out there: oceans of time trailer

Blacklist Creative approached with this project at the same time as No Step Back. I flinched. We had scant weeks to do eleven full-build CG shots for this trailer. We were supplied low-poly game assets for all the ships and planet biomes, which meant a lot of exporting assets from Maya into C4D. We didn't need to retopo the majority, with the exception of the giant clawed hand, which was a simple enough retopo and standard hand rig in C4D, with touch-ups on the skin textures (zoomed into just the hand, 8K soon became 512 px)

One of the more challenging shots was the close-up reverse zoom out of the main character's eyeball. We needed the look to be somewhat game-y but also convincing. We auditioned a lot of the preset models on Metahumans, because I found out that you can export MH models direct to Maya with a character rig pre-built. Then, in Metahumans on the Epic site, I actually designed the character to the supplied reference as closely as I could, and exported that out of Quixel Bridge into Maya for the facial animation. I animated saccades, eyelid, brow and cheek twinges and exported as FBX into Cinema 4D, where I spent a couple days building up lashes, hair groom and peach fuzz over the face, as well as overlaying 8K facial scans in Photoshop to get a bit of wrinkling in the eye socket area for cheap. While far from photoreal, the hard work was done by Quixel, and it served the purpose well.


My favourite shot was the vista - a classic "concept art" shot with multiple planes of detail and a tiny human for scale in the foreground. Instead of splitting up the geo and rendering cards for background parallax, we left everything in camera, with the sky alpha replaced by a huge canyon expanse in comp.


Out There: Oceans of Time
Client: Modern Wolf/Mi-Clos Interactive
Studio: Blacklist Creative
Director/Producer/Lead CG: Liam Bunston
Producer: Mathias Upton-Hansen


© Edmund Brown 2022

© Edmund Brown 2019