Quick update for today. Have all the textures done for the caravan and baggage, minus a couple inevitable material tweaks. I'm currently working on the luggage on top, along with the ropes and hanging lights.
I'm excited to say that I am almost completely done with this piece! I think it's effectively done, especially because you have to know when to stop, otherwise a personal project never really ends! There are a couple things here and there I can improve upon, the most notable to me being the lighting and fog. After having some issues getting the look down, I decided to work with it the best I could and try to troubleshoot on a smaller project or come back to this after a small break.
I also had a ton of fun playing with Cascade in UE4 and making some interesting particle effects. I also made a water shader for the river. My next step is to gather some shots of these and make a couple gifs or short videos showing the movement!
Here are some of my final shots, and you can see the whole project here: Castle Diorama page
Getting a little closer to the finish line! Some possible freelance jobs have been taking up some of my time, but I'm still working on this piece. I redid the pine tree I had attempted at the beginning, and feel like it fits the concept much better now. I also made a few flowers, grass planes and a tiling grass and dirt texture. I like the grass, as I feel like it has the angular square shapes of the concept, though there is one spot that tiles a little noticeably. Once I put these on the terrain I will see how the blend and adjust accordingly. The dirt on the other hand I'm still not quite happy with. I think it is close to the concept, but still might be a little too blobby, since the concept is pretty angular. Again, I'll see how well it will work once I can test it on the terrain. The cobblestone has been redone as well; I wanted to use it for the balcony and for the few stones scattered on the dirt path, so I still need to make a couple simple meshes for that.
Next I will be working on the large boulders in the concept, and some panning textures for the water. I also need to create a cliff texture and sculpt the terrain. There are some smaller details I want in there, so I'm not sure if it would be better to sculpt and import as a static mesh, or create it in engine. I still haven't done much in UE4 yet, so I will start implementing all my current assets soon.
I've gotten a lot done since the last update! I have pretty much finished all the textures for the castle, though I am still tweaking the overall colors and some details. I want to start focusing on the rest of the scene so that I can make sure everything blends together well. So far I still have everything in Marmoset (unlit diffuse only), so I know some of the things will also look different once I get them into UE4, and I am excited to play with some lighting for the windows to give them a better glow.
So far I can see that I need to make some improvements on details of some of the textures, since they read better up close, but I want to wait until it is in engine to see how much I will need to do. I could have probably also planned out the texture sheets a little better, but so far I am pretty happy with everything. Here's a sample of all the textures I have so far.
Now that everything is modeled and UVed, I'll also be exaggerating the silhouette of the main building to give it some more style. Next I think it would be a good idea to get the terrain sculpted, or at least get a better block out of that for prop and rock/tree placement. Since I want this to be a full 360 diorama, I plan to make a small pond behind the castle as a source for the waterfall you can see on the left.
I'm back! There was a bit of delay with my work since I was lucky enough to attend E3 last week. I spent the week walking around, playing lots of games and trying to get as much inspiration as possible. Getting out and seeing new things always makes me more productive when I return to work.
Things have been progressing steadily with the castle, and today I wanted to share some of the building elements I have; specifically the roof and wood textures. I wanted to make sure these would be reusable throughout the scene, so I made a couple modular pieces and tiles that I could duplicate and modify to fit my needs. Here are the two different textures (diffuse only), and a render of the castle with them implemented:
The four individual tiles for the roof really help add a nice silhouette to the castle, and allow me to hide any odd seams or texture intersections. The wood beams I have give me a lot of versatility throughout the scene, and I added a tiling plank part to the texture so that I can use it under the roof and building end caps.
Currently I am doing some final touches on the roof, and have gotten a good start on the windows and metal. After that I will work on the doors and start the stone textures for the rest of the building. I think besides a few unique cubes for stones most of the textures can be tiling for the walls. Once all of that is done I will make sure everything is cleaned up and export to UE4 so I can start working on the terrain and plants.
Thanks for reading!