[Portfolio] – Alexandra Jackson

Offline / Send Message
Alemja polycounter

I've been meaning to do this for quite some time, so here's my portfolio site, I'm mostly a 3d Character Artist. Now one thing I've been curious about is how much people care about the horizontal scroll, I've thought about changing it so everything scrolls vertically but I'd like some people's opinions on that matter.

Other than that, critiques on my work and all that jazz are always appreciated.


  • Jason Young
    Offline / Send Message
    Jason Young polycounter lvl 9
    Unless you have a good reason to use the horizontal scroll, I'd go vertical. I like being able to scroll with my mousewheel. :)
  • System
    Offline / Send Message
    System admin
    Nice site, looks very swanky!

    Characters look well modelled and seem consistent in style. Textures look a bit plain and don't really pop, though it may be a case of rendering method. Is this realtime or software?

    @ JMYoung The middle mouse button can allow vertical and horizontal scrolling, doesn't take much effort for one click.
  • Swizzle
    Offline / Send Message
    Swizzle polycounter lvl 10
    I agree with JMYoung; horizontal scroll needs to go. It's non-standard and can be very annoying.

    As for the actual content, there are a few things I noticed:

    - You're using very high res textures, but not taking advantage of that by making them detailed enough that it seems like the characters need textures that large. It's great that you can hand-paint stuff, but the polygon budgets of your characters look like something you'd see in a PS2 game while your texture sizes are something you'd see in a current gen FPS. The level of detail in your textures could probably be achieved with 512 maps and there would be very little noticeable change in quality if your UVs were laid out cleverly.

    - The normal maps on your Verona character aren't being shown off in any way because you're using very flat lighting in the renders. Furthermore, they're obviously the result of running a diffuse map through a normal map filter. That's a pretty horrendous no-no. It's a very useful skill being able to construct a high-poly model and bake normals and AO, so I'd suggest you practice it and only use normal map filters for things that it would be impractical to model, like embroidery or fabric textures.

    - This is more a general critique of your texture painting, but it seems like a lot of details on your models are floating. They aren't grounded well in the diffuse map. Since your textures are hand painted, I'd suggest going in and painting in a touch of darker color in some places to simulate shadowing. Or, alternatively, do an AO bake and tweak it until it looks good when applied to your textures. That may take a bit of overpainting to get right.
  • Ark
    I kinda like the horizontal scroll, but maybe that because i have 3 monitors. :) It's certainly different from the norm and is not that much of a pain scrolling, either click middle mouse or mouse wheel roll over the scroll bars.
  • Heartless
    A fellow graphic/web designer, eh?

    I like the site but I'm not crazy about the horizontal scrolling. It also feels weird since I have a 24in widescreen monitor, horizontal scrolling is not something I do very often.

    Some suggestions:

    Make your links white, they should stand out. Also lighten up the bio on the left. It's hard to read. Then on the right, I'd just have it scroll vertically, demoreel on the first line and two characters on each line after that.
  • Snader
    Offline / Send Message
    Snader polycounter lvl 9
    I'm a fan of minimalism and utilitarianism, your site scores high on the first, low on the latter. Love the colors and typo, simple and clean. Hate the vertical scrolling, navigation and there are some technical quirks:
    -text/title showing behind the menu
    -background colors are a pinch off. too close to be different, but they're not exactly the same:
    -the video is a different height than the images, even though the player is the same height

    There's also a bit of a stylistic break with the resum
  • Mike_Carlyle
    Offline / Send Message
    Mike_Carlyle polycounter lvl 10
    I almost missed the content on the side because of the horizontal scroll
  • Alemja
    Offline / Send Message
    Alemja polycounter
    Wow some really good feedback! Thank you everybody who took the time to look at my site, it's really appreciated. Concerning the site I'm going to be making the following updates:

    - Ditching the horizontal scroll for a more traditional vertical scroll.
    - Lighten up the text
    - Get rid of my graphic/web design title. I was once back in the day but like a couple of you pointed out, I don't really have anything to show for it and probably never really will.
    - Make the links white
    -text/title showing behind the menu
    I think I know what this is, out of curiosity what browser are you using? It could help me figure out if my hunch is correct or not.
    -background colors are a pinch off. too close to be different, but they're not exactly the same:
    This is actually really interesting, because they both have the same hex value. I'm just guessing, but it's probably the CSS that makes it transparent. Since there is no universal code for transparency you have to put in several different codes to make sure they work with almost every browser. Since I'm going to switch to the traditional vertical scroll, I'm thinking of just getting rid of the transparency since it won't really have a point anymore.
    the video is a different height than the images, even though the player is the same height
    I didn't think this would bother people too much, but the player height was done on purpose to kind of keep the flow of the site I guess. Kind of like trying to keep all the thumbnails the same size. This is an easy fix, and I can make the player and video match in size for the redesign later.

    Concerning the characters:
    I'm considering possibly ditching the reel and eventually the older characters (everything except the Blade Mantis) since I know I can do much better. I kinda knew going into this that they where sub-par at best, but people pointing things out especially with the textures gives me a slightly better idea where I stand.

    As for the character Verona's normal maps, interesting story with that. Long story short the first quarter it was decided on a hand-painted look without normals and the next quarter when the project was continued it was decided everyone wanted normals. :poly127: She was the only character we didn't re-create so the she already had a diffuse and spec map. Now that I think about it it might be best if I don't show them at all since it's such a big NO to take them from the diffuse.

    Thanks again for all the feedback!
  • r_fletch_r
    Offline / Send Message
    r_fletch_r polycounter lvl 7
    Id personally ditch the video and go for more high res stills. The wipes and pans are fancy and all but they obscure your work. Video turn tables would be ok as a way to compliment your stills but make them full character and not a pan. Also the side scrolling made me miss everything but your video on my first look. I thought the picture on the right was decor.
  • Alemja
    Offline / Send Message
    Alemja polycounter

    The site is all updated now, overall it works much better and gives me far more flexibility when it comes to posting stuff. I thank everyone for their help, if there are any other suggestions for minor tweaks I would be glad to hear them.

    I removed my demo reel but right now all of my other work is going to stay as it is. I'm going to see if I can make some changes based on suggestions (mostly texture tweaks) or just cut my losses and create something new (more likely the case). I also will probably be adding a section for some 2d stuff like studies and concepts.
  • Envart
    Offline / Send Message
    Envart polycounter lvl 6
    Looks far better, makes your work look much more attractive.
Sign In or Register to comment.