tamariki

The next generation of Ora Nui dancers :D

Kean'e and Mika showing off their new tops for their performance this Saturday. They’ll be shaking it at the May Day is Lei Day Celebration at Thomas Jefferson Middle School at 12:40p. If you’re in the neighborhood come on out and celebrate with us!

Ora Nui Tahitian Dance Troupe is the only AUTHENTIC Tahitian dance school in Vancouver, WA. For more info on the group and classes visit us at www.oranuidance.com

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Business Cards:

I’m unsure as to which of these I would prefer to use as a graphic for a business card, I have asked for feedback and am currently leaning towards the two with the Tamariki rather than the human characters currently.

Tamariki animation test:

This digital painting was done to be animated in the style of blizzards hearthstone advertisement and potentially be used in my show reel. The initial painting was done on minimal layers, so i had to go back and slice up each individual piece that was going to be animated. I know now for the future though to work on the image as if its going to be animated in this style from the get go.

Kapa Haka Kids follows the journey of a group of novice students from Auckland’s North Shore who have just four weeks to prepare for the kapa haka performance of their lives in front of an audience of thousands!

For New Zealand’s largest secondary school, Rangitoto College on Auckland’s North Shore, success at the Polyfest has been an impossible dream. With over 3000 students, but only 80 Māori students, Rangitoto College are known more for their sporting prowess than their Māori cultural performance skills.

Helping them on their kapa haka journey are two of the leading kapa haka performers in the country, Howard Morrison Junior and his sister, Donna Grant.

Episode 1 - It’s the largest school in the country, but can the kids from Rangitoto College put together a champion haka group in just four weeks?

Episode 2 - The pressure is on, and the kids are falling apart. A surprise road trip turns into a journey of discovery for the Kapa Haka kids.

Episode 3 - With only a few days until Polyfest, the Kapa Haka kids are told they must step up or step out of the competition.

Episode 4 - It’s crunch time – can the Kapa Haka kids conquer their nerves, or will they go home empty handed?

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Tamariki O Pachamama mock Codex cover illustration:

I wanted to do a nice digital painting that would be used as the Codex front cover, as well as to have printed for the graduation show. To start I did three very rough thumbnails to work out the layout and composition using previous Warhammer codex covers as reference.

After picking my favorite one, I would go back over the thumbnail, which was now scaled to a more sensible size, and do a simple line pass, fleshing out the image more. I had to use a lot of reference on the anatomy of archers and poses with bows to ensure the Hoa looked natural.

Next would be laying down some initial colours, which would then become more solid tonal work. However I had a lot of trouble here, the background wasn’t coming out the way I had imagined it. The tree branches were not what I had in mind and I was having a hard time figuring out how to render a jungle canopy. Not to mention the characters themselves didn’t fit in the scene tonally, as their skin and the trees were hard to differentiate between.

I decided to redo the whole background and work from there, to do this i went back to my research material from BA7 and used a lot of reference from my old mood boards. This gave me a much nicer background in the style I had in mind, providing a strong base to now ground the characters too, as well as providing the correct light sourcing to ensure the characters looked coherent together.

To adjust the characters to the new back ground i took the Hoa archers and tweaked their vibrancy and saturation in the image modifiers until they looked more coherent with the background. As for the Tamariki, I would first have to fix the anatomy which wasn’t close to what my sculpt looked like. To do this i would use the warp option to manipulate parts of the Tamariki into the right size and shape, then i would repaint over the whole character. Now adding the correct tonal values and highlights in relation to the rest of the image.

After some adjustments I went back over all the characters to add the finer details, such as their facial features, better rendering of the materials and the addition of the Tamariki’s psychic conjuring. At this point I also noticed i still hadn’t properly fixed the Tamariki’s legs as they appeared to just float behind branches. Thus I would repaint over the legs, bringing one foot onto the branch in front and the other supporting itself on the trunk of the tree the Tamariki was hanging from, adding more dimension to the characters pose. It was also noted that some noise around the characters and across the painting as a whole would solidify the image and tie the characters to the background strongly.

