Saturday, January 30, 2010

3D Manpower: guy-candy unlimited

Gay heroes ... Jarrat and Stone once more ... and a couple of male nudes: 3D art lends itself to perfectly to this kind of work. I bless the day when I looked over Mel Keegan's shoulder and glimpsed the interface for DAZ Studio 3 for the first time. That was back in August. It's coming up on six months now, that I've been doing this art, and ... sometimes it feels like I've been doing it for years, and other times it feels like it's been a few weeks. I have a couple of things left to get a handle on in the basic Studio 3, and then the only thing left at this level of the software is (gulp) animation.

Now, I'm not that all-fired desperate to get into the animation, but it's certainly worth remembering that the potential is there. However, I'd rather move up to the Advanced version of the studio. That's the one where you can do water, smoke and fire effects, and also most of the animation controls kick in, on that level...

The things I still need to learn to do like they're second nature in this level of DAZ are the Deformers and the faaaaar advanced render settings (like pixel filters, shading rates, bucket orders, the alchemy of ray tracing). After I get into that, there's only one thing I need to know, and I'm not sure you can do this in Studio 3 at this level. I'm pretty sure you need to move up to Advanced. What I want to know is how to make my own textures and apply them. I know that textures are imported as .pZ2 files, but ... what software makes these? What am I missing? Do I need to be using Carrarra for this?

The truth is, I haven't actually looked very far into this, but I'm about to, because there's not very much further to go in this level of DAZ Studio 3. The only thing left is animation, and I don't want to get into that just yet. The reason I don't want to is pretty good: you need more hardware power than I've got. I have a quad core (4x 2.3) with 6G of ram (2G hard, the other 4 as Ready Boost; and I know hard is better) and unlimited harddrive space (1.34T at the moment, expandable to infinity). But I need more hard ram and I could use four faster processors to handle animation.

Was looking at an OfficeWorks (same as OfficeMax) catalog the other day, and they had a faster system for $1080. Um ... next Christmas!

Eventually -- this is the kind of thing you can do on the desktop with this software:

...the only downside is that it takes a looooong time to learn how to do this, and a ton of money to put into the hardware and software. So, for the moment I'm going to stick with stills. It could be 2011 before I get into animation. It's something else, a dimension more. But after I get my head around the water, smoke and fire effects and everything else except the animation that you can do with the Advanced version ... wellllll...!!

Can you imagine a video like this one here, but featuring the characters you see on the blog rather than a girl (whom many of us would nickname Miss Spaghetti Limbs) --?? A NARC or Hellgate video maybe, or a fantasia on the theme of beautiful guys. Oooooh, yes.

Later. I hope!

Jade, 31 January
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