Breakdown | Original U.S. WWII Wood Box for MK1A1 Grenades


Feedback based on the previous crate.
Special thanks to my mentor Stephen Honegger for guiding and marking up things that needed to be adjusted.

After getting this feedback and markups back from Pops, I knew for a fact that I really had just delete everything and simply start again. Collected in PureRef are references from Battlefield Battlepacks, Renders and Cinematic shots from games such as Call Of Duty along with the one to one reference that I was going with for this project. I gathered more reference this time as shown below, and made it one to one as mentioned. The form and the textures had to be spot on, the crates measures at 25 x 9.5 x 6 and assuming this was inches I need to get the scale right. I also have been obsessed with plugins lately so I need to find something that would make the scale experience, fun and visually better for the UI.


I added a human base mesh from Maya’s content library as a scale reference and have been working with different types of templates as well. This dude is at 180cm, I then realized afterwards this box was tiny, here I was able to understand how big it was, I was shocked after I converted it. I measured the crate with the plugin called Measure Tools, this made this process much easier and real-time as you can see in the image below.

Next step was to figure out how I was going to get the shape working with the panels. I used Union, and the Boolean tool then cleaned up the areas where needed. Steps are shown below, from block out to the final panel. I bevelled the areas that resemble the overall shape and form, then soften the edges the give it more depth.

After the details for the crate was completed from the reference, I needed to create the rope. Doing this was quite changing and the only way to get it right was to make it procedural and dependent on a curve. Doing this I need to make a NURBS curve and duplicate them to create the base for the rope. Afterwards, I then layered what was necessary then kept only the one reference curve. I decided to go further with this and have the one curve with joints. Doing this has now allowed this to become what I call Rope Maker and all you really need to do this make an adjustment to the curve and it can be any Rope I'd like. Works using the shape and the adjustment with a spline. As shown below.

At this point, all was needed was to get the reference in Maya and view it from the Z-axis so I could copy it exactly.

I then set the map size to 4K, knowing I didn't want to comprise detail. Two texture sheets were exported but easily would have been only one if the inside wasn't necessary, but I had to get this right, then I started the UV Mapping and preped this for Substance Painter.



Was all done with Substance Painter, and Source for the wood texture. The stamps were created in photoshop with the original references with photo retouching, then to be turned into Alphas. I used masking for most of my process know I was only limited to two Texture Set. Started in a 2K workflow and worked with masks, stencils and layering to give it a worn look, stains, scratches and spray paint stamps were added for additional realism.

Once everything was done, I then baked all maps in 8k with Anti-Aliasing and Subssampleing at 8x8 then exported out to 4K to retain all the detail from the masking and the textures itself. 


After getting an understanding of how the textures would work with the rope, I then took the rope into Zbrush to add Inflate and Sbend. The first one is without Sbend, and I ended up leaning towards 0.2 Inflate, Sbend at -20 and 3.0 for the rope as it looked pretty close to the reference

Lighting / Rendering

Lighting was done with one spotlight and a shadow catcher, multiple cameras were added for the ease of rendered without having to move and pan the camera too much. All of this was done in Marmoset Tool Bag. After everything was prepared, I was able to create the necessary like a turntable and exploded view for extra viewing  


Final steps before I post anything online really is SEO, I know not many people might not take it this far. But I actually do keywording for everything I do, Images and Video Content, even if it is for 3D. It's a habit I took with me from my Photography Days. But, it really does help, it's difficult enough as it is with what we do in the 3D industry, so I highly recommend it. Taking the extra mile for this and researching on how you can too, well help your traffic, It also will save you time because when you post to folio either Artstation or other, the tags will always be there, and you can always reuse tag and filter it if you have a system as I do. It's a must. I'll never need to add the tags one by one, but your work still has to be boss.

Final Result

Final results show variations, all angles and an exploded view for more detail for look dev.
The Original U.S. WWII Wood Box for MK1A1 Grenades | Prop
Can be found at the following links. 

The Bank Vault

So I been away for a bit and if I can remember I think it's been over a month now since I've updated this. Here I'd like to talk about some upcoming projects I've got on my list as well as to talk about the recent one that's done and dusted.

I'll be honest here and if I have to clear it myself to feel better about everything that's happened lately. The Bank Vault was an extra project that almost got in the way of where I was going with a previous project which was the bathroom. After having something that wasn't the greatest I had decided to go and make something different, something to get out of my comfort zone and that was The Bank Vault. After speaking to my mentor I started to make a bathroom showing off something simple and just focus on the design/feel.

Even at the time, I was happy with it and less was more, looking at it now says different. 
It wasn't less enough.  
As you can see here it is very simple and very less it only really involved two plans for the
walls/floors with high res textures in 2K. Even the wireframe shows how simple it is.

After I was done with the Bathroom, I was pump and a little down that I still had the major project to finish off, and I didn't want to be cookie-cutter either. So I kept modelling The Bank Vault, there was a lot of parts and assets to go by, it would be stupid to stop halfway or bake it and post and call it done. Who does that? I did that, but not as much because my attention to detail with modelling is so much different.

Now that The Bank Vault is complete, Next step was to make some sort of actual Reel to get an idea to do with my youtube channel. I had to get the video done and with all my experience in the video editing and composting, it was pretty easy, all I had to do was have my old photo/video teacher in my head and have him yelling at me. Cut here cut there, get coffee and cut some more. Take no breaks and presto!

Smashed this out in like 4 days. I think this The Bank Vault story is even more powerful than explaining the process and the materials I used for it. It shows I was able to move quickly and get my butt rolling, even more so, I'd often dream about it in my sleep. But let's talk about the details too.

I was highly inspired by the movie Ocean's Eleven and the interior of the vault. I went with biometrics for high-level security alongside with keypads pads and tradition locks, the research went into this was movies, found images online, materials from the industrial area, visiting banks around town and Half-Life like and Gary's Mod to get a clear understanding with props from labs. For the materials, I've chosen steal to give it a strong and cold feel to it, this helped to add volume to the scene.  Lighting I used emissive for most LED lights and for the computer as for the biometric hand scanner, added lights for gold cabinet and overhead lab lights to light up the whole scene. Extra attention to detail such as posters and a man-made blueprint made completely from the Maya Wireframe was key here. For textures, I used Source and masking to brush out certain areas that I wanted then added by painting it in to give it a personal touch.  


The Bank Vault Post: 
The Bank Vault Video:

Bathroom Blog: 

Hope you guys dig all this and the story behind it. Until the next post.

Vault Updates 03

Okay, so here are some updates from the vault. Add more geo as you may have noticed super hyped for the lightbox, added this in here so we're on the same page with detail, and to mention detail there so much more now. This is the direction I want to go with my work from now on. Electronic parts are super important when it comes to machinery, remember that kids. Attention to detail with things like keypads and warning signs helps make the scene alive. Whether it be large or at a small scale, not to mention not unlike previous posts the scene looked empty with knowing that more work needed to be done. Now the scene is empty knowing that I have to move stuff in it, just like how I did with my apartment. That's what I mean. Can't wait to give more updates. It looks the way does because I broke rules. Enjoy.