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VISUAL SKETCHBOOK PREHISTORIC PAPERCRAFT CHLOE McCANN


PROJECT GOALS MY AIM FOR THIS PROJECT IS TO PRODUCE A SERIES OF 3D DINOSAUR MODELS WHICH CAN BE ADAPTED INTO PAPERCRAFT SHEETS TO BE ASSEMBLED IN REAL LIFE. IN ORDER TO DO THIS I WILL MAKE THE SCULPTS, THEN RETOP THESE INTO SUPER LOW POLY MODELS (AROUND 1000 POLYGONS, PREFERABLY LESS). THESE WILL THEN BE TAKEN INTO PEPAKURA DESIGNER WHERE THE PAPERCRAFT SHEETS WILL BE MADE. I WILL THEN ATTEMPT TO ASSEMBLE THESE MODELS IN REAL LIFE.


AESTHETIC GOALS

I WANT MY DINOSAURS TO APPEAR REALISTIC, BUT AT THE SAME TIME NOT TOO REALISTIC SO THAT THEY AREN’T AS POTENTIALLY FRIGHTENING FOR YOUNGER CHILDREN. THE MODELS SHOULD BE SUITABLE FOR DISPLAY IN A KIDS BEDROOM OR A CLASSROOM, AND IF FOR EXAMPLE THEY RESEMBLED DINOSAURS FROM JURASSIC PARK IN REALISM, THEN THERE MAY BE ISSUES WITH SAID CHILDREN BEING INTIMIDATED OR AFRAID. HOWEVER, AT THE SAME TIME I WOULD PREFER THAT THEY DON’T LOOK GOOFY LIKE, SAY, REX FROM TOY STORY, SO THERE IS A DELICATE BALANCE THAT I MUST STICK TO. I THINK THAT THE BEST COMPARISON I CAN MAKE TO THE ART STYLE I’M AIMING FOR IS PLASTIC TOY DINOSAURS; SOME OF THESE, ESPECIALLY FROM THE PAPO BRAND, ARE IMPRESSIVELY REALISTIC AND YET NOT TOO SCARY.


STARTING OUT I STARTED OUT SKETCHING VARIOUS DINOSAURS. IN ORDER TO DETERMINE WHICH DINOSAURS WOULD BE SUITABLE FOR RECREATION USING PAPERCRAFT, I HAD TO TAKE INTO ACCOUNT THEIR SIZE AND COMPLEXITY. I WANTED TO KEEP ALL OF THE PAPERCRAFT FIGURES TO A SIMILAR SIZE IN ORDER TO AVOID SOME BEING TOO SMALL AND FIDDLY TO MAKE. I ALSO NEEDED TO ENSURE THAT THEY COULD STAND INDEPENDENTLY, SO MORE DAINTY ANIMALS WITH THIN LEGS LIKELY WOULDN’T HAVE BEEN POSSIBLE.


SCULPTING BEGINS

I STARTED OFF BY SCULPTING THE BASIC SHAPES OF TWO DINOSAURS: A CARNOTAURUS AND A TRICERATOPS. FOR THIS I USED ZBRUSH.


SCULPTING CARNOTAURUS I CHOSE CARNOTAURUS TO START OFF WITH MAINLY BECAUSE OF ITS UNUSUAL AND UNIQUE APPEARANCE. CARNOTAURUS HAD MULTIPLE VERY ODD FEATURES, SUCH AS A SHALLOW DOWNWARD-CURVED JAW, TINY VESTIGIAL ARMS AND BULL-LIKE HORNS, WHICH NO OTHER CARNIVOROUS DINOSAUR HAD (THAT HAVE BEEN DISCOVERED SO FAR). ANOTHER REASON IS THAT IT’S SIMILAR IN SIZE TO TRICERATOPS, AND I DIDN’T WANT MY MODELS TO BE SUPER DIFFERENT IN SIZE. I ADDED SOME MAJOR DETAILS TO THE CARNOTAURUS, LIKE TEETH, WRINKLES IN THE SKIN AND SCUTES ON THE LEGS. I ALSO FIXED SOME INACCURACIES AND PROBLEMS WITH THE FACE; THE EYES ARE NOW SMALLER, AND THE SHAPE OF THE SKULL CAVITIES HAVE BEEN IMPROVED TO MORE CLOSELY RESEMBLE HOW THEY DO IN REAL LIFE CARNOTAURUS SKULLS.


