Scene Reflection

This part of the module was pretty fun and I am glad I was able to practice my modelling and finding my way around Maya. I learned alot during this task, like using deformers and trying more complex shapes. UV mapping was difficult especially in models with alot of extrusions. I am still unsure in this and will need more practice, but overall my modelling in maya has improved and I feel more confident.

Final Outcome

After doing a few renders to fix the floating table issue, we have finally got a finished piece! Really happy with the end result it looks great. I will probably have some aspects of this on my showreel and perhaps have time with textured.

The Narrative 

The brief stated we had to create a scene with a narrative and I think we have done just that. The room is set up to look like it is being used, the objects scattered and cluttered. We new what type of pirates we wanted and in what timeline and did alot of research in 17th century styles. We looked at all different types of concepts, videos,movies and games to decide on what items a pirate would possess. At a glance I think it is obvious what this scene is.

This is a good shot of the table and chair where the captain would sit reading his map and counting his money. With the big windows and curtains created by Rebecca it looks really well. I love the reflections in the windows. I am really glad we fixed the table legs since this is like the centre peice and would have been so noticeable! The steps up to the table gives it a nice appeal instead of just a flat room, it also shows just our luxurious our pirate is.


The camera pans over the table so you can see everything the Captain has. We wanted it set out to look like he was just using it. The scales have money and diamonds on it with a slight tilt. The quill is sitting on the scroll as if he was in the middle of writing something, with the ink bottle beside. He has a glass and bottles with different liquids for drinking. We stuck a knife into the map as if he was marking something out and the compass is beside it. The telescope is at arms reach so he can look out the window at anytime. We put some books on the table in a messy pile that he has been reading.


The came pans as if going down the steps and shows a good shot of the globe, aswell as seeing objects on the table at a different angle.


Love the bookcase! Robert modelled the shelves and I came in and rearranged the books and scrolls. Rebecca also added her bottles and gave them a glass texture to break it up abit. Plus  I added a skull and hook to give it a piratey appeal.


Rebecca really did a great job with the weapons rack. She created different styles of swords and a gun and even made a pirate hat! If anyone wasn’t sure who owned this room they would now. My barrels are also in the shot with Roberts lanterns and Potrait. I thought I would make it croaked to look like the room moved alot from stormy seas.


Love this shot when the camera pans over the door. I made Rebecca’s swords in a cross like we saw in many different concepts and pictures of pirate ships. The windows on either side of the door really brings it together.


The bed that I had modelled was positioned into the corner with Rebecca’s Ncloth draped over it to look unmade. Kristina modelled the bedside cabinet and we put things on it that would be at any beside – a candle, watch, books and even an eye batch. Robert modelled an open book that we set on the bed like it was just discarded.


The next shot also has things that would be seen in a ‘bedroom’. It has a chest of drawers with opened doors and clothes hanging out, like he had hurriedly gotten ready. This shot shows the nets that would be hanging on the walls. There are several in this room that would have been used to hold things down if the seas got rocky. Robert modelled a parrot cage that is sitting on top with feathers inside. There is also crates that has lots of bottles the pirate could have purchased for the voyage.


This is probably my favourite piece in the whole room, the treasure chest. Rebecca created this and spent so much time on the design and all the diamonds and coins and chains. The glass texture with the blue tint really makes that pop out. Love it!


This shot is all Kristina. She did great work on the chandelier, the ropes, the beams and the nets. she arranged them all and I think it really added to the theme of a pirate ship.


Issues- Floating table

After the first render, when putting it together we noticed something. The Table was FLOATING! It wasn’t until the ambient occlusion was rendered that we seen the shadows under the table leg, making the gap from the ground really obvious.

Because the table is a big part of the scene and there is a few close ups we just had to rerender again. We had the time and decided to do it, hopefully we will get it right next time! We also took this as an opportunity to tweak the reflections on some of the diamonds so they were not too white.

floating table.JPG


Composition is a way of guiding the viewer’s eye towards the most important elements of your work, sometimes – in a very specific order. … Focal length, aperture, angle at which you choose to position your camera relative to your subject also greatly affects composition.” – Reference Link

Robert started to place the camera into position, moving it around the room. After he got the base movement I took over and finalised it. Rebecca also helped me with the smoothing and using the Graph Editor.



Rebecca came across this video of a scene with the camera moving around it. We all really liked this and will do something similar to our scene. We also really want to try a 360 camera but we are finding it hard to get a tutorial for Arnold.


Image Link [Accessed 2nd Nov.2016]


Tag Team!

Modelling a Feather 

There was a few objects that we modelled together. Kristina originally had the feather and Ink bottle but due to time she was worried she would not get it finished, so she asked us to help. Rebecca took the Ink bottle and I took the feather.

I used a tutorial to help me create a simple feather. I then UV mapped it using Planar.



