after having talked with tom and josh we have come up with a lovely storyline that will blow everyones minds! to create a realistic composite I have been learning how to render out realistic shaders for reflecting the environment and creating layered texturing for creating a damaged look using layered textures and displacement maps and alpha channel texturing to create reflective scratched metal ie new metal and the non reflective rusted metal ie old metal.
I have also experimented with creating wave forms based on speech in after effects (pretty simple really, like three clicks worth of work) and rendering out an image sequence to apply as a texture that can then be combined into a shader to create a realistic digital display that can be keyed for dialouge and can reflect the environment.
Also, I have started to explore the dynamic simulations needed for the thrusters of the robot/other flying things and have used 3D fluids in maya to generate realistic thruster exhaust, the fluid can be ignited based on temperature and the colouration of the flame is both dependent on input colours but also on the temperature of the fluid and the dissipation of heat and fluid into the air and tested with a sphere reflecting a environment and the thruster on the object. overall testing is going well! The fluid is cached and can be constrained to an object and move around the scene without calculating every frame of sim.
Finally, today I have been experimenting with the rigging of the robot and how to create a realistic way for the robot to move as it is floating, we have decided to have the thrusters move using pistons to move forward and to hover depending on what is happening in the scene. I have decide to incorporate set driven keys to have hydraulics pushing to engine up and down to create an authentic machine driven look of the character.
Reflective shading with cut metal (yes the scratches are not amazing!): http://youtu.be/6wibJcvQUqw
Wave forms: http://youtu.be/qEMbJlTsTNc
Thruster tests: http://youtu.be/amJGIgaSpNo , http://youtu.be/mazkIseJlq0
Set key thruster test: http://youtu.be/n01cweqzAkc