Movies are back online as long as it doesn't go past the
5 GB limit per day that I have. If you come to the site
and it is shut down you will know why. I am allowed a ton
of bandwidth now that I have switched web hosts so I will
not get burned again with huge bandwidth bill. Whew.... Anyhoo-
Well here is is 2004 and a year later since I started with
this project. Am I crazy or something?!? I actually thought
I might be able to finish this before the holidays?!?. Whoops!
What was I thinking? One of the problems is that I keep going
back and fixing things that I see wrong or I that I just don't
like. I am my worst critic and I want it just right. I have
rendered a low quality ride-thru of part 3 (4 parts in all)
to see how the animation and effects are looking. A few more
fixes, add exit lobby camera animation and then it can go
to final render. All is going well! Hope to have it wrapped
up first or second quarter of 2004!
I hope... We shall see.
See teaser clip movie below.
Please note: The begining of this teaser
shows clipped sections of the lobby. The real ride-thru you
actually walk the entire line path to the atommobiles and
enter the chair just as if you were there doing it yourself
from your perspective. I just picked some clips here and there
I know. I know. Many
of you out there hate Divx
but it is the only way I can get my movies compressed to a decent
size right now. I am not an expert in compression. If anyone
has a freeware (not trial ware) that can compress AVI files
into a good decent quality size and can be opened by both Windows
and Mac,, please let me know. I am using Adobe Premiere
so if you know of a good setting you can also let me know. I
was going to post an MPEG 1 file but it was 11gb in size. When
I try to export to quicktime my files come out huge. Compression
The molecules are so active now....
(Did you see the chair silhouettes?
You can see a quick clip of this in the 7mb teaser above)
This could only mean the snowflake is melting, melting, melting...
(One of the many flashs from the hto molecule separating.
Did you remember this part?
In our display area.....
Exiting the ride
Believe it or not, the oil lamp has thousands of drops on each
strand and they all drip down while changing (cycling) color
as a group every so often.
This is MONSANTO....
I hadn't added the chairs yet on these pics. Check out the old
exit area I modeled. No gift shop here. To much trouble to make
it. This isn't the virtual gift shop tour anyway. Also check
out the old mural ouside by Mary Blair. Cool huh. My thanks
to Spencer Cook at Virtual
toad (he is building a cgi ride through of Mr Toad's Wild
Ride from WDW) for the tips.
Exit lobby info table. It has the ACTUAL COMPLETE text
descriptions that were used for each window.
The images are only 50% accurate (2 images are correct
the other two center ones are REALLY close to what was
used on that table). Close though. I will have a close up
of this at the end of the ride-thru or make it an extra feature.
I have been getting
a ton of requests to put up some updates on my ATIS ride
thru project. Well, you ask for it you got it. Below are some
screen shots of work in progress of the model building and animation
set up process before rendering. The models of the rooms
below are not "set in stone" and might go through
some additional changes. Remember this is a work in progress.
I have built everything except the free flowing molecule scenes,
back on visual and exit display area. The projectors and images
for these rooms are ready, I just need to finish them. Click
the images below to see larger version!
is an early WIP
some walls and rooms
detail and models
the chair rotations and inserting frozen H2O molecules
the center of the atom
the transparent scrims walls that will be used for depth
with the molecule projection rooms. Also there is an angled
cylinder for a temporary placement for the back on visual
scope eye. See next image.
you are back on visual!
I went back and reworked
some of the ice scenes and snowflake scenes. Here are
some final renders and some render tests
from the virtual ride thru. Remember this is my interpretation
so your memories my differ from mine. Most of my models
have come from VERY good reference material thanks to
some nice visual aids that I was given. Thanks again
(you know who you are). Much of this was created from
my memories. Better get them in digital format before
i get to old to remember them all!
of ice tower above me
I break this gigantic prism?
seems smooth and solid.
atoms go on almost forever.
H2O frozen atoms
dashing about me like fiery comets! Can I possibly survive?!!
the milky way...
go on exploring the nucleus.
As I stated in the news section I have been busy rendering
out the lobby and tweaking sound effects. This walkthru render
alone took 3750 frames of animation that took about
2 months to render due to my pc hanging up during the
rendering process. I sent the image sequence to After Effects
to create a non-compressed AVI file for best quality. After
transferring the final large 3.5GB AVI file to an MPEG2 (70MB)
file format (for a quick DVD burn for testing) I noticed the
lobby had more light inside than what I wanted. See images
above. The final DVD render will be darker than the images
shown here. The transfer between my monitor settings and DVD
output changes the brightness of the final product so I will
use filters to darken up the area to better match the actual
lobby. I guess I have a really dark monitor.