SCULPTING TRICERATOPS THE FIRST REASON I CHOSE TRICERATOPS HAS TO DO WITH ITS INSTANT RECOGNIZABILITY; EVERYONE KNOWS WHAT A TRICERATOPS IS, AND I WANTED AT LEAST ONE DINOSAUR IN THE GROUP I’VE CHOSEN TO BE WELL-KNOWN. THE SECOND IS THAT IT’S CHUNKY WITH SHORT LEGS, WHICH SHOULD MAKE THE PAPERCRAFT MODEL STURDY. THE FINAL REASON HAS TO DO WITH ITS RELATIVE SIMPLICITY. TRICERATOPS HAS LOTS OF RELATIVES, SOME ARGUABLY MORE INTERESTING LOOKING THAN IT, BUT TRICERATOPS IS NICE AND SIMPLE WITH THREE BIG HORNS AND NOT MUCH ELSE. THIS WILL MAKE THE MODEL EASIER TO BUILD IN THE END, AS OPPOSED TO, FOR EXAMPLE, STYRACOSAURUS, A TRICERATOPS RELATIVE WITH NINE HUGE HORNS.

A STYRACOSAURUS FROM JURASSIC WORLD: EVOLUTION. NOTE THE UNREASONABLE AMOUNT OF HORNS.


SCULPTING AMARGASAURUS AMARGASAURUS WAS A (RELATIVELY) SMALL SAUROPOD, AT AROUND 9 METERS LONG. I DECIDED TO CHOOSE THIS FAIRLY OBSCURE DINOSAUR BECAUSE I WANTED TO MAKE A SAUROPOD, BUT THE WELL KNOWN ONES ARE FAR TOO LARGE IN COMPARISON WITH MY OTHER DINOSAURS. THIS WILL ALSO MAKE THE TRIO NICE AND VARIED, WITH THREE VERY DIFFERENT FAMILIES OF DINOSAURS REPRESENTED.


DETAILING TRICERATOPS I ADDED SURFACE DETAILS TO THE TRICERATOPS. I USED THE ALPHAS BELOW, COMBINED WITH DETAIL I MADE BY HAND TO CREATE THE SCALES, AND LEATHERY SKIN ON ITS UNDERBELLY.


DETAILING CARNOTAURUS I ADDED SURFACE DETAIL TO THE CARNOTAURUS, BUT THIS TIME I USED ZBRUSH’S NOISE FUNCTION TO APPLY THE SCALES ALPHA, RATHER THAN CLICKING AND DRAGGING IT ON. THIS AVOIDED THE GAPS AND OVERLAPPING SCALES I HAD ISSUES WITH WHEN DETAILING THE TRICERATOPS.


DETAILING IN ZBRUSH I CREATED THE DETAIL ON THE AMARGASAURUS IN THE SAME WAY THAT I DETAILED THE OTHER TWO DINOSAURS, WITH A MIX OF ALPHAS AND HAND-DRAWN LINES. I USED A COMBO OF APPLYING ALPHAS USING NOISE AND DRAGGING THEM OUT BY HAND TO TRY BREAK UP THE TEXTURE AND MAKE THE SEAMS HARDER TO PICK OUT.


PAINTING TRICERATOPS I USED POLYPAINT IN ZBRUSH TO PAINT THE MODELS. THE “MASK BY CAVITY” FEATURE WAS USED TO MASK OFF THE SCALES SO THAT I COULD PAINT BETWEEN THEM, IN ORDER TO GIVE THEM DEFINITION.


PAINTING CARNOTAURUS


PAINTING AMARGASAURUS


RETOP & UNWRAP I RETOPOLOGIZED THE TRICERATOPS MODEL IN 3D-COAT AND UV UNWRAPPED IT IN 3DS MAX. IT HAS 1,238 TRIANGLES. I HAVE KEPT THE MODEL AT SUCH A LOW RESOLUTION IN ORDER TO MAKE IT EASIER TO ASSEMBLE AS A PAPERCRAFT MODEL.


