Author Topic: Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)  (Read 3475 times)

Offline bobbberz

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Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)
« on: June 19, 2014, 10:04:23 PM »
Hi, and thank you for the warm welcome to your site. I have always wanted to do a WIP report, so I have decided to give it a shot now. Its a good way to get feedback and critique as well as a push for me to see a project through and not give up halfway through like I tend to do sometimes. If I commit myself here with a thread like this, then I know I will push it through till the end.

l was actually intending to build a Fokker DR1. I did all the research, got all the reference files and even set up the Image Planes in 3DS Max and was ready to go. However, at the last minute I decided to push the Fokker to the back of the line (my line is only two planes long at the moment) and go for my second choice which is the Spad XIII. Reason for this is that the Fokker has been done so often and every Tom, Dick and Harry has modeled one, so I decided to go for something not so common. I'll definitely join the Toms, Dicks and Harrys club soon, but first up is my Spad.

I chose the Spad XIII because the form appeals to me and I love the look of it from all sides. It is a fast and robust fighter and has a decent history to it. It has many little detailed parts at the front which I love modeling, and at the same time it looks like it won't be such a complicated plane to model. The only part of this plane which I don't really like so much is the exhaust pipe running down the fuselage ending just below and past the cockpit.  If I had designed this plane I would have done that part differently. I am sure pilots had to be very careful whilst getting out of the cockpit that they didn't burn their legs or hands.

My goal will be to model the plane in Autodesk 3DS MAX, then I'll add some smaller details and realistic damage in 3D-Coat, I'll create the UV's in 3D-Coat. I'll create textures in Photoshop and then back to 3D-Coat to paint and texture the whole thing. The murals I will then add in 3DS MAX and then post-process in Photoshop and create some concept artwork for the background and do the final compositing in Photoshop.  Possibly I will finish off by creating a small animation in Adobe After Effects, but I will decide that at the end.

I'll document all the steps I take in this thread and invite whoever is interested to give me any constructive critiques, help and feedback that you can. I would truly appreciate that.

I have found some reference photos in the internet that I will use for my image planes, they were designed by Serge Desmet, and I hope he doesn't mind me borrowing them for this project. Thank you Serge.

I have already cut and scaled the reference photos in Photoshop and exported them to 3DS MAX where I created three image planes for the top, side and front views. I hope I succeed in uploading the screenshot here so you can see it. So now all is set to begin modeling.



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Offline IanB

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Re: Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2014, 12:28:10 AM »
I'm looking forward to seeing how all this works as 3-d computer modelling is something I know nothing about! Thanks for deciding to share the process.

Ian

Offline bobs_buckles

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Re: Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)
« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2014, 07:20:49 AM »
Very interesting  ;)
Thanks for doing this.

VB



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Offline Des

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Re: Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)
« Reply #3 on: June 20, 2014, 07:28:51 AM »
I am very interested in following each step of this process, thank you for choosing to post the WIP on this forum.

Des.
Late Founder of ww1aircraftmodels.com and forum.ww1aircraftmodels.com

Offline vincentm

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Re: Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)
« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2014, 08:28:41 AM »
Very interesting project. I've modeled a few WWII birds in 3dsmax some years ago, then I switched to car models for video games. I was using the same technique with top, side and front views in the viewports. Is that the latest Max version? mine is now aging a bit. Funny how different and yet similar it looks.

Offline bobbberz

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Re: Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)
« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2014, 12:45:51 AM »
@ Vincentm: This is the 2014 version of 3DS Max. There is a newer version out, the 2015 version, but the amount of new functions and improvements are so little that it is not worth it for me to update just yet.

Looking forward to getting started proper on this model over the weekend. I'll just be looking at blocking in the basic shapes I guess.

By the way this is a photo of my work station. I am working with a dual monitor, Intuos Graphic Tablet and a 3DConnexion SpacePilot Pro 3D Mouse (I can't live without this anymore!)

Hopefully I can get some progress pics up by the end of the weekend.

Thanks for your support!

Gary

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Offline bobbberz

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Re: Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)
« Reply #6 on: June 21, 2014, 09:47:54 PM »
Weekend!!! Time to get started on my project. Actually, I was so excited to get started on my Spad that I was already awake at 6 am this morning. I knew I could get in a couple of modelling hours before my fiancÚ would come and give me a list of stuff she wanted taken care of around the house today. Keeping her in a good mood would buy my more time, so I made her breakfast in bed fit for a queen, and bagged myself another hour together with my Spad.

