Green Invader - Robert Czarny
History with Vue
I saw Vue for the first time in February 2002, in a local grocery. There was a free Vue 2 & Vue 4 Demo joined to a computer magazine. I was amazed by its simplicity. Before I discovered Vue, I didn’t realize that creation of 3D scenes could be as simple as it is with Vue. Basically I learned Vue 2 without looking into the manual. Now Vue 6 is a much more complex and powerful tool, but still its interface is relatively simple to learn.
My favorite features list!
· Ecosystems : very logical, flexible and quite simple settings for eco-materials
· Easy GI lighting setting, objects manager, excellent tool for large scenes management
· Lots of easily accessible & ready to use content : plants, atmospheres, materials, objects, terrain presets etc...
· Good import of 3D meshes from different 3D formats, especially Poser and 3DS
· Easy to set rendering of a selected area.
I would like to explore more advanced tricks for large scenes optimization – radiosity, rendering settings, allowing the best quality/rendering time ratio.
This project was started when I was browsing through several websites with free fonts. On one of them I found some funny fonts with animals and aliens, and I wondered how would they look when transformed to 3D icons in the Vue 3D Text Editor.
Using this font, I typed a random sequence, which gave me a bunch of animals. I wondered if it would be possible to make a “3D cartoon style” scene using them. I started to play with those fonts in the Vue 6 3D Text Editor, and I liked the result so much, that I decided to go further and show what cool things can be done with Vue 3D Text Editor.
I rounded the edges of icons using a rounded bevel profile with a very narrow width and depth – just to get a soft border around the flat font surface. Then I defined a more pronounced extrusion shape using a custom profile. I ungrouped the 3D text so that I could position each object individually and applied some unusual materials for different parts of my 3D text.
To model the flying saucer I used a simple Wingdings circle character and I defined a custom shape for extrusion. I made a Boolean difference to extrude a hole in UFO for small alien and added a cap made with primitives. I made a simplistic alien figure with a couple of primitives, then I metablobed them.
I was also experimenting with HDRI Lighting. I found that by boosting the contrast I got better reflections. The glow under the UFO was obtained by applying a luminous, fuzzy material to a squashed sphere. I used materials with different reflectivity to better illustrate the HDRI reflections and GI lighting.
For the fresnel material, I prepared a function defined reflectivity for several materials.
It is dependent on the incident angle to the camera.
When angle is close to 0 the surface is 100% when angle is perpendicular, the surface is less reflective. This simulates so called Fresnel reflections.
Tips and tricks to share with the community.
The Text Editor lets you create some quite complex objects in seconds. On the Internet you may find thousands of amazing free fonts depicting not only letters, but all objects you can imagine, all kinds of logos, patterns. Vue lets you add easily the 3rd dimension to those fonts. Using some unusual font shapes and applying user defined extrusion profiles you may create amazing & complex shapes very quickly.
Who am I? I was born only a couple of weeks before humans landed on Moon. According to my mum I was watching with her the direct transmission of this memorable achievement of humanity. Unfortunately I was too young to keep in mind even a shadow of memory of this event. Then I had a quite ordinary childhood. I was fascinated with all machines. It started with big orange garbage truck visiting each morning our housing estate, then I discovered jets & rockets. So, as 80% of young boys, I planned to become an astronaut, but finally I become engineer of chemistry.
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