Learning Dark Arts

Come learn the art of 3D computer generated art and animation. This blog deals with the lessons learned and the art created by Robert G. Male using DazStudio from Daz3D. Also covered are the ancillary software, tools, techniques, and processes needed both before and after rendering in the 3D software.


Spell casting woman.

R.M.T.P. Co.


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August 25, 2008

Put Them in Their Place

Last week I spoke of verisimilitude and kind of got off track on what I wanted to impart about the idea. I had the example of an item that was scaled down and placed in a scene where it looked correct for the angle given, but from another angle it was all wrong. The reason behinds that placement were, firstly, to make things easy, and secondly, was because the item looked better incorrectly placed than it did in the correct position. That was the point that I failed to make. It's like in the theatre when you have something on the stage that is wooden, but to make it appear like it is wood to the audience it has to be dressed to appear that way at a distance. This is what I was getting at last week. In missing my mark I opened myself up to a bit of schooling about how to do things the right way.

I received a helpful comment from bobatt on last week's blog. I was aware of the functionality, but I had not been using it, so I am repeating it here. In DazStudio there is an option to view multiple cameras at once. To date I have put things in their rightful place, the realistic rather than purely verisimilitudinous position, by moving my camera around repetitiously. I did it to get my dancers' hand positions in my most recently posted picture, "Light On Their Feet". I think I have not used a four-window view due to my old computer. The old machine lacked the oomph to handle it as exemplified by the other troubles I had. Then, once you have everything where it should be there are two things to do--parent items to each other, and lock joints to keep everything in place.

Music: The Longest Day by Iron Maiden.

August 18, 2008

Verisimilitudinous Verisimilitude

Say that five times fast. This is something I wanted to talk about what I was on my little vacation from blogs. I also needed a picture to go along with it, which I just started last night and finished this evening--grrr, it took over twenty minutes to read in the file even with the few elements I had prior to the lights even. This image is titled "Light On Their Feet". What's so special about this picture that it illustrates the idea of verisimilitude? Not everything in that picture is as it appears. I'm speaking physically, or spatially. I am not however speaking about my--or the software's' inability to make things appear to touch the floor. That actually fails verisimilitude. Instead I am speaking about the items on the table and where they really are compared to where they appear to be.

The items on the table appear--from this angle--to be sitting neatly, if not centred left to right, on the table. However, looking at them from a higher angle or from overhead those items are nearly off of the back of the table. They are also elevated from the natural position they would sit in if it were reality and not an approximation. This picture isn't my most extreme case of items not appearing correct unless they were placed where they could not be in reality to appear as they do. For my Christmas/New Years picture I used a scaled down football trophy as a goblet on a bar. The trophy was not scaled properly to match the drinker's hand, nor was it sitting on the top surface of the bar either. So, what does this all mean? You've got me. It's just a phenomenon I've dealt with.

Music: Runaway by Me First & The Gimme-Gimmes.

August 11, 2008


I don't recall what it was that I had in mind to talk about today. It's a pitfall of having three or four topics planned out and one or more of them having more than one part. I could go back and look at the heads up I gave myself, and you the audience, back when I resumed blogging after my hiatus. I have a picture or two that I should put up in my gallery here at Artzone, but I'm not sure when I'll get to it. I have to say I'm not too happy to the changes made in how pictures are uploaded to the gallery. I seem to have to create the thumbnail twice or more before the software remembers I supposedly saved it already. I much prefer making and uploading my own thumbnail. This is especially true when it comes to those times where the image includes nudity or something worthy of a controversial tag. That way I can even do something for the thumbnail that isn't a part of the actual picture. I know that sort of defeats the purpose of a thumbnail, but at the same time it is ever so useful.

The other problem with the upload is where do I put the picture's name? At least one picture had no name because I had some kind of trouble with it, and I had no luck, that I recall, changing the name after. It's just true I guess that the more things change they more they suck. Speaking of sucking, in the reverse, I have some photos I'll eventually add to my gallery too. They're pretty cool. I went in and I upped the saturation, and I fiddled with the light and contrast, and I did a wee bit of gamma colour correction to them. They look pretty sweet if a little hyper-real. I was inspired to do these pictures by a bunch of HDR photos that I browsed through a couple weeks ago. Some of those other people's pictures were a little too surreal so I didn't push my own manually tweaked pictures nearly as far. Hopefully everyone can see what I've done sooner than later. For now, talk to you next week.

Music: Wildest Dreams by Iron Maiden.

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Robert G. Male

Name: Robert G. Male
Location: Ontario, Canada

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