Monthly Archives: February 2012

Photoshop exercise

I frequently do little Photoshop exercises just to warm up, especially when I’m suffering from texturing block, and most of them end up in the recycle bin after they’ve served their purpose. I thought I’d post this morning’s exercise for the fun of it.

2 reasons: it’s one of the goofiest exercises I’ve done, and because some of the cardboard boxes in the storeroom props set from 2007 have Barve Megafoods markings. And just to segue from there into the realm of backstory, I frequently work with basic backstory outlines in my head while designing models, and these boxes weren’t an exception. It all kind of comes at me fast, and it’s not like I sit around for hours trying to come up with this stuff–it literally just kind of pops into my head, and most of the time I’m pretty good about filtering that stuff so customers don’t start wondering if there’s something wrong with my head. 😆

In this case, I think my brain was trying to come up with as many vomit based puns as possible when I was texturing those Ambient Elements cardboard boxes in 2007. Barve Megafoods used to be Chunderson-Barve, which was the merger of Chunderson Foods and Barve Products, 2 competing companies owned by Ralph Chunderson and Chuck Barve. Now, Chuck is kind of an oddball character–his big dream was to engineer a boneless fish/chicken/pork substitute that could be aquafarmed, and it wasn’t until well after his death that his descendant Charles Emesis Barve IV finally nailed it and named the resulting abomination “Chucken” in honor of the family patriarch. Fast forward to 2012–I came across this hilarious photo of some sort of disgusting looking fish when collecting texturing references, and I immediately thought back to the Chucken backstory and decided that was going to be the subject of this morning’s Photoshop exercise.

Digital clay!

I found another fun new toy, Sculptris. I was looking for something simple to use for occasional character modeling, and weird organics are a lot easier to block out if you’re using a “sculpting with clay” sort of paradigm.

I ended up with this silly little alien head in about half an hour of semi-randomly messing around:

The toolset is pretty intuitive. I didn’t need to consult any documentation to get that far because the tool names and the way they work are pretty clear if you have any background in messing around with clay. Pinch, push, pull, smooth, crease. I like that.

At some point, I want to delve further into this program and try something a bit more ambitious than Mr. Lumpyhead up there. The thought of eventually being able to whip up whatever organic figure I wanted and send it off to be printed is kinda fun–I’d never have to bemoan the unavailability of some specific figure I wish I had again.

Now, if I had a time dilation machine, I could get in all the practice I wanted without impacting anything else like work, sleep, or social contact.

Quick health update

Payday arrived, and I was able to visit a walk-in clinic yesterday morning. Turns out a large part of the severity of my symptoms over the past few weeks was due to a case of bronchitis that followed on from the cold, so it wasn’t the sudden worsening of my allergy-induced asthma that I feared it was. I’ve been prescribed antibiotics and a new bronchodilator, and should be my old self again soon.