Here at Chronos Studeos the architects and 3D visualizers work on a vast range of projects covering a whole variety of subjects.
However, every now and then Chronos Studeos wins a contract the details of which live much longer in our collective memories.
One such contract came in 2012, when the Chronos Studeos architects and 3D visualizers found themselves spending days and nights analyzing the intricate details of military vehicles which have a capacity to evoke fear, as opposed to luxury residences which promote feelings of harmony and joy.
As you can see from our gallery of images (all of which you can click to see the full size 3D visualizations), Chronos Studeos was hired to model, texture, render and animate the Nigerian Army’s first locally produced armoured personnel carrier (APC), Igirigi.
The process began with members of the Chronos Studeos team travelling from Lagos to the Nigerian capital of Abuja to work alongside military and industry figures and give a presentation of the company’s plans for the project.
The team were shown tabletop models of the APC which allowed them to study every single part of the proposed vehicle. This included close analysis of such features as the radiator hatch, the bumper, the communications unit and the engine covers, as well as more intricate elements like the rear lights and mirrors.
Once hand sketches were produced for the 3D visualizations, the team embarked on a more intense and general background study of armoured personnel carriers so as to fully appreciate and comprehend every part of the vehicle.
Amongst the model of APCs studied were the Russian origin BTR-70, the Stryker, the Wombat APC, the APC Phantom 10 Desert and the AAF APC. This vital research enabled the Chronos Studeos 3D visualization experts to truly appreciate every element of the armoured personnel carrier, from the wheels to the camouflage.
Once this analysis was complete the team then adapted their own APC models to the specifications laid down by the Nigerian Army for its own carrier.
After further consultations with engineers and other senior figures on the project the Chronos Studeos team finally returned to their desks and embarked on the intricate and time consuming work of the 3D visualization process.
The modelling was undertaken in Google Sketchup after which the animators worked in 3DS Max, where they rigged the vehicle, this process involving producing such elements as the vehicle’s body, wheels, and the suspension system. Next came the adding of the textures, the basic one of course being the traditional military camouflage, while mapped light materials were added to other elements, such as dirt on the tyres.
After the animation process was finished the project moved to the video production team. By setting up a rough terrain scenario in 3DS Max, the team worked on achieving such details as the perfect synchronization and movement of the vehicle, and then onto the sounds of the APC, such as the starting of the ignition and the way the vehicle moved. The team also studied and incorporated the sounds of both industrial and military vehicles into the final video production.
During this process the vehicle was rigged so that the team could witness its behaviour, including the tilt, on the rough terrain, with the maximum slope being no more than approximately 30 degrees.
Although the first time that Chronos Studeos had modeled a vehicle, and therefore a challenging project, the team were delighted with the results as the model performed extremely well. At the end of this process test renders were sent to Army generals for modifications and, ultimately, their final approval. The turnaround on this project was strict, the team having just one week to undertake all desk works. However, as architect and 3D Animator Supervisor Hassan Anifowose says: “It was a beautiful experience. We learnt a lot. We take on challenges all the time so we enjoyed it. We love what we do and we do our very, very best to make it good.”
Once put into service, the APC Igirigi was inspected by the Nigerian President, Goodluck Jonathan (pictured below).
As Hassan Anifowose highlighted in his recent blog interview, and as this particular project reminds us, all those in this line of work really do need to be able to soak up knowledge on a vast range of subjects which extend far beyond the concepts of beauty and magnificence more usually associated with the daily work of an architect.
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Everyone at Chronos Studeos thanks you for your continued support.