Starting Blocks

Well, not quite starting blocks. But the recent penchant for pixels had me thinking once again about ephtracy’s MagicaVoxel, which has been sitting around on my machine for years now and, besides a piece or two here and there, hasn’t been put to particularly good use. My excuses are that I found the interface a little daunting and the camera seemed to do its own thing – usually not what I needed it to be doing. Well, I thought it was about time I came face to face with this old nemesis and settled the score once and for all.

I was going to make something.

Really, I was just being a drama queen for a change. It’s nowhere near as scary a program as I had told myself it was – actually, it’s rather fun and therapeutic once you get your head around the camera. Time disappears just as it does with 2D pixel art, or sticking Lego blocks together. I just started doodling really, thinking of Lego playsets, and coming up with some sort of ruined monument:

It’s not going to win any awards, but the lessons learnt in that session were very valuable indeed. And I actually wanted to make something else, rather than hit close and throw the PC in the bin so that’s a big hurdle cleared. Hence, the next two hours were spent modelling something on a larger scale; a ruined church, a not uncommon sight around these parts:

This one was lots of fun, and I think captures some of that toylike charm.

Yes, it does take a bit of getting used to, and I still have a great deal to learn, but MagicaVoxel is quite an enjoyable experience once you get going, and hopefully I’ll be using it more from now on. I’m sure if you use it more than once every two years you’ll pick it up even quicker than I did. And it’s free, which is always nice.

5 comments
  1. Those are really good, and the greenery touches add to them. I get what you say about the ‘toylike’ charm, as I totally imagined some action figures or countryside animal poses in there 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jacob said:

      Thanks! It’s a neat little program and yeah, there’s a definite Lego vibe to the whole process really; only there’s no running out of/losing blocks, or stepping on a stray one later…

      Hopefully some figures will pop up someday! It should at least be easier to achieve here than on my other 3D models.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Jacob said:

      Ha, I did try a ring! Next step is Lego Millionaire I suppose…

      Like

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