rollerskates & Guess Who Concept Art)


He-Man On Roller-Skates (Concept Sketch)

So I completed a concept sketch of He-Man wearing roller-skates. I really had to hold myself back and sketch as true to the toy as possible even when I was sorely tempted to make him go full roller derby girl. I might be rather cruel to the memory of He-Man because every time I draw this character I want to make him exaggerate his masculine body shaper but still give him overly feminine features and gestures similar to how Arnold Schwarzenegger looked in Conan the Barbarian. I think I can take it further with this sketch later as a personal illustration and draw him with stripe knee socks along with elbow, knee and wrist protection pads. At the moment I can’t think of an appropriate derby name that will not offend transvestites or transexual people. Humour and political correctness is getting harder to balance nowadays.


Guess Who Board Face Concept Art

I also did more design sketches for the faces for the Guess Who Board. This is my first attempt but I stopped midway when I realised that I was going completely off tangent. As fun as it was to paint this, the angled tilt of the head as well as the addition of the neck and the shoulder just doesn’t make it a Guess Who face. So I am setting this aside for now and moving on to another style that would be more suitable.

Constellation Owl


Constellation Owl

This week has been very busy as in a few days I will be heading off to London for the Parallax Art Fair (!!). Exciting times and I still have plenty more to do. During the weekend I completed another smoke illustration of Zeus the owl. Zeus is a wee screech owl living at the Wildlife Learning Center in California. They’re not sure how he became blind and theorised that it was through an attack from a larger bird. In any case, a combination of blood clots and cataracts have now made his eyes look as if they are windows into the galactic universe. I can’t remember where it was that I first saw a picture of Zeus, but I was so smitten with his sweet face and incredible eyes that I got to work immediately.

I have to admit I did have another incentive for painting Zeus. Actually two incentives. The first was that I need to complete one more original illustration to feature at Parallax Art Fair London. I was also motivated by my own project Little Guardian which has hit a temporary creative rut. I am still sketching and researching different designs for the spirit character so this illustration is in part also a concept experiment. Since the spirit character is supernatural, it would be interesting to design it with constellation eyes that are similar to Zeus’s.


Zeus The Owl (Wildlife Learning Center)

I’ve also been running around getting prepared for Parallax Art Fair this weekend as I’ll be leaving Thursday night. Thanks to the guys at DJCad Make I had a vinyl sticker of my name logo made and ready to go in an hour. I think it will give my exhibition space a clean, professional look and I’m pretty chuffed about it!


Logo Vector Art For The Vinyl


The Finished Vinyl

I had trouble finding good name card holders in store or online and rather than spend more time searching for one it occurred to me that I had plenty of MDF wood left over from when I made the Chinese Zodiac Lantern Lamp. I used Adobe Illustrator to prepare the name card holder design and the laser cut file was ready in time for my booking hour with the laser cutter machine. I had forgotten how much I enjoyed working with the machines at DJCad make and the guys there are incredibly helpful and accommodating. I couldn’t complete all of my work within the first hour because I ran into other problems with the picture frames that I ordered and I had to improvise a quick solution for them. I do have a time slot with the laser cutter booked tomorrow so I’m confident everything that needs to be cut will be completed by then. The name card holders will need to be glued and painted after wards.


Lasercut MDF Pieces For My Namecard Holders


Incomplete Namecard Holder

The frames that I ordered for the large prints had inside mounts that were for the original size of the paper which was 483mm by 329mm. As the paper is imported from Japan their size of A3+ didn’t match UK standards which is 350mm by 320mm (in case you were wondering, yes I am putting the exact measurements on this post as a permanent way to make sure I don’t forget or lose them). So the first attempt the printer made with the original paper this morning ended in a sad crumpled print. He offered to cut the remaining paper to SRA3 size and print again. This time the prints came out perfectly but now I had a gap between the mount and the frame in the print. The best solution I could think of involved buying black mount board and using the laser cutter to cut it to size so it can fill in that gap.


Printed Qilin Image On Washi Paper (Paper Was Crumpled By The Printer)


First Dragon Print (Success!)

When I went back to printers at the end of the day to collect the rest of the prints I just had to try out the inner black mount that I had just cut. The part of me that wants perfection is a little bothered that the black edge at the top and bottom is thicker than the sides but I’m happy with how the entire frame looks with everything put together. The difference between the black and cream mount gave the overall look of the frame an interesting presentation so I’m not disappointed. Oh, I have not yet removed the safety cover for the frame yet which is why it is still tinted blue in the image. In summation, I was productive today!


Framed Qilin Painting

Little Guardian (Concept Illustration)


Spirit Character Concept Illustration (Qilin Version)

I revisited my personal project this week with two concept illustration of the spirit character. Both concepts are based on Chinese mythological creatures; a Qilin and Long (Chinese dragon). Chinese legendary beasts are described to be chimeric and they take on different physical attributes from different animals such as deer, carp, tiger or fish. Both Dragon and Qilin are symbols of benevolence, prosperity and luck, but they also represent judgement and righteous behaviour. The spirit character in my project is presented by its physical form (it house statue) and it’s immaterial form that better represents its personal character which is innocent and pure. The statue the spirit lives in by contrast should visually represent the spirit’s duty and resembles a fierce protective statue that Oriental cultures used to place in their homes to guard them from harm. I was toying with the idea of making each design a complete opposite in appearance. The gentler, immaterial aspect of the spirit manifests itself as a peaceful looking Qilin while its physical housing is presented as a powerful and strong Dragon. But now that I have completed a concept illustration of each creature…. I don’t think it would work. Back to the drawing board.


