When I was looking for some inspiration in terms of showing scale in our animation I thought that A Bug’s Life (1998) might help so I watched a few clips from the film and videos on how it was made.
I wasn’t happy with the design of the grass so far so I looked at the design of the surroundings in A Bug’s Life for some inspiration.
Here is an example of some of our original grass, I felt like it was too clumpy and needed to be more subtle:
Here is a still from A Bug’s Life where you can see the tall grass in the background, this helps the give a sense of scale to the world. I liked the way the grass seen here was curved and resembled real grass much more than my early models. So I decided to try remodelling the grass.
I started off by attempting to model a single blade of grass and was just planning on duplicating it over and over but when I looked back at the still from above the blades have much more diversity. Some were more curved than others, some had slightly different thickness which made it look much more convincing.
So I then started over, modelling another single blade of grass and duplicating it, I then bent the tops of the grass by selecting the vertices and rotating them, then I made a few variations of the blade of grass and put them together:
After this I added colour and put it into the potential scene for our animation to get a sense of the scale in regards to the worm and its surroundings.
This is an early model/s of the worm’s hole and the gravel/dirt around it, I felt like it looked too blocky so I decided to remodel it taking inspiration from the style used in A Bug’s Life.
Here is the remodel of the worm’s hole/dirt, I added different colours to individual pieces of dirt to break it up a little bit and make it look more interesting.
I then imported the worm hole and the dirt into our scene and scaled it down so that it was the right size compared to the trees around it, I then placed the worm model into the hole to get a sense of scale and how our final animation could potentially look.
We tried adding a HDR photo to the sky dome but we were having some issues with lines showing up in the sky in the render so we then tried using a drawing of the sky and clouds (drawn by Jessica)
These are some of the HDR files that we tried to use:
These are Jessica’s sky drawings:
We couldn’t fix the problems we were having with the lines showing up in the render so we decided to use a sky shader instead. This gave a block colour to the background and ended up fitting in better with the cartoony look than the HDR’s did. We still thought something was missing from the background so we added in some clouds that Jessica modelled and I think this makes it look much more complete.
Here is the scene with the clouds added:
We still have to tweak a few things in the scene like the grass/bushes in the background but I am happy with the progress that we’ve made so far!
Now time to rig wormy!