I started working on the treehouse directly by creating the UV's and making the textures. Time is gradually running out for us and the textures need to be finished as soon as possible, I also have to texture the interior of the treehouse as well as the props so I've still got a lot on my plate. To help save time with the UV mapping I used a method which I never like to use, 'Automatic Mapping', which automatically maps the UV's for you and you don't have to unfold them, this usually breaks up the model into lots of separate UV's and is generally pretty messy, however I'm short on time so I have no choice but to give it a go.
As you can see from the texture map above, the UV's were thrown all over the place and it looks quite messy and unorganised, however it saved a lot of time for me and the main parts of the geometry that will be seen the most in our film were layed out perfectly in the UV Texture Editor.
The above screenshot was a progress shot I took to show the rest of the team so they could see the progress that I'm making on the texturing. It was important to keep up to date progress sessions as a team to try to keep us on track and this is an example of the type of thing that I have shown to present my work to the group.
The geometry for the treehouse is broken into separate parts, there is the treehouse, the roof, the railing, the ladder and the support planks, apart from the treehouse everything else was UV mapped by myself using the more proper and accurate methods of creating projections and unfolding them in the texture editor. The texture map above is for the ladder, I made it so that the steps would look worn and dirty due to continuous use of shoes and boots when Summer and any other kids have climbed up and down it, I also had to apply this worn/weathered effect to the rest of the textures to make sure it was consistent and generally accurate for the environment. The visual style for our film has slowly changed over the course of the production and the environments have gone from being simple with basic colour to simple with detailed textures. This hasn't been a decision made on a whim but a gradual process which has been more suited to our work and in my opinion looks much more suitable for our film.
This is the roof of the treehouse texture, when I originally made it and applied it to the model I noticed that something didn't look right, but I couldn't put my finger on what it was; it wasn't until I looked out of my bedroom window into the garden that I realised what was missing. The shed in my garden sits underneath a tree and the roof is quite dirty with twigs, dead leaves and other natural mess and dirt; this is what needed to be added to the roof to make it look more natural, otherwise it just looks strangely clean and out of place in the scene.
This is the updated texture for the roof, I added more murky and dirt based tones to the wood to give the impression of moss and staining from bad weather as well as dirt which has come from the tree and leaves above.