Modelling a Bed

One of the models assigned to me was the bed. I had created the base, mattress and Pillow. We wanted the bed to be unmade so I tried to squash the pillow using soft select to get that look that it had recently been used. When it came to creating the blanket I wanted to use Ncloth. I was having bother with the settings and couldn’t get it to look right. Rebecca took over and made the blanket for me. She also UV mapped the whole thing.


Modelling a Cabinet

Since the cabin is also the living quarters for the Captain he would have drawers to keep his personal belongings in. I looked at antique cabinets from the 17th century to see the style. I noticed that almost all of them had round bevelled feet. I seen this image and liked the style of it. Also  the locks on this happened to be very similar to what Rebecca designed on the treasure chest, its a sign! We decided the handles would be round circles like what we saw in another reference.


Image Link [Accessed 30th Oct.2016]

We want one of the drawers to be opened so that we can have cloth hanging out using ncloth, as if it is a clothes drawer. I created the cabinet starting with the cube polygon. I scaled the vertices in and out to get the corner shapes of the top and bottom. I then created edge loops and selected faces to extrude out for the drawers. I used bevel on the drawer edges to give them more shape. The drawer that is opened was extruded out more than the others. I then selected the top face and extrude down to get the inside of the drawer. The legs and handles were created separately.



For the UV map a selected Automatic and it looked pretty good. I started to stitch edges together but there was so many UVs and it started to get distorted I reverted back to automatic, selected layout and normalise. The squares looked well and tidy so hopefully the texture will be fine without it being stitched.


Modelling a Telescope

A pirate is a sailor who needs a telescope to see across the great ocean! I was watching pirates of the Caribbean and I noticed Captain Barbossa had a small hand held one that extends out. I took that as reference and made our pirate one.

This was pretty easy to model. I started with a pipe polygon and and extruded the faces making it thicker at the top. I also give it a bevelled round each at the bottom.  I then duplicated the shape, scaling it smaller and placing it next to the bigger shape. I repeated this until I got the look of a telescope that can expand and retract into itself, as show below:



For the UV mapping Automatic seems to work well. I tried to stitch in places but it went distorted and looked better left alone. I selected layout and normalised the squares to get them straight. There is a seam but it can easily be hidden at the bottom of the telescope.


Modelling Weighing Scales

We decided that a pirate would need weighing scales to count all their gold, so I looked at some ‘Scales of Justice’. I imagined it would be gold and metallic and also a centre piece on the Captains table. We could even have some coins on it and tilted slightly. I looked at some images for reference.

scale concept.jpg

Image Link [Accessed 30th Oct.2016]

I created the base by scaling the vertices in and out to get the shape. The top of the scales that hold the bowls was made by using the Curve deformer on a long rectangular shape. I made sure there was enough edges for the shape to bend. The bowls which the coins will be set in was made starting with a cube polygon. I selected the smooth tool until it was round. I then selected half the faces and deleted them, then scaled the shape until it was thin. I selected the faces on the bottom of the bowl and moved them up slightly, using scale to give it a flat bottom.


I UV mapped the scale in seperate parts to make it easier since there were different shapes. For the base I used the Planar and stitched the sides together. For the bowls I used Cylindrical and the curve and hanging hooks worked well with using Automatic.




Modelling a Book

Book Tutorial

Really liked this image I came across. It looks very old time with the leather bound covers. I also like the idea of having books like this stacked on the Captains table, the way there are different sizes and rotated at different angles. I could imagine these books holding information about the pirate journeys or about the places they visit.


Image Link [Accessed 30th Oct.2016]

For our scene we have planned to have a bookcase (which is being modelled by Robert) with all different types of books. I followed the tutorial shown above to create this hard back book. I went for this tutorial because it also shows how to properly UV map it. Also it has an old fashion look to it, with a hard back cover and those curves sticking out along the spine. When the books are added to the scene this can be scaled to different sizes and thickness to look like different types of books.


The book had been made Low poly so the map was not too crazy. I did the cover and the pages separate since they will have different textures, the same with the straps on the spine.



Modelling Barrel and Crates

Barrel Tutorial

I used the tutorial above to create the barrel. Starting with a cube polygon I scaled it to be thin and long like a wooden plank. I then duplicated the same plank several times. I combined the ‘planks’ and used the deform Bend to slightly bend them. I then deleted the history and added another deformer, this time curve. I curved the planks of wood in a circle until I got the barrel shape, as shown below:

After the main shape of the barrel was made I put the metal rings around them and also added a lid and bottom. For the crate I kept it very simple, using scaled polygon cubes and positioning them in a box shape (as shown). I wanted the crates to have gaps between the wood so that you can see what it inside them.


Since I kept it to basic cube polygons with no extrusions the UV mapping was quick and easy. Automatic worked really well, all I had to do was stitch the box shapes together.