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    Hi guys.
    Well - I opened up Wings3d, and decided to take a stab at toying around with designing a CC3 overland symbol, as you can see in the posted graphic. I decided to design an overland Sci Fi symbol representing a generic "Outpost". I'm going to finish modelling it, material map it, and then move it into Bryce 6.3 - retexture it - orient it into a 3d perspective view (nice and dramatic like), and slap it onto a plain white background - where I can then move it into the GIMP to "transparify it", and convert it to PNG. It's a learning process - and advice is not only welcome, it's wanted. Not sure if I should go with a photo-realistic look, or if I should "cartoonify" it. I'm not really sure if photo realistic mode would translate well as an addition to a CC3 map?

    How it appears in the graphic is about how it will be oriented as a CC3 overland symbol. Structures I'll do in Wings3d, decorative embellishments I'll hand draw (current mode of thinking).
    Just toying around with teaching myself how to do this right - for now - so I'm not dedicating myself to a real, solid actual project yet.

    If this little experiment works out - then maybe I'll start doing Castles, and citadels, and other cool junk!
    • CommentAuthorBeZurKur
    • CommentTimeJul 17th 2011
    That looks very cool! I don't have any advice to offer, but I'm certainly keeping an eye on this thread.
    • CommentTimeJul 17th 2011
    Looking good. Looking forward to how it will look with some textures applied.

    If I were you, I don't think I would go for photo-realistic. It is more difficult to get it to look good on a map.
    That's what I was thinking Remy, luckily my GIMP app is loaded with old .8bf photoshop filters (I've got the pspi.exe .8bf adaptor plugin).
    • CommentAuthorJay_NOLA
    • CommentTimeJul 17th 2011 edited
    I like. When you get the outpost finished & textured in Bryce I'd love to get a copy of the files. I did a Bryce scene a few weeks ago that it would look great in.

    The object image against a plain white background and brought into GIMP isn't as good I've found as doing a render of the object, doing a 2nd render set to Object Mask with the object selected to make an alpha chanel mask, and bringing both into GIMP. GIMP I found can remove some parts of an object if it part of textured in a color is like the background or has a clear type material in it.
    A black background in some cases may be a little better for the render against than a white one too.

    I've attached a zip with some rough instructions on this. The zip has a Bryce render of a space ship. the Object Mask (alpha channel) render. & the finished CC3 PNG after I brought the renders into GIMP using the instructions.
    I just slapped down one texture on the ship so it doesn't look that good, but it shows why you want to use this method, given how the hull plating is.

    I need to do a better tutorial on this at some point.

    If you have any questions on this just ask.
    Jay, as soon as I get the model properly grouped and get my materials ironed out - I will give you a copy of all Bryce files pertaining to this, anyone else wanting a Bryce version only need ask. I use BRYCE 6.1 / 6.3, so I don't know if earlier versions can read it - but if your version can read .obp files - then it ought to be ok - if not - I'll go ahead and send along the .obj file and the bryce mats to when I'm done, and you can import the .obj + .mtl file into your version of Bryce. If you would so kindly continue assisting me on the graphics end of this stuff - then you'll probably be getting a steady stream of new Bryce models (if I decide to plunge into this symbols catalogue(s) thing full steam), lol :) Keep in mind that I haven't even UV mapped this yet.

    (Edit note - reminder - still working on it as of 07 / 20 / 2011, 7:42 PM US-EST.)
    Ok - well - uuummmm - as you can see, I've started defining my material groups. The colors HOPEFULLY will NOT be the ones I'll use in the completed CC3 Overland symbol - they just define the locations of different texture / material sections. I seem to have run into a tiny newly discovered fact, as it seems that this seemingly simple model is going to probably have several hundred material groups! I may just plop this puppy directly into Bryce - and texture / snapshot it there - after grouping, and forego uv mapping for now - although I will uv map it later as a straight forward 3d model. When I'm ready to move it into CC3, I'll review the CC3 manual - and go over Jay_NOLA's notes on finalizing this thing.
    • CommentAuthorJimP
    • CommentTimeJul 21st 2011
    Right now it looks like something that would make a useful oblique view of an asteroid or moon station.
    Thanks Jim - yes it does. I had a versatile symbol in mind for multiple map types / terrains. Once I do this and learn how to do it as prolifically as I do my FT PRO stuff, I MIGHT shoot for doing entire multi-genre symbol sets - have to think about it.
    • CommentAuthorJay_NOLA
    • CommentTimeJul 22nd 2011
    Looks great. I've got a Bryce scene that it will work great in that I did a month ago.