My goal for today was to get the fuselage, wings, rudder etc blocked in. I just need something to start with, a general form of the aircraft, polygons without too much detailing. 3D modelling is just like painting or pottery, where many passes are required, each time the level of detail is finer until the  final product is finished.

When modelling anything symmetrical in 3D one really only needs to model half of the object and when all is finished just mirror it to the opposite side. This not only saves a lot of time whilst modelling, but also creates an exact and symmetrical 3D object. You can see in my screenshot that I have only blocked in one half of the plane, I will keep up this process until the final pass where I will then use a mirror function (or modifier as it is called in 3DS Max).

So I achieved all I wanted to today. I blocked in all the big bits. My fiancÚ got her breakfast in bed and is happy ..... now I am off to take care of her list of jobs she wants done.

Tomorrow I begin blocking in some smaller bits and pieces maybe the struts and cockpit opening.

Beware of the hun in the sun!

Offline bobbberz

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Re: Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)
« Reply #7 on: June 21, 2014, 09:49:08 PM »
I forgot to upload the screenshot with the wireframes.

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Offline Ernie

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Re: Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)
« Reply #8 on: June 22, 2014, 03:11:05 AM »
I've never seen this before and it is really very interesting, Kiwiness. I
will be following your project with enthusiasm.  Thanks for posting.

Cheers,
Ernie :)
The new old guy, take two...

Offline RAGIII

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Re: Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)
« Reply #9 on: June 22, 2014, 03:39:10 AM »
Looking good ! I have been fascinated by the 3D process since the old days on the Drome! Tim West amongst  others, used to create 3 D Models that I would have believed were actual Plastic or Stick and Tissue kits!
I am looking forward to your progress!!
RAGIII
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Offline vincentm

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Re: Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)
« Reply #10 on: June 22, 2014, 08:22:02 AM »
The shapes look good. Do you use box modelling? surface modelling? splines?
The elevator's trailing edge looks a bit thick.

Offline bobbberz

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Re: Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)
« Reply #11 on: June 22, 2014, 05:55:28 PM »
@ Ernie: Thank you Ernie, I appreciate you following this project. I will try to explain things in a not so complicated way for those who have no experience in 3D modelling.

@ RAGIII: I figured out what you meant by the "Drome". The Aerodrome website. Thank you for showing me this site, wow it is amazing, there are fantastic artists there, I think I will spend a lot of time going through those amazing artists portfolios. Thank you!

@ Vincetm: Thank Vince! I use a combination of box modelling, e.g. for the fuselage and the front wings, and spline modelling e.g. for the rear wings, rudder etc. I never really could get into surface modelling, also called nurbs or nurms. 3DS Max is not such a good Nurb modeller anway, Maya would be better for that. I'll fix up the finer detail in the next passes, including the thickness of the elevator etc. Learnt a new word now, thanks Vince. Elevator :) Is there anywhere on site I can find a list of plane terminology?
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Offline bobbberz

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Re: Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)
« Reply #12 on: June 22, 2014, 06:05:26 PM »
By the way, can someone please tell me how I can post a photo to this forum thread and have it showing up as a full photo and not just a thumbnail at the bottom of the post? Thanks.
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Offline bobbberz

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Re: Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)
« Reply #13 on: June 22, 2014, 09:18:37 PM »
Thank you Mista Red Baron!!! Quite easy really. I owe you a beer, thanks .... I will try this out now.
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Offline bobbberz

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Re: Spad XIII CGI Project (WIP)
« Reply #14 on: June 22, 2014, 09:43:54 PM »
Thanks to RedBaron I can now insert photos into my thread posts.

Today I didn't have too much time so I decided at least to get the wheel rim and tire done. For the rim I just created a primitive cylinder and extruded and beveled it into the shape according to the reference files I have. I created an axle hole in the middle and then smoothed out the whole rim. There is a modifier in 3DS Max called "TurboSmooth". I love this modifier and use it all the time. Sometimes it helps to cover up any little discrepancies in vertex/polygon alignment.





For the tire I created a Bezier curve in the profile of the tire along the top inside lip of the rim.





I then applied a "Lathe" modifier to the curve, making sure that the axis of the curve was equal to the exact middle of the rim. By doing this the lathe modifier extended the curve perfectly around the inside lip of the rim, creating my tire. I gave it a black color just as "placeholder". Later I will add a little tread and more detail, but for now it will do.





I hope this resembles the wheel and tire on the Spad somewhat. Let me know if I should change or improve something ..... More progress to come in the next few day.

Cheers

Gary
Beware of the hun in the sun!