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Video: How does the International Space Station work?


Jared Owen writes:

I've wanted to do an animation on the International Space Station (ISS) for a long time. I knew it was going to take a lot of time to do well. I had only spent an hour or two looking up reference images before decided to purchase a professional 3D model. It saved me a ton of time! I checked out every book the library had on the ISS, read many ISS websites and wiki pages, and watched several documentaries. I really wanted to get the details right but I also just really enjoy learning about this kind of stuff.

The radiator and solar panels were rigged using armatures and drivers so that I could animate the unfolding process. The Canadarm2 and Dextre probably should have been done with armatures but I just did a bunch of parenting to get it to look right.

I put in over 200 hours on this and then it took about 4 days for my computer to render. (I probably should have tried the 2.8 beta to speed things up). I plan on doing more ISS animations in the future. I hope you enjoy!

See also the article we published about Jared and his work last month: Meet the Artist: Jared Owen.

About Author

Jared Owen

I make 3D animations about how things work and post them to youtube!

1 Comment

  1. Great video, very interesting to watch. The model you got from Turbosquid is really good, too. I've got an ISS model from NASA's website, it is a *.blend file but obviously looks like it's converted from some other format. At the moment I'm trying to convert it from Blender Internal to Cycles, but it's one large piece with hundreds of materials... quite annoying work to do.

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