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Please review my portfolio.

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nexussim triangle

I have been practicing CGI for about 9 months now and have focused on environmental/props/hard surface and texturing. My mindset always moves towards making the most detailed thing I can make, but some of my more recent projects were much smaller and focused so as to learn a particular area...such as texturing and how to handle a specific material like glass or rope and so on. I do know that I should only be posting my best work but our minds can blind us right? For example, my favorite project was the podracer. It was a passion project and I would happily do another one, but, should it be in my porfolio? It took me one month and I did it after about 1 month of learning, so maybe my love for it is blinding the hard truth? I don't know.

Anyways, if anyone would be so kind as to review my portfolio and give me any feedback (no matter how harsh), it would be hugely appreciated!! Some specific things I'm looking for is if it's anywhere near junior job ready, what areas I need to work on and what projects should be axed from the portfolio page. (Maybe I'll add folders and make one specifically for Portfolio). Thanks in advance for any help.

Oh! I should also be noted that 2 of the projects look like courses, but the raft scene I made myself because I liked the picture I saw and the farmhouse scene I mostly worked ahead of the course and went back to see if I could pick up new info. Then I added a bunch of things of my own to the composition.

Here it is: https://www.artstation.com/andrewcave

And here is my current project that isn't finished but will be going up at some point:


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  • nexussim
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    nexussim triangle

    Wow @Ashervisalis thank you so much. That's a better answer than I ever hoped for honestly. I will take your advice. Since I love the ship and it took a lot of time, I will go back and fix what's wrong with it. I sucked at texturing and uv unmapping among other things and could make some major improvements - like even putting the remade canon in to replace all of them. (Guess what...80 million triangle sceen...yikes!! >.<) . As for the glass vase...ahhh to bad lol. As for the microphone, I did include a low poly wireframe. Are you saying to switch which one is first in the image order?

    I completley agree with the teddy bear honestly, it was just to show I learned rigging.

    Just wondering, is there a particular reason the remove the raft scene? (For knowledge of what to look for and think about when posting on my portfolio).

    Thanks a ton, I really appreciate the feedback!

    EDIT: Oh, in answer to what you were wondering. The tree is all made by me but it's not sculpted. Instead it's the base mesh with added geometry and a displacement map. Each and every piece I made, from leaves to petals to grass. As for breakdown images, I'm not sure exactly what type to make. I'm assuming texel density pics and wireframes. I'm not sure about showing textures? Maybe you mean when people show the normal, height, roughness and so on? If so, in the case of the violets they are either textures from polyhaven or images from pixabay.

    Here are a couple breakdown pics, but something tells me this isn't what you mean haha.

  • BagelHero
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    BagelHero greentooth

    Are you aiming for games work? Or any kind of CG work? Specifically still renders/archvis/VFX/movies/etc? Right now the work you're making doesn't seem suitable for games, but you may be fully aware of that. Wanted to check, it impacts what your breakdowns look like.

  • nexussim
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    nexussim triangle

    Any kind of CG work. Just want to get a job in the industry. I should note I just started learning techniques that would be used in the game industry like high to low poly baking. I should also mention that my favorite type of work (and therefore what will always be my best results probably) is ultra realism and extreme detail. Thanks for replying :)

  • Sequence
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    Sequence triangle

    Nice work on the cleanup! Textures look much better and the UVs are pretty clean.

    As for the hull being made of separate planks, I think that's perfectly fine if this is a high poly model. There's a lot of flat surfaces here so you could also delete a good amount of edge loops to reduce polys and that might help with the loading/saving issues.

  • Fabi_G
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    Fabi_G ngon master

    Nice improvement!

    Maybe distribute the grunge less even and have it react more to the boats construction (some offset across different planks, increased density towards cavities, more wear on some edges would be also interesting). The boat shape would map nicely to trims.

    I think the fixtures look a bit thin and there are so many, if all were used the paddles might get into each other way.

    Keep it up!

  • nexussim
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    nexussim triangle

    Thank you both! So, I've had a wakeup call that the poly count is astronomical and really shouldn't be (80 million triangles), so I'm working hard on fixing almost all the assets in the scene plus the uvs and texturing. This is going to take a while... I'm practicing high to low poly baking. I did one asset that was over 700,000 triangles and it's now at about 6000. It looks almost the same! As for things like this boat, no one has seen the wireframe. I was told it shouldn't be in a portfolio as it is. I agree. Guess I'll show it here lol.

