"Xeno, where have you been? What's happened to your film? Why did you taunt us and then scurry away with nothing more to show? Do you like killing our dreams on purpose? Is that it?"
All questions I can hear you asking and which you're probably not. Regardless! Here's an update:
Teaser video is still happening, but rather than just going ahead with what might be something sub-standard, I've been spending my time getting to properly learn how to handle Daz Studio, now that I've transferred to that from Poser. That's what I used to produce the egg poster, up above and, having now got to grips with the way it uses lighting, I can say it's well worth it.
With that change, however, comes the definite decision of this being a motion comic, rather than CGI animated. Not only would it cost a small fortune to get the expansions I'd need to make it look satisfactory, but it would eat massively into time. Rather than faff around like that, I'd rather spend the time trying to render some awesome-looking still pictures, instead of take a risk at producing something potentially... Not nearly as good.
Maybe for the future!
Bad news... The software which I had been planning to use for the 'motion' side of the motion comic process, doesn't work on Vista. Arrrrrgh
! Didn't realise it at the time, which means I've spent more money than I should have done on a product which I won't be able to use until getting Windows 7 or up!Sooo
... Instead of the funky-looking reveals, panel animations and more, which I was hoping would make this look properly unique, I'm going to have to resort to the relatively simple techniques available through conventional video editing. Siiiiigh
... But at least it's still something! And I've seen other projects which have used that and been no less decent for it. Still planning on using audio to complement the zooms, pans, transitions and so on. So, all that earlier planning I did isn't for nothing. It's just not going to be as great as I was hoping for (on the bright side, it also means I could always produce a PDF adaptation of it in more conventional comic style).
Nevertheless, in good news, there is the following!
Due to being carefully watchful with sales, I've now managed to procure a heck of a lot of relevant environments and models and for the CGI software. This means that, while it'll effectively be like a slide show accompanied to an audio play with music, it'll be one where the story can really
open up in scope.
And even better, the most recent upgrade now allows me access in Daz to something I was using to produce the more realistic flesh in Poser, on some of those earlier images I posted here. Won't bore you with the details, but something called Sub-Surface Scattering essentially lets it model how lighting is absorbed by skin and other materials, allowing for a more convincingly cinematic mood/style.
So, there you have it! An update on where this project now is! Basic story is now more or less ready and has upped tempo from a fairly claustrophobic survival-horror to something which can now afford to be a little more epic in scope (but hopefully not at the expense of the former). I must have spent a heck of a lot more money than I should have, experimenting with physical models, then switching to Poser, then Daz, then getting motion comic software I can't use...
I'm trying to look upon the latter as an accidental investment for the future, though! Just a frustrating one... And all the stuff I've managed to obtain can definitely be used for art in general.
Well, that's that. Now all the pieces are in place and I know what the story should be (had to get the right selection of virtual environments/sets, first), I can finally start rendering some visuals for the teaser of what should be in the final product, rather than just random, irrelevant crap thrown together at the last moment.