RETOP & UNWRAP I USED THE EXACT SAME SOFTWARE AND TECHNIQUES TO RETOP AND UV UNWRAP THE CARNOTAURUS AS THE TRICERATOPS. THIS TIME I ADDED PLANES TO THE INSIDE OF THE MOUTH AND ALONG THE SPINE. THESE ARE WHAT I BAKED THE TEETH AND BACK SPIKES ONTO. WHEN DISPLAYING THE MODELS DIGITALLY, AN ALPHA MAP WAS APPLIED FOR TRANSPARENCY IN THESE AREAS, AND WHEN ASSEMBLING THE MODEL IN PAPER THE TEETH AND SPIKES WERE CUT OUT. LATER I REVISITED THE TRICERATOPS AND DID THE SAME FOR THE SPIKES ON ITS CREST.


RETOP & UNWRAP I USED 3D-COAT TO BOTH RETOP AND UNWRAP THE AMARGASAURUS. BELOW IS AN IMAGE OF THE RESULTING LOWPOLY MODEL AND THE UV MAP, IN 3DS MAX.


BAKING TEXTURES I BAKED THE TEXTURES USING MARMOSET TOOLBAG 3. AS THE MODELS WERE USED TO CREATE PAPERCRAFT FIGURES, I ONLY BAKED THE DIFFUSE, AMBIENT OCCLUSION AND NORMAL MAPS, AND DIDN’T CREATE GLOSS AND SPECULAR MAPS AS THEY WOULDN’T BE USABLE. I LAYERED THE OCCLUSION MAP ONTO THE DIFFUSE MAP, AS THIS WAS THE ONLY MAP USEABLE FOR THE PAPERCRAFT MODEL. HOWEVER, I DID LOOK INTO CREATING LIGHTMAPS TO SIMULATE DEPTH.


BAKING TEXTURES


BAKING TEXTURES


LIGHTMAPPING I FOUND OUT HOW TO BAKE LIGHTMAPS IN MARMOSET TOOLBAG. IT WORKED WELL TO CAPTURE THE DETAIL OF THE NORMAL MAP, AND WOULD GO A LONG WAY TO MAKING MY PAPERCRAFT FIGURES LOOK MORE INTERESTING. HOWEVER, THERE WAS AN ISSUE WITH THE CARNOTAURUS WHICH CAUSED THE UV ISLAND ON THE SIDE OF THE HEAD TO BE DARKER THAN THE SURROUNDING AREAS. IT TURNED OUT TO BE A RESULT OF THE LIGHT NOT BEING SYMMETRICAL, AND BECAUSE THE AFFECTED UV ISLAND WAS INVERTED, THE LIGHT INFORMATION FROM THE DARKER SIDE OF THE MODEL WAS MAPPED TO IT. IT COULD BE FIXED BY EITHER MAKING THE LIGHTS IN THE SCENE COMPLETELY SYMMETRICAL, OR FIXING THE UV ISLAND. (I LATER SCRAPPED USING LIGHTMAPS BY THEMSELVES, AND INSTEAD USED THEM IN CONJUNCTION WITH MANIPULATING THE NORMAL MAPS’ COLOUR CHANNELS TO BRING THE DETAIL INTO THE DIFFUSE MAP.)


TEXTURE DETAIL SINCE LIGHTMAPS DIDN’T WORK VERY WELL BY THEMSELVES, MY TUTOR MATT SHOWED ME HOW TO EXTRACT DETAIL FROM THE NORMAL MAP AND OVERLAY IT ONTO THE DIFFUSE MAP. BY USING THE “HIGH PASS” FILTER IN PHOTOSHOP AND ADJUSTING THE SLIDER, I GOT A VERSION OF THE IMAGE THAT WAS MUCH FLATTER, BUT WITH THE DETAIL PRESERVED. THEN I REMOVED THE RED AND GREEN CHANNELS OF THE NORMAL MAP, LEAVING THE BLUE BEHIND. THE HIGH PASS LAYER WAS THEN OVERLAID ON THIS, AND THE LEVELS AND COLOUR WERE TWEAKED. YOU ARE THEN LEFT WITH A MONOCHROME VERSION OF THE NORMAL MAP WHICH CAN BE LAYERED ON TOP OF THE DIFFUSE. OVERLAYING THE (FIXED) LIGHTMAP ONTO THIS CREATED A MATERIAL THAT SIMULATES DEPTH AND LIGHTING USING JUST ONE TEXTURE. MATT DID THE CARNOTAURUS AS A DEMONSTRATION, AND I USED THE TECHNIQUE ON THE OTHER TWO MODELS’ TEXTURES.


