Michael Fields-3D imaging

SOU students enter international 3D imaging contest, recognized for innovation

SOU students Michael Fields and Matt Krause, both seniors in the university’s Emerging Media and Digital Arts (EMDA) program, showcased their 3D imaging abilities this winter by participating in the X-Taon Car Texturing Contest.

Fields, originally from Bandon, was awarded sixth place in the international contest that drew hundreds of entries from China, Indonesia, Malta, Canada, Germany, Sri Lanka, France, Slovakia and other countries. He was the only student winner from the United States.

The car texturing contest, which ran from last Nov. 27 to Dec. 18, had student and professional categories, and was judged by jurors from Pixar Animation Studios, Microsoft Studios, Animal Logic and Takumi Yamamoto. The competition was sponsored by Allegorithmic, developer of the Substance Painter 3D painting software, and Substance Designer, a 3D material authoring tool.

All contestants began with the blank exterior of a digital show car, and used 3D tools to “paint” the vehicle with designs and textures. Fields used a computer mouse to create an intricate, black-and-white design for his entry, which he called “Sharpie Car.”

“Not easy to create a full black-and-white, hand-painted version and here it is superbly executed – and with a mouse,” one juror wrote. “Are you crazy! Congrats!”

Fields and Krause have worked closely with SOU professor Miles Inada to develop portfolios and innovative 3D works as part of the SOU EMDA program. Both are major contributors to campus culture as co-presidents of the Student Game Development Club at SOU.

The two plan to pursue careers in the game development industry when they graduate from SOU following Spring Term.