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Jessica Dinh's Avatar
Old (#1)
Hey guys! I am going to try hand-painting textures on some low-poly wells here. I've done some hand-painting on a couple props before, but I had really small texture sizes so this time I'm gonna give myself a little more room and make it look nice for port I'm going for WoW style proportions, textures, and colors. Also, this will be my first attempt at tileable textures, so here goes haha. Here's a sheet of concepts I came up with, as well as the 3 I've chosen to go with (the two with green dots and that one single image):




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Here are my models, created in 3ds Max. They are not exact replicas of my concepts, as I was kindof working on designing as I went haha:

443 tris:



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866 tris:



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820 tris:



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So the plan is to do these wells in order from top to bottom (least favorite to favorite design, heh). I'm hoping they get successively better as I learn from each one!

Crits and comments on concepts and models appreciated. Next step is the unwrap on the first well.

Thanks!
Jessica

Last edited by Jessica Dinh; 08-17-2011 at 02:20 AM..
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Maph's Avatar
Old (#2)
Cool start, although I would have loved seeing nr 5 being worked out. Silhouette on that one is pretty freaking awesome.
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Jessica Dinh's Avatar
Old (#3)
Ahaha! Really? I personally think it's just kinda weird, haha I went crzy on that one. But thanks xD
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Jessica Dinh's Avatar
Old (#4)
Alright, so I am unwrapping this piece, and I'm wondering which way is better: should I quick-planar that well top, or break it up into pieces and stack the shells? If I break up the shells, this will create more vertices, so I guess my main question is whether or not it's worth it to create more vertices in order to save texture space. I actually have quite a few instances of this across this well (and the others too!), so I think it would be a good thing to know before I unwrap the whole thing haha. Another big place where this is occurring is the floor beneath the well. To stack, or not to stack, that is the question!!



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Thanks!
Jessica
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Rick_D's Avatar
Old (#5)
think about how you will do ambient occlusion, whether you want a butterfly seam etc

also use more polies, this is 2011
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Jessica Dinh's Avatar
Old (#6)
Ahh! I completely forgot about AO Rick, so thank you for reminding me. This really helps me to decide which pieces should be unique, and which to stack. As for the tricount, I'm really trying to challenge myself to create textures that will speak in place of geometry I know it all looks pretty crappily simple right now, but I'm hoping that when I get to texturing, that will be resolved. It's not something I've tried before, so I'd like to give it a shot haha
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gilesruscoe's Avatar
Old (#7)
Lookin' good, textures will be nice to see once you start them
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xXm0RpH3usXx's Avatar
Old (#8)
as you are saying youre going for a handpainted look you might want to edit the geometry a little and make it more curvy...
its only straight lines right now, which doesnt give muhc character (or life) to the model
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Saman's Avatar
Old (#9)
I agree with xxm0rphh3usXx. You should add more polygons to your model, you can always remove unnecessary polygons later on. Nice sketches btw.
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Bart's Avatar
Old (#10)
Those sketches are nice I will have to say also that investing a couple of more polys will make a huge difference. Looking forward to seeing some hand painted textures
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Jessica Dinh's Avatar
Old (#11)
Ah, thank you guys. Now that I look at the models, they do seem pretty generic so I will take your advice and add some more polies for character!
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Jessica Dinh's Avatar
Old (#12)
Mesh update: added about 200 tris to help out the silhouette! Critique and comments welcome



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Jessica Dinh's Avatar
Old (#13)
Got it packed. Should I go 512 or 1024? I'd like to do 1024, but is that kindof outrageous for something this simple/small, or is it acceptable especially if I'm trying to make some really nice textures for portfolio?
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linkov's Avatar
Old (#14)
Jessica, I think you should probably decide for what kind of game you making these wells. Even if there is no real game, it will help you with your final specs - tri count and texture resolution, and maybe you'll re-think some of your design choices.

For example: if you making this well for 1st/3rd person game, then your polycount is quite low. If its for some top-down perspective game, RTS or something, then 512 or 256 texture will be fine, but you might want to change your design completely, because player will be seeing only this massive roof, which is not that interesting really.
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gsokol's Avatar
Old (#15)
Don't worry too much about texture size. 1024 would be fine. If you change your mind, you can always shrink it down, but you can't do the opposite.
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Jessica Dinh's Avatar
Old (#16)
Thank you Linkov, that really does help. I'm thinking of this being in a 1st person sort of game, with a big emphasis on textures. Now that I think of that, it's not so hard to decide what texture size to go with xD And that is true gsokol, haha. I could always shrink it down! 1024 it is:



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Critique and comments welcome!
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Isaiah Sherman's Avatar
Old (#17)
What might be stronger as a portfolio piece is to in fact figure out what kinds of materials you're going to use, then create tiling textures based on that. Tiles for the roofing, wood, concrete, brick, etc. Make several 256x256 sheets and maybe some 512x256 for some horizontal texture that would be good for repeating horizontally / vertically to act as trim textures.

