Sintel, the Durian Open Movie Project » Blog Archive » Community Sprint: Background Characters!


Community Sprint: Background Characters!

on March 25th, 2010, by Colin Levy

Heeeeyyyy guys!

Welp, the modeling sprint we had last month was pretty awesome. Even well after the sprint had officially closed, models continued to flow into BlendSwap. There’s a total of 29 pages worth of models in the Durian category, and they’ve already been a great help!

During the last sprint we discussed briefly doing another, with a different focus. As it so happens, we need some help with character modeling and animation for our market scene. We need tons of background characters!

Here’s a stupid video we threw together talking about it a little bit:

So to recap in text, this will be a two-part sprint for modeling and animation. We will supply a few rigs to be animated. The actions that are animated will be able to be applied to a variety of characters. So if you animate Sintel like a weak old man, we can take the old man model that someone else makes and just give him that animation. 🙂

Before the Sprint we will post a document with more details about the actual *content* we’re looking for, with model sketches, a list of actions, models you can download, a few screenshots and a description of the scene. Also more details about how it’s gonna work.

Again, we will be meeting in the #blenderdurian IRC channel on the FreeNode network, on Saturday, March 27th, between 1-2:00pm GMT+1 (Amsterdam), 12:00-1:00pm GMT. (Refer to Getting Started in Blender IRC if you’re not familiar with irc.) We’ll be in and out of the chat all weekend.

Sorry this is a bit more last-minute, but hopefully we’ll still get a decent turnout! Looking forward to it.


63 Responses to “Community Sprint: Background Characters!”

  1. RH2 Says:

    Join the dark side, and be there by 6AM…

  2. Lamhaidh Says:

    What level of detail are Team Durian looking for? Are we talking people walking about and thinking etc. or are we talking about the bryan and the merchant haggling (or not as the case may be) over a fake beard?

  3. ToastBusters Says:

    One thing to remember is that if these are background characters they must NOT be distracting, but they should still move in such a way that they feel real and alive, I’d imagine going about their routines of haggling and trading in the marketplace.

    Characters further away from camera don’t need to be as detailed in their animation but anything right up close, say immediately behind the main action, should be rather refined.

    But not distracting! The last thing we need is for the audience’s eyes to wander away from the main action.

  4. Rod Naugler Says:

    Its a city of clones! the HORROR!


  5. Jayden Says:

    Can you please upload everything early before the sprint like last time, so people in other parts of the world can have the weekend too? Because if you upload it at around 1-2pm your time, I will only have less then a day to do something, and I want to model something and make some animations! Because I didn’t have time to finish my steep rocky mountain ridge for the modeling sprint. but if you upload everything early like before, that would be great.

  6. Shinobi Says:

    Please, post as soon as you can everything we need for the sprint.

    We just need to know “early” what do you aim at to be productives so give us concept sketches, styles, models, rigs and everything cuold be useful for visualize and organize our work.

    Because the sprint asks a hard task this time and give us very little time to realize it. So please, be complete and exhaustives 😉

  7. Obscure Says:

    What would be really useful is quality criteria.
    For instance, Body and Clothing separate meshes or all in one.
    Maximum sculpt levels/ polygon limits. Hi res vs low res.
    Given your going for a Bazaar/market cultural diversity is probably not an issue??
    Full bodies or are just faces fine.
    Any other limitations that need to be set to get what you want.

  8. Paulo Bardes Says:

    @kike sanz

    Loved your idea!!!

  9. Paulo Bardes Says:

    Can Angela and Nathan make a quick tutorial about how to model and rig a back-ground character? It would also help us to have an idea of detail level and realism…

  10. Jayden Says:

    Paulo Bardes: If you don’t know how to model and rig a character, you shouldn’t be trying to do that for the sprint. They won’t have time to, because they are working to make durian better, and to make a tutorial, takes a while. It would be really long. Plus, that is the type of stuff they include on the dvd, when that comes out. Not now.

  11. Paulo Bardes Says:

    Yes, I know that is impossible to teach how to make good models and/or rigs in one short video, but the idea is just to give quick tips and tricks… Even when you think you know all you need, you can learn something more… ^^

  12. Jayden Says:

    Paulo Bardes: Go over to They have lots of free turoails on rigging and modelling in blender 2.5. Go check i tout!

  13. Mike Says:

    Are you going to have any Dogs or Cats or birds etc hanging around too. Walking through a market there’s always a lanky dog and a yappy little ankle biter hanging about the stalls. Seagulls hang around nagging for food also….. Just a thought.