After a long hard road I finally have the first complete video. While this is a major milestone for this project, I fully intend on continuing to develop this piece through the remained of the semester and address a few issues I had to compromise on to meet my deadlines.
Enjoy! (Recommend watching in 1080 HD)
I've spent the last 4 weeks in the rendering and editing stages of production. With only a few more weeks left before the project is due for a grade I'm finishing up editing the final video and rendering the last few scenes I need.
Below is a trailer style intro video for the project's final presentation.
This week I scheduled a sprint to render several scenes by the end of week 5. Here is an example of the illustrative portion of the thesis video.
After a bit of research I took a little bit of a detour this week. I discovered a workflow that would allow me to rather effortlessly render my thesis animations in Keyshot. Given the experience I have with Keyshot, and the ease with which I can make changes to lighting, I've decided to use this as my renderer.
Below is a test video of one of my animations at about 80% quality, (a significant jump from Mental Ray). Lighting this scene took me considerably less time than in Mental Ray, and, being a PBR renderer, Keyshot provides much higher quality materials.
One drawback of exporting to Keyshot is that the expression I've written to animate the wheels seems to break. I'm currently investing my time into working out this issue.
This week I focused entirely on rigging the car to prepare it for animation. While not a full simulation rig, this set up will allow me to quickly key the vehicle through the "on-track" phase of the video.
My goal for week 4 is to have begun animating and have several play-blasts from Maya to illustrate my shots.
After a long break away from thesis, I came back to this semester with a few re-prioritizations for the track.
The level of detail I was aiming for in the original concept to fully flesh out an RIT themed race track. After considering time restrictions, I came to the conclusion that I needed to LOD of the track wasn't the primary focus of the project.
The revised track loses the elevation changes and the auxiliary track assets. (render quality is not representative of the final image.
After an insane 3 week sprint I was able to finish modeling the Formula X car and create a livery to showcase at my mid year thesis review presentation. Below are a few Keyshot renders featuring the preliminary Formula X livery, (again continuing the RIT theme from previous assets).
Also below is my current Thesis Design Document showing alot of research and studies I've done during the project, but haven't been able to post until now. BE WARNED, it's a bit of a read...
With the end of the semester soon approaching, I've been focusing in on finer details and refining the active aerodynamic surfaces on the vehicle.
Spent this week further refining the lines of the body to reflect the final shape. I also incorporated the front suspension configuration, cockpit canopy, and adjusted the proportions of the vehicle. Here are a few Keyshot renders of my current work in progress.
This week I began production on the actual Formula X car. My goal this week was to block out the car's major elements and get an understanding of the form's overall volume to allow for adjustments moving forward. My goal for the rest of this semester is to complete the model short of the cockpit interior, and the high detail components that will be highlighted in the final animation.
This week our instructors allowed us to receive critique from the other thesis group. For my thesis I received a lot of feedback about the track and the renderer I'm going to use.
In regards to the track, many of my classmates expressed concern about how I was going to create the terrain that occurs around the track. Having given this very little consideration I plan on researching some displacement mapping techniques suggested by a classmate.
The other concern is the renderer I plan on using. Throughout the course of this project I have been looking at several different rendering software and using other projects to experiment with them. So far I've given Renderman and Vray a look with mixed results. More research is required.