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Andreas Strømberg gave a little talk on his sci-fi Enforcer gun created with the help of Blender and Toolbag.
My name is Andreas Strømberg, I’m from Verdal in Norway and I am mostly self-taught, although I did take a year of 3D Design.
I have worked on Battlefield 1, Battlefront, Total War: Rome 2, Payday 2 and a few more. I’ve worked for EA Dice, Creative Assembly, Monochrome and now I’m at Starbreeze.
I begin by making a blockout, where at least for me the point is to get the scale right and try to figure out the potential problems early on, like how pieces fit together, how it looks from different views and so on.
Go hunting for reference before you start modeling.
All credit goes to Adam Wood and Epic Games for their community-driven Unreal Tournament game, I was looking through the concepts and following the thread, and when the concept of the Enforcer came up around 2015 I knew right away that I had to create it.
But at that time another artist was making the in-game version, so I didn’t want to compete with that, and I had other projects going on.
So I made a folder for the project and did a quick blockout in 3ds Max, then I put it in my “On hold” folder, where I keep unfinished projects or projects I have yet to start on.
And I picked it up last year, and I’ve been working on it on and off until now.
I usually model starting with the largest pieces and then deal with the smaller ones, although often I choose what interests me the most to work on at that time.
I didn’t do anything special during modeling to help it look realistic, other than changing the width and softness of the edges depending on the material.
I’m a person who has switched programs multiple times, for work or for other reasons, I always try and use the same program at home as I do at work.
And now I was tired of doing that, and I chose Blender, because it’s free, open source, with rapid development, good python scripting support and documentation.
I first make all the base colors, which is like paint, plastic and so on, until I get them looking decent. Then I add graphics, color variation, wear and dirt. I use a lot of layers and layer masks, so I have the option to go back in and change what I have done later on.
I experimented with lighting and presentation until I found something I like, I also had help from friends to come up with a good look.
And I’ve also used the post-processing tools in Marmoset Toolbag: bloom, sharpen and curves.
Practice, take what you learn from each project and apply it to the next.