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WELCOME TO AIRSHIP CREATIVE
visual effects / simulations / 3d artist

Welcome to Airship, my humble freelance game art and Vfx shop specializing in the creation of pre-rendered and realtime art including modeling, texturing, shader/material creation, rigid body dynamics, fluid simulations, and visual effects. Well, actually Airship was my freelance art studio but now I work for 2K Marin in Northern California.

You can email at ewan@airshipcreative.com

NEWS

August 27th, 2013: The Bureau: XCOM Declassified PC upresing intiative was an absolute blast. As the Project Lead, I had the pleasure of working with a group of fantastic aritists, extremely capable programmers, as well as the incredible folks at Nvidia whose support was instrumental in our success. We implemented many of Nvidia's high-end Physx/Apex features such as turbulence grids and jets, rippable and reactive cloth, GPU accelerated particles, and many other Nvidia and DX11 features. I also did my fair share of the FX (including the green reactor turbulence particles in the image below) and level art seen in the PC version of the game. Here is the link from Nvidia hilighting the team's work:

August 21st, 2013: Well, The Bureau: XCOM Declassified is on store shelves after three years in development and while the reviews are not what any of us had hoped. . There are many things in this game that I am very proud of: the FX, much of the technical art, many of the advanced shaders, numerous key moments and spectacle events, as well as the PC sku upresing intitiative. The thing I am most proud of? Comically, it's the voice work of the Zujari that I recorded thanks to Adam, Jessica, and Maxim who invited me into the recording booth. When you hear a Zujari commander yelling commands at his minions, or the Zujari regulars barking feedback to the player, that was me and it was amazingly fun.

March 12th, 2013: Well that was surreal. So after working in it my cushy job and open a wine bar/art gallery. It was fun for a while but after a few years I decided to focus on game art. I sold the wine bar to a buddy of mine who renamed it The Press Club. Last night my wife and I were watching Portlandia, a comedy about our former home when The Press Club showed up center stage. Eventually, the cast was eating lunch inside between walls that were very familiar - yes, I chose that crazy red paint - and made me miss Portland and our friends up there. Very cool to see it alive and bustling. Congrats Kevin!

January 2nd, 2013: I've been putting a new RBD plugin through its paces and I must say that PullDownIt is intuitive and powerful. It's only version 2 and there are some quirks that will certainly be figured out as this plugin evolves, but overall: very cool. Scene setup is fast and straightforward and the result is high fidelity fracturing (jagged voronoi faces) and compelling destruction animation. Check it out - there is a free eval version but it's nerfed with some pretty limiting restrictions.

March 20th, 2012: Everyone loves a rant so here we go. I want to love Houdini. I really do. Sadly, I don't. I know. I'm crazy. Let fly with the flame emails - I will accept them with humility. My point is that I've tried Houdini Pyro 2 (with H12) and I've tried FumeFX. I like FumeFX better. I can get equal if not better results in less time. Period. I've worked with FLIP fluids and I agree that they are cool, but how is Houdini better than RealFlow 12? I would submit that it isn't. Ive used Houdini's RBD (albeit not the new bullet physics so I may be out of date on this one) but I've been using a lot of RayFire lately and it's fast, robust, and cheap. How is Houdini a better solution? Why am I obsessed with Houdini? I don't know.

March 9th, 2012: So this year's GDC was very interesting. Innovation abounds and it seems - although I can not confirm anything specific - that the next generation of game consoles and engines will be upon us sooner than we think. I think it's fair to say that late 2013 qualifies as "sooner". I also got to check out Unreal 4 which was very, very interesting. I'll leave it at that.

February 19th, 2012: Happy New Years! Ok, Ok - It's February so I'm a bit late. XCOM is rolling forward in a very good way. As a project, it's been complicated but over the last 6 months or so, this game is serously taking shape and will likely be a very pleasant surprise to both fans and sceptics alike. Firaxis (I have a serious Civ 5 problem) leads off the 2K lineup with their exceptional true-to-the-original with a healthy dose of Firaxis excellence XCOM: Enemy Unknown, and we follow next year with our vision of a squad based tactical shooter unlike anything else out there. Be forewarned; you just might like it.

October 19th, 2011: It's been a busy time at work but I made some time to help out my buddy Jesse Sweet who won a spot in the Montreal Kino Kabaret Film Festival. I had 3 days to put together this digital matte / set extension shot at 1080p and had a lot of fun in the process. I'll post a link as soon as the Director posts the full short film. Congrats Jesse.

September 22nd, 2011: I've been noodling around with Houdini's rigid body dynamics. I like the procedural approach and the rigid body dynamics but wow, tough to adopt the fluid sim stuff after learning with FumeFX and RealFlow. We're currently exploring how best to use Houdini's strengths within our Unreal pipeline with mixed results.

August 30th, 2011: After an awesome 8 week class, this is the last week of Allan McKay's Advanced Digital Pyro class through the CG Society and I'm actually sad we're nearing the end. I learned a ton, had a lot of fun, and met some great artists. Thanks much Allan!

January 12th, 2011: Happy New Years everyone. Hope your 2011 is off to a good start. I found this gameplay video on Vimeo that features a lot of my FX work on Bioshock 2. This guy caught some nice footage of some fun effects. Enjoy!

