Update - My First UE4 Environment.

Work In Progress / 06 February 2019

Hi everyone,

It's been a couple of months now since my last post and I thought I should take the time to explain and update you all on my current situation. Firstly, thank you all so much for following me and encouraging me, and a big thanks to those of you who have supported me by buying my materials. It's really appreciated! The reaction I've had from all of you has helped to give me the confidence to leave my job of 10 years to pursue a career in the video games industry, something I've wanted to do since I left university. As I'm sure you can tell from my portfolio, I'm passionate about texturing and materials. I'd love to become a material/texture artist in the industry, but those jobs seem fairly rare. So I'm looking to build on the skills I've developed as a generalist and transition into an environment artist, a position that's much more common and would allow me to still do a lot of texturing work. So I'm currently putting all my time into learning Unreal Engine 4 and building my first environment!

I toyed around with a lot of different ideas about what to make. I wanted something that was an enclosed space, not too big, and not too complex or cluttered (I don't want to run before I can walk!). I decided in the end to make Matt Murdock's apartment from the Netflix Daredevil series. I gathered as much reference from the show as I could and began blocking out the space. Here's what I've managed to get into the engine so far:

I've been mostly focusing on light mapping this week... I've had better weeks. Still, it all needs to be learnt. I'm making plenty of mistakes, but that's okay because it's the best way to learn. I'm intending to do 2 different lighting setups using UE4's lighting scenarios: daytime and night. This will help me get to grips with lighting a scene almost entirely from exterior light, as well as a scene that's all manmade lighting. I've also attempted to make it as modular as possible, but that's caused some light map seams. I'm contemplating merging some of the meshes together into larger, more contiguous meshes. There's also an issue with the skirting boards. They all come out dark when I build the lighting. I've checked the normals and they're not inverted, so if anyone's got any idea what's going on there I'd love to hear from you. :)

Anyway, there's lots to do so I'm going to park the light map stuff for now and get onto making some of the primary props and lighting fixtures. I'll post more progress on this over the coming weeks. Comments and criticisms are welcome. Advice is even more welcome! ;)