03 Jun 2012
3/4 angle artwork from modelsheet.
Layers of the final model.
Final render.
Maya, Mental Ray, Photoshop.
EM33A - Close Combat Drone - 360
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This was a project extending five weeks, including test models, drawing model sheet and learning basic polygon modelling in Maya/Mudbox. I had no previous experience with modelling except I had attended Dadiu (The National Academy of Digital, Interactive Entertainment) in 2011 as an Art Director. I knew how to texture a 3D model, but anything else I had to learn from scratch. First of all that meant learning how to build geometry in space, unwrapping the geometry, and exporting detailed geometry to a normal-map. Secondly to know where to differentiate the detail of the geometry in relation to movement and deformation if animated, keep the geometry below a certain triangle count (in this case 5000 tris), mirror map geometry to get a higher detail in texture, and simulate complex anatomy through normals and ambient occlusion.

My choice of model was a previous idea of mine, intended for a sci-fi splatter. A close-combat drone used when ballistic weaponry isn’t an option. Using internal computing, satellite-control, heatwave and ultrasound scanners, it can see everything and anticipate anything on the battlefield without the need of cameras or a head for that matter. The rotary blades can go as high as 1500 revolutions per minute before overheating, and have been carefully programmed not to hit the drone itself. The em33a model is also programmed with a neuro-mechanic reward system, giving each drone a personal will to neutralize its target(s).