There’s something just horrible about the nature of Catmul-Clark subdivision surfaces. 3D animators for the past decade lost sight of their modeling process because of quads, and the way they deform and pinch when subdivided. Throughout my time at UNCA I couldn’t help but wonder if there was an appealing way to break free, tap in to my love for low-polygon modeling of the Playstation and Nintendo 64 era, throw some high quality lights on it and call it a day. A fair amount of artists in 2010 beat me to the punch. Instead of being grumpy about that fact, I’m rather pleased to know that there’s others out there that would rather jump straight in to designing their models, characters, and getting in to the motion, the story, and the beautiful colours and camera angles than wasting countless hours worrying about whether or not there’s a single triangle in their mesh.
I saw a car commercial just recently that had adopted a style very similar to Pivot involving a squirrel in a hatchback. That’s when I knew the trend would take off. Make sure you’re taking notes: car commercials buy the best trends — it’s a fact of advertising capital.
The best effect of this technique (other than saving lots of time that’s better spent on making a more complex animation) is that it’s finally convincing artists to adopt non-photo-realistic styles! Computers, after all, are a tool. Like any tool, it is best when used to exploit its strengths, and I’ve always felt that real objects did the best job of depicting real objects, and computers did the best job of depicting things that fall in to a wonderfully huge “other.”