Monday, 9 September 2019

New painting commission

Here's a 2 foot by 2 foot painting commision done for someone who is in the Royal Lancers.  Also although its not obvious in the photo the yellow in the text and flags is actualy gold metal paint that reflects. The dark red took 16 coats to get an even coverage and took a fair old while.

Wednesday, 15 May 2019

New Tutorial Released: The Gaea to UE4 Workflow

Following on from the success of Gaea:: A Practical Guide, my new tutorial 'The Gaea to Unreal Engine Workflow' is now out and available for sale.  This 4 1/2 hours of video (along with project files) take us from an empty scene in Gaea to a real time high quality terrain in UE 4. Showing the correct way to import Height maps and other control maps from Gaea into the Unreal Engine allowing you to leverage the level of control you need.

We will be creating the landscape shader in passes creating a distance shader using distance textures created with the help of Quixel Mixer & Quixel Bridge, through to a Parallax Occlusion  material and finally adding in displacement.  In this tutorial All textures used are from the Megascans library, and supplied with the tutorial is a link to a free access to the Megascans free assets along with Quixel Mixer and Quixel bridge for 30 days.

This  is aimed at terrain arts, Quixel users, UE4 users and of course Gaea users. Although World Machine users can also benefit seamlessly from the non Gaea specific videos.  It is assumed that you are comfortable to some level with Gaea and know your way around the basics of UE4.  The UE4 version used is 4.22 for this video.

Also included are two extra videos, one on setting up height based and slope based masks and another (from an alternate take) that goes far deeper into the theory behind the conversion and settings for taking Gaea height maps into UE4.

Includes project files for Gaea, Quixel Mixer (minus the assets of course) and UE4 (minus the textures).

If you would like it direct from me for $35 (thus saving a bit on the Gumroad price) , send $35 to me on PayPal using  making sure to include your email address you want me to send the videos and project files to.

Running time is 4 1/2 hours

Chapter 1: The introduction

Chapter 2: Creating our scene in Gaea, and exporting all the maps we will need (along with a few extra ones just in case)

Chapter 3: Adjusting someof the output control maps fomr Gaea using Photoshop

Chapter 4: Creating our previs scene in Quixel mixer and exportign our distance textures

Chapter 5: Quixel Bridge, setting it up for use with the Unreal Engine

Chapter 6: Creating our Material Function layers in UE4 with Prallax Occlusion and 1st pass at our main Landscape material

Chapter 7: Continuing our 1st pass at the Layered landscape material in UE 4 and adding in a distance fade via the creation of a distance fade material function for our distance texture set.

Chapter 8:  Adding in texture variation to break up any tiling on our main landscape material. Also importing our height map from Gaea correctly and setting up the landscape to work with our Landscape material.

Chapter 9: Creating a displacement material fucntion and adding displacement to our Landscape material

Chapter 10: Finalising our scene in UE4 and fiilising our displacement to suit the scene.

Chapter 11: Continuing t fine tune our material and scne in UE4

Chapter 12: An extra video covering how to create A slope based mask material function, a height based material function mask and how to setup tri planar mapping as a material Function you can use in other materials of your own.

Extra Video: This is an alternate take of the height map import section into UE4 I included as I went into far more depth in places as to 'why' things work and are correct in this way of working. Covering things like how the scales between the two programs work and how to ensure your terrain is the right size.

Friday, 10 May 2019

Gaea to Unreal Engine workflow development tests

Here's some screen shots of a real time Unreal Engine scene that I'm using to develop a shader setup for Gaea terrains.  This shade shows the non displaced shader using parallax occlusion mapping and maps for masks output from Gaea.

This is basically a dev / dry run before I record the final sections of the next tutorial video that will provide some rock solid useful workflows for Gaea (or even world machine for that matter) to UE4.

Wednesday, 24 April 2019

Poster for Danny John-Jules 1 man show & UE4 tests

A few things of late that I've been up to:

1st up here's a poster I designed a while back for Danny John-Jules one man show, which starts in the UK this october.

...and also some test images from a Unreal Engine 4 level I'm using as a testbed for some shader work to nail the perfect workflow for use of Gaea assets in both a game and visual FX pipeline.  The idea for this was to use only a very simple set of geometry and let the shader do the heavy lifting.  

