De volta ao passado hominídeo

sábado, novembro 28, 2009

3-D Renderings Bring Ancient Hominids to Life
By Brandon Keim November 25, 2009 | 12:29 pm | Categories: Anthropology, Tech

For decades, paleoartists have told the story of human evolution through sculpture and drawing. Now their tools have evolved, too.

Computers allow a level of detail and control that isn’t possible with other media. Their creations can come closer than ever to bringing our ancestors to life.

“What’s driven my work has always been, ‘I want to see that thing alive. I want to see that world,” said paleoartist Viktor Deak, who provided the reconstructions used in the Becoming Human documentaries, which aired in November on PBS. “Computer graphics is developing to the point where, in movies like “Benjamin Button,” you don’t know what parts are not digital.”

Deak still begins his reconstructions in traditional fashion, sculpting bodies from clay. Like other paleoartists, he doesn’t know what his fossil interpretation will look like when complete, but comes to an understanding of anatomic nuances, of tissue and muscle thickness and how it might have linked to ancient bone, while working with his hands in three dimensions.

Once he’s done, he converts the work to digital format. For a 78-foot-long mural now traveling with Lucy’s Legacy, a touring exhibition featuring the famous 3.2 million year old fossils, he photographed his sculptures and imported them to Photoshop. There he added hundreds of layers of texture and light, tweaking them for maximum combinatorial realism.

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