Worldbuilding – It begins with nothingness and becomes nothing

Notice: All articles under the worldbuilding will be ever evolving. What you're reading right now is an early version. There's always more to learn, and better ways to go about the design process are discovered.

In March 2017 I took part in a design workshop that changed the way I think about design. I could go on and write an entirely new blog post on great lessons from it, but for this blog, I’ll focus on two of the strongest aspects that I learned and I hold in my mind ever since.

I’ve touched one aspect in the “How to Design Almost Anything” post, that deals with how to design in a way, that we find pleasing. This post will deal with principles on the evolution of the reality you’re designing. Before there was anything, there were the rules. Your rules. And just before there were rules, there was a decision, that something should happen. You start with the decision. Continue reading “Worldbuilding – It begins with nothingness and becomes nothing”

“How to Design Almost Anything” – Introduction to The Nature of Order by Christopher Alexander

In March 2017 I took part in a design workshop that changed the way I think about design. I could go on and write an entirely new blog post on great lessons from it, but for this blog, I’ll focus on two of the strongest aspects that I learned and I hold in my mind ever since.

One aspect is the Evolution of Design process, which comes handy in Worldbuilding, which we will visit at some point later. The other one – vaguely described in this article – is a set of guidelines developed by one of the most influential architects to walk the face of the Earth, Christopher Alexander.

It’s a set of principles, normally referred to as Fundamental Properties of Wholeness. Continue reading ““How to Design Almost Anything” – Introduction to The Nature of Order by Christopher Alexander”

Better Days [Project PR.01]

Firestorm in the garage. Click on the image for 4k resolution.

2022 – Project PR.01 is introduced in the last quarter of the Synoris Championship. It comes second to last in the championship due to many mechanical failures
2023 – Project PR.01 wins it’s first race in the championship (two in total). Charismatic drivers – Ian Quinn and Skylar Walker, combined with great PR ensure PR.01 gains fandom quickly. It gets nicknamed “Firestorm” due to many failures of the last year championship ending in fire, besides the (now signature) backfiring.
2025 – Project PR.01 – now unofficially adopting the name “Firestorm”- comes second in the championship, the last match being the deciding.
2026 – Project PR.01 gets destroyed beyond repair in a massive crash at the 14th match (out of 22) in the championship, causing it’s retirement. To this point, PR.01 was winning the ’26 championship.
2027 – Project PR.01 gets restored with the name “Firestorm” and is put into the museum as one of the most influential racers of its (short) time.
2029 – Firestorm gets stolen from the museum.
2032 – The picture was taken.
2033 – ???

There’s a story behind this image, though not quite as dramatic as Firestorm’s. Continue reading “Better Days [Project PR.01]”

Making Bast (Egyptian Goddess CDC)

It was a productive month, ranging from setting up forum to extending my portfolio pieces. One of them was related to the Character Design Challenge, Egyptian Gods. This is how Bast here came about.

It might show around the Rocket Coil and the blog posts, but I love to think about design as a form of storytelling. I’ve seen many designs, especially in the CDC that would look amazingly good, but quite a few of them – while drawn perfectly – seemed to lack a story and were just pretty drawings.

I definitely wanted to place more story in my design. I’m sure there could be a debate about whether I succeeded at it or not, but if nothing else, I learned more about the process. There were hiccups in the production, of course, and some of them can be avoided in the future.

 

Bast, the final result

See the Bast on the ArtStation Continue reading “Making Bast (Egyptian Goddess CDC)”

“Story is the King”, they say.

Making a Faery Tale is a process that exceeds 18 months of pre-production and production. It’s the pilot project of Rocket Coil to learn and understand the process of making an animated film. Whatever mistake might be made on the Faery Tale, is the mistake we can learn to never make again.

In December 2016 I was ready to make the layout for the Faery Tale, and then push it onwards into animation. I guess if I went about it fairly quickly, I could proclaim Faery Tale finished in about 3 months. There was just this little itch in the back of my head that Story simply wasn’t good enough. It would make a good music video, but as a movie it would fail to leave a lasting impression. There was no resolve, the characters didn’t grow.

So the first thing to do was to fix story. Continue reading ““Story is the King”, they say.”

Where the Faery Tale begins

At the time of writing, Faery Tale is the main project developed under Rocket Coil. It’s the prototype of a short animated film and therefore a basic framework example of how Rocket Coil operates.

It was mid-winter, late 2015 when I was writing a script for the new animated short I was going to make. The previous one was quite mercilessly killed set aside for the better days and I really wanted to make “my breakthrough film”; the sooner the better. It shouldn’t be all that hard, I thought to myself, since I already knew how to model, place cameras, some basic rendering and animation in Maya.

Moving on three months, the story was set, I just finished the storyboard and the characters were coming together nicely. The guy whom I had a deal with that he will rig my characters just got a new job, so this didn’t go very well. I also got a part-time job, since the production of the film just extended due to the fact that I had to learn to rig now, and I couldn’t afford to work full-time on the Faery Tale anymore. Continue reading “Where the Faery Tale begins”

The Rocket Coil Blog

Hello! Welcome to the Rocket Coil blog!

I believe my knowledge is doing the best job, when I put it out there. It will not be the ultimate guide on anything in particular, but I hope that someone who might want to learn things similar to what I do, will find it helpful. On the blog we will mainly cover 3 topics:

  • The development of Faery Tale
  • Production Design and Storytelling topics
  • “Let’s Call That Philosophy” series

With the Faery Tale series I’m going to talk about how Faery Tale was (and still is) being produced. It’s my first ‘real’ 3D animated film that I’m making and I’m learning a lot while producing it. I’m starting to understand the scope of the production of (3D) animated movie, as making this one is taking enormous amounts of energy and time. Animation is just a monstrous craft. Continue reading “The Rocket Coil Blog”