2013

Happy New Year

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Scifi Warning Signs and Semiotics

Waiting for inspiration to strike, I have been cleaning-up my hard drive. Trawling through my C4D project files I kept coming across signs, insignia and logos I had made. I decided to pull them together into a family of Photoshop templates so that I stopped reinventing the wheel each time I needed a sign or logo and could work faster.

The Warning signs were designed to broadly fit into the same universe as my Moon/Silent Running-inspired signs.
Symbols

Colours
The base colours are always:
Yellow: eaac04/R234-G172-B4
Grey: 3f3e40/R63-G62-B64

You can download them, in .PSD form, from my DeviantArt Resources Gallery

A word about fonts
I have adjusted these templates so that the text layers use Arial Black, as both Windows and Mac machines should have this font as standard. The signs look more effective with any of the following fonts available from dafont

Capture_it
Coalition
Defused
Jacinto Sans
Bitsumishi
Dodger
SF Automaton

Groups & Layers
To minimise the file sizes, wherever possible I have removed rasterised layers and left the original PS Shape layer - this also allows you to easily change the colours. However, occasionally you will find the original shape layer missing - this is where I forgot to duplicate the Shape layer before rasterising or merging the layer.

Base Shape Layer (Diamond, rectangle, square, pill, etc)
Scratches & Dirt
Masks (alpha masks for clean and damaged)
Techy symbols (eg: Medical, Stop Hand Sign, Radiation, No Access Logo, Biohazard
Text (eg: Level, Security, Warning/No Access/Stop)

The PS Brushes used to create the Dirt and Scratches layers include, but are not limited to:
Scratches by Katrina Rempel
Grunge_Brushed_by_misstaraleexo
Grunge Notion by Blazter
GrungeBrushes3 by KeReN-R

For the Biohazard sign I used Hazard Brushes 1 by AscendedArts

Use
Personal Use
Have a ball - do whatever you want with it!

Commercial Use
No restrictions beyond checking those of the font you use.

Whatever you do with the template, I would love to see it - I had loads of fun making images with it and I hope you do to! Drop me a note on DeviantArt

Changes to the site

I have made some changes to the site and in the process taken the opportunity to move all downloads to my DeviantArt gallery. From now on, all free wallpapers and resources will be on DeviantArt only

Latest work: Cities In The Sky

A little while back I saw an image in my RSS stream which had a really brilliant perspective… The illustration featured 3 floating cities and a stream of craft going to-and-fro.. The perspective was brilliant. Sadly, I don’t know where the illustration came from…

I have tried to reproduce the perspective here - everything in the image I have used before; the towers here, the craft here.

Cities In The Sky-small

Modelled and rendered in Cinema 4D, hipster colour wash in Photoshop Happy Textures for the towers are by Marlin Studios, except the windows/window lights, which are mine. The craft uses all my textures, including some from my resources gallery on DeviantArt The sky is from Dosch HDRI skies.

Recent Images - August 2013

Here are a few of the images I have been working on over the past month or so: Colony Station and Asteroid Base: Final Approach

Colony Station was inspired by re-reading Bryson’s “Short History of Everything” (as I do pretty regularly - my copy is falling to pieces…..) and the section discussing the development of our understanding of the forces that shaped Earth, particularly plate tectonics, got me thinking…. I began to wonder about the fate of a colony ship that sets off to a distant world, only to find that it’s surface is still being ravaged by tectonic and volcanic activity - as Bryson points out, our own world has typically been much more active than now. We have evolved during a relatively quiet period.

Colony Station - thumb

So, the image shows the way in which the colonists choose to survive; the redesign and rebuilding of their ship (I imagined a Helios-style ship) - hacked using the materials with which they were to build their new towns and villages. The habitat ring filled in and expanded, the solar panels which would have provided the power for their homes unfurled below the station…

The basis of the ship-cum-station is a mesh I built a long time ago (here: 2008,
my blog tells me) and I have just fleshed it out. It now has lots of little homages to other sci-fi space stations! Textures are a mixture of my own and a few by Marlin Studios.

The planet was built - as usual - with the aid of
Michael Welters ‘Atmosphere’ plug in. I used my own (16k px) textures with Atmosphere to produce the planets tortured, twisted surface. I found a great texture (I thought on DeviantArt, but I couldn’t find it again to link to) which I built out in Photoshop to the appropriate size. Then used one of my Spherical Ocean/Land Maps (see my Resources here for examples garryts.deviantart.com/gallery… to produce the land form shapes.

The station and planet were rendered together in C4D as I wanted the same sunlight that created the right planet view to also illuminate the colonist station. A little colour correction and 'bloom' added in Photoshop.

An old cover by the (late great) Peter Elson was the trigger for Asteroid Base: Final Approach.

Asteroid Base shuttle-small
The ship is an
old one of mine, modded slightly (well… I never actually finished it!) and re-textured. Textures are from Dosch, Total Textures and myself. The asteroid is by Axeman3d - I have modded the mesh slightly and re-textured. Yep, the inside of the asteroid base is NASA Hanger 1 !! Happy

I didn’t notice - and am perplexed by - the shadows of the rear Comms Tower on the hull; there isn’t a light source to generate those shadows! I’m wondering if it’s a side effect of opening the old ship model (a C4D 10 file) in C4D R13?

Rendered in one go in C4D, then processed to death in Photoshop...

