SoulThief

A second test of my window from 123D Catch in DAZ Studio

I’ve composed a second image in DAZ Studio using the church window I scanned as a 3D object using Autodesk 123D as per previous posts. I’m pretty pleased with the outcome. I’ve only got one fairly diffuse spotlight shining on the scene and that is a light blue light to give a slightly creepy mood. I looked at some reference material of faces that were surprised and shocked and parted the

Posing a figure in DAZ Studio

This is the sequel to the post about using Autodesk’s 123D Catch to make an environment for a DAZ Studio image. Again I have a video of me talking as I fiddle away with DAZ Studio. What you are going to see in this video is me adding a standard figure to the scene (it comes with the free Genesis Essentials Pack). I will then drag a pose onto it

Using 123D Catch to make an environment for DAZ Studio

I love to create, but I am also fairly limited in respects to money. Hence I put a lot of effort into finding free computer graphic tools and seeing what I can do with them. I’ve mentioned DAZ Studio before. Now to look at 123D Catch, a wonderful product from Autodesk. Basically 123D Catch lets you take several photos of something and then turn these into a 3D object for use in 3D

A documentary that influenced my fantasy writing - Slumming it

‘Slumming It’ is a documentary by Kevin McCloud whereby McCloud visits the slum of Dharavi in Mumbai, India. Here he finds a world that is so different to that which Westerners (like myself) experience. The children play among filth near toxic drains, Pollution is everywhere. Poverty is everywhere. Surely this must be soul crushing for the inhabitants. And yet there is a richness of spirit that is fascinating to watch.

Creating the cover of my novel – Part 2

This entry is part 2 of 2 in the series Making my own book cover

Back on to the creation of the cover. As I said in my previous post, my designer Paul Deuis of Jethryk (http://www.jethryk.com.au) guided me superbly in what I needed to give him. In this post I’ve included excerpts from his emails so that you can see what to expect from a good designer. So first he gave me an idea of the specifications and why. “I’ve made the artboard 155mm x

DAZ Studio - an author's tool when you want to create art

I am placing this post between parts one and two of “Creating the cover of my novel.” This is because I want to demonstrate how easy the creation of a simple image can be with a tool like DAZ Studio. (I feel like a magician revealing tricks of the trade) DAZ Studio is a free (yes, free!) piece of software that permits the user to arrange and pose 3D models.

Creating the cover of my novel - Part 1

This entry is part 1 of 2 in the series Making my own book cover

Whoever said that you should not judge a book by its cover was obviously swimming against the tide. Judging a book by its cover is precisely what most people do. You only need to stand in a book shop (you remember book shops don’t you?) and watch people browse. The books with the great covers are constantly being examined. Anyway, I wanted a great cover. And I wanted it as

What I want in a Villain & The Curse of the Bad Chapter

  This is two blog posts for the price of one as I have been dwelling on both of these things. The first is finding the villain that I find perfect for the novel. Yes sure, I’ve already named and described him in the first draft. But I really need to tease him out more. So I have been watching films and documentaries of actors who are known for characterisations

Writing my own gestalt-sentient beings

In the mid-1990s I read a book with an idea that captured my imagination. In Verner Vinge’s “A Fire Upon the Deep” I read of a canine gestalt-sentient species called the Tine. A gestalt-sentient species, as portrayed in that novel, was one that had a sort of group mind or group consciousness. So an “individual” might be made up of five or six beings who shared a consciousness. What really

Quantum entanglement & Sympathetic magic

Well, as any of my dear friends out there know, I am trying to create a world in which magic is merely science that is forgotten. I know, not a new idea. But I am trying to express it in a way that is true to most reader’s expectations of fantasy while providing a rationale that satisfies my own need for logic and consistency. Anyway, I’ll write more about that

First step in seeing people

I love the way that some authors can catch the essence of a person in a few sentences.  But how can I do that as a writer? I set myself the task of really trying to observe the people around me. By that I mean not just seeing what I expect to see, but really deconstructing their behaviour into a suite of movements and expressions and so on. But this

Two's company. Three is more interesting.

The other day I found myself wondering why a certain scene of mine was so dull. It had conflict. It had heightened emotions. Yet it was still dull. Essentially the scene was an argument between two characters regarding a course of action. The principal risks were to do nothing and definitely kill 300 people or do something and let an unknown (possibly extremely dangerous) entity loose upon their world. Both

Swearing, obscenities and so on in my fantasy and science fiction

Is it just me, or does everyone think that the use of the word ‘frak’ in science fiction and fantasy is just plain lame? I know that it annoyed the crap out of me in Battlestar Galactica. I figure that if you mean ‘fuck’ then just say it. Having said that, why use it at all? To be honest, I rarely use the so-called F-word in real life. My swearing vocabulary consists of ‘bloody’