Unreal Scene - Highly Flammable Divination Moon Shop

Work In Progress / 17 September 2021

I received a great deal of support from the Unreal Slackers community on Discord <3 There are so many of you who have helped me progress on this project, thank you! 

Bear with me now, it is my bedtime. Adam Dencker, here is that asset gym you wanted to see. It is coming along, lots of lamps.

Here is the updated lamp now in the scene. Mmm, relaxing modeling.

Not a great picture, but that is because the only other one I have is a huge change to my scene!

I decided my scene was struggling from some foundational issues, namely it wasn't grounded in space, the colors were all too saturated which lead them to confuse the viewer. So I took some time to draw over the top and resolve some of the problems.

I then revised materials, and used a Quixel cliff rock to anchor the piece in place and removed all distracting elements from the scene background, including my banyan tree :( 'twas a sad moment.

But paid off.

And while I may not get the waterfall shaders in for a while, I have a good idea of how to do them so I've decided to add it in. The light value underneath the building helps to make it look as if it is floating and light.

I'm pleased with my studies so far. My next jump is going to be checking out the modeling plug ins in Unreal that might allow me to block out a scene in engine. That step would save a lot of import/export time in my workflow.

Have a great night, I'm going offline for system maintenance.

It's curtains for you!

Work In Progress / 14 September 2021

Working on cloth simulations in Maya for the curtains in my scene. I didn't realize quite how long it would take but I now have a fairly acceptable base curtain for my scene in Unreal. Now I'm thinking how to shade it so that it has a gossamer quality.

I also added in some point lights to the interior so that I could start seeing a little of the hanging lanterns in the scene. I want to model them out but more important right now is to get the materials and the vegetation in. Specifically, need to put in time on making the material for the roof in Substance. Not entirely sure how it will tile so I'll need to start out really basic.

I'm also struggling on the crates a bit. I'll get there.

You can see the curtains in engine below.

Hey, Adam, I didn't get a chance to take shots of my asset gym yet. It's on the list.

Mmmm, modular design...

Work In Progress / 05 September 2021

I want to switch gears to creating textures, but first I modeled out the planter, began work on the ropework of the nets, and imported the arch tracery into the Unreal map. 

Tracery, I just adore some lovely tracery!

Work In Progress / 04 September 2021

Mhm, that fancy wood carving bit around the windows/cabinets/stainedglass, or rather...as is often the case, stonework, tracery. My home is gradually evolving into a castle full of the stuff, I might have to tone it down...but not today!

Here is the updated Divination Moon Shop! Two big updates

I imported all models into Unreal Engine.

This took me a while as I individually brought each mesh to the origin in Maya, deleted the history, and exported to FBX for Unreal. (Do you prefer obj or fbx for your Unreal scenes?) Then I placed them on top of the original block out that was imported a big single mesh. This is great, because I'm at the point where I can work on the asset gym and just reimport the mesh with new texture/detail/materials etc.

Asset gym imported meshes below.

And then the tracery my dear, yes the tracery.

First, I sketched on top of the concept in Procreate to get a feel for how I interpreted the structure.

With confidence that the idea was functional, I modeled it in simple planes. This reduced the amount of geo to work with and sped up the process. I could easily move meshes backwards and forwards to get the desired overlapping interactions.

I delayed adding this because while it is important it seemed like a bit of luxury detail focus. I specifically waited until the larger shapes were in, and the bulk of the less exciting elements were blocked out.

I adore the way the tracery block out looks. It adds much needed heart and soul to the model.

EDIT: It is a bit late and I'm checking off for some delightful sleep. I forgot to include the beautiful original concept by Lok Du, so, rather hurriedly tossed in, here you go!

Getting Unreal now.

General / 21 August 2021

I'm bringing my meshes from the asset gym to the origin, ensuring the pivot point is where I want it, and exporting to FBX one by one. I've heard OBJ is less error prone than FBX but it isn't requested by Unreal...so here we go again on the testing of the FBX versus OBJ.

I then started importing the meshes into Unreal, so that when I update the meshes with detail and material, it will easily repopulate my scene. I'm starting to really like the look of it. Unreal import in progress below, you can see the overlapping blockout and imported individual static meshes. 

Happy First Crash Day!

General / 20 August 2021

A year ago, Maya crashed on me for the first time. 

A year goes by so quickly, and I'm grateful to you for helping me come so far. I've had a hard time putting into words without feeling cheesy, the emotion I get when I think of the awesomeness of the 3D learning community, and also of my family, and friends, and the artists who are long gone who figured out things like chiaroscuro, or perspective, or even the creators of procedural texturing and real time game engines. Thinking back on the day my mother stayed up late into the night programming the Commodore 64, sending a small boat floating up and down the screen, "Look what I did!" she said to my dad after hours of hard work, "Look!"

"Wow, that's amazing!" he said, "Now what?"

And because my mother didn't have a drive on which to save her creation, they powered it off and the boat is left only in my memory.

It is small victories, and small failures in life that stack up eternal, and, I know to my core that I stand on the shoulders of giants.

So when I say thank you for helping me grow, it seems barely enough. Thank you.

Shiny roof = no lumpy roof

Work In Progress / 14 August 2021

I'm excited about the roof, but let's face it...I had the most fun blocking out the floor lamps on the landing. :D


The roof is shiny because I set the material to Blinn to help identify lumps. While I don't mind lumps in my mashed potatoes, I do mind them on my organic curvy roof. 

  I admit, this entire time I've been dead set on working macro to micro...and I wanted a break so I put some TLC into these enchanting floor lamps.

  I also, have a lovely modular floor started.  Sculpting in ZBrush is starting to feel like riding a bike. Subdivision levels are making sense now.

Lovely Modular Floor

So far this Environment Art for Unreal class has been pretty helpful, it seems to tie a lot of the pieces together in a way that sticks. Either that or I'm getting that sweet sweet muscle memory.

Happy modeling.

Divination Moon Shop Update

Work In Progress / 06 August 2021

Extruding the roof highlighted some non-manifold geometry hiding in the rafters ;) To that end I cleaned up the roof and adjusted so that the two roof pieces fit together now. I've decided to let the two roof pieces smash into each other. I believe that will give me more control of the texturing later. I can cover the seam up with a strip of trim.

Here is where I'm at in Maya. I included a shot of the roof wireframe. If you have a critique or feedback to help me improve, I'd love to hear it.

Divination Shop Blockout in Unreal 5

General / 03 August 2021

I decided to go with UE5 on this after listening to my teacher Peyton Varney's feedback on his tests so far. He says, overall pretty similar to UE4 with the exceptions of lumen and nanite. I'm still going to design this for games, so high to low poly baking etc.  I've got beautiful hanging colored lights in my concept and am excited to set up emissive materials for them, see how that goes. 

Making progress on the shop.

General / 31 July 2021

My scene block out is finally coming together!