The Victorian Office
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The Victorian Office

Mayson Bray
by maysonbray on 1 Jun 2021 for Rookie Awards 2021

A small known private detective living in Victorian Era London has pulled multiple all-nighters over the past month researching a hard-to-crack case. His office is cluttered with equipment, books, and grimy plates. His last priority has been keeping his room neat, his first is the capture of the menace on the loose.

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For this six-week project, I wanted to push myself to create the home office of a victorian detective after a long night of research. Some stylistic influences include "The Order 1886", "Assassins Creed Syndicate",  "Sherlock Holmes 2009", and a painting by William Collingwood. 

Pre-Production - To prepare for this project, I wanted to solidify the scope and visual feel for the space that I set out to create. I did so by doing research on Victorian Era London, which included gathering references and researching the interior design of the late 1800s. After research, I created an asset list detailing the models, textures, and materials that I needed to create. I then created a white box of the project, outlining a general look and feel for the office. I didn't have any project-specific concept art, so this step was crucial at the beginning of my process.

Here you can see my weekly progress from week 2-5. In the early weeks, I focused on modeling and composition. The space slowly evolved over the first couple of weeks with the help of feedback and critique. After week 3, I had finalized the composition and placement of the assets, I then proceeded with surfacing the assets from week 3-5. After finalizing the assets, week 6 was spent on final touches like the flame shader and lighting tweaks.

The unique assets in the scene were modeled in Maya, or sculpted in Zbrush, and then baked and textured in Substance Painter. This workflow allows for optimized assets with a low poly count. I textured these assets with macro storytelling in mind that really shines when viewed up close. However, after this project, I will make sure to use my time more wisely. I realized that most of the smaller details like the carving on the pen were lost when viewed at character height. 

When planning this scene I wanted to try to make the walls and its decor modular. I had trim sheets in mind, but I had a hard time figuring out how to make them for my scene, and I ended up modeling a modular wall. While they aren't as versatile in use as I wanted, I think I came up with a workable solution with the time that I had. The curtain geometry was made and simulated in Blender with the help of the cloth brush.

Substance designer was a big help when creating materials for my scene. I am still new to the program, but I learned a ton creating these simple materials and I look forward to using it again for future projects. I used Designer for all the materials above except the red curtain material. 


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