I mentioned in the comments of a previous post that our little old lady neighbor ended up in the hospital from a fall last week, and we’ve been looking after her Chihuahua since then. She’s not a particularly well-behaved dog and is not really socialized to people other than her owner. She went uncharacteristically nuts on me and chewed up my hands when I tried to fasten the leash to her harness last night. I mean the berserk kind of nuts, like she was channeling Cujo or something. That was a bit of a surprise, because she’s normally shy and annoying, not vicious.
So, right now I only have partial use of my right hand, and I’m on light duty until it heals up. It’s currently at less than half of normal strength and my dexterity is a bit shot. I think the bite hit or came pretty close to a nerve. The dog seems to have mellowed out a little bit today–I walked her around the block without her trying to take a chunk out of my ankles, so that’s something.
I can’t believe this. I’m a 375 pound bald guy with a goatee who is routinely mistaken for a biker or a convict by strangers, and a 10 pound dog kicks my ass. Granted, she took me by surprise and I was going out of my way not to hurt her, but still…I got my ass handed to me by a Chihuahua. I’m never gonna live this down.
Okay, some project updates!
My last 2 revisions and test builds of the Zoom were time well spent. I need to shave an additional millimeter off the length of the belly plate, move a few glue flaps around, and do one more test build to see if that did the trick, but that’ll need to wait for my thumb to recover some of its strength. Those modifications will pay huge dividends with the truck, van, and other vehicles.
Texture redetailing for the Percheron and Crotale is still underway. I expect to have some screenshots/renders to share as soon as we’ve put the Zoom to bed.
Reminiscences From The Sickbed
Since the injury to my right hand currently means I suck at doing almost everything for the moment, I decided to just do some housekeeping and backing up on my computer that I’d been putting off for months.
While doing that, I found some goofy personal projects I worked on last year. Since I’d shared one recently (the helicopter gunship in a previous post), I figured I’d share another one here.
I’d been working on a sort of cartoony Lego-ish block figure for a few years now, and I had forgotten how far along it actually was. This was my fourth revision and the closest I’ve come to what I really wanted.
I had started with a “naked” figure, which is technically not actually naked, but the principle applies:
The hair is removable, like a helmet. Hats and helmets are supposed to fit over the hairpiece. All of the limbs are jointed and swivel in at least one axis, including the hands. The torso and legs plug together. In practical terms, this means parts are completely interchangeable.
This is an alternate version in swim trunks and a one piece bathing suit. It was a logical extrapolation from undergarments. I’m also mixing up the hairpieces in the following images to show the different colors.
Okay, we’re into full-on costume territory now. I had some Marines in woodland and digital camouflage:
I had intended to do similarly styled xenomorphs, facehuggers, a xenomorph queen, supporting characters, and a powerloader as well. I don’t remember why I didn’t start on them. I probably ran out of time or a programming gig came up.
And here are some Spacefleet redshirts, showing one of the several other ethnicity options that I had done:
According to my notes, I was supposed to do red, yellow, blue, and green variations of those guys, along with a white and gray flag rank variation. Also, variant hairpieces with pointy ears, or separate stick-on pointy ears.
I also found some notes for doing a small town sheriff (Winchell S. Donutt), his deputies (Nina Eclair, Russell Bear Claw, Duncan Donutt), an assortment of small town folks, some white-robed cultists who worship Escarganth The Space Snail, a high priest of Escarganth in black robes with a snail hat, and a giant spider-legged robosnail exosuit with a little bubble in the front through which you can see a tentacled alien snail working some levers. Yeah, I know, I’m kind of bent.
I had also apparently planned to do a zombie themed set, because I found some zombie skin color studies amongst the various Photoshop layers in the texture. The goofy placeholder face here made me chuckle:
The world these block people lived in was supposed to be built out of a variety of blocks, in keeping with the theme, but I recall not being super keen on folding up a billion paper blocks, so I probably would have ended up splitting the difference and going with a more Playmobil-esque playset paradigm with some interchangeable parts.
That was a pretty funny blast from the past. I’m thinking about revisiting those guys later in the year and modifying their geometry so they can be 3D printed at Shapeways. I haven’t decided if I want to go for the full color sandstone option so I can use the existing textures, or print blanks in a smoother material and do inkjet decal wraps, or if I want to convert the painted texturing into actual surface relief and then hand paint the 3D prints. I’ll worry about that later when I get around to it.