I think I may have found an art style that better serves the goals of the project while also letting me show off skills. Still not 100% sure of it, but I’ve had good feedback so far.
I had a look though The Story of Art on Lynn’s recommendation and marked some things I liked, but felt like none of them were really going to translate nicley to 3D. I took at step back and worked on my rigging since I was stuck and somehow not working on it made me see how my influences could come together. I think I probably just needed to take a step back from the project.
I used the details and forms I saw in Byzantine art, Impressionism, Pointillism and Art Nouveau to create a swirly, pattern focused texture that could be used nicley with a normal map. The idea is that I’m abstracting the details rather than foregoing them to abstract the entire form.
This worked nicley for the tree, but I couldn’t really tell if things were working without seeing the rest of the environment like this. I painted a new rock texture and did a quick overlay on the ground texture to see how it looked. I then did a wee comparison between both environments in each state. I think that at this point it was better – but still not quite there.
I had a look at the models that were used in the witness for grass, as I hadn’t been able to get this right before, and found they are planes intersecting one another to make it look like there’s more there. http://mollyrocket.com/casey/stream_0015.html
This added some nice interest. I still feel there’s something lacking – but I think I’ll find it.