As lead of the technical art team I was responsible for tasks such as:
- Consulting the tech team
- Pipeline development
- Research & Development
- Problem solving
- Particle effects
- Simulations & dynamics
- Technical aspects of character development
- Rigging & deforming
- Setting up render passed for the effects
Additional tasks I did were:
One of the biggest tasks I had was creating the various visual effects that were required for the sequence.
Already at a quite early stage of the project I started with researching and developing various techniques to create the particle effects. The most used technique we uses are Maya's fluids and nParticles.
I spend quite some time on creating the earth and the shaders for it. Since the sequence ends with the big K-T extinction event, we wanted the have the impact trigger the continental drifting. To achieve this I came up with a workflow that allowed the artist to model the continents on a flat plane. Once the models were done they were bent around the globe over its latitude and longitude, and later animated.
To create the ocean shader I took the first iteration that Niek made and continued building on that.
Rigging & Deforming
For the tape shot we needed a easy and flexible rig. Not only should it allow the tape to stretch, it also had to allow the animators to make the tape jiggle due to the force at which it was pulled out by Cosmo.
Eventually I was asked to both rig the tape and animate the shot.
The goggles needed to be deformable, this allowing it to snap around Cosmo's head once he lets it slip out of his hands. A wrap deformer, driven by a proxy mesh, was used to achieve this deformation.