Monday, May 24, 2010

Animation Glossary - T and U

Tej Kohli animation glossary, words starting with T and U.

Texture : A bitmap image that is applied to the surface of 3D object to give it detail. Texture maps may be either photographic images or procedural textures, and may be applied in each of the material channels of an object using a variety of mapping or projection methods.

Three-Point Lighting : A system of CG lighting derived from real-world cinematography, in which a scene is illuminated by three light sources: a Key light, which acts as the primary source of illumination for the scene; a Fill light, which illuminates shadow areas; and a Rim light, which illuminates the edges of objects and helps them stand out from the background.

Tiling : The process of duplicating a texture across the surface of an object. Tiling textures must be created so that the edge of one aligns perfectly with that of its neighbour, otherwise the result is a series of ugly seams. Highfrequency textures are those in which patterns repeat at short intervals over an object’s surface; low-frequency textures are those in which the intervals are larger.

Timeline : A fundamental element of the graphical user interface of most modern 3D software packages which shows the timing of the keyframes in a sequence of animation. Playback of the animation may be controlled either by a series of VCR-like controls, or by clicking and dragging with the mouse to ‘scrub’ a slider to and fro along the timeline.

Trimming : The process by which NURBS surfaces are edited. The trimming tools allow 3D artists to define areas on a NURBS surface that will be made invisible and not render out, even though their CVs still exist. Separate trimmed surfaces may be joined together by using a variety of techniques, including Attaching, Aligning, Filleting and Stitching.

UV Texture Co-ordinates : The co-ordinate system used for assigning textures to polygonal models. Since UV co-ordinate space is two-dimensional, one of several projection methods must be used to ‘unwrap’ the UVs from the model and lay them flat on a plane. Once unwrapped, the UV map may be screengrabbed and exported to a paint package for texture painting.

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Sunday, May 2, 2010

Animation Glossary - S

Tej Kohli Animation Glossary - Words begining with 'S'

Scene : A set of 3D objects, including the models themselves and the lights and camera that will be used when rendering them out.

Scene file See : File format.
Script : A small piece of code created in a 3D software package’s own internal programming language, and used to automate common or complex tasks.

Shading : The mathematical process of calculating how a model’s surfaces react to light. A variety of alternative algorithms can be used for the task, including Phong, Lambert, and Blinn shading models. Shaders are often built up as node-based shading trees, with each node controlling a specific aspect of the process.

Skinning : The process of binding the surface of a model to the underlying skeleton during character rigging.

Skeleton : An underlying network of bones used to define and control the motion of a model during character animation. Moving a bone causes the mesh of the model to move and deform.

Snapping : The automatic alignment of one object to another or to a reference grid, intended to aid the precise placement of objects within a scene or modelling hierarchy.

Soft-Body Dynamics : The simulation of the behaviour of soft bodies that deform on collision with other objects, such as cloth or fluid flows.

Specularity : A surface property of an object that determines the way in which highlights appear on that surface.

Spline See: NURBS.

Subdivision Surface : Also known as Sub-Ds, subdivision surfaces are surfaces created using a technique midway between polygon and NURBS modelling. They consist of an underlying polygonal base mesh, which is automatically subdivided by the software to create a smoothed final form. Sub-Ds combine much of the power of NURBS surfaces with the intuitive characteristics and ease of use of polygonal modelling tools.

Sweep : A modelling technique similar to extrusion in which a twodimensional profile is replicated along a path, then joined to form a continuous three-dimensional surface. Unlike extrusion, however, this path need not be perpendicular to the profile. By sweeping a circular profile along a helical path, for example, it would be possible to model a coiled cable of the type commonly found on telephones.

Symmetry : A modelling option in which any changes made to the model are duplicated across an axis of reflectional symmetry. This makes it possible to create complex symmetrical objects, such as a human or animal head, without having to work directly on more than one half of the model.

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