Thinking ahead and planning is not exactly what I do. But my friend, Nick Reiber, needs a city to be built for his web series, “Mild Mannered”, and I told him I’d give it a try.
Buildings are fairly simple to create, and can be realistic from a distance and in the proper setting, and with the correct lighting. So I started with a city grid in my favorite 3D modeling software, Blender.
I assume this city is facing the ocean (bottom of grid) and has mountains or terrain behind it (top of grid).
Slowly, I began dropping cubes of differing shapes and sizes onto the grid and started forming the pyramid style of a great city skyline.
Once the basic settings are in place and each square of the grid houses either a building or a park or what-have-you, the actual buildings are created one by one, each with a set of basic windows and a texture.
The windows themselves are single, black cubes with “array” modifiers, which is a fancy way of saying just trust me, I know what I’m doing. Ultimately, these windows are simply placeholders for, potentially, a more reflective and more appropriate window, that is built directly from the mesh of the buildings. It’s too much time and energy to create highly detailed buildings if they are not going to be used, or if the city can’t come together for one reason or another.
The hardest part has been substituting the original cube blocks with these more detailed buildings.
A skydome is set in place with a more appropriate lighting.
There’s much work left to do, and I have mixed feelings about this so far, but I wanted to post the results of my efforts anyway. It’s pretty neat, imagining what’s possible.
Oh yeah, here’s a set of trees I made, which should help with the realism of the city and make my computer groan in agony.
UPDATED IMAGES – -
A shot of some buildings with a reflective glass.
A view of a water tower atop a building.
Redesigned city layout, reflective glass, basic sky blue.
Combining different elements and making good progress.
Other elements I want to include are:
Different sky textures
Brick texture on some buildings
Mountainous background or ocean
Longer, wider, overall city
Billboards, lights, awnings
Parking structures, gas stations, strip malls, housing
Helipad on select buildings
Guard rails on tall buildings
Windows on all sides of select buildings
Lighthouse design serves as Beacon Herald building, with connected helipad.
Here I have decided to expand the city grid to give it more depth.
I’ve spread the buildings out (though they still look like they are right on top of each other) into city blocks and will continue populating the city grid with buildings.