Project Profile:
Journey to the Oceans of the World
(2001 - 2002)

3D Modeling
Sculpture & Textiles



The goal of this project was to create a 360 degree looping animation intended as an installation that would border the cylindrical ceiling of an aquarium entrance way. The animation was rendered using six cameras that would all connect seamlessly, with the fish swimming from one camera view to the next. When projected, it would all appear as one image completely surrounding the viewer.

sea turtle

The "Fish Project" was the brainchild of my former 3D computer graphics professor, Russ Pensyl, and was created by a team of 10-15 people in a little under a year. The installation was featured at SIGGRAPH 2002.

Image of the installation from Russ Pensyl's website.

My involvement:

I modeled, textured, and did some of the animation for the hawksbill sea turtle.


Lessons learned:

turtle rotation


As my first major team project, I covered a lot of new ground with this one. At the time I was still relatively new to Maya, modeling, and animation in general. The sea turtle was the first character I had created with the intention of going for a realistic, lifelike design. This project is also where I first got experience texturing and bump mapping a NURBS model. I think it was also my first real attempt at animation in Maya. I spent a lot of time watching nature documentaries to study how turtles swim. I also had to learn to animate along a path. The animation involved the turtle swimming through all six camera views over the course of two minutes and ending exactly where it began so that the animation could loop properly.

Aside from technical aspects, this was also my first time working in a structured team environment and facing strict deadlines. Of course, this would soon become the norm...

Software used:

Maya 3.0
Photoshop 6.0

sea turtle



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