"At first blush, the visuals in BioShock 2 seem on par with those of the first game--but after carefully scrutinizing them, we saw many subtle improvements. Lighting has been polished up considerably, and the overall level of detail seems to have been increased, too. We're especially fans of the particle effects we saw both indoors and underwater." Kotaku.com | Gamespot.com

June 13th, 2010: Been noodling around with Zbrush and Mudbox to get better at creating high poly models. I still have a ways to go but it sure is fun. This guy was created in Mudbox and Max. More sculpts below.

April 2nd, 2010: Just returned from a fantastic trip down under to work with the 2K Marin Australia crew. Yeah, calling 2K Australia 2K Marin is a bit odd but the jist of the change is that we've joined forces like the Wonder Twins. Great group of developers and I must say that I really enjoyed Canberra although I almost perished a few times looking the wrong way when crossing the street. Other than that, very fun trip.

February 11th, 2010: Bioshock 2 was released this week to solid reviews and a metascore of 88.8 as of today. More importantly, people seem to really enjoy the game. It was a very wierd feeling opening up the box and seeing a project that I've been starring at for almost 2 years come to life in my livingroom. I am very proud of the game and am honored to be working with the extremely talented folks at 2K Marin and 2k Australia. Next up, GDC, a trip down under for a few weeks, Bioshock 2 DLC, and an NDA title that will make a lot of gamers happy when it's announced.

January 24th, 2010: Happy New Year! Hope you all had a fantastic holiday season. Thingsare starting to get very exciting as we approach the release of Bioshock 2. So far the media'sresponse has been extremely positive. I've said too muchalready, butneedless to say, we're all quite excited about the feedback we've received so far. With the game finished, I've been transitioning to Bioshock2 DLC as well as a very exciting new project in support of our friends at 2k Australia - a seriously talented bunch of dingo-eating, 'roo boxing devs of highest calibre. 2010 is shaping up quite nicely.

PROJECTS

The Bureau : XCOM Declassified: lead VFX artist, lead artist (PC sku)
Developer: 2K Marin

Bioshock 2Bioshock 2 : principle VFX artist (all player, ai, weapon, and plasmid effects, about 70% of environment / cinematic effects)
Developer: 2K Marin

Bioshock 2Bioshock 2 DLC: Minverva's Den : principle VFX artist (all VFX)
Developer: 2K Marin

BorderlandsBorderlands : art manager, lead VFX artist (Liquid Development)
Developer: Gearbox Software

Killzone 2 : 3d artist (Liquid Development)
Developer: Guerilla Games

Kinect Adventures! : contract VFX artist (Liquid Development)
Developer: Good Science Studio

Fable 2 : 3d artist, assistant art manager (Liquid Development)
Developer: Lionhead Studios

Rockband 2 : 3d artist (Liquid Development)
Developer: Harmonix

AliensAliens: Colonial Marines : 3d artist (Liquid Development)
Developer: Gearbox

Condemned 2: Bloodshot : 3d artist (Liquid Development)
Developer: Monolith Productions

Damnation : lead FX artist (Liquid Development)
Developer: Blue Omega
Merchants of Brooklin : 3d artist (Liquid Development)
* CryEngine 2
Developer: Paleo Entertainment

Brothers In Arms: Hell's Highway : art manager (Weapons), 3d artist (Liquid Development)
Developer: Gearbox Software

TOOLBOX

3D Applications
Autodesk 3D Studio Max
Autodesk Mudbox
Autodesk Maya
Autodesk Softimage XSI

Maxon BodyPaint
Vue

FX Simulation
Houdini
FumeFX

RealFlow
RayFire

MassFX
Reactor

Game Engines
Unreal Engine
(Extensive Cascade, Material Editor, Matinee)
CryEngine

Rendering
VRay
MentalRay
Krakatoa

2D / Compositing Applications
Adobe Photoshop
Adobe After Effects

Adobe Illustrator

Match Moving
Boujou
Mocha

PROFESSIONAL GAME ART SAMPLES

Fable 2
Developer: Lionhead Studios
Role: 3d Artist, Assistant Art Manager
Personal Contribution: Character textures and texture variations, Clockwork Rifle model and textures, various environmental asset textures

Textures

Model and Textures

Textures

Textures

Textures
Rock Band + Rock Band 2
Developer: Harmonix
Role: 3d Artist
Personal Contribution: Fender Jazz Basses - 4 unique models, 44+ texture variations, 2 Amp models

Instruments

Insturments

Instruments

Screenshot

Screenshot
Killzone 2
Developer: Guerilla Games
Personal Contribution: 3 unique environment prop models and textures, 5 "medical" props models and textures

Model and Textures

Model and Textures

Model and Textures

Model and Textures
 
Brothers in Arms: Hells Highway
Developer: Gearbox Software
Role: art manager (11 weapons including Thompson, Sturmgewer, Panzerschrek, Grease gun, and Walther), 3d artist
Personal Contribution: Thompson submachine gun textures

Weapon Textures
Condemned 2: Bloodshot
Developer: Monolith
Role: 3d artist
Personal Contribution: tire iron and track light melee weapon models and textures

Melee Weapon

Melee Weapon
Aliens: Colonial Marines
Developer: Gearbox Software
Role: 3d artist, assistant art manager
Personal Contribution: Colony Debris, Hadley's Hope sign

Model

Model
GDC08 Havok Destruction Demo
Developer: Havok
Role: art manager (destructable aqueduct and wooden shack), texture artist
Personal Contribution: Destructable wooden shack textures

Building Textures
Personal Work - Digital Sculpts

Character

Character

Character

Character
 

© 2013 Airship Creative LLC. All rights reserved.