Monday, August 03, 2020


It's been a long time since I've posted here.
There are as many reasons why I should have as to why I haven't. The main reason is that I'm busy and there are quite a few unfinished things that aren't worth blogging about really. I know it's quite fashionable to add every detail of a process but I'd rather just produce an end result and get the conversation tracking backwards and forwards from that point.
In short, I've been in the garden making it look nice, it sort of does. It's a nice place to be with a cold beer and no phone. I'm still learning the finer details of Blender and Inkscape but nothing much to show really. The hardware studio was finished then I changed my mind and I bought a couple of new things so it needs re-ordering and cables all need to be re-routed so no music from there yet. Once it's running properly I have a patten that's waiting to be turned into a track.
I've just decided to remix a friends track, that's just a project file at the moment.
So there you are, I'm doing lots but nothing is done.
I think I need another week off to get up to date.

Sunday, May 03, 2020

Time Enough

If only my real truck was this handsome.
I have once again spent more time than I should on trying to get a picture to work. This one sort of does so I'm leaving it there. I'm only doing this because I promised myself I would and now it's done.
My next little distraction is the same kind of thing but rendered in a comic style. I have dumb puns to make. The scenes will be set up in LeoCAD and then Toon rendered in Blender. This is where I want to be. It's a lot of effort but what else am I going to do until the next Bitwig Studio release. I really want to get my hands on the new arpeggiator.
Anyway, I'm off to bed, there's work tomorrow. Being a key worker is good but there's no time off for fun.
Until next weekend when it's a bank holiday.

Sunday, April 19, 2020

It's Toon Time

This weekend I have mostly been playing with "Toon" shaders in Blender.
The Toon shaders give a model a more comic look which is very different from the photorealistic render of the last blog post.
I followed a YouTube tutorial to create the above shading and I'm pleased with the results. It looks quite sketchy which is the kind of effect I'm after. I've always wanted to make my own comics. Just short 3 panel things that reflect short instances in my life. I have enough experience with LeoCAD to build scenes and put Lego MiniFigure people in them to represent people I know. I'm even considering taking photos of friends and creating vector representations of their faces to add to the MiniFigure heads, just so that people recognise themselves.
It's all down to building the scenes now which will be a lot of fun.
You never know, you might spot yourself in one of my comics.

Saturday, April 04, 2020

Going Nowhere And Getting There

This is my first attempt at 3D model compositing.
I'm quite pleased with the result, it's not perfect and I will get better but it at least looks how I imagined it would.
The model was made in LeoCAD and exported to Blender to be rendered with the shadow. The background image was adjusted in GIMP before going into fSpy to act as a Blender camera reference. The model was lined up in Blender and after being rendered the image was taken back into GIMP to be overlaid and composited with the background photo.
To think all this was learned in about 4 weeks and all achieved with free software is quite mind-blowing, even for me. I have lots of ideas now that the method is nailed down.
Staying in just became a lot more fun.

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Onwards, Onwards

I'm still on the move.
During the week I had one day off work due to Coronavirus but then it was back to work the next day. I'm a key worker in a key supply chain so the truck stays on the road even if in a reduced capacity.
My car passed its MOT also which means it's on the road for another year. This was very good news amid all the bad.
My 3D learning is gathering a little pace too. The above image, although like others posted here is a step forward. Importing LeoCAD .obj files never included the details printed on the figures or bricks. This has now been solved by importing the native .ldr file into Blender and exporting the .obj from there. That in itself was a task because I needed to add an addon to Blender and also add the LDraw library to the importer. A little trial and error got me there in the end.
My next task is to add LeoCAD files that have been rendered in Blender to photographs. I've watched a tutorial so I'll go through it again with Blender open this time.
Expect results very soon.