LasVegas ConExpo map & VR

This week from March 7-11, the CONEXPO-CON/AGG show is being held at the LasVegas Convention Center. I was asked to create a 3D map for convention visitors. The finished product was a large scale file that could be reproduced large enough to use for signage at the entrance to the show. Along the way, it underwent many changes and iterations depending on the purpose. The challenge was to balance aesthetics with clarity, so ultimately it was simplified from the earlier designs.The 3D model I built was based on floorplans and images captured from Google Earth, which proved to be invaluable:


And here's an an earlier version, which was to include lots of construction equipment rendered at various angles.


Another part of the assignment was to create a 360-degree environment that could be viewed using a Google Cardboard (or similar) viewer. If you aren't familiar with Google Cardboard, it's a simple inexpensive virtual reality (VR) platform developed by Google for use with a head mount for a smartphone. While it isn't as totally immersive as more costly VR headsets like the Oculus Rift, it does give a pretty convincing feeling of being in an environment.

When first given the assignment, I'd never done anything like this before, and online solutions for creating content for Google Cardboard were slim. It took some trial & error, but I finally hit on a way to render out the 3D environment and the client was pleased with the result. If you have access to a Google Cardboard viewer, you can click on the above image to see it in action. Once I had a workflow, creating another environment for Dipstick Studio, my ideation sketching business, was easy:

This is the second year I've done an assignment for the ConExpo show. The previous work can be seen here. Thanks to all the great folks at Slack & Co. for bring me in on this fun job!

Conexpo-Con/AGG ads

Here's a 3D job that kept me busy for most of the past month. From what I gather, they're promoting a construction equipment convention that's going to be held in Las Vegas in March 2014. (Note: I DIDN'T do the video on their home page.) The images needed to be rendered big enough to output them for trade show booth displays, so the final file sizes were pretty much a bear to work with. I started with prebuilt 3D models which were purchased from Turbosquid , a 3D model site. I then used a cloth simulator in a 3D program which is a good start, but requires a lot of post rendering Photoshop work. The "cloth" is in fact a 3D plane that is dropped over the model (actually an invisible low-polygon-count "proxy" version, to get geeky for a moment) and frozen when it looks about right. Getting a proper feel to the fabric takes a good bit of fiddling with the cloth/gravity settings and trial-and-error.

Oh, and in the process, I also learned what "stanchions" are (those velvet rope barrier thingies).

Thanks to Joshua Schober for the excellent art direction.