Here I am, being creative at 1AM!on January 9, 2012 at 1:42 am
*squeals with excitement* I’m up at 1AM and I’m OH SO HAPPY! HAP HAP HAPPY!
Ok, I’ll calm down and tell you why. I have been working non-stop this week on 3D Backgrounds for my comic series. Yeah, I’m better at modeling than drawing buildings in perspective. Plus, it takes less time to model my stuff and take screenshots for backgrounds. That way once the model is finished, I just have to render the scene for the background, toss my characters INTO this nice 3D perspective and BING! Next scene!
Now, I don’t have a lot of money … in fact … I’m as poor as you expect a dirt poor artist to get. I haggle at Goodwill that’s how poor I am right now.
Anyway, I digressed. The fact of the matter is a lot of 3D Programs out there sure aren’t cheap. Unless you’re a hard core penny pincher and you sniff out the free stuff. So, not long ago I ran into Google Sketchup. The regular version is free … the pro version costs a little. But, right now I only need the free version.
It’s insanely easy to model with … beats Studio Max in how quick it is to model with and I like that. I hated Max in school. In fact I hated it so much I swore off 3D modeling as any part of my future whatsoever. Enter … Sketchup …
I saw a simple tutorial while messing around on YouTube and my jaw dropped. That easy huh? Then saw some tutorials about how to export the models as line art for comic book backgrounds. I was intrigued seeing as how drawing backgrounds was my weak point and I got the program. I messed with it a little bit. Did a few models. Made a 3D Tardis from Dr. Who as a kinda gift for Mark.
And, well then I got so busy with other things and got down on myself … (Yes, even with my ego I do self loath at times) and kinda quit for awhile. But, for the heck of it I started modeling Chrissy’s castle for my comics series. I figured, why not? Got so slap happy with it I decided, why just export it as line art to color later? This stuff looks so good I can use it with the colors, shading, shadows, and textures! It’s awesome! And, it’d save a lot of time too. Especially since I don’t wanna pay a colorist to help with line art. Since no one was helping me anyway even if I flashed cash at them. Ya jerks.
Anyway, I’ve been having a blast. I have the castle almost complete. It’s looking nice. Mark says it’s beautiful. As a perfectionist I don’t think I can say that til I’m done with it. I was working on some of the indoor stuff when I realized … *GASP* … Sketchup does not have something Max has. Something vital to my backgrounds … lights! There’s no light sources! Only the sun for the shadows. I saw a few tutorials on how to prevent the ceiling of the model from casting a shadow to let the sunlight in … but that doesn’t help me with lamps, light-bulbs, campfires, candles, magic spells blasting everything within a ten mile radius, ya know … that sort of thing. So, I did some more searching … and found a program that works with Sketchup that costs … $800 bucks! Yeah sure, there’s a 30 day trial version … and I could pirate … but why risk my freedom? I am now up at 1AM doing research into trying to find something free that does what I need. And, via the Ruby Scripts with Sketchup I FOUND IT! A free ray-tracing rendering program called POV-Ray! Oh boy, the learning curve! Took me all of an hour to figure this one out. I’m ashamed. Shoulda been instant … but I am tired … yeah I’ll blame it on that.
Anyway, there’s a Ruby script that works with POV-Ray called SU2POV. So I downloaded the ruby script and after being frustrated for some time because it didn’t set up in the folder correctly so it didn’t even show in the plugin’s drop down menu … ergh … I got it to work. Downloaded and installed POV-Ray and it’s BEAUTIFUL! I got it working after a little bit of tutorials reading and it renders night scenes with reflections and everything! I’m so excited now I can’t sleep!
I’m going to be up all night long working on this! Eeeeeeee!!!