Thursday, May 1, 2008

ENDS 170 Project 3

This is our final project for my ENDS 170 course with professor Wei Yan. I had the great oportunity to learn several of the basic techniques in the powerful programs including Autodesk Revit 2008, Autodesk VIZ 2008, and Photoshop. These three programs were something completely new to me this semester. I was oblivious to any of the possibilities these programs carried with them. At the same time, I was intimidated by the programs because of the great potential they carry, but the more I worked on the programs, the more familiar I became with them and the more comfortable.
In this Final Project, we had to take our previous design from Revit (Project 2) and convert it into a DWG file in order to import it into VIZ. Once the file was imported into VIZ and after long hours of practice on the VIZ tutorials, we began working on the project. It was pretty challenging at first to get the materials to come the way I wanted them to but I was finally able to get results that I wanted.
In this ariel view, I was trying to show all of the buildings in my complex as well as part of the bay. I feel like this rendering is not as succesful as my next rendering because of the appearence of the material. The walls in my building are made of an Arch & Design material using the "polished concrete" template. I then went in there and changed the bitmap of the concrete with an image of polished stone I found in Google. I added a Bump map to add some texture to the material but not too much because I wanted to keep the polished look. I also had to add a Mapscaler to the walls in order for the stone texture to show up, and I had to resize the map in ordere to hide the tiling effect of viz.
That is probably one of the weaknesses of VIZ. It cannot create a texture that is continously flowing. At least, I do not know how to do it. It would be great if VIZ could generate textures and materials without the tiling effect. Sometimes it can be helpfull but a lot of the times it is hard to make the material look real.
This image is from the exterior looking up at the buildings and the landscape of the site. Adding materials to the buildings and everything else was pretty challenging. I like the way some things come out to be very realistic, but I do not like the fact that my inexperience in the program shows up in the quality of my work. I would have liked to know all the loop wholes of the program in order to create a more convincing rendering of the scene. For example, I would like to learn how to create a realistic grass texture using the various maps and tools provided by VIZ.

My Flyaround Movie:

This is a video generated by me using Autodesk VIZ 2008. It is part of my final project for my ENDS 170 class. In this particular video, I was asked to do a 10 second flyaround 0f my building which was designed earlier in the semester.

This flyaround goes all around the complex to show its characteristics. The concept I tried to use in the way the camera takes off to show you around is simple. I wanted to prettend like you were on top of some sort of flying machine. You suddenly begin to lift up and you can begin to see the whole complex. Then the journey takes you around the buildings and around my sculpture. You finally see the whole complex and you begin to decend from where you began the journey.

My Walk through:

This is the video I produced for a walkthrough of my gallery. I really wanted to make it seem like the viewer was actually going in to my gallery. I tried to simulate some of the human characteristics, by looking around and focusing your attention when you see a frame on the wall. I also added picture frames in my gallery, to simulate some of the things that would be displayed in an actual gallery. Since this is my design and my video I thought it would be fun to put picture frames of my friends and family. I could have easily made the frames full of famous paintings by artists like Picasso, Van Gogh, Pallock, and many others, but it was my intention to have frames that represent me.

I was pretty pleased with my video, but I was still not completely satisfied. Because of the lack of time, I was not able to take several sample renderings to make sure the quality of my work was at its best. I found several disturbing errors in my video that I would like to fix at a later time. Even though we will be out of school by then, I want to make my video a little bit better by improving the lighting on the interior and the amount of frames I use to make it in order to slow down the animation. I used omni light for the interior, but because I also had a mrSun light, I had to change the intensity of the omni lights to a very high setting. Once I began animating, I changed the mrSun to a spot light in order to cut down the rendering time, but I forgot to turn down the intensity of the omni lights. I believe if I was to change the intensity of the omni lights by half, I would be able to achieve a better video.

Other than that, I am very pleased with this project and the program (Autodesk VIZ 2008) that we used. I was really able to explore the capabilities of the program. I really enjoyed turning Revit Design into a VIZ rendering that would look as realistic as possible.

The program has much potential, far beyond what I learned this semester. I wish to continue interacting with the program and experiment with several of the tools provided by it.