Monday, 5 November 2007

Polygon Project

I've got a better idea of what the hell I'm doing for my first self negotiated project now. Yay! Ummm...yeah, polygons. This is now officially called The Polygon Project, and will involve the reacreation of a digital 3D space in an analogue (i.e. real) 3D space. That sounds ridiculous I know, but let me try to explain.

Animating stuff in 3D software has traditionally pissed me right off, because it's so bloody fiddly and annoying. So I've always fancied having a go at subverting it somehow, and at dealing with a similar aesthetic but with the advantages and imperfections that live action filming can bring. The plan is to come up with some very simple compostions and models in Maya (3D software), and recreate them in the big old shoe factory (where the bluescreen space is), using hanging cardboard cut-outs of each of the polygons, but also to space them at varying distances from the camera, so that when the camera moves there is an artificial parallax effect - kind of like the channel 4 idents, but in reverse...

The idea is to blend in these live action shots with some fancy After Effects animations in post production. I don't really know why at the moment - I think I originally wanted to have the animations almost break down and have people or microphones being revealed as the camera screws up its moves or something.

Anyway, that's the 3D space / camera move recreation sorted (like there's not going to be any problems), "but what about the textue mapping!?", I hear you ask. Well, I'm going to use that projection mapping technique I've been on about to project onto each individual polygon, so I'll effectively be able to animate the whole set up as I film the camera moves, and because I'll be filming in darkness, anything that isn't being projected onto should be invisible, so I'll be able to play around with how the shapes are revealed, coloured, patterned etc.

This is really just a series of tests and experiments to see what the technique is capable of, and (assuming that something good comes from it) I'll go on to develop it for different ideas later in the year.

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