Fore Abbey Cloisters
Wrestling with Wraps, Maps and Texture Aps
Our efforts to model the cloisters at Fore Abbey have moved from the large scale idea of the whole abbey as a loose model, towards a more concentrated look at the cloisters which sit in the centre of the abbey space. The cloister area has several columns and arches still standing and as such there are visual references as well as our measures to work from.
Throughout the process, the most difficult task has been to correctly figure out the start point to construct from. We have drawn and extruded from splines, we have taken basic shapes and used modifiers to morph them towards our pillar shapes and we have used boolean operators to unify sets of cylinders – none of these efforts were entirely satisfactory but they did lead us back towards a spline based object to work from. The principle issue with our pillars was a massive poly count and so we removed modifiers especially the Turbosmooth modifier that had beautifully bevelled our pillar caps and edges.
Redrawing from a spline, we used the CapHoles modifier to fill out a new pillar and then reused our original bevel base and tops but added a chamfer rather than Turbosmooth.
Returning to the overall model we used boolean operators to extract door spaces in the outer cloister wall and began to look at our arch shapes. For these we used a basic box shape and drew cylinders over the plan of the arches and then used a ProBoolean subtraction to cut holes through the box to make our arch. These we then took into a separate 3Ds Max project to combine with the pillars and began to create an array.
Having worked together on the one computer throughout – we began to press further into the project on two fronts. Marianna took the arches and began to reshape and tweak them to create more realistic looking shapes as I began to seek out textures and looks.
Through conversations and our own research we decided that aged concrete might give a good look to our pillars, arches and the walls on which they stand. We also sought out medieval textures online and scanned many websites for comparable buildings that might give us further visual cues to work from.
The outer walls still standing are composed of rough stone and for this reason we chose a texture that, when combined properly, would give a sense of the rough, solid stone that has stood for the centuries.
As the cloister began to assume some kind of shape, we worked on a schedule to try and finish the model in so far as time and our skill-sets would allow. The texturing and the scaling into a finished form were the areas we hoped would push our flat looking construction onto a different plane and as we found a wonderful interior roofing texture we entered into our final weeks work on a hopeful note.