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ATEC 3317 Course

Introduction to 3D Computer Animation
Credit Hours: 3 Time: R 7:00pm-9:45pm

Web address Instructor Chris Tran Email: By appointment only, after class meets on Thursdays. ATEC 3317 will explore 3D modeling concepts and techniques for 3D computer animation. A conceptual understanding of the elements of surface modeling will be the main focus of this course. Understand the fundamental principles of modeling 3D computer generated forms. Develop artistic skills and technical skills and use both to produce creative forms. Learn technical terms related to 3D modeling and computer animation. Enhance ability to discuss current issues related to 3D modeling and computer animation. Demonstrate the ability to offer both technical and aesthetic criticisms of the work of peers and self.

Office Hours Course Description

Course Objectives

Course Methodology

Students are expected to be participating and working in each and every class. Students are encouraged to collaborate in solving some of the difficult technical and conceptual problems that are part of their project. Class sessions will consist of lectures, demonstration, studio work, critiques, video reference, and discussions focusing on class assignments. The class format will take on a variety of styles, as the subject dictates. Examples will be presented and discussed in lectures, videos and demonstrations. Students will present their work in critique sessions. Students are encouraged to complete all work at the ATEC computer labs in order to benefit from collaborative learning with your peers. Students choosing to use "offsite" hardware and software must have their current working files on the system and available for review at the beginning of each and every class. Problems with "offsite" systems and/or incompatibility will not be an acceptable excuse for missed assignments.

Tentative Course




In Class Activity


Schedule (Course Schedule is subject to change at the discretion of the instructor. Check periodically for updates.)

Date Course Orientation and syllabus review Computer Graphics Primer, Polygons, NURBS, curves, surfaces, projects, primitives, transform tools, components Maya intro demo NURBS modeling, construction history, layers, windows, layouts, Hotbox, Hypergraph, Channel Box, Attribute Editor, revolve/loft/extrude, model sheet , storyboards NURBS modeling, good/bad models, computational efficiency, groups, hierarchies, hypergraph, working with curves, planar tool, duplicate, text tool, sculpt tool, boolean operations Basic lighting, basic camera, rendering a turntable, A1 presentation Wk 5 9/15 Polygon modeling, conversion, surface normals, smooth shading, Polygon modeling, working with faces, components, sculpt tool, fill hole, combine/separate, split edge, cut faces, merge edges Polygon modeling, avoiding bad geometry, identifying "illegal faces" and how to fix them Subdivision surfaces Study for mid-term Mid-term exam A2 presentation Read Chap 5 critique


Wk 1 8/18

Read Chap 1 -4 Definition of a model

Help -> Learning Resourses -> Tutorials -> Getting A1 given Started -> Maya Basics

NURBS Modeling Revolving and lofting surfaces Exercise: building a NURBS arm

Wk 2 8/25

Wk 3 9/1

NURBS Modeling A1 symbol Lesson 2 Sculpting design due

Wk 4 9/8

Work on A1 in class

Learning Maya Lessons 7 & 8

A1 due A2 given

Wk 6 9/22

Polygonal Modeling Lesson 1

A2 process book due

Wk 7 9 /29

Work on A2 in class

Wk 8 10/6 Wk 9 10/13 Wk 10

Subdivision surfaces: Lesson 1 Work on A2 in class critique A2 due

10/20 Wk 11 10/27 Wk 12 11/3 Wk 13 11/10 Wk 14 11/17 Final 11/24 Fk, Inverse kinematics , Read Chap building/binding a 12 hand Modeling for facial animation Work day Work day A3 final presentation Character Setup: Lesson 1 (skeletons and kinematics) Character Setup: Lesson 3 Work on A3 in class Work on A3 in class critique

A3 given A3 process book due

A3 due


Personal symbol or logo Mechanical or organic model Rube Goldberg contraption

description description description

work submitted work submitted work submitted

Grading policy

Students must demonstrate satisfactory achievement of course objectives through fulfillment of course assignments and by contributing to class discussions and critiques. Course assignments will require students to use software and equipment available at the ATEC computer labs. Collaboration between students in the course, other faculty, staff and students in the ATEC program is encouraged. Course evaluation will be based upon the following: Assignments 1 - 3: 30% each, where 30% of each assignment grade is given to process book research. l Mid-term exam: 10% All students are required to be on time and in attendance for each and every class. Students arriving to class more than 15 minutes late will be counted as absent. Two (2) absences will lower a final grade by 1/2 a letter. Three (3) absences will lower your final grade by one letter. Four (4) absences will result in a failing grade ("F ") for the course.

Adherence to deadlines is expected. It is the individual student's responsibility to keep track of the goals and deadlines and to present the work to the class and instructor on the specified dates. Late assignments will affect your grade: *** Students must turn in assignments within the first 15 minutes of class to get full credit. A letter grade will be drop for every passing 15 minutes. *** Students will be expected to make a formal presentation of their progress on dates specified by the course timeline. If you need to drop the class for any reason, you are responsible for initiating the drop procedure. Contact the Register's Office. If you do not withdraw by the specific drop date and you do not fulfill the requirements of the class, you will receive a failing grade.

Grading Scale

A+/A AB+ B BC+

4.00 3.67 3.33 3.00 2.67 2.33


2.00 1.67 1.33 1.00 0.67


The Art of 3 -D Computer Animation and Effects, 3rd Ed, Isaac Victor Kerlow (required) Notebook/Sketchbook Archive Material: Zip Drive, Flash Drive, CD or DVD It is the policy of UTD to provide reasonable and appropriate accommodations for individuals with documented disabilities. This University will adhere to all applicable federal, state, and local laws, regulations, and guidelines with respect to providing reasonable accommodations as required to afford equal educational opportunity. It is the student's responsibility to contact the appropriate office in a timely manner if s/he desires to arrange for accommodations. UTD may initiate disciplinary proceedings against a student accused of scholastic dishonesty. Scholastic dishonesty includes, but is not limited to statements, acts, or omissions related to application for enrollment, the ward of a degree, and/or the submission of one's work of material that is not one's own. Scholastic dishonesty may involve one or more of the following acts; cheating, plagiarism, collusion, and falsifying academic records. Cheating is the willful giving or receiving of information in an unauthorized manner during an examination, illicitly obtaining examination questions in advance, copying computer files, copying internet material, using someone else's work for assignments as if it were one's own, or any other dishonest means of attempting to fulfill the requirements of a course. Plagiarism is the use of an author's works or ideas as if they were one's own without giving credit to the source, including, but not limited to, failure to acknowledge a direct quotation.

Course Supplies Accommodation Process

Scholastic Dishonesty

Copyright Violations

It is a federal crime to reproduce copyrighted software. Anyone caught reproducing software from the UTD labs will be subject to disciplinary action. In addition, anyone caught reproducing outside software in the lab will automatically lose all lab privileges and will be subject to other disciplinary action as deemed necessary.