POSE SKETCHING I SKETCHED SOME DIFFERENT POSES THAT THE PAPERCRAFT MODELS COULD HAVE. I NEEDED TO MAKE SURE THAT THE POSES I CHOSE WERE BALANCED AND WOULDN’T FALL OVER, WHILE AT THE SAME TIME BEING DYNAMIC AND INTERESTING. DUE TO THE CARNOTAURUS BEING BIPEDAL, BOTH LEGS NEEDED TO BE PLANTED ON THE GROUND, WHICH UNFORTUNATELY LIMITED POSSIBILITIES.


RIGGING AND POSING I DECIDED THAT IT WOULD BE BEST TO RIG MY THREE DINOSAURS FOR THE PURPOSE OF POSING THEM; IT DOESN’T TAKE THAT MUCH MORE TIME OR EFFORT, AND I FIND IT VERY DIFFICULT AND TEDIOUS TO POSE A MODEL MANUALLY. RIGGING THEM ALSO MEANS THAT I HAD MORE FREEDOM TO TRY OUT DIFFERENT POSES BEFORE SETTLING ON ONE.

I TRIED TO GIVE EACH DINOSAUR A DYNAMIC, INTERESTING POSE. TO MAKE IT EASIER FOR MYSELF WHEN CONVERTING THE MODELS TO PAPERCRAFT, I “EXPLODED” THEM, WHICH MEANS I MADE ANY SEPARATE MESHES, SUCH AS PLANES FOR SPIKES AND TEETH, FLOAT IN THE AIR.


SEARCH FOR A STAR COMPETITION I ADAPTED THE TRICERATOPS AND CARNOTAURUS MODELS FOR THE GRADS IN GAMES SEARCH FOR A STAR COMPETITION. I RETOPPED THE SCULPTS AGAIN, BUT THIS TIME MADE MUCH HIGHER POLY MODELS SO THEY WERE MORE SUITABLE. I ALSO HAD TO RIG THEM FROM SCRATCH AS THE GEOMETRY WAS TOO DIFFERENT FOR SKIN WRAPPING TO WORK IN 3DS MAX. BECAUSE THE COMPETITION CALLED FOR GAME-READY MODELS TO BE SHOWN IN UNREAL ENGINE 4, I WAS ABLE TO USE NORMAL AND ROUGHNESS MAPS, ALLOWING FOR MORE VISUAL FIDELITY. I POSED THE TWO MODELS SO IT LOOKED LIKE THEY WERE STANDING OFF AND READY TO FIGHT, AND BUILT A FOREST SCENE AROUND THEM IN UNREAL 4.


SEARCH FOR A STAR COMPETITION IN ORDER TO CREATE THE TALL TREES IN THE BACKGROUND OF THE SCENE, I USED SIMPLE BROWN CYLINDERS. A POSTPROCESSING VOLUME ADDED COLOUR GRADING, DEPTH OF FIELD AND DISTANCE FOG TO MAKE THESE LOOK BETTER AND MORE CONVINCING. THIS FENCE WAS CREATED USING PLANES WITH AN ALPHA APPLIED. I WANTED TO MAKE IT OBVIOUS THAT THIS SCENE WAS A JURASSIC PARK SORT OF SITUATION AND NOT A NATURAL ONE, AS TRICERATOPS AND CARNOTAURUS WOULD NEVER HAVE MET IN REAL LIFE DUE TO LIVING IN DIFFERENT PARTS OF THE WORLD. THE FOG AND DEPTH OF FIELD HELPED MASK THE SIMPLICITY OF THE FENCE.