    This was all a while back and now I can see all the issues. I sculpted the rudder and oars for a damaged look and left them like that... Also, I got the idea in my head that the best and most skilled way to do things was to make everything connected (which is why the seats are part of the hull and not just shoved into it). I feel I made a huge mountain out of the whole pirate ship instead of a small hill :D

    Now to fix everything I'm working on them in separate files so it doesn't crash all the time. I've wasted hours dealing with crashes, loading and saving. Thanks again for all the kind words and areas to improve on!

  • nexussim
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    nexussim triangle

    Hey there, just thought I'd leave a bit of a progress report. Here are some after and before renders of assets I'm redoing for the pirate ship:

    Before:

    After:

    Still a TON of work to do. The red is because no textures and that's how redshift displays them. I also still have to redo the lifeboats based on some feedback here and fix a couple things that still aren't right. (Have to completely redo the side banisters I think because the geometry sucks, making it hard to uv map and so the new texture still doesn't look right.) Any further criticisms would of course be wonderful!

  • Ashervisalis
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    Ashervisalis godlike master sticky

    Lookin good dude :)

  • nexussim
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    nexussim triangle

    Bit of an update here. (And would love criticism on my current progress). Here are some before and afters of my ship texturing:

    before:


    (And a pic up above on previous post with the 2 lifeboats)

    Current:

    Some renders were before some changes, like the barrel color isn't as brown now and finished lanterns. The handles for the rope also look like garbage at the moment; haven't fixed them yet.

    Any critiques would be very welcome please. I'm getting some tunnel vision :D

  • Fabi_G
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    Fabi_G ngon master

    Hey, I think it's improved πŸ‘οΈ

    This scene is good to texture with trim sheet. I think you could improve the scene further with modelled construction details (think how everything was made from boards)

    Edit: Some construction ideas transferred from random ref image:

    Maybe reduce scope of scene, make it nice and detailed, then expand.

    Keep it up mate πŸ’ͺ

  • nexussim
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    nexussim triangle

    Thank you for the ideas! About the reduce scope of scene comment, do you mean, just focus on the one area until it's top notch? That sounds perfectly fine. (Also, very cool way to show what you mean!)

  • Fabi_G
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    Fabi_G ngon master

    Hey! Yes, break down the scene, iterate on a sub section. Once confident with result (possibly get feedback) apply learnings to other sections.

    Doesn't have to be polished to the max (it's never perfect), the goal is to figure out an efficient, iterative workflow.

    Ideally this way you don't have iterate much on the scene as a whole, hence save time.

    Just my thoughts :D

  • Lukes3D
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    Lukes3D triangle

    Something about the cartoon ocean and how it intersects with the raft doesn't look right.

    You might want to go with a different style of ocean, and apply more waves to it so the intersection of the raft and water is not a straight line.

    Try making the ocean more realistic. I know it's suppose to be cartoonish but water is one of those rare things that work in either cartoon or real without much change. Try copying the water in sea of thieves, which is a cartoony/stylized game.

  • nexussim
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    nexussim triangle

    Thanks for the advice Luke. I've actually received the same feedback about the ocean before, but I decided to leave it until last. Now, I have to admit I was trying to make this ship look as real as possible, not stylized. Anyways, yah absolutely that's the plan for the ocean. I'm almost finished retexturing everything, then I can deal with that.

  • nexussim
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    nexussim triangle

    So, for this pirate ship project, this is the last update I'm going to leave. I've received some advice that it's probably best to stop updating the project for now since each iteration I improve in skill which makes other previous iterations look lower quality making it an endless loop of upgrading haha. So, I'm going to focus now on upgrading my skills on much smaller projects for the moment. Here is a comparison of a distant outside render (the last area I was finishing):

    OLD:

    NEW:

    And some interior:


    Any critiques are always welcome. I added atmosphere to aim for a more realistic look. Fixed the water up. Used some fog to hide the water plane ending (found fog with redshift and maya to be much harder to "get" than in blender). Perhaps I could have achieved the same result if my camera were at the same angle as the old render. I'm still not quite sure about the main hull material...I was trying to make it a more contrasting color so everything didn't look the same. On the other hand, I did like the coloring of the material in the old render, it was just to noisy. Also, I've noticed that distance shots like this don't show nearly as much of the huge amount of work that went into fixing this. From a distance it's much harder to notice in the old render that the uvs are garbage and that up-close everything would look much worse.

    So yah. I think I've managed to achieve most of what was suggested including the removal of some of my projects from artstation (except the raft, I'm fond of it. Should it be removed because it's a totally different type of project?). So, I'm going to do a bunch of renders, remove all the old ones and replace them and call it quits on this project for now, at least until I'm at a better level in the future. Any suggestions? Thanks to all of you!

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