I re-rendered the beginning of the walkthru to include the
mirror that was on the back wall (see middle image). I also
did a second pass render for the snow composite. Now that
I am finally finished with the most time consuming area I
can model the rest of the attraction. I am currently finishing
up modeling the walls of ice scene, animating the chair and
camera animation and creating great looking scrims for the
"nothing is solid" section. The rest of the project
should go very quickly since I have already built many of
the projectors that were housed in the different rooms and
the rendering won't hang if I don't render it with raytracing
and a smaller polygon count.
I haven't been able to work on the ATIS Project much
this month due to my PC being down due to a long
over dueoffice remodel. My old office was just
trashed from carpet stains, filled with tons of junk, a crappy
little desk and no room to move or to even lay down an instruction
manual (I need to use one now and then for this project).
Now that my wife and I are finally finished with that 3 week
remodel I was able to get some hours in. I have a few pictures
to show of the walls of ice scene but I won't post the movie
tests due to the fact that I don't want to spoil it. The black
line you are seeing below in the pictures is the atommobile
handlebar (yes it is supposed to look like that). Oh, and
the last image is an out of seat render test.
I also posted (below) a little animation test for the newly
added Peoplemover/s that moves overhead in the lobby. I modeled
the turquoise and red old style ( during the Monsanto years)
Note: I have been getting requests
for Quicktime files. Due to my lack of compression skills
for Quicktime, my files are coming out to large of a file
size to be useful to post on the site. Please let me know
what other file type I can create (avi,mpeg,wmp???) so Mac
users can open the movies up as well. Is an AVI okay? Please
let me know what is preferred. Also let me know which certain
movie files are on here that Mac cannot open so I can redo
them if I can.
I also created a better / more detailed
tip for the Mighty Microscope!
Peoplemover animation test to see how they look next to
the Atommobiles. I have a green (turquoise) and red one
that will go durring the lobby sequence.
(WITH SOUND) 06-30-03
I can't take it anymore!
My old machine rendering scene heavy projects (like
the lobby) at 700 x 486 pixel took about 1 hour 30 minutes
to render... PER FRAME!!! That means ONE SECOND
of animation took well over 60 HOURS. Argh!
So with the help of a new credit card I was able to
purchase a new PC that can take on this giant project. A new
computer can really do you wonders. To those who are curious,
it is a Pentium (multi-threading) 2.6 ghz with 1gig of ram
with a (high end) ATI Fire GL X1 VIDEO CARD, two 80
gig hard drives and a Pioneer DVD W/RW / CD W/RW. This thing
is a render monster. This new machine can now render
the same scene with full raytrace lighting at about one
frame for every four minute and with raytracing turned
off it renders in 30 seconds a frame! Hardware-rendering
(for particles like snow) renders in REALTIME! Nice!
Quick Raytracing / Hardware Rendering Definitions: Raytracing
is where the computer calculates light and reflections and
adds them to the rendered frame and it takes frames longer
to render when activated during the render process. Hardware
rendering is when your graphics card handles all of the rendering
and not the software you are using to render particle effects
like sparks, snow, smoke, fire etc.
Here are some almost finished lobby images with more
details added like the tube atommobiles, Monsanto (text) power
statement (see below) and diorama box contents. I still want
to tweek the mighty microscope silver nose, add a peoplemover
above and a loading dock helper-person. I also added the inside
box diorama scenes. I didn't have any reference material at
the time to so I just made it up from what I could remember.
Today I received a DVD from a fellow fan that had footage
of the inside of the boxes. I will try to go back replace
them with a closer version of the diorama box.
is a quick three scene composite movie (with sound) of some
test renders that I put together. Some of these cut scenes have
some missing elements. Can you spot them? Click here
or picture below to view 8.52mb movie. (Divx)
(WITH SOUND) 06-09-03
To keep things interesting I decided to switch gears and
work on the nucleus scene for fun. I had to post this as soon
as I finished it because I am excited about how nice it came
out. Here is a quick render of the Nucleus scene. Damn close
to the way it originality looked I think. If you look hard
enough, you can see I even added the long pole that held it
up like in the original ride (you were able to see it on the
actual ride if you looked hard for it). What do you think?