THE GRASS IN THE SCENE IS MADE UP OF CROSSED, DOUBLE-SIDED PLANES, WITH A MATERIAL APPLIED WITH AN OPACITY MASK.

THE DINOSAURS’ FOOTPRINTS WERE MADE USING DECALS. I SCULPTED THE FOOTPRINTS ON A PLANE IN ZBRUSH AND THEN BAKED A NORMAL MAP FROM THEM. ALPHA MAPS ENSURED THAT THE PRINTS FADED OUT AROUND THE EDGES NATURALLY AND DIDN’T END ABRUPTLY.


VIDEO ANIMATION FOR MY SUBMISSION VIDEO I CREATED A SHORT ANIMATION WITH THE GAME-READY CARNOTAURUS AND TRICERATOPS I MADE FOR THE COMPETITION. I DID THIS TO BRING LIFE AND INTEREST TO THEM, BECAUSE HAVING THEM STAND STATIONARY IS A LITTLE BIT DULL. I IMPORTED THEM INTO THE UNREAL SCENE AND RECORDED FOOTAGE OF THAT, AND ALSO RENDERED CLOSE-UP CLIPS OF BOTH DINOSAURS ANIMATING IN MARMOSET TOOLBAG FOR THE VIDEO. OVER THE CLIP OF THE UNREAL ENGINE SCENE, I ADDED SOUND EFFECTS OF ROARING, FOOTSTEPS AND AMBIENT FOREST SOUNDS.


PEPAKURA DESIGNER

IN ORDER TO CONVERT MY MODELS TO PAPERCRAFT, I USED PEPAKURA DESIGNER, A SOFTWARE DESIGNED SPECIFICALLY FOR THE PURPOSE. ABOVE IS A SCREENSHOT FROM THE PROGRAM, IN WHICH MY CARNOTAURUS MODEL HAS BEEN SPLIT UP INTO PAPERCRAFT SHEETS. I DECIDED TO GIVE ALL OF THE MODELS CIRCULAR BASES, FOR STABILITY PURPOSES.


PEPAKURA DESIGNER IN ORDER TO SPLIT A MODEL UP INTO PARTS FOR PAPERCRAFT IN PEPAKURA DESIGNER, I HAD TO MARK THE SEAMS. THIS DETERMINED WHERE THE MODEL WOULD BE SPLIT UP. PEPAKURA DESIGNER CALCULATED IF A PIECE WILL BE 100% FLAT AUTOMATICALLY AS I WAS DOING THIS, SO IF I MADE A PIECE THAT WOULD BE IMPOSSIBLE TO PRINT IT WOULD SPLIT THAT PIECE UP ELSEWHERE TO MAKE IT RIGHT AGAIN. THIS PROVED ANNOYING WHEN IT WOULD MAKE CUTS AUTOMATICALLY THAT I DIDN’T NOTICE UNTIL LATER, BUT IT’S JUST HOW THE SOFTWARE WORKS TO ENSURE THAT EVERYTHING IS POSSIBLE TO PRINT. THE SOFTWARE REPRESENTS SEAMS AS OPEN EDGES. THESE BIG GAPS CAN MAKE THE MODEL VISUALLY CONFUSING, BUT IT’S A GOOD, OBVIOUS WAY OF SHOWING THE SEAMS, AND THIS CAN ALSO BE TOGGLED OFF.

THE RIGHT WINDOW IS WHERE THE PAPERCRAFT SHEETS ARE ARRANGED. THE SOFTWARE ALLOWS DIFFERENT PAPER SIZES, MARGIN SIZES AND ALL SORTS OF OTHER OPTIONS. THE PIECES CAN BE MOVED AND ROTATED TO FIT THEM ONTO THE PAGES. THE STICKING TABS CAN ALSO BE EDITED, ADDED OR REMOVED, AND PEPAKURA WILL AUTOMATICALLY CHANGE THE TAB ON THE CORRESPONDING EDGE TO REFLECT THIS.