Finally after some feedback it was suggested that a much stronger diffuse of light from the Tamariki’s conjured power was needed, the resulting oranges and yellows contrasting nicely to the greens that were prominent in the painting. After a few passes adding the diffuse lighting I am very happy with the result.

I have learned a lot from this piece of work, especially when it comes brush strokes and working with tonal values, usually being afraid to work in colours as I have a tendency to focus on heavy detail far too early. However this time I was able to focus more finding the general form and tone before I worried about details.

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Hoa hunter bows

Here is the designs for the Hoa bows, starting from silhouettes, going to grey scale iterations of which I coloured quickly by masking areas and tweaking the hue and colourisation. Of the four bows i think my favourites are the first two and will use them when working on the illustration for the Tamariki o Pachamama mock codex cover.
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Tamariki Finished Sculpt:

I recently finished the sculpt for the Tamariki and I’m very pleased with the final character. In the final stages I went back with the dam standard and pinch brushes to add more detail to areas such as the face, creating folds and wrinkles in the skin around the eyes and creasing the skin more under the neck. I also went and added battle damage to parts of the sculpt, including cuts in the flush and chips in the scales where the character has seen a lot of combat. In terms of things that need improvement, the feet could definitely do with more work as at the moment they are quite basic, and the scales are still not 100% how I wanted them. However I am very pleased with the anatomical work of the character and the muscle tonnage. With the addition of the wrinkles the face also has a lot more character. 

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Tamariki Scales re-work:

After reposing the sculpt I had to fix the scales as they had deformed around the shoulder areas quite a substantial amount. Using a large brush i would simply flatten out the scales on the shoulders and re draw them now I had the confidence to do so quicker. The process still took a while as tried to keep the scales as cohesive in their symmetry as possible and I would quickly find myself falling into the same trap when working on the scales earlier. I had to be reminded by mark to work with a larger brush and quick strokes so as not to get too absorbed with the details until the very end. With that I would utilize a large clay tubes brush and quickly flesh out each scale in a more natural and rough manor while accentuating each rig. Then taking the pinch tool I would refine the edges of all the ridges to a crisp edge that was far more visually interesting than previous attempts.

Then to finish the scales off Mark had also suggested baking a noise map onto the scales to add a nice texture. Looking into the noise maps i picked a nice texture that resembled the rough surface of scales, tweaked the settings to get a nice effect. However after multiple attempts to then project the map onto the model, the level of detail would drop. (see example images, top: level of detail required before baking the noise map onto the model. bottom: level of detail after the map had been applied to the model.) I was unsure how to fix the problem so in the end I figured I would not worry about, leaving it as I had other things to work on.

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Tamariki final pose - Power stance:

As a lot of the models in Warhammer 40k that represent psykers follow a similar trend in their position of outstretched hand, ready to hurl conjured powers at their foe, i figured it would also be the most fitting pose for the Tamariki as it too is a powerful psyker and the pose will help solidify that fact.

So here we have a fully rigged skeleton posed and ready to be bound back to the sculpt so that the final adjustments can be made.

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Tamariki Pose Concepts:

After talking to mark about my previous rigged pose, he suggested that I use a simpler version of the rig to quickly iterate more poses to choose from. After some playing around these are the five best poses I came up with, with a preference tending more towards the last one.

Tamariki pose concept:

This pencil drawing is something I worked on one day over the Easter break as an idea for a pose after discovering that my laptop couldn’t handle the rigging process in Zbrush. I really like the aggressive nature of the pose, although I was unable to fit the whole figure onto the paper (drawing too big again), but I’m really pleased with the line work and shading on this piece.

Time restraints

After Easter I have realized that I won’t have time to work on both the Hoa Hunters and Uri as I had proposed too do due to time limitations as I still have a lot of work to do on the Tamariki. As such I will now have to focus on just one character after the Tamariki, and I decided that should be the Hoa as they are more pivotal in the culture than the Uri.