A Non-Photo Realistic Shader Based On The Work Of Shaun Thomas

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Background

For this project I drew inspiration from the visually striking The Wolf Among Us (Telltale Games) & the work of the comic book artist Shaun Thomas. I set out to recreate the heavy outlined, roughly sketched comic book feel of both Wolf & Thomas.

The creation of the shader drew on a number of existing works including Whitaker's introduction to creating a Toon Shader & Winkenbach's study into computer generated pen & ink illustrations.

Above shows the progression of the shader & the work of Thomas.

Key Elements Overview

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Thick Outer Edges

The effect of thick outer edges on geometry is achieved through manipulation of the lighting.

That is, clamping the dot product of the light normal & the view vector projected from the camera in the scene.

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Saturated Colour

Thomas’ work uses high contrast & harsh shadows.

I created the base colour of the shader & the ambient light of the scene as configurable elements in FX Composer to enable manipulation of harsh shadows.

 

Construction Lines

The sketchy surface of the shader was implemented using a texture.

Thomas' work uses negative shadows, so detail can be seen even in darkness. 

This was achieved by switching the diffuse colour of the texture depending on where the model was viewed in relation to the light source.