Introduction: Pissed-Off Moose: Making a 3D Model for Animation
The Pissed-Off Moose Animation Model is a project which revolves around 3D modeling, texturing and rigging. Using programs such as Blender, Microsoft 3D Builder and Sculptris, an anthropomorphic moose that had a bad day was made. The inspiration for the project came from doodles Dino did in his calculus notebook. Charles really appreciated the original and simplistic design of the "Pissed-off Moose" and was adamant to use the design in a future project.
Work in progress
Step 1: Tools & Materials
- Drawing tools of your choice (paper, pen, pencil, MS Paint, ...)
- Blender (screw SketchUp)
- Sculptris (real pottery is for peasants)
- Windows 3D Builder (Windows 10 is okay... I guess)
-Photoshop (or similar program)
-Sebastian Lague's Blender Character Creation series on Youtube
-Lumpy the moose from Happy Tree friends
Step 2: Setting Up Foundations
-Draw a front-view and side-view drawings of the the moose
-In blender, click "Background images" on the right-side menu
-Add the side image to "Right Side-View" and the front image to "Front-View"
-To see the overlaid images, make sure you are on "Orthogonal View"
-You can switch between front and side views by clicking 1 and 3 on the NumPad
Step 3: Modeling the Body
-Start with center cube
-Use "Mirror" modifier to keep symmetry (no need to do everything twice)
-Create more edges and vertices
-Extrude basic shapes for body parts
-Select edges to move them and match up with drawings
-Repeat previous step while switching between front and side views until completion
-Export as OBJ file
Step 4: Modeling the Head
-Flatten and smooth the sphere to a more workable shape
-Use the Draw, Inflate, Grab and Smooth tools to sculpt the desired head
-Export the model as an OBJ file
-Import the OBJ file to Windows 3D Builder
-Use the Simply tool to get the desired low-poly style
-Export final product as OBJ file
Step 5: Fine Tuning
-Import the OBJ files for the head and body
-Connect them together by moving the head down to the body and by extruding the edges
-Fine tune the edges until satisfied with the neck
-The 3D modelling is complete. Now on to making it ready to animate
Step 6: Texturing
-Drag in a second work-space on Blender
-Select "UV/Image Editor"
-Select the model change from "Object Mode" to "Edit Mode"
-In "Edge Mode", select edges in a way for the part to unwrap
-Mark them as seam (ctrl+E)
-Repeat for each part of the model (arms, legs, antlers,etc.)
-Click "UV Unwrap" (U)
-Arrange all unwrapped parts in the UV grid
-Screenshot the grid
-Paint over each part in painting software of your choice (We recommend Photoshop)
-Add the image in "UV/Image editor"
Step 7: Rigging
-Press Shift+A and add an Armature Object.
-Click on the Armatures Tab and in the Display Panel turn on X ray (to see armatures through the model).
-Press 3 on the Numpad to get into the sideview. With the Armature object selected, press TAB to enter into Edit mode to edit the bones
-Select the tip of the bone and press E to extrude a new one
-Keep Extruding and Rotating the bones until satisfied
-To make the process simpler, only do the spine, neck and all the left limbs
-Press TAB to exit edit mode. With the Armature object selected, press Shift+S and select 'Cursor to Selected'. This will bring the 3D cursor to the origin point of the object that is the center of the armature.
-press TAB again to enter into Edit mode. Select all the left bones (press B to drag select or hold Shift and then Right click for multiple select.)
-Press Shift+D to make a duplicate, Right-click anywhere to confirm the default position of the new bones.
Step 8: Conclusion
Problems and Solutions
Modelling the Head: originally, we planned on making the moose's head the same way we made the body. Using Blender to accomplish this task became way to difficult with the result looking ugly and blocky. Mind you this was only the head and the antlers was therefore out of the question. To resolve this issue, we decided to model the head separately in Sculptris and make it "low-poly" in Microsoft 3D Builder using the "Simplify" Tool.
Texturing: After dabbling with UV mapping, we gave up after an hour of frustration. We decided to try applying a material to each body part by selecting vertices and assigning them a separate material. All looked well until we clicked "Render" and all we saw was a gray moose. In the end, we pushed through with UV mapping, getting frustrated and almost pitching our laptops out of the window. After 3 attempts over the course of 3 days, we achieved something satisfying.
What we learned
In the end, we learned that to do such a project, both team mates should be proficient in Blender to accelerate the process. We also learned that if you calm down and take a step back, the process of texturing and rigging go much smoother and you obtain a better result. If we did this, we could have maybe managed to animate the model.