You can get a much higher rez looking image with using tiling texture sheets.

Also, is there a reason why the object is so low poly? Sure, this forum loves low poly stuff, but why not make it a high caliber hand-painted project that will make it stand out amongst the hundreds of other hand-painted projects you see?

The nice thing about using tiling textures if you can have a total shit UV sheet so long as the final product looks good.
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Jessica Dinh's Avatar
Old (#18)
Hi Halasi, I really appreciate your critique. I am going to try tiling in this project - it was my plan from the beginning. However, I must say that the whole topic of tileable textures confuses me immensely even after having done much research on it. So if I am going about uv layout incorrectly or anything it is because I am diving into tileable textures without much sense of where I'm going. Still, I feel at this point, that it is the only way I'm gonna learn how to do it.

What I do understand is how to make the tileable texture itself, but then my question is - what to do with it? Do I still layout my uv's like I regularly would if I were going to be painting everything uniquely? Or do I stack as many shells as I can? (which is what I did) Why do you say to make it 256 x 256? I was just going to make some tileable sheets that were square-shaped and duplicate them around in my uvw sheet up there. I didn't know the dimensions of the tileable texture mattered.

Or do you mean that I should have several different uvw sheets, each filled with their own tileable texture, on top of which I stack the pieces that belong to that material?

Or do you mean that I should create several tileable textures, each 256 x 256 (or rectangular as you said I might have to in some cases), then arrange them all into one final uvw sheet? And then unwrap and stack my uv's into the textures? In that case, would I just eyeball where to stack my shells? Like, 'oh, that looks like about 256 x 256 pixels right here, where my cobblestone texture is going to be'. Am I making sense?

Last edited by Jessica Dinh; 08-20-2011 at 04:12 AM..
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linkov's Avatar
Old (#19)
Jessica, there is a well inside Stormwind city, in trade district. And, perhaps, some other places too. Its quite lowpoly, and probably shares textures with nearby buildings, but it looks and fits naturally with surrounding area because this well is part of the composition. A filler piece noone cares about. Taken out, it will not be a piece of Art for someone to be proud of.

Consider this. You're making a portfolio piece. You need to make it look good on its own. Noone will be imagining your well within some larger environment. So, if you doing it for some 1st person game, spend time to polish you mesh. Add more triangles, play with forms. Right now its still blocky and not so interesting really. Textures might fix it, but there is no reason for not trying to support it with silhouette.
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Jessica Dinh's Avatar
Old (#20)
Thank you linkov, I see what you mean. I actually do plan on building a little town scene around this soon; regardless, I want everything in the scene to be interesting and able to stand on its own as a portfolio piece. I will take this concept back to pen and paper for awhile, until I come up with something more interesting haha. Perhaps I was trying to take this too fast, trying to understand textures and uv's and whatnot, when my concept still needs work. First things first! I hope to post soon with some better silhouettes.
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Wells's Avatar
Old (#21)
re: texture size.

ask yourself, do you need that many pixels for the amount of detail you're putting into it?

generally, when people put 'hand painted' in the title of the thread, they mean WoW style. Which does not need that much space. by all means, use whatever size you want for a portfolio piece, but keep in mind that if you're not using the full potential of those 1024x1024 pixels [which is a lot of pixels to paint!] it can ruin the piece in an employers eye.

at the end of this, try reducing the size and see what is lost. keep reducing until there's a significant loss in quality. this will help you when next you have to decide what size the DIF should be.

Last edited by Wells; 08-20-2011 at 07:33 AM..

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Lazerus Reborn's Avatar
Old (#22)
Well, Well, Well. What do we have here then.

It's nice to see the variation in the designs, seems your bridging two cultures?

Pretty clean and efficient model with a good uv to boot. Cant wait to see your texture.
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Jessica Dinh's Avatar
Old (#23)
Thanks Sectaurs, that makes sense. I will use a 1024 but keep that in mind if my textures aren't doing the size justice. Thanks Lazerus
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Isaiah Sherman's Avatar
Old (#24)
The way I work with tiling textures I actually have a library of texture to choose from before I even start unwrapping.

Hopefully this helps you some. This is how we made 99% of all the environment art in Infamous 2! Hell, pretty much any environment in any game uses this. It lets you get assets looking really high res with some basic 256 or 512 maps. Of course, in-house shaders with some more features like strong vertex color support with height maps does a lot of the work.

There is always more to learn.

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Dan!'s Avatar
Old (#25)
to piggyback on what Haiasi said-knowing the technique he suggests you could paint the textures of the materials you need first and then UV the obect to fit those tiling textures.

edit: this is a redundant statement.
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