There's no place I can be ... Since I found ...

I recently finished watching the first (and only) season of Firefly again and was curious as to what the cast was up to. One thing led to another and somehow I went from IMDB to Google to a site that had some Lightwave tutorials on how to build the Serenity. These tutorials are great reference on all the parts of the ship, but I use 3DS Max for my 3D work, and Max doesn't like Booleans too much. Frankly I don't either, they make for a messy mesh. I bring this up because the guy who made the tutorials tends to use Booleans for every other step.

So I'm gradually working my way through the tuts building one section at a time, but it's taking a while due to not taking the shortcuts of Boolean. And since I'm building this thing from the ground up I'm making a few modifications along the way. You diehard fans out there may be able to spot the differences, but I make the changes outta love and the belief that they make for a better ship.

The Reactor

Jan. 19 - 28 - Didn't work on it every day. The days I did work on it, the hours ranged from 2-6 hours of work.

Serenity model image - 01 Serenity model image - 02 Serenity model image - 03 Serenity model image - 04 Serenity model image - 04b

The Cradle & Grav Ring

Jan 31 - Feb 02. - The cradle was one of those 'looks easy to model' pieces. It's always difficult to model something that's one continuous piece, has a lot of subtle curves, and has square & rectangular sections cut out, while also keeping a smooth flow to the topology. If you do it wrong you'll have creases or artifacts. The ring was cake.

Serenity model image - 05a Serenity model image - 05b Serenity model image - 06


Feb 03 - 06, Mar 27 - 31 - I don't remember a lot of the process I went through during the modeling of engine. The hull webbing near the back of the engine was a pain. And rigging up all the stabilizer panel hydraulics was a chore as well. There's no way to wire all of them at once, so I had to do them all individually.

Serenity model image - 09_01a Serenity model image - 09_02a Serenity model image - 09_03a

That's all done now, and now all I have to do is move a controller up and down to open all those panels. There's also a control for the back thruster hood that allows me to contract or expand it easily.

Serenity model image - 09_01b Serenity model image - 09_02b Serenity model image - 09_03b

After I moved in to my new place I started doing some contract work for a company called Bent, and they use RPManager for all of there scene management and rendering. Well I kind of fell in love with it so for I've been looking for something like it for a couple weeks now. I finally came across a maxscript written by Sergo Pogosyan. It was almost exactly what I was looking for. Almost. It wasn't written for Max 9 which I'm still using. So I had to strip out some code, and while I was doing that I added in some functionality.

New features:

  • Scene states change when the user selects a camera from the list.
  • The animation timeline advances to the specified frame number if it's not set to zero.

If anyone thinks it'd be of use to them here it is for download (Right-Click & download).

What Dis?

My name's Trevor Lemon, and this is my blog. I'll try to update it with whatever I'm working on, random thoughts, links to shit I think is cool; whatever I deem worthy I suppose.

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