PEPAKURA DESIGNER ALLOWS TEXTURES TO BE APPLIED TO UV-MAPPED MODELS. THIS IS A HELPFUL FEATURE AS IT GAVE SOME MORE CONTEXT TO AREAS OF THE MODEL WHEN I WAS MARKING THE SEAMS. IT ALSO ALLOWS FOR TEXTURES TO BE APPLIED ONTO THE SHEETS WHEN THEY’RE EXPORTED.


PEPAKURA DESIGNER THESE ARE ALL OF THE DINOSAUR MODELS, WITH SEAMS AND PARTS ARRANGED INTO SHEETS, IN PEPAKURA DESIGNER. ONCE THIS STAGE WAS COMPLETE, I EXPORTED THE SHEETS INTO BITMAP FILES, TOOK THEM INTO PHOTOSHOP AND EDITED THEM IN PREPARATION FOR PRINTING.


EDITING THE PAPERCRAFT SHEETS ONCE I COMPLETED THE PAPERCRAFT SHEETS IN PEPAKURA DESIGNER, I EXPORTED THEM AS INDIVIDUAL IMAGE FILES IN ORDER TO EDIT THEM IN ADOBE PHOTOSHOP. I WANTED TO MAKE THE SHEETS PLEASANT TO LOOK AT, WHILE BEING EASY TO UNDERSTAND AT THE SAME TIME. I SAVED OUT TWO VERSIONS OF THE SHEETS: ONE WITH TEXTURES AND NOTHING ELSE, AND ANOTHER WITH JUST THE OUTLINES AND FOLD LINES, FLIPPED HORIZONTALLY. THIS IS SO THAT THEY CAN BE PRINTED DOUBLE-SIDED AND THE LINES AREN’T VISIBLE ON THE FINISHED PRODUCT. ON THE PLAIN, LINES-ONLY SIDE I COLOUR CODED THE PIECES TO INDICATE THE PART OF THE BODY THEY BELONG TO, AND ADDED A COLOUR KEY TO THE FRONT PAGE. THIS SHOULD HOPEFULLY MAKE IT EASIER FOR OTHER PEOPLE TO MAKE SENSE OF THE MODELS. THERE ARE ALSO READ-ONLY PEPAKURA VIEWER FILES TO ACCOMPANY THE SHEETS WHICH CAN BE USED TO LOOK AT THE MODELS AND SEE HOW THE PARTS FIT TOGETHER; PEOPLE WOULD HAVE TO INSTALL PEPAKURA VIEWER FOR THIS, BUT IT IS A FREE PROGRAM.


FRONT PAGES I WAS UNHAPPY WITH THE FRONT PAGE I HAD PREVIOUSLY MADE FOR THE CARNOTAURUS; IT WAS VERY DULL AND UNINTERESTING, AND DIDN’T CATCH THE EYE. I REMADE IT ENTIRELY, WITH A MUCH MORE INTERESTING LAYOUT, BETTER FONT (“ROADWAY” FROM 1001FONTS.COM), AND A NEW RENDER OF THE MODEL WHICH HAS A BETTER ANGLE AND IMPROVED LIGHTING. I WILL BE USING THIS AS A SORT OF TEMPLATE TO BASE THE OTHER COVER PAGES OFF OF, IN ORDER TO MAINTAIN THE SAME THEME AND LEVEL OF QUALITY THROUGHOUT.

BEFORE

AFTER


FRONT PAGES

I MADE THE FRONT PAGES FOR EACH DINOSAUR USING THE ONE I MADE FOR THE CARNOTAURUS AS A TEMPLATE. I HAD TO EDIT AND MOVE THINGS AROUND FOR EACH SO THAT EVERYTHING FIT ON THE PAGE, LOOKED GOOD AND MADE SENSE FOR THE SPECIFIC DINOSAUR.


PRINTING I DECIDED TO USE 250GSM WHITE CARD FOR THESE PRINTS; THE REASON BEING THAT I WANTED THE MODELS TO BE AS STURDY AS POSSIBLE. IF I HAD CHOSEN REGULAR PAPER, THEN IT WOULD BE LIKELY THAT THE MODELS WOULD NOT BE ABLE TO SUPPORT THEMSELVES, AND EITHER SAG OVER TIME OR JUST NOT STAND UP IN THE FIRST PLACE.

