Camera Animation

My role in the group project (modelling and animating the background) needs to be done early on in order for everyone else to be able to animate their assets correctly.

I’ve animated the complete camera movement for the sequence based on everyone’s animatics.

Here is a playblast synced with our chosen section of audio:

I think the result is really good for a first version. A couple of changes needed to be made from the animatics but I’ve sent the playblast to the group and am waiting on their approval.

I will probably need to finish and render out this animation by the end of the week which means making small adjustments/improvements to the model, adding lighting, and setting up the right render settings.

My texturing abilities are still very basic so I won’t be able to properly texture the whole model in time. The group seem happy with the basic block colours the model currently has, and too detailed textures would be a distraction from their 2D animations.


Easter Tutorials: Mastering Maya

I wanted to reflect and build on my Maya modelling skills, as I’m determined to create nice, clean models in my current and future projects. I’ve been using Udemy, YouTube and Lynda to go back over the key tools in Maya and to make sure I haven’t slipped into any bad habits. I also discovered some new tools I hadn’t used before. I started by speeding through the basics and then moved on to more complex tutorials to try and push my skills.

Essential Training Certificate.PNG


Showreel Research

I’ve been watching GC Generalist demo reels to try and work out how I can make my reel as impressive and engaging as possible.

I’ve noticed that in a lot of good CG showreels, the artist shows the process of each piece in order to highlight their specialist skills and demonstrate how each thing was made. I think it’s important to outline the amount of work going into an asset/environment, as it’s a reminder of how many stages the CG pipeline involves.

I’ve also seen people using the icons of the software they use, and this is something I could also include on my web portfolio so that future employers are aware of my software skills.

Most seem to include simple banners along the bottom containing the title/role of each clip. It’s important to make this label clear, but not too distracting.

A simple audio track (definitely without lyrics) that is royalty free would be good to use in the showreel. Something upbeat but not too cheesy/annoying.

– Don’t stay on the title for too long! It can be very annoying…

– Make sure the video thumbnail is interesting/high quality

– Place characters on a spinning podium?

– Include NUA logo???

– Stick to 1 minute

– Avoid using static cameras??

(Sidenote: I’m concerned that the work I have, and the renders of my work, aren’t ready or suitable for a showreel. I need to improve the way I present my work.)

Here’s a good showreel example:

I like the way he has presented information at the start and would like to do something similar:


Another good showreel:

Analysing Old Showreels

2016 Showreel:

My 2016 showreel from college consists mainly of live-action work. The length of the showreel is okay, but could possibly still be shorter. I can’t see any major flaws in the editing or (royalty free) music choice, but the reel overall is quite boring. It features a lot of interesting scenes and camera shots but doesn’t particularly reveal anything special about my work or abilities at the time.

Improved 2016 Showreel:

I improved the previous showreel for my application to this animation course, and this is what I ended up showing in my interview. It’s shorter than the previous version, has quicker cuts, and is more upbeat. This generally makes it more interesting to watch but there’s nothing really eye-catching or unique about it.

1st Year Animation Showreel:

I made this at the very end of year one, so almost a year ago now. The first thing I noticed is my terrible choice for the first clip. I’ve used a playblast of my unfinished character waving, which doesn’t look particularly impressive or aesthetic. I’ve also included my entire ‘mystery box’ sequence without breaking it up, which I feel was a bad decision. It would have been better to have split it up and only show the most interesting moments. I’m pleased with the music choice as it’s very upbeat, however, I haven’t edited in time to it. It also contains some un-impressive work that probably didn’t deserve to be included in the reel. One thing I can say is that I’ve improved a lot since last year, and have been able to stay clear of 2D animation.

The only positive thing I can take from last years reel is the music choice (which I could potentially use again) and my creative use of text at the end of the video.

What makes a good showreel?

  • Not too long (around a minute?)
  • Include only your best work
  • Put your best work towards the beginning (to hook people’s attention and encourage them to keep watching!)
  • Only good quality files/images/renders
  • Avoid too many static screens
  • Include background music (but not too distracting)
  • Smooth transitions

What to do with images and static work?

  • Zooms
  • Fades / Zooms to Fade
  • Panning across work
  • Showing step by step progression


What to include in the intro/outro?

Title (specialism)
Contact (email, blog, website, etc)
Logo? (if you have one)


  • Lower music volume when sound is needed (work with audio)
  • Show the specialism you’re interested in
  • Don’t repeat the same thing too often
  • Less is more
  • Don’t play the same clip for too long
  • Title work (and keep it consistent)
  • Edit to the music!
  • Show work processes


Web Portfolio Update


I decided to simplify my website and stick with a dark colour scheme, as this seems to be a theme amongst other CG portfolios. I’ve also noticed a lot of web portfolios with tiled work and decided to use it on mine. My website previously had a lot more text on it, which looked quite messy. I’ve also narrowed down the work in the ‘other work’ tab, as I only want my best work to be shown on the site. I kept my ‘about’ page short and simple, as I currently don’t have a lot of experience or information to share.

There are probably more improvements that can be made, but I’m happy with how the site looks currently and think it’s almost ready to submit to the branding project and for applying for apprenticeships over the next month or two.