I've been Awarded Autodesk Expert Elite Status

I forgot to mention that about a month back I was awarded Autodesk Elite Status. This is rather cool and it allows me to help out people with some of my somewhat extensive experience.  Things have been rather busy on the personal front with my father having to have a serious spinal operation (hence why I didn't mention it until now.... I've not had a moment to myself till recently.

Wednesday, 13 March 2019

New Tutorial Release :: Gaea A Practical Guide

Quite recently Quadspinner released Gaea a next generation terrain creation application.  I'd been lucky enough to be allowed to use a very early version to help out with a troublesome freelance gig I had in at the time and it quite honestly made my life far easier.  Now, as some of you know I've not released commercial tutorials for quite a few years (I lost count of how many I did for various firms including FXPHD etc.....)  So what has changed and why have I released this one?

Its quite simple really, I stopped being excited by any of the recent applications that came out (although I did rather like substance designer and painter when I gave those a whirl.)  Gaea genuinely excites me and more importantly makes me WANT to work in it.  Its the same feeling I got with Mudbox and Zbrush many years back. In fact the title of the tutorial is a tribute in a small way to my very first DVD tutorial 'Mudbox:: A Practical Guide'

This will be the 1st in a series of tutorials in increasing complexity that will be coming out.  This tutorial covers GAEA in its entirety, covering every node and with a  number of examples as we progress. There are also two projects, a simple 'get you started making something that looks cool one' and a far more complex one for you to get your teeth in.

It runs at 3 3/4 hours long and can be bought right now form gumroad, or if you prefer, for the next 2 days only you can buy directly from me (and as a result get £5 off the asking price).

So spread the word of this amazing application and maybe even buy the tutorial ;)

If you would like to buy it diret fomr me for £20 then simply use the following link and once I have the money I will send you a direct link to the tutorial videos and files:

A quick video I did explaining about it...

All the following images are just direct screenshots from the GAEA interface and not proper renders.

Thursday, 27 December 2018

Wayne's Review of 2018

...And I thought 2017 was a bad year!! Well holy shitballs it wasn't even in the running compared to 2018!  All sorts of very bad things happened on the personal front including my father being in an out of hospital and a close family member going missing for a month. (Along with a LOT of other stuff I cant outline for various reasons.)

But career wise the year started with a couple of speed sculpts. I was intending on keeping this up until 'life happened' and sort of got in the way a wee bit.

Over the course of the year I did a number of painting commissions (3 of which I can't show until next year some point).  But ones I can show included a one of Batman, a Shawn of the Dead one and a portrait of a couple.

I was interviewed for an article by Dice on working in the games industry. (Which was a bit odd as I'd not worked on site in the games industry since 2014!)

The happiest part of the year was getting married back in April to the love of my life Louise. We had a huge wedding and party with people attending from all four corners of the globe.  It was a truly astoundingly amazing time.

I celebrated 25 years doing 3D this year and I still count myself as on the never ending journey of learning. Its one of the things I love about this industry... you can never say at any point that you know it all.  I've been lucky enough to work with some amazing people and on some amazing projects and look forward to seeing what next year holds.  Quarter of a century doing this isn't bad going I think.

I also did a full Sci Fi level in the Unreal Engine as 'something to do' when work was thin on the ground.  I was later asked by Epic if I minded them putting it on file to be possibly used for publicity purposes (I think my reply was 'you sure about that? You've not mixed me up with some bugger else?' lol.)

So what do I ask for next year?  Well being realistic, simply that its less shit than this year, even if only by a little and that some interesting projects come along. Also that the personal life crap takes a backseat this year so I can crack on doing what I love.

I hope you've all had an amazing Xmas and that you have a truly terrific 2019.

Wednesday, 7 November 2018

UE4 Sci Fi level mess around done

Although it still has a few niggley problems I'm considering this done now so I can move onto other stuff. This was basically just me messing around when I had a few minutes here and there. I wanted a clean look and some Kubrick-esque style framing and lighting (as I'm sick to damn death of everything having to be dirty and knackered looking, everyone and their dog seems to be doing that in substance painter, substance designer these days.)

Anyway here are a few screen shots:

You can also seem them and a couple of videos over on my Art Station account HERE