DTC 335 Final

Final Project
WSU Vancouver DTC 335
Production Statement

The goal of this project was to model and texture a set of chess pieces and an

environment, and then animate a 1-1:30 minute scene based on a narrative drafted

first in storyboard format.

Modeling the pieces was a learning process, but every obstacle I encountered made

me want to learn more about how to build better in 3d. The knight was especially

challenging. After modeling the pieces, I animated them in Maya alongside the music

track I remixed from three creative commons audio sources so that they were timed

well together. Many of the key movements line up precisely with beats of the music. I

found that this really made the music and animation feel like a cohesive piece.

The rendering process took a lot of tweaking, especially when it came to getting the

lighting to work correctly with the Arnold rendering software. After that, it was mostly a

matter of patience. However, there was one major problem I encountered that

required me to re-render about 500 frames: the same material rendered differently on

certain models, so there was an inconsistency with many of the “ghost” models not

rendering as transparent, even though the material was transparent and I had

unchecked “opaque” in the models’ Arnold attributes. The problem was that I had

selected all of them at once, but I should have done it one by one and run a test

render to show each model, not just random frames.

Thanks to DTC 201, I was familiar enough with After Effects for the compositing of the

video to go smoothly. I created some text and effects in Photoshop and Illustrator,

imported the image sequence, and the rest fell into place.

Duration: 90

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