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Modelling is Hard, Texturing is Harder

Well, at least for me. Of course, I've been using Blender off and on for a few months, whereas I've been programming for 10 or 15 years so it's not surprising that the latter comes more easily to me at this point. The biggest thing isn't so much using Blender though. It does more cool stuff than I will ever learn to use, but the problem is that modelling is an artistic process and that's something I've always struggled with. Nonetheless, I've managed to mostly finish the modelling part, although it still needs to be rigged up for animation (which, based on my previous experience with the test model, will be no small task either).

After I finish rigging the model, I'll move on to the suprisingly (to me anyway) more difficult texturing part. In retrospect I probably should have expected that, but I thought texturing would be relatively easy because I had some experience with the Gimp already so I wasn't starting from scratch. The thing I forgot, though, was that texturing is a huge part of what makes a game model look good. In a real-time engine you generally can't afford to model all of the details that you'd like to have, so you end up doing some modelling with textures and normal maps. Texturing just part of the torso turned out to be a moderately difficult and quite time-consuming process. Fortunately I realized that I needed to add the arms and legs before finishing the texturing so that everything would flow together nicely. I was able to attach those parts to areas I hadn't yet textured so I wasn't forced to throw out any of my previous work. On the bright side, adding in some details with a normal map makes a huge difference in how the model looks, so I feel like all this work should pay off in the end.

And, after all that is done, I'll have one mech model done, with only two to go.:-)