Updated Galleries

I have updated the galleries with several new images

Latest work: Helium 3 Transport

This image can truly be said to have had a gestation period of around 35 years… When I first came across Chris Foss’s cover for Asimov’s Early Years I became fascinated by the odd ship in the background. Then the Foss cover for Voyage of the Space Beagle reinforced this obsession with asymmetrical designs.

So recently I decided to have a go at creating a ship along these lines… My first mistake was brute forcing the design - not working it out ahead to time. I usually work this way (brute force), but this time around I found myself constantly fighting against the objective of creating an asymmetrical design. My brain’s normal desire for symmetry won out.

There are also some scifi visuals that you can’t win against; I experimented with tubular engines but it always looked like something from the Trek universe. Also, blocky engines on supporting struts in a symmetrical design makes any ship look like it’s from Starship Troopers - mine looked like an anorexic ‘Roger Young’ for ages. Anyway, I kept at it; the result isn’t remotely Chris Foss-like - from the front, in fact, it now looks like it could be from a Gerry Anderson production!

Helium 3 Transport-1024x768

Other elements of my design were driven by a preoccupation with Freighters and Transports… No idea why. So, I gave it slide-loading doors for freight and rear-access doors for people/robot crew/passengers. The ungainly sensor strut towards the front of the ship is straight out of Peter Elson’s style.

Textures are mostly mine, though there are a few by Philip K, AsileFX, and Total Texture SciFi pack. The main hull textures you can find in my
DeviantArt Resources collection.

The engine glow was created partly in C4D - using textures in the Luminosity channel - and in Photoshop

Practicing: Terraforming Venus

This is just a sketch, an excuse really, to create a planet in Photoshop… It came to me recently that I hadn’t created any planets in Photoshop for over 8 months - all had been made in C4D.

I also recently read an article on terraforming, part of which had a bizarre argument that we should terraform Mars and/or Venus because we’re breaking Earth - as if it’s easier to terraform another planet than stop destroying the one we’re on already! Anyway, that got me thinking about Venus and Carl Sagan’s old idea about using modified blue algae to alter the existing carbon dioxide-rich atmosphere. I know he later rubbished it himself, but it still sounds cool.


Terraforming Venus
Anyway, so here we are: 100 years into the future and a terraforming station in orbit around a changed Venus… the carbon dioxide atmosphere has been greatly reduced and the oxygen levels increased. Thin clouds already exist and the clear skies reveal continent-wide solidified lava flows and enormous caldera of extinct volcanos.

The texture for Venus was created using an image of pealing paint or plaster as a bump layer and over the top layering an image I made from ESA satellite photos of the Moroccan desert.

The space station includes bits downloaded from the forum discussion on Greebles at Foundation 3d as well as the spheres at the bottom from kennyscrap.com

I know the windows are in the wrong place for a station creating artificial gravity from centrifugal force, but they looked pants in the right place.

The space station was finished and textured in Cinema 4D and the final image was composited and rendered in Cinema 4D. The finished render was sent back to Photoshop for additional color correction and FX.

Latest works: Freighter - April 2013

Having see ‘Moon’ finally, as well as reading quite a few articles on asteroid mining, the concept of the ‘space freighter’ has been playing on my mind and this image is the result!

So here we go - totally produced in Cinema 4D; the Earth was created using Michael Welters ‘Atmosphere’ plug in. Freighter was also modelled and textures in Cinema 4D. For a while I strongly played with following the scifi trope of the battered, weathered freighter look. Thankfully, common sense prevailed! However, at least one of the textures I created for that has made it to my DeviantArt Resources - just follow the link, below.
Freighter Front Page


The ship hull texture is my own (the Colour, Specular and Normal layers are available from my DeviantArt page) as are the stripes and star decals. Other textures are by Total Textures and Marlin Studios.

My Work Featured On Interstellar Fiction Magazine

Interstellar Fiction, an online scifi magazine, is featuring some of my work in their April edition - you can check it out here and get your fix of scifi too! Happy

Enjoy!

1930s Pulp Scifi Magazine Cover PSD Template

If you check out my gallery here or on DeviantArt regularly, you know that I have been having a little fun with some faux 1930’s-style pulp sci-fi magazine covers. Having done quite a few of these, I realized I had ended-up with quite a set of resources in Photoshop - ideal for a template.

So, I’ve done just that - pulled the resources together to create my Do-It-Yourself 1930’s Pulp Scifi Magazine Cover Creator. You can get it over in my DeviantArt Resources Gallery

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Pulp Scifi Covers For March

So, here’s another faux pulp scifi magazine cover… I’m accidentally creating a Photoshop template for creating these, which I think I’ll post soon over on my DeviantArt page. I’ll let you know when I do. These are just so much fun do to. Happy

Nemean-web Science Mar2013-1024x768

More Pulp Scifi Covers!

Having started developing my own pulp covers, I can’t stop! Here is the latest… Laugh

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Pulp Scifi Covers And Guilty Pleasures!

One of my guilty little pleasures is spending far too much time playing with Bradley W. Schenck’s brilliant ‘Pulp-O-Mizer’ on his site Thrilling Tales.

The Pulp-O-Mizer allows you to build your own faux 1930’s pulp scifi covers… The only problem - for me - is that you can’t use your own content or save them… So, I’ve started to make my own!

Here is the first...

Nemean-web Saucersjan2013-1024x768