Let’s continue with the Prisoner of Azkaban clock tower! I created the columns and elaborate moulding below the clock. As you can see in this “work in progress” render, everything was still separate from the building at this point:
But as these areas became more complete, I began placing them correctly along the building. I also discovered some issues with how I’d built the facade last year, so I decided to simply redo some of it altogether. Below, you can see some of the old walls removed for replacement as I maneuvered the new elements into position:
I resisted the urge to simplify some of these details, and I’m glad I did. The results were worth it the effort! This has become one of the most detailed areas of the model so far, mostly because the original design has a lot of details, but also because the available reference material is so good. Maybe it’s a good thing I don’t have detail drawings for most of the castle…everything would take so much longer if I could get this precise with everything:
Fun fact, by the way: see that arch at the bottom of the last render? In the miniature, it’s just got open air behind it, but they created a full-sized set for a shot in Order of the Phoenix, and in that version, it’s actually a balcony. (Umbridge and Filch are standing up there.) They don’t appear to have changed the miniature; I’m going to leave the balcony out.
Moving downward, we arrive at this lovely Gothic pediment that frames the entryway. No technical drawings for this one, so I had to just rely on as many reference images as I could find. Shots of this spot on the miniature are virtually impossible to get in the Warner Bros. Studio Tour, so most of my references are actually from the corresponding set, and some of the details can vary between the sets and the miniatures. Anyway, the modeling process looked much like building the arches above, so I won’t bore you with too many in-progress shots:
I also discovered how good Blender’s denoising has gotten, which means I can drastically speed up my renders. My poor machine only chugged for 15 minutes or so on these images, rather than an hour or more.
Anyway, as I got to the very bottom of the tower, where it meets the courtyard, I started feeling the need for more data. So I went on another photogrammetry spree, trying to create meshes from every possible shot of the courtyard/clock tower set in the film. (There are a lot of them!) Accuracy and precision are very important to me with this project – partly just so I know I’m getting something close to the “real thing”, and partly because I know from past experience that small errors have a way accumulating. You estimate the height of object B on object A, and then you estimate the height of object C on object B, etc., and before you know it, lots of small inaccuracies begin to add up…and sooner or later, those will clash noticeably with other estimations elsewhere on the model.
I’d like to avoid that, which is why I ended up with over a dozen photogrammetry meshes (with different lighting and even different seasons) thrown together to get a more complete picture of the courtyard!
Ugly, yes, but very helpful as I prepare to complete the clock tower and start on the courtyard.
P.S. Don’t let me forget to finish the hospital wing.
P.P.S. Happy belated Mother’s Day!