I WENT TO THE PRINTING BUREAU IN THE TECHNOLOGY BUILDING IN ORDER TO GET HIGH QUALITY, DOUBLE-SIDED PRINTS ON THICK CARD. THEY CAME OUT LOOKING AMAZING- I’M REALLY PLEASED WITH HOW THEY TURNED OUT.


MODEL ASSEMBLY (KINDA...) UNFORTUNATELY, I SOON DISCOVERED THAT THE SIDES OF THE PAPERCRAFT SHEETS WERE MISALIGNED, SO WHEN I CUT AROUND A PIECE ON THE PLAIN SIDE, IT CUT OFF SOME OF THE TEXTURE ON THE OTHER SIDE. I RECTIFIED THIS BY DRAWING THE TABS ONTO THE TEXTURED SIDE USING PENCIL. I HAD TO REFERENCE THE PEPAKURA VIEWER FILE FOR THIS. THIS ISSUE ALSO MADE IT DIFFICULT TO PLACE THE FOLD LINES CORRECTLY.

I VASTLY UNDERESTIMATED THE DIFFICULTY OF THESE PAPERCRAFT MODELS, MY SKILLS, AND THE AMOUNT OF TIME THEY WOULD TAKE. I ESTIMATED AT FIRST THAT EACH ONE WOULD TAKE ROUGHLY A DAY TO COMPLETE AND PLANNED MY TIME ACCORDINGLY, BUT UNFORTUNATELY I DID NOT EVEN FIND THE TIME TO COMPLETE ONE. IT WAS ALSO GRUELLINGLY DIFFICULT; WORDS CANNOT DESCRIBE THE STRUGGLE I EXPERIENCED TRYING TO MAKE EVERY PIECE FIT TOGETHER. I HAD THE IDEA OF MAKING THE TORSO, THE LEGS AND THE HEAD IN SEPARATE PIECES AND JOINING THEM TOGETHER AS THEY WERE COMPLETED, BUT EVERY ATTEMPT AT ATTACHING BODY PARTS RESULTED IN THEM NEARLY TEARING THEMSELVES APART. I NEVER MANAGED TO GET THE LEGS TO FIT ONTO THE BODY RIGHT; THERE ARE BIG GAPS WHERE I SIMPLY COULDN’T GET THE EDGES TO MEET WITHOUT THE WHOLE THING CRUMBLING. IT WOULD ALSO RANDOMLY POP APART AT THE SEAMS IN PLACES, WITH NO OUTSIDE INPUT. I USED A COMBINATION OF DOUBLE-SIDED TAPE AND PVA GLUE, BUT THESE SEEMINGLY WEREN’T STRONG ENOUGH TO HOLD IT FIRMLY TOGETHER. I CONTEMPLATED USING SUPER GLUE AT CERTAIN POINTS, BUT THERE WOULD BE NO WAY TO AVOID TOUCHING IT AND I VALUE THE SKIN ON MY FINGERS.


MODEL ASSEMBLY EVALUATION I UNFORTUNATELY MADE A LOT OF MISTAKES WHEN IT CAME TO THE ASSEMBLY OF THESE MODELS, SO I AM GOING TO GO OVER WHAT I DID WRONG, WHY I FAILED AND HOW I COULD HAVE MADE THIS INTO A SUCCESS. THE FACT THAT THE PRINTS WERE MISALIGNED CERTAINLY DIDN’T HELP MATTERS, AS THE IMPRECISENESS OF DRAWING THE TABS ON WITH PENCIL MAY HAVE MADE PARTS FIT POORLY, BUT I ALSO MADE SOME BLUNDERS OF MY OWN.

