Amanda Animates

Amanda Animates

by AmandaKutcher on 31 May 2023 for Rookie Awards 2023

Here is a collection of some of the works I created while at Gnomon - School of Visual Effects, Games & Animation. I am excited to share and document my progress as an artist so far. Thank you for taking the time to look at my Rookies submission!

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A Fallen Star-  

 "A Fallen Star" was created in Houdini and rendered in Arnold while studying at Gnomon. I wanted to create a magical explosion that disrupts the surrounding environment. I used a pyro Solver to create the impact cloud, a pop network to create the magical trail, and Booleans to create the crater in the ground. I had not used Arnold in previous projects so learning the render engine was a fun challenge! I used Arnolds light path expressions to create AOV's so I could have more control over the lighting in Nuke. 

The Dirigible-

I stumbled upon Michal Matczak's concept art of a large blimp soaring through a foggy cave and was amazed by the blimp's design. I wanted to put my Hard Surface Modeling skills to the test and decided to commence the creation of the dirigible in Maya. I realized that the detailed planks and small poles created a sense of scale and added to the grand feeling of the piece. The most difficult aspect of "The Dirigible" was creating individual planks that perfectly aligned to each other. I overcame this issue by blocking out the large shapes of the circular balloon and cutting it into the smaller planks of wood. Once I was happy with the shape of every plank, I would extrude the planks and bevel the edges. This allowed each plank to become an individual piece and I was able to place them in the perfect spot to create the curved effects of the balloon and hull.

Once the Hard Surface was complete, the talented Liz Chua textured my dirigible using Substance Painter and I am so happy with the results. I then lit the project and rendered in Vray and Arnold in Maya. Lastly, I used Nuke to edit the AOV's and After Effects to stich the video together. 

Mystical Forest -

This last piece is an original concept inspired by Star wars and Sponge Bob. I wanted to create a mysterious forest with strange creatures in a sci-fi world. The most difficult aspect of the project was creating the netting in Maya. I did this by using duplicate special to create a flat grid of netting. I then used the bend tool to make the netting into a cylindrical  shape similar to that of basketball net. Lastly, I used the lattice tool to close off the bottom end of the net. I used ZBrush's move brush to pull down on the netting to give a sense of gravity. I used Mega Scans to create the environment and textured the butterfly net, capsule, box, and jellyfish using Substance Painter. I then rendered in Redshift and had fun playing with the renderer's post processing tools such as flare and bloom.

Thank you  taking the time to look at my Rookies post! I enjoyed documenting my artistic journey thus far and I am excited to share more of my projects in the future!

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