- 2013 Dodge Viper SRT GTS: HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!
Photos, computer animation and text by Cor Steenstra
We wanted to present you with a super special on New Years Day!! So here it is.. The 2013 Dodge Viper SRT GTS!! Sadly, our viewer range has not been interesting enough for Chrysler to make vehicles available to us, at least not since their bankruptcy, and even before that time, the Dodge Viper has always been off limits to us. So we’ve gotten creative and got a 3D model of the Viper and rendered and animated it similar to how we do a shoot. So sadly no driving experiences, since we have not driven it, and no opinions of built quality, sound levels, comfort.. But still..
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!
- Integrating the Wacom Inkling into the Creative Automotive Design Process
Text, photos, video, design and animation by Cor Steenstra
Wacom introduced the Inkling in 2011, and I was drooling at the idea of it. I couldn’t wait to get my hands on one, and was glad Wacom was interested to supply me with a unit. I was so thoroughly impressed with it, that I wanted to show how I integrate this in my Automotive Design process.
As you can see in the accompanying video, I start out sketching when and where the inspiration strikes, in this case at my local pool and in the sunshine, under an umbrella of course. The main advantage of the Inkling is that it is so handy, pocket sized, that you can take it with you anywhere. It is less clunky than an iPad (don’t get me wrong, i LOVE my iPad), and I prefer sketching with a ballpoint pen still, even though I pioneered sketching on a tablet within my car design process. The old napkin sketch literally happens way too often, and the Inkling offers the opportunity to capture this in high definition, digitally, and with layer options.
That is the other really cool thing. Often I start out with some rough sketch lines, to set the proportions and to get an overall feel. I then get a bit more into what I want where, and then go in to detail. With the inkling I can capture all these phases on separate layers, easily and conveniently. That way I don’t loose any of the old, base, core inspiration lines and their dynamics, but it does allow me to selectively use the cleaner, more detailed layers if I want to take it to a rendering stage. I can even do variations on the same piece of paper, using separate layers, and make a mess of the actual paper sketch, and still have the ability to separate everything afterwards and keep my various separate proposals/variations.
The Wacom Inkling integrates seamlessly into Photoshop, so the layers functionality can be used to its fullest, but the most astonishing thing here is the integration with Autodesk’s Sketchbook pro. In Sketchbook Pro you have paint layers and vector layers, and even though I made rough sketches, when opening the layers in Sketchbook Pro they come in as Vector layers. Vector layers mean that I can take each and every line on there, and edit them, adjust them. I CAN ADJUST MY SKETCH LINES!!!! Who would’ve even thought something like that possible. I can delete lines I don’t want, and slightly fine tune each line just the way I want to, or clean up lines with the Sketchbook Pro tools.
Subsequently I can save all this and export the curves to Alias Autostudio, and actually use them as base guides for my model. That way I keep the original intention and dynamics of my ideation as much as possible, with as little as possible “interpretation”. Wow!!
I took this further, all the way to an Alias exterior model using organic modeling techniques. As you can see, out came a very clean, very organic model with very clean highlights, and very very close to the core idea of the sketches. I subsequently rendered and animated the model, both in Autodesk Showcase as well as in Bunkspeed. I even created a design studio environment, and made a narrow 2-seater tandem version, and the full 4-seat version, and stuck them on turntables.
Is this efficiency or not?
I LOVE THE WACOM INKLING!! (am I too obvious) Now, about those new Cintiqs… LOL.
- Volvo S60 Video Introduction
Volvo Car unveiled the S60 Concept at the 2009 Detroit Motor Show on January 11. Volvo Cars’ CEO, Stephen Odell held a press conference about the business and the future of the company. The company has the potential to reestablish its credentials in the premium sedan segment. The video also shows interviews with Design Chief Steve Mattin, interior designer Lars Falk and more.
- Bailout plan could soon face House vote
By John Crawley and Thomas Ferraro
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. House of Representatives could vote as early as Wednesday on a $15 billion plan to bail out and restructure U.S. automakers but the initiative may face Republican roadblocks in the Senate. The White House and congressional Democrats sought to quickly finalize an agreement in principle struck Tuesday night on conditions for providing $15 billion in low-interest loans to avert a threatened industry collapse if one or more of “The Big Three” U.S. automakers were to fail. But some issues remained unresolved, apparently including a Democratic demand that automakers drop lawsuits against states seeking to reduce tailpipe pollution.
“Still no deal/bill,” a Senate Republican leadership aide wrote in an e-mail to Reuters.
“Bill mostly written,” e-mailed a Democratic leadership aide. “A couple of outstanding issues. More to come” later in the day.
Democratic aides said negotiators, following days of marathon talks, wanted to go over any proposed bill, “line by line,” before announcing any final accord.
Yet Democratic Sen. Carl Levin of Michigan, whose home state is headquarters to General Motors Corp, Ford Motor Co and Chrysler LLC, declared victory late on Tuesday after word of a breakthrough.
“I understand an agreement has been reached,” Levin said in a statement.
Levin urged Republican President George W. Bush and Democratic President-elect Barack Obama to help rally support for the pending measure.
A Bush administration official said late Tuesday that negotiators satisfied the key White House concern in the talks that companies receiving aid obtain the necessary concessions and make other changes to prove they can survive and compete.
In addition to providing loans, the proposal would force automakers to answer to a presidentially appointed trustee — or “car czar” — and make the government their biggest shareholder.
The overseer will have powers to shape a restructuring of the companies, withholding further loans if progress toward a turnaround stalled.
A key provision would permit the czar to recommend a bankruptcy restructuring if companies borrowing money fail to obtain the necessary concessions.
Democrats control Congress and are expected to be able to push a bill through the House. But they may run into trouble in the Senate where Republicans could raise a roadblock that would take 60 votes to clear.
A top Republican aide, who earlier this week predicted passage of such a measure, voiced caution, saying a number of Republicans would want a chance to amend the bill.
“It’s not going to be a slam dunk,” the aide said. “Democrats are going to have to be careful about dropping a bill on us without allowing an amendment or two.”
With Obama having recently resigned from his Senate seat, Democrats hold the chamber 50-49. Democrats figure at least a few Democrats may oppose a bailout and they will need 12 to 15 Republicans to get the 60 votes to move toward passage of a bill, a senior aide said.
“Ball is in the Senate Republicans’ court,” said Jim Manley, a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Nevada Democrat. “There is no word yet whether they will give us consent.”
The bailout plan is designed to allow GM and Chrysler to avert threatened bankruptcy through March. Ford has requested an emergency line of credit for use later if its finances worsen further.
Some Republicans wanted some sort of bankruptcy option included as an incentive for labor and other stakeholders to agree on givebacks.
Among issues raised by Republicans is the use of taxpayer money in the case of Chrysler, which is owned by private equity firm Cerberus Capital Management. During the talks, Democratic aides said the Bush administration resisted a bid to hold Cerberus liable for repayment if the auto company defaulted on any government loan.
The administration official, who spoke on the condition that he not be identified because the deal had not been finalized, would not comment on specific companies so it remains unclear if that matter still needs to be cleared up.
An auto bailout has evoked competing emotions in Congress.
Lawmakers fear if automakers collapse, it would deepen the U.S. recession. But many say market forces, not a government saddled with a record deficit, should determine their fate.
A poll by CBS News conducted last week found Americans split on whether taxpayer funds should help automakers.
(Additional reporting by Kevin Krolicki in Detroit and Donna Smith and Richard Cowan in Washington; Editing by Eric Beech)