I added sound to test the sync with
the heart beat. Again this room is not to the original scale
of the attraction. This is just a test to see if the model special
effect and star projectors are working correctly. The final
render will look a lot clearer and cleaner than this low quality
mpeg. You can actually see even more stars in the higher quality
render. Click image above or here
Things are still going nicely. I added a ton of Atommobile
Chairs to the Lobby and addes some animation to a bunch items
in the scene. See movie below. Remember to right click
and "save target as" to view movies
This was another quick 3 sec. test (nothing
is quick in rendering though) to see if:
Atommobile chairs are moving at the right speed.
Chair doors close correctly.
If the loading floor is moving at the right speed.
The light is blinking at the right speed.
If you look hard in this AVI movie you can see little snow
flakes in the petri dish in the background.
This took 2 and a half days to render on
my @#!!%# machine! I don't think that is normal. Still looking
some test renders of the lobby with the loading area, guard
rails and diorama boxes (still empty inside). The boxes even
have an internal light as the real ones did and have a large
glass lens window. I still need to add more textures, color
and other items to make this scene complete. Look at the phone
on the loading area. I haven't even added buttons on it yet.
ALL the chairs will be present in the scene when it is ready.
I need to model a peoplemover and some actual human riders to
add life to the scene. Right now I am testing some things out
and thought it would be cool to post some of these renderings.
been modeling the lobby lately due to it's enormous, time consuming,
undertaking so to keep things from getting boring I have been
testing my molecule projectors that I custom made for this section
of the ridethru. Each Atom rotates individually and they all
move together without moving over each other. This effect is
real close to way it originaly looked except one side of the
room had larger molecules to simulate that you were getting
bigger again. The chairs are supposed to rotate to both sides
fo the room and drive by the "EYE" but this is just
a test. All these details will be worked out in the final piece.
It won't be a problem. I still need to model a ton of more stuff
before I can go into my final renders. The lobby is taking most
of my time. Till then I will continue to post my animation and
render tests for those of you who like to see my work in progress.
Here is an animation
ride thru test. I wanted to see how the chairs moved and if
my molecule projectors will work correctly. Again, this is just
a test. I know the chairs are moving a bit to fast and I will
need to add more ease-in & ease-out to the rotations. Also
the actual ride thru will be more accurate to the actual layout
and track design by the blue print from the maps section. This
is just a render animation test so no nit picky e-mails please.
Click below image to view movie.
This is a movie test of my particle emitter
that I will have in the snow petri dish that hangs in the ceiling
of the lobby of ATIS. I needed to test the reflective, see through
glass with a moving snow pieces inside. I might have it blow
around a bit more on the final version in the lobby. I do like
this one though. I want people to be able to see the snow and
not a blurry mess. ("Few more tests..." Willy Wonka)
I have jumped to working on the lobby and some
light animation for the mural. Check
out this avi movie test of the light rings. I still
need to work more on the scene but is is getting there.
Here is my finished chair with trim and
handle bar smoothed out . Don't worry. You won't see the base
in the movie. This is just something to tell me what position
the chair should be pointed on the track when I do chair rotations.
Here are some renders of the lobby work in progress.
Many things still need to be added and tweaked until it is finished.
The petri dish will contain a snow particle
effect that I have already tested. When the lobby is complete
I will add it.
Well, I am
finally going to build a recreation of the ATIS attraction in
full CGI computer animation. So far things are going very well
and the animation tests are coming together nicely. It looks
like I will be able to fatefully rebuild what I can remember.
I rode ATIS so many times my memory is pretty clear on 98% of
the ride thru. I will be posting some quick shots of my models
and test renders here so you can see how things are going. CGI
is harder than you think! Whew!
Here are some test
renders of The Mighty Microscope. I know, I know. It
doesn't look exactly right yet but remember this is a work in
progress so bare with me. These are just test renders to check
how things are coming. I still need to add the color, add the
track bottom, and the chairs in the tube. I have already tested
and animated the blinking lights. So far so good.
Here are some test
renders of the famous & ever so mysterious blue chairs.
This was a big pain to model since I am such a novice 3D student
(self taught as well) but you have to crawl before you can
walk I guess. The chair opens and closes as it should. I have
done many animation tests with this model and it seems to
be working out fine. I will eventually add some people when
needed in the scene. Some of therse pictures were rendered
before I added the silver trim that goes over and around the
top. I still need to round out the handle bars and trim so
they are smoother in the corners.