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Archives for design » Shawn Woods - Art Director/Senior Artist
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Realism in UI Design

The history of the visual design of user interfaces can be described as a gradual change towards more realism. As computers have become faster, designers have added increasingly realistic details such as color, 3D effects, shadows, translucency, and even simple physics. Some of these changes have helped usability. Shadows behind windows help us see which window is active. The physicality of the iPhone’s user interface makes the device more natural to use…. continue reading article…

http://ignorethecode.net/blog/2010/01/21/realism_in_ui_design/

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Creative Director, 3D Video Game Artist, UI Designer

I just created a new account with DIGG and posted my blog on there. If you would like to DIGG my site, click the link below. Thank you for your support!

Shawn is an award-winning industry Veteran with years experience in positions of increasing complexity and responsibility in Entertainment, AAA Games, Casual Games, and Web 2.0 Design. He has worked on such games a Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War, Company of Heroes, The Outfit, and Fit Brains Games.

read more | digg story

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Video Game Achievements

Video Game Achievements

The Outfit – Published by THQ, Developed by Relic Entertainment

The achievement medals for THQ‘s “The Outfit” were created using 3D Studio Max and Adobe Photoshop. This game was Relic Entertainment’s first foray into the video game console world.

The achievements are high resolution models rendered out using the Brazil Renderer from SplutterFish. I was Art Supervisor on the visual appearance of the models, as well as creating the art assets for modeling, texturing, rendering, and post-production work done in Photoshop. I split the duties with another talented artist at Relic Entertainment, Jacob Binkowski, who helped model and texture half the medals. Since “The Outfit” was a fictional World War II game, we could not use the real life medals. For some, we took artistic liberties to keep the essence of the original, and in other cases we came up with a completely original piece. What was cool in the end was that one of our medals was actually created into a real-life medallion give to everyone who worked on the game. In total, it took 3 weeks to create all of the medals between two full-time artists.

Here is the full list of the 41 achievements for The Outfit.

Coming Soon – Company of Heroes: Opposing Fronts Achievements

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UI Design – Dawn of War Games (PC)

Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War (PC)
Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War: Winter Assault (PC)
Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War: Dark Crusade (PC)
Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War: Soulstorm (PC)
http://www.dawnofwargame.com

I designed the original HUD and Frontend for the PC video game Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War. This was actually my first “official” video game to ship although I did assist on the pre-vis UI Design for Homeworld 2.

These screenshots illustrate how I created the Head Up Display (HUD) for the Space Marines race. I started off by setting up a scene in 3D Studio Max using a camera set to Ortho view (I didn’t want any perspective since my measurements had to be precise). After roughing out the shapes in 3D, I rendered out the interface design using Global Illumination to give me a nice, soft render.

I then used these layered renders and brought them into Photoshop, where I continued to color and texture the pieces. You can see a screenshot of the UI Editor I originally used for Dawn of War. At the time, we had no tool to create the interface for our game. Working with two programmers, I designed the look and feel for the UI Editor itself, and helped get the functionality working as well. It ended up working similar to tools I used on a regular basis; Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash, and Dreamweaver.

Today, Adobe Flash is being used as the authoring tool, along with Scaleform for the UI Design on Dawn of War 2.

Since the original HUD was not real-time 3D, I could paint textures onto the display as I pleased. The near-finished result is posted below. I’ve also included screenshots from Dawn of War: Dark Crusade where I created the HUD for the Necrons and Tau races.

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Website Design – DuaneWoods.com

Website Design - DuaneWoods.com

In the summer of 2008, I designed my brother’s professional website. He’s a videographer and editor and wanted a site relating to film/tv. He is also very technical and familiar with various lighting rigs and cameras. So I combined the two ideas using concrete lights and cables with the “filmic” background to give the appearance of Northern Lights we saw so much back home in Manitoba.

He uses a Mac, therefore the Coverflow navigation was a perfect fit for his website. It is easy to use and expandable to display more movie clips in the future.

Visit Duane’s Website at http://www.duanewoods.com


UI Design: Dawn of War: Dark Crusade (XFire Skin)

UI Design: Dawn of War: Dark Crusade (XFire Skin)

Dawn of War: Dark Crusade
XFire Skin

XfireTM is a free tool that automatically keeps track of when and where gamers are playing PC games online and lets their friends join them easily. It works regardless of game type, server browser, or gaming service that a player is using. Xfire eliminates the hassles of running multiple programs like IRC, instant messengers, or in-game friends lists to keep track of when and where a gamer’s friends are playing. It supports the best and the latest online PC games including server and non-server-based First Person Shooters, Real Time Strategy, and Role Playing Games.

This was a custom skin I made for Xfire using key UI elements from the game.

You can download the skin here.

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Hello world!

Welcome to my new blog! I have decided, after much deliberation, to switch to a blog format. This will allow me to update my website a lot more often. I also plan on writing some industry-related articles, and post links to information that interests me.

Thanks for visiting!
- Shawn

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