    You might want to lok at the link bellow if the stuff in my little making a PNG doesn't work. Never had a situation where I had to do the steps in the tutorial link so far, but having another way to make an alpha mask is helpful.

    I'm thining of maybe typing up a large sort of generic tutorial file of things to be aware of if your going to use a 3D program to render a 3D model for a CC3 symbol, if any one would be interested in it.

    Thanks Jay - yeah - I went over to the Artzone and PDFed it, it's in my desktop reference library now.
    • CommentAuthorJimP
    • CommentTimeJul 22nd 2011
    Yeah. Jay, I look forward to that tutorial. I am looking to add oblique views of Inns, houses, starships, etc. symbols to my CC3 maps.

    Issue 49 of the Annual oblique maps and this could work together.
    • CommentAuthorJay_NOLA
    • CommentTimeJul 23rd 2011
    Ok I'll start working on it in the next few days as time permits. I'm still a beginer when it comes to workig with 3D programs so I'm certain that I'll end up having to rewrite some of it as I learn more techniques.

    I also want to list some ideas on using CC3 stuff to aid in making 3D models & art.
    Ok - all material zones defined - I will now export, and move into Bryce. From there I shall aspire to do my alpha layer and color layer images - and then - on to The GIMP, then hopefully - on to CC3!

    You don't have to have Bryce to do this - because theoretically you could just render it in Wings 3d, or Blender, or whatever 3d modelling app you might be into - as long as your using a compatible renderer / rendering engine. You WILL however need a good graphics app like GIMP, Photoshop, or Paint Shop Pro, or something else that isnt just a simple desktop paint app - because you have to do your layers and touchups and such, and you have to have transparency.
    This is what it looks like in Bryce. Ok, now I'm going to ungroup the model in Bryce and add a few new textures to it to make it more realistic looking / add better detail. I'll start with the solar array panels, and work up from there.
    I know you're just playing around. But when you're done, you might make symbols of each of the parts (Dome, Solar Array, Connecting Hall, Gas Tower, etc.). That would let others make a lot of unique configurations without going through the same work.

    It looks nice!
    Actually that's a very good suggestion Steve. Thank you sir.

    For overland maps - you want stuff that represents larger scale points of interest. I was thinking that - just as you have symbols on fantasy related maps representing villages, towns, and cities - then you could have them for Sci Fi representing - maybe - something like "outposts", "settlements", and "Colonies"?

    And - yes sir - I am "just playing around" for now - but while I'm doing so, I'm learning. I figure that if I keep stabbing at it - I might actually keep my mind active enough to fend off senility for at least another year or two, lol.
    • CommentAuthorJimP
    • CommentTimeJul 26th 2011 edited
    Well, I'm looking for surface outpost symbols to use on this site:

    Nessie of Marsport

    I'm thinking of taking out the silliness, and using it as a 'Space 1889' site.

    The game's home site, I think

    What would be neat is if someone did 3D symbols for places like Minas Tirth, Barad-Dur, Isengard for Lord of the Rings fans or Cair Paravel and Jadis' ice castle for the Narnia fans.
    Ugh...THE WORK!!!...Thanks Marvin, Now I have to whip out my Wings3D and subdivision model until I die from advanced Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, LOL:).
    Hee hee, sorry Terraformer.

    Still, the castles and cities symbols, etc are all generic. There's been so many amazing fantasy cities, fortresses and towers made in movies the last few years, I'm surprised that no one has come up with CC3 symbol versions of them.
    • CommentAuthorJay_NOLA
    • CommentTimeAug 7th 2011
    Hey Marvin,
    many of the famous people, vehicles, locations, etc. from fantasy & sci fi books, tv series, movies, etc. you can find that 3D model versions of them have been made by fans already and are often free to download. ShareCG,com has many of them. The DAZ Forums has listings of free models from various settings & even has request threads. So if you have a model you just need to open it up in our 3D model program or a 2D paint program that can handle it. Do any rendering, etc. you need to & you can easily get a new CC3 symbol from it.

    Was just thinking about this while I was looking at some stuff I was looking at a LOTR scene done in Bryce earlier today.