MY BIGGEST ISSUE WHEN IT CAME TO ASSEMBLING THE MODELS WAS MY CHOICE OF ADHESIVE; A COMBINATION OF DOUBLE-SIDED TAPE AND WASHABLE PVA GLUE SIMPLY WASN’T STRONG ENOUGH FOR THE PROJECT. I IMAGINE THAT THIS WOULD BE MORE SUITABLE IF I WERE USING REGULAR PRINTER PAPER, BUT MY 250GSM CARD WAS TOO THICK FOR THESE ADHESIVES TO HOLD PERMANENTLY. I ALSO WASN’T AWARE THAT “WASHABLE” PVA GLUE WOULD BE WEAKER THAN REGULAR GLUE, WHICH MADE MATTERS WORSE.

MY METHOD OF ASSEMBLY LIKELY CAUSED ME SOME AVOIDABLE PROBLEMS. MY TECHNIQUE OF ASSEMBLING BODY PARTS SEPARATELY IS A GOOD IDEA IN THEORY, BUT IN PRACTICE IT MAKES IT DIFFICULT FOR ME TO PUSH THE TABS TOGETHER IN PLACES. THIS WAS AN ESPECIALLY LARGE PROBLEM WITH ATTACHING THE LEGS. BECAUSE THERE WEREN’T ANY GAPS FOR ME TO REACH INSIDE, THE PARTS WERE STUCK TOGETHER WEAKLY, AND ANY ATTEMPT TO FIX IT WOULD RESULT IN EDGES ON OTHER WEAK PARTS OF THE MODEL SEPARATING FROM THE FORCE. THIS ALSO MAKES IT VERY STRUCTURALLY UNSOUND, SO THE MODEL IS VERY DIFFICULT TO MOVE.

I THINK THAT I COULD HAVE MADE THE ASSEMBLY OF THE MODELS A SUCCESS, HAD I KNOWN HOW. I THINK THAT THE BIGGEST FACTOR IN THE FAILURE WAS DEFINITELY MY ADHESIVE CHOICE; I SHOULD HAVE LOOKED UP THE BEST KIND OF GLUE FOR THE PURPOSE. I HAVE SINCE BEEN RECOMMENDED UHU GLUE FOR THIS KIND OF PROJECT, SO IF I EVER REVISIT IT, THAT IS WHAT I WILL USE. I ALSO SHOULD HAVE EXPORTED THE SHEETS WITH EDGE NUMBERS ENABLED; PEPAKURA DESIGNER GIVES EACH EDGE A NUMBER, LETTING YOU KNOW WHAT EDGES CORRESPOND, AND WHICH TO DO FIRST. I DISREGARDED THIS AS IT MADE THE PAGE CLUTTERED, BUT NOW I KNOW THAT IT IS AN IMPORTANT FEATURE.


CONCLUSION DESPITE TECHNICALLY NOT ACHIEVING A LARGE PART OF WHAT I SET OUT TO DO, I’M STILL HAPPY WITH WHAT I HAVE ACHIEVED IN THIS PROJECT. I MADE SOME MODELS THAT I’M VERY PLEASED WITH, EXPLORED AN ENTIRELY NEW ART FORM TO ME (PAPERCRAFT) AND SOFTWARE (PEPAKURA DESIGNER), AND IMPROVED MY PORTFOLIO. IT WOULD HAVE BEEN REALLY COOL TO SUCCESSFULLY ASSEMBLE THE PAPERCRAFT, THOUGH. IF I WERE TO GO BACK AND IMPROVE ON THIS PROJECT, I WOULD GET THE DIGITAL 3D MODELS AND PAPERCRAFT SHEETS DONE EARLIER SO I HAD MORE TIME TO ASSEMBLE THE REALLIFE MODELS. I WOULD ALSO DO SOME RESEARCH BEFORE BEGINNING THE BUILD ON WHAT ADHESIVES ARE BEST FOR THE JOB, AND SOME EFFECTIVE TECHNIQUES TO MAKE THE PROCESS LESS DIFFICULT. I WOULD BE HAPPY TO DO MORE PAPERCRAFT PROJECTS IN THE FUTURE AS IT WAS A LOT OF FUN AND ENCOURAGED ME TO DESIGN MY CHARACTERS DIFFERENTLY.

Profile for Chloe McCann

Prehistoric Papercraft - Sketchbook  

Prehistoric Papercraft - Sketchbook  

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