Spirit Character Concept Illustration (Dragon Version)

Character Design: Primordial (3D Sculpting Part Two)

I’ve made quite a bit of progress with the Primordial sculpt the last few days and I feel good about what I have done with the model so far. Since the last time I blogged I’ve lowered the number of points using Z-Remesher and blocked out the Primordial character’s muscles and shapes roughly. I went onto defining the head, horn and facial shapes before moving onto Z-Remesher again, this time to increase the points number in order to achieve a higher level of polish and detail. I also change the working material with one that I downloaded online named z98. I preferred this material as it improved the colour and ‘feel’ of the sculpt and helped to make it look quite impressive as well. Sculpting and shaping the muscles and head was an absolute joy and I was becoming more and more excited as the day progressed. Next up will be the teeth!

Screen Shot 2015-12-07 at 1.02.25 am

Using Z-Remesher To Lower The Number Of Points

Screen Shot 2015-12-07 at 1.02.37 am

Sculpting Muscle Shapes and Forms Roughly

Screen Shot 2015-12-07 at 1.24.54 pm

Shaping The Head, Tentacles & Back

Screen Shot 2015-12-07 at 10.00.31 pm

Curving The Front Horns & Sculpting Additional Facial Horns

Screen Shot 2015-12-08 at 1.54.42 pm

Z-Remeshing The Number Of Points Up & Changing The Sculpt’s Material To z98

Screen Shot 2015-12-10 at 9.04.32 am

Sculpting Muscle & Head Details

Screen Shot 2015-12-10 at 9.06.22 am

Continuing With Detailing & Defination

Screen Shot 2015-12-09 at 12.02.17 am

Close-Up Of Face Before Head Detailing

Character Design: Primordial (Concept Illustration & Turnaround)

Concept art painting time! My favourite part of any production process. I wanted to quickly conceptualise the angry and destructive personality of the character. I reverted back to my comfort zone and used the smokey black and white illustrative style that I am fond of. The head shape of the monster differs from the sketches that I was working on, I gave it another set of heavy horns along with a double set of mandibles. I wanted to make the character more intimidating and emphasise how predatory it is.


Primordial Concept Art

I also made the character’s model turnaround sheet; front, back, profile and three-quarter poses. This process too the longest time as I was particularly concerned with making him as anatomically correct as I am able to with my limited knowledge. Drawing his tentacles from behind was the area that I had the most difficulty with. While I was working on the model sheet for Primordial I started to consider sculpting and modelling in Z-Brush instead of Maya. The character was becoming more complicated and detailed on the model sheet and concept art so Z-Brush has become the best option for me. And also the most ambitious. So with almost no knowledge or experience with Z-Brush, I am now going to embark on my first 3D sculpting project.


Primordial 3D Model Sheet Turnaround

Character Modelling: Head & Torso

[Blog]CharacterModellingHead02Polygon Model of Character Head (Beginning of Face)

This week we had a more thorough lesson in 3D modelling with Sang using his character sheet. We began each character element with either a basic polygon cube or plane in Maya. But first we imported image planes of the character sheet to use as modelling guides. Using mainly the front and side view of the character, Sang introduced us to Maya’s (new?) Modelling Tool Kit side panel and taught us how to utilise it to add cuts, manipulate vertices and extrude faces in order to create the character’s torso and then his face. We ended at a place partially at the place of the skull.

I’m not sure if I would be able to use this process in Maya to create my own character as I had already decided to use Z-Brush.  SO after the lesson I had a short chat with Sang and he gave me some encouraging pointers on how to use Z-Brush to model the Primordial character.  He told me to familiarise myself as best I could with Z-Brush brushes, Dynamesh, Subtools, Polypaint, Spotlight and normal/displacement mapping.


Polygon Model of Character Torso (Unsmoothed)


Polygon Model of Character Torso (Smoothed and Subdivided)


Polygon Model of Character Head (Beginning of Face)

Character Design: Primordial (Moodboard & Concept Sketches)


Primordial Character Design (Reference Moodboard)

For the Character Design assignment I have my goals set to create a giant primitive monster. Visual references in the mood/inspiration board in the above picture are from Blizzard’s Diablo, Neon Genenesis Evangelion, Pacific Rim, John Carter as well as other various sources. I drew the concept sketches below trying to conceptualise a character that is ancient, primordial and destructive. I wanted it to have four arms with three fingers on each hand, an elongated body and no eyes.


Primordial Character Design (Concept Sketch)


Primordial Character Design (Concept Sketch)


Primordial Character Design (Concept Sketch)

My initial inspiration for the character was from Ridley Scott’s Alien (Xenomorph) creature which was conceptualised by H.R. Giger. I am fascinated at the concept of how creatures without physical eyes can still sense and navigate with confidence and in this case; a primal sort of malice and destruction.


Xenomorph/Alien (1979) Source: Tumblr

Robin Goodfellow

Robin Goodfellow

Robin Goodfellow (Mudbox Head)


We were introduced to Mudbox in 3D class over a week ago and touched on the basics of the sculpting  and painting software. I really enjoy using Mudbox but I think I should focus on Maya and Z-Brush as both programs require a lot of time and commitment. Just by opening the program and taking a look at the user interface anyone can tell that it is a lot less complicated and overwhelming than Z-Brush. We were given a model of a generic human male head and after playing around with the different sculpt and paint tools I ended up with a faun or satyr looking character who I named Robin Goodfellow.