Dinosaurs & Prehistoric Life

Well, for some reason my old thread vanished of the face of the earth (it doesn’t even recognise it when I search for all threads started my me) so I guess I’ll just have to post it again.

Me and some friends are making a film series as a sort of school project inspired by the british TV show Primeval. Basically some dinosaurs come through time portals into the present day and eat people.

Obviously this requires some VFX work, so I’ve set about designing and creating lots of prehistoric creatures (I learnt blender for this very purpose).

The site of the film is http://www.youtube.com/user/PrimordialSeries?feature=mhee and from there you can access the Facebook page (I’d post a link but I’m limited by the number of URLs).

My latest animation is this, of an Acrocanthosaurus:

Here are a few of my earlier creations:

There are currently planned to be seven episodes in the series, although I’m just going to try and get the first episode done at the moment. All the creatures were created, textured and rendered in Blender, with some of them being sculpted additionally in Sculptris.

All feedback is welcome!

Early test animation of a dragonfly swarm (some jerky movements will be corrected):

Just an OpenGL render of the swarm scene, showing how I’ve improved it since the last rendering (banking was set too high previously, resulting in insects flipping around in mid-air):

Wow, neat models and animations!

I’m working on a new title sequence at the moment (I worked out how to put images/movies into shards made from curves).

There’s also a little promotional pic I made a while ago:

Also, please help support us by liking our facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/primordialseries

I like it dinosaurs :slight_smile: . Good work

Use some bumpmapping to give it some more structure would be my advice.

i do usually use bump mapping for everything (you can see in the examples above) but I haven’t finished sculpting the acrocanthosaur.

Here’s a short render of the new title sequence, all in Blender. Not yet finished, and I need to find a way of putting up the quality and keeping the file size lower.

Turnable of the latest creature (it’s not yet finished):

There’s still the teeth, tongue and horns to do.

A couple of animation tests:

Please give feedback!

I think the animation should have a lot more of the “random” fast movements characteristic to dragonflies.

The movement of the swarm is based more on that of creatures such as mosquitos rather than dragonflies, as the random movement thing is quite difficult to implement with boids.

Here’s a render of the Pachycephalosaur, with a baby one:

i’ve never seen dragonflies swarm
aren’t they solitary predators?
i’ve never seen more than two at a time

in the animation, the tail doesn’t seem to have enough mass to serve as a counterweight to the upper body and head

also, the running involves a lot of hip wiggling but it doesn’t seem proportionate to the degree in which the feet are swung towards the centre-line of the locomotion track

when bipeds run, they swing their legs toward the centre so that all the footprints line up single file
the gait of your animation is more like power-walking
is that what you want?

i don’t know where this dinosaur fits in evolutionarily, but a more advanced runner would get some ‘air’ and the butt would come up to provide clearance for the legs to swing inward
your animation sways side to side but doesn’t go up and down
it seems to be wiggling but the clearance between the belly and the ground remains the same
is it a trot rather than a full run?

there seems to be too much going on with the neck that isn’t in phase or proportion with the locomotion
i keep seeing the head lunging forward and back at like 1.5 times the speed of the legs

Your pachycephalosaur looks more like a dinosauroid with spikes attached than a pachycephalosaur. But if you’re not aiming for a realistic anatomy, it’s good. Great, in fact.

All of the creatures for the series have undergone serious artistic license to make them more appealing//fearsome etc. or to fit with the storyline. They’re effectively fictional.
The dragonflies, for example, are a fictional extinct species which are intended to be parasitic, emerging from their hosts as a swarm once the laval stage is complete.
And thanks for the tips on the animation, I’ll see what I can do with that :smiley:

I’m reworking a pterosaur I made earlier for better accuracy and to try out new methods on it, like hand painted bump maps.
Here’s a timelapse showing me sculpting & texturing it:

I chose not to sculpt up to very high levels of detail because A) by computer can’t handle it and B) finer detail is dealt with in bump mapping.
Here’s a render of what I’ve got so far:

It still needs work on the inside of the mouth, the teeth, the claws and the fur, and then its on to rigging :confused:

Hey your pterosaur luce como el mio :).

the machine limitation it’s a problem :P.

Simple but nice :wink: .

The basic texturing work so far looks superb, good job on that part.

Though your creatures could use a little more work when it comes to realistic shading, especially if you’ll be compositing them with real-world backgrounds.

The renders you see here are all with quick lighting set ups to save time, in the final thing they will be much more realistic, and once colour graded the creatures can look pretty lifelike :slight_smile:
Thanks for your support! I’m hoping to get a brief compositing test done next week, once the rig’s done.