This page holds a list of recommended reference material/sites and tools to use for modeling, with reviews and commentary on each. Resource Material
1. David Macaulay's books on the construction of various historical items:
- Cathedral, Castle, Ship, (factory) Mill, City, Mosque, and Pyramid (and also one on modern underground foundations and such called 'Underground').
- This series is a must-have for creating historically accurate models. It contains everything from sample blueprints to technical explinations and examples of the processes required to build the thing in real-life.
- The books come complete with explinations of what everything is in the item and how it works (i.e. the different parts of a wall).
2. Artist profile & how-to books
- John Howe's Fantasy Art Workshop; Incredible reference selection of John Howe's work. A lot of great inspiration.
- Rob Alexander's How to Draw and Paint Fantasy Architecture (thank Cathy for this book!); Really nice mix of physical technique and technical explination.
- Gary Russel's The Art of the Lord of the Rings; great character concept work and scene concepts from the film.
- Charles W.C. Oman's Castles; An old and musty book that presents quite a bit of reference material on the methods and needs of castles and their construction.
3. Wikipedia- good quick-reference
4. Google image search- great way to get a quick image idea of what you want (I used this to quickly make a Pilum, or Roman javelin, for the new JC Superstar tribute) Useful Tools
1. Google Sketchup 8 (free version); where I do all my non-organic modelling.
2. Sculptris Alpha (free); great organic clay-like modelling program.
3. Deftship (free version); awesome program for making ship hulls.
4. MeshLab; a great way to reduce the poly count of a model (it's highly recommended to remove the backfaces of your .skp and then export it as a .obj before sending it through here).
5. EarthSculptor; somewhat hard to learn but really useful terrain texturing and creation program.