THAÍS ALVARENGA


THAÍS ALVARENGA 

Creative Technologist  |  Narrative Designer  |  Environmental Designer  |  
3/02/2023

PROGRESS FOR WEEK 1 OF PRODUCTION





Summary: Worked on idle animation for the protagonist character in the Capstone Project. Finished the main elements of the environment and played around with the speed of the camera path. Finally, tested the projection of a project build on a short throw projector to see the immersiveness of the experience.




ENVIRONMENT AND CAMERA SPEED



For this week, I decided to finalize the environment for now. Though I had quite a bit done from my last working sessions, I wanted to try two things: adding a more detailed skybox and making a dust particle system to simulate a sandstorm.

The particle system that I made uses a texture (from the standard library asset) for each particle that slowly expands and becomes transparent. I am using two different colors: one at the start of the particle’s life which transitions into another color at the end of the particle’s life. It looks very good and really adds a sense of vastness to the space (this is based on user feedback of the before and after).

For the skybox I used the Skybox Shader asset package from the Asset store. I am on the fence about using it because I find that the rotating skybox can be a bit too distracting. I like the look, but I think that it is taking away from the important part: the desert. For now, I am going to use my own costume skybox instead and revisit this later in the semester.





On recommendation of prof Slavica, I decided to play around with the velocity of the camera path I am creating to have a better pacing so the user can appreciate the environment without getting dizzy. For now, the velocity I’ve settled on is the one depicted below.





ANIMATION



I worked on an idle animation for my character, Rima, who the user will be interacting with throughout this experience.

To make the animation, I used Harmony by ToonBoom since it is an industry standard and ports easily to Unity using the Harmony SDK. The animation was done in 3’s at 24 fps. The color palette is still up for revision so each color layer can be modified individually to account for corrections in the future (ex. I can change the color of the bandana and its details separately with the use of a color variable in the Harmony project).





PROJECTION



Finally, I made a build of my current Unity project and projected it using a short throw projector from the IM lab. At a distance of 13.5″ from the wall, the size of the projector seems to be more than enough for the installation.

In the picture below, the projection has a width of 135″ or about 3.5 meters.





I did user tests on the immersiveness of the projection with two people who said that it felt very immersive even though the space was not in a headset.


For next time


  • Make final camera path
  • Place dummy assets for camera shots (greyboxing)
  • Set audio triggers


Feel free to reach out to me for more work inquiries or to chat!


Thank you for visiting!

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