Skywatcher Music [screencast/video]

Some of you may remember that some time ago, I made a vow to produce a music video for one of Sheffield composer, Skywatcher Music‘s tracks.
Here’s a couple of little progress videos I’ve made centered around the orange Broadstadium3D models from 3D Warehouse.

Today, I finally completed the first, and actually had enough screencast footage for a second video, so why not?

Skywatcher Music – Chrysippus Allegedly Died Of Laughter

The second video is all screencast, and starts with me completely breaking Adsetts Building (though I didn’t realise that’s what I was doing at the time) – in the preview image above, you can see that it’s too big and floating off the ground.

Skywatcher – Platysma


I want to share with you a bit about my process of how I work through the means of screenshots and explaining them:

Map overlays

Here I’m using an OpenStreetMap overlay of the area UV mapped to my Terrain object: to the top right, I have a UV image editor window and four faces selected on the mesh in front of the cathedral (orange).
The Terrain while in this state is not curved and has no elevation, it’s completely flat.

To quickly navigate to any point in the map, I can select a single face from the 3D viewport, hover over to the map, press a to select all faces in the UV editor and NumPad . to jump to that point on the map, it also works vice versa, and the top right corner I can search for buildings by name.

From a lower view, having the building and street names on the ground is useful. Having a building levitate 15ft in the air, not so much.

There are some buildings you might not have seen yet, they’ve been imported and adapted from the Broadstadium3D libraries on 3D Warehouse: these will need retopologising and UV mapping with my own textures.

Video editing

Here I’m finalising a composite of progress videos, backed to a Skywatcher Music track. Although the cut is slightly rough, I do hope to release this by the end of the night.

The bottom layer with the waveform is the audio for the video, the blue is video file, purple represents image sequences and the pink strips are speed modifiers, to speed up or slow down segments.
This area can get very complicated.

Asset: 'Sheffield 3D' [3D Warehouse]

These are amazing!
There’s a library of 3D models of Sheffield buildings, uploaded by the user ‘
Here is a screenshot of the library, for those of us who do not want to go offsite:

KMZ from Sketchup

This will download a zip file, open and extract it.
It’ll look like this:

Look in this folder called model.dae

The textures don’t quite work….

…and then sometimes they do:

Using layouts from KMZ files is finickity in Blender.
I’m only interested in the mesh itself, its shape, and I’ll completely retexture this myself. One reason being that .kmz files use textures from Google Street View, which, as an open-source project, I can’t (and don’t want to use Google imagery)

Fortunately, as you can see from this (largely upscaled) example of one of the image textures, there’s enough detail to paint over to produce my own textures.

Building: Sheffield Cathedral

I’ll update this later today with some more text and video, but here’s a start of Sheffield Cathedral.

The model itself is from Sketchup, and a collection of models have been uploaded by a user called ‘’.

The Sketchup file format does need a bit of playing about with to get working in Blender: as the textures on the original model are from Google Maps, we’re not allowed to use them because of licencing – so I’ve just kept the base mesh and will UV map it myself.