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156 3D Modeling and Motion
This syllabus is subject to change based on the class needs.
Maya, Unity, WebGL, After Effects, Media Encoder and Photoshop
Winter 2021,  M W 2:00 - 4:50 pm, Remote    

Professor: Jennifer Steinkamp
office hours: 1:00-2:00 Wednesdays, same zoom link as the class
TA: Carrie Chen
office hours: Fridays 4-6, and by appointment,  zoom link for TA office hours: 242 496 2724


Published Assignments

Description:  This course is an introduction to theories of 3D form, spatial design, motion and lighting using 3D visualization and video tools.  For example, tools originally designed for motion will be used to construct form.  Aspects of time such as speed and duration will be used to contemplate form and interaction. The first half of the course involves weekly assignments focused towards an understanding of virtual in relation to real form. The second half is devoted to an individual project.

Grading: Grading is determined by the completion and quality of all assignments. Attendance and participation are mandatory, these effect the grade. No more than 3 absences allowed. Assignments should only be made for this class.

Technical Exercises
Exercise A)
Create a simple scene in Unity using primitives, make objects throwable, publish a webGL, due Wednesday week 1.

Exercise B) Use your work in progress from assignment 1 to create a simple scene in Unity using Maya shapes with some animation, publish a webGL.  Due Wednesday week 3.

Creative Assignments
Assignment 1)
Model a room from any time or place. Keep in mind this room will contain interactive elements  Choose a place full of narrative ideas and intrigue. It helps to have good reference images. We will create a webGL of this room. The webGL is due Monday week 6. Render one 3000 pixel image and document the interaction of the webGL with OBS. The renderings, webGL and video are due week 10.

Assignment 2)
Model a ring to be 3D printed at Bring in a sketch idea week 3. A minigrant is paying for part of the print. Due Wednesday week 4.

Assignment 3) Anything you prefer utilizing what we have learned. Your project could be a 3D printed sculpture, a poster, a 3D typeface, a book, an animation, a VR or AR project, an interactive project, a video with effects, etc. Present a proposal week 6. Documentation in the form of renders, OBS captures, webGLs, or photographs are due week 10.

Grad students create their own assignments, but I recommend creating a variation on assignment 1 in order to learn Maya and Unity.

Install this software on your Mac or PC

Render Server
A render server has been setup for DMA classes. This will be helpful for animation projects. Israel Gutierrez is the render wrangler in order to help keep the renders flowing.    Deadline notes

Zoom Settings during class
View Options
near the top
     Exit Full Screen
     Fit to Screen
Size the Zoom Meeting screen to about half the screen, on the right
Start Maya or the software we are discussing for the class
Reduce the size of Maya, place on the left side
Open a browser to the course notes
Hide all other programs.
Please keep your video and audio on.

Settings to allow your esteemed professor access to your desktop.
Mac Security & Privacy
     Privacy tab

     Unlock to make changes
     Select Zoom

Recorded Lectures

Week 0     Table Tutorial      A:Unity VR Primitives        WebGL publish
There is no class, please try these tutorials and install all the software required for class before we meet.
Start Exercise A: Create a simple scene in Unity using primitives, make objects throwable, publish a webGL   due Wednesday week 1.

Week 1
Monday 1/4     Maya Shortcuts     Polygon Table Chair

Wednesday 1/6      NURBS Modeling
Approve image choice and start Assignment 1
Exercise A due

Week 2
Monday 1/11         Polygon Modeling     
Try these tutorials on your own, optional: Polygon Modeling Cup    Trim Tools pencil
Start Exercise B:  Use your work in progress from assignment 1 to create a simple scene in Unity using Maya shapes with some animation, publish a webGL.   Due Wednesday week 3.

Wednesday 1/13      B:Unity VR Maya Animation   Advanced NURBS Modeling   Sculpting   Import models
Sketches for assignment 2 due.

Week 3
Monday 1/18    Martin Luther King, Jr. Day   

Wednesday  1/20    3D Print a ring
Critique Exercise B webGL published to class website, critique comments
Start Modeling Ring

Week 4
Monday 1/25    UV map polygons    Arnold Rendering     Texture Mapping   Unity Lighting and Texture   
Try this tutorial on your own, optional: UV Map Polygons last two exercises

Start thinking about Assignment 3

Wednesday 1/27     Velocity Bouncing Ball   Unity interact with animation   Unity interact with a door   sound
Try this tutorial on your own, optional: Hierarchical Animation   
Assignment 2 is DUE, last chance to turn in the ring model to be 3D printed

Week 5
Monday 2/1 nCloth Dynamic Simulations     Deformers    Path Animation     Unity Basic Animation
Try these tutorials on your own, optional: Unity VR  Ncloth animation  Unity VR Legacy Maya Dynamics

Wednesday 2/3       Maya Inverse Kinematics    Unity Inverse Kinematics

Start assignment 3, proposals due Monday

Week 6
Monday 2/8       
Critique assignment 1 webGL published to class website,  critique comments 
Discuss proposals for assignment 3

Wednesday 2/10    Export Unity Models to FBX for Maya    Lighting      Raytracing Glass
Try these tutorials on your own, optional:  Paint Effects for plants etc    Backgrounds   Depth of Field

Week 7
Monday 2/15   President's Day

Wednesday 2/17   Camera Animation   Motion Blur    Deadline Render Server

Week 8
Monday 2/22  Substance Painter     Particles and Dynamics     

Wednesday 2/24     OBS screen capture VR documentation   
AfterEffects really basic      AfterEffects Advanced    Adobe Media Encoder mp4 encoding

Week 9
Monday 3/1   Critique assignment 3 in progress, critique comments     
Premiere Editing     Unity Video Texture Maps 

Wednesday 3/3   

Week 10
Monday 3/8    

Wednesday 3/10   

Week 11
Monday 3/15    No Class

Wednesday 3/17    FINAL PRESENTATION assignments 1 & 3 will be presented at 2PM
critique comments

All assignments will be turned in on the web, web publish and drop folders.

Assignment Drop Folders
use Filezilla,
PC use WinSCP
     Host:  (port 22)
     User ID: Your login
     or  /home/users/yourlogin/myClasses/W21-156/drop

Any animations or movies 1080HD

Final renderings 3000 pixels or more, tiff or png format

Screen Capture any interactive projects with OBS Studio.
Edit with Premiere or After Effects


By default WinSCP starts at your DMA home directory  /home/users/yourname
Select the folder link to MyClasses
Select the link to W21-156  AKA /data/classes/W21/156
Select drop
Select the correct folder for the assignment
Make sure your name is part of the file name.

File Transfer to Web Publish Folders
You can test publish your webGL sites through the class folders.
Mac use Filezilla
, PC use WinSCP to transfer
     Host name: 
     Port number: 22

     User name: Your UCLA login


By default WinSCP starts at your home directory  /home/users/yourname
Select the link to myClasses
Select the link to W21-156    AKA   /data/classes/Winter21/156
Select web                           AKA   /data/classes/web/Winter21/156
Select projects
Select the correct assignment folder such as exerciseA

Upload the entire
yourname_project + _player you created for the publish, this includes an index.html and Build folder.

Use this link to find your projects on the web:


© 1988-2021 Jennifer Steinkamp