Gas Station [WIP] environment

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  11 November 2007
Gas Station [WIP] environment

I'm learning to do 3d environments and this is my first full attempt at a scene and am seeking some C&C and any advice to help me along the way. I am definitely a newb but would like some honest constructive criticism on anything really, right now I am a soft peice of clay, help mold me! I realize my model is kinda just a rectangular box.. the reference pic I had seemed really cool at the time. I haven't tackled normal, spec maps and proper lighting yet.. still kinda unsure about them. Here is what I have so far.. thanks for viewing!

Maya software render, color map only, 4593 tri's, 2x 1024 colormaps, I think 2x 512 alpha maps for grafiti and decals

These are my main texture sheets, please note that I have resized them to 512 for this post. They are originally 1024 size and will definetly stuff more into it as I continue to texture. I also have some alpha sheets too but didn't grab them, they are just for the graffiti, and other decals.

Things I want to add but still need to learn are: A tree, shrubs on the ground, moldy glass panes, some broken glass on the ground
  11 November 2007
Hi there!
If this is your first full attempt on a scene, I must say I`m very impressed! I really like your texturing skills and those UV-maps look "tight" & clean.
The model itself can be improved though, as it is has too many polys right now. For those long, straight edges, you don`t need much detail, as it won`t contribute to the scene (only lower the framerate). Here is a pic to show what i mean:

I removed the edges you don`t really need here. I guess you can remove some detail on the ground as well.

I hope you see what I mean & keep up the good work =)
"Fast, fat computers breed slow, lazy programmers."
  11 November 2007
Hi! Not bad but...

1. You really could use just 1 higher res garage door texture with both doors stacked on it and use dirt and graffiti as decals

2. Same thing for the main white wood texture. I think you're wasting too much space on it.

3. "Oil, Brakes, Shocks" should be sharper if the text is going to be that large.

4. Your wood grain is way too large.

5. I think your building might be borderline too small. The length of the building suggests that there *might* be barely enough room to fit the length of a car in it, and would be super cramped to try to work on with two cars in there.

Just as a workflow thing, I would have put all the props on a seperate texture sheet and kept the building details together.

Why is there a large plywood on the ground? Looks odd. I'd expect to see (and I think would be more visually interesting) tire marks, oil stains, etc. You said this was a ref pic though so maybe people work like that.

I don't understand the damage on what I assume is the garage window? It's broken clean in half but the top and bottom parts stay together, which is an odd way for a window to break.

Good start, keep at it!
  11 November 2007
cool job akvan!

On my side I noticed that some smoothing groups should be adjusted. E.G. large wooden beam behind the barrel should have sharp sides. The barrel itself could have at least 8 sides instead of 6.
Also I think that aging/weathering on superior part of ur building is not the same for red and grey beams. That is to say that gray planks look more old than red horisontal beams on top.

"Oil Breaks ..." needs to be more dark/saturated/contrasted imo, cause this is the logo, and it appears to be too subtle right now.

I also think that red in general could be less bright.

Go on, u r doing nice work

::my stuff
  11 November 2007
i am agreeing with the above, well most of it... but wanted to add a point that immediately hit me... that is the corner where the overhang meets the building looks really unnatural because you used intersecting geometry but have not tried to make a connection to the building.
I guess the way it is now could be how it is in real life but with a red edge in the corner there or at leas a thin strip of wood to hold the edges together would look more natural.

And something else I just noticed... the damage to the white wood at the top and bottom of the wall is way to large... I can clearly see that the original texture was taken from 4 to 5 inch wood and not wall building material

But you are on the right direction. Good stuff!
Teached serious game design: triadic game design

The Earth is round...
Like a pancake!! -makes circling motion with hand-
  11 November 2007
I'm still not too sure about the proper use of decals aside from graffiti and such. If I make decals of the grime, wood damage, dirt, ect.. won't I have a whole bunch of planes on my walls, adding extra polygons?

thanks for all the comments, its quite alot of info and I'm gonna take the day to go over them and make my adjustments!

heres my reference pic that I used as my guide, for anyone interested to see

  11 November 2007
wow.. the real thing is even older and more weathered than yours... although your version is more destroyed...

Decals are not only used on planes... they can also be projected (in most game engines) or placed on a layer above the diffuse texture in the shader (also applicable to most game engines) only you'lll have to have a different set of uv coordinates to pull the last one off... that is by the way also a good idea when baking lighting info into lighting maps.

Hope to have cleared that up!
Teached serious game design: triadic game design

The Earth is round...
Like a pancake!! -makes circling motion with hand-
  11 November 2007
If you hadn't posted the reference image I was going to say the building was pretty simple and you would want to do more details on roofline, but you've nailed the modeling on that reference photo. Only thing I can say is if you're going for dusk with the sun setting behind the building, you should have your shadow casting light angled as such and fake the bounce with some softer omnis.

There are some phenomenal weathering textures in the machine wash filters (

Keep up the good work. Looking forward to the finished shot.
John Athayde
Meticulous |

Mesh Warping in Shake Macro
The Sandbox - all CG short film from 2005
  01 January 2008
It's been a very long time since an update, but I wanted to post my progress on this.

Changes I've made since last post:

-removed cheesy sky background
-reduced some polys as suggested
-applied specular and normal maps
-tryed to setup lighting
-other misc. color balance, contrast, brightness stuff

Things that I still want to fix:

-a sharper "oil, brakes, shocks" decal
-weird shadows cast by my tree leaves
-side beam texture doesn't blend with top beam textures

Things I would like some comments/suggestions on:

- Anything and everything... would especially like some suggestions on lighting. This peice is mostly a learning project for me, but I would like to have it in my portfolio.. this would be my very first completed peice of 3d art. I also want to finish this soon because I'm getting very burnt out on this :(

Last edited by akvan : 01 January 2008 at 03:09 AM.
  01 January 2008
Nice work, only thing i can add is that the red trim is way to bright and fresh and really takes it out of the old and broke enviroment, if you look at your refrence the red is much darker and worn. just my two cents. Nice start tho.
  01 January 2008
Did alot of tweaking today, reduced the redness of the beams as suggested. Also I think I have a much better lighting now

Last edited by akvan : 01 January 2008 at 04:59 AM.
  01 January 2008
Not sure if someone has already said this or not. (I didnt read through everyones posts) but watch your scale on things. Things like the boards nailed up are way to big. Also the red trim is very thick too compaired to the reference image you posted. Try to keep them as close to real world scale as possible.

Good job so far.
Nathaniel Bell Environment Artist
  01 January 2008
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