Hi there! I run an Internet data center by day, aspiring game developer by night and weekends, and this site is my story. I live in Toronto, love computers, 3D animation, programming and other hacking, cycling, gym, beer, and did I say computers?
My name is Cassius Adams. I’m 37 and live in Toronto, Canada. Like most guys of my age, I grew up sitting in front of either a console or a computer playing countless hours of video games. It started on the good old Atari 2600. Good times. It went from there to Nintendo, Game Boy, Super Nintendo. I even owned a Virtual Boy for anyone that remembers those. When I wasn’t playing games I was learning about computers, and first started programming in a form of BASIC on my Apple IIc computer. I also owned and programmed on a Tandy TRS-80 (known as the “Trash 80″).
It was on my Apple II that I first tried my hand at developing a 3D racing game. I spent about 2 weeks on it and didn’t get terribly far, just the first 10 seconds of the race. This is well before the day of 3D games, I was about 14 years old and simply didn’t have the math skills behind writing my own 3D game engine. I still don’t! On top of that, I had no hard drive, so I literally wrote my programs and games without turning off the computer for weeks at a time. Power goes out, I lose it all. Mother unplugs the computer <start rant>because she heard on the news about a terrible computer virus, and since to her it’s all pretty much magic because she doesn’t understand it, and she doesn’t realize viruses don’t appear out of nowhere or come down the power lines to infect our house, or whatever she was thinking </end rant>, I lose it all!
People have asked me how I can possibly take on another challenge given my daily responsibilities. In truth, there’s plenty of time when you’re in front of a computer 13+ hours a day. It’s easy when you enjoy it.
For the past 20 years I’ve been doing 3D modeling and animation for fun, and professionally when there are contracts. I’ve also been programming for just as long, whether it be software, website or web applications. I’ve been in the computer and Internet industry since 1997, but over the past 9 years I have been running a Toronto data center where we provide Internet hosting solutions to hundreds, if not thousands, of businesses around the world.
3D Modeling & Animation
I remember watching Tron as a young boy and thinking how cool the animation was. In grade 9, a substitute teacher came to my electronics class and seemed to have no curriculum for us. Instead, he put on a video for us which consisted of nothing but 3D computer animation. The video was completely useless as an educational tool for most, but for me it was inspiring. This is pre-popular Internet so finding 3d animation software was difficult. Fortunately a classmate of mine had access to software through, shall I say, questionable means. He hooked me up with a copy of Truespace, a low-end 3D modeling and animation application. I ended up using that software for over a decade. Getting good results was tricky, but it did the job for me. Eventually I updated my copy of Truespace to a newer edition and used that for a few years.
I have performed 3D imagery contract work for a number of businesses, including my own business, and created still image renderings for projects worth as much as $300 million.
It was time to move from the now-defunct Truespace modeling platform (Microsoft bought them and then promptly dropped the product a few years ago). I have since turned to Blender, which is freely available and significantly more functional than my old software. It has taken some getting used to but I’m coming along. It’s difficult to break the patterns developed throughout 20 years of using the same software. Fortunately with Blender’s tools I can produce better results in a much shorter amount of time. My first usage of Blender was modeling and texturing a 3D scene of Toronto’s Queen Street West for use in Unity 3D to learn them both at the same time.
Photoshop & Texturing
I’ve been using Photoshop for well over a decade now, and it has been a fantastic tool to assist me with texturing my 3D models and for other graphic design projects. To be able to get good results in Photoshop through a combination of 3D and 2D gives me a very satisfying feeling. For the purposes of video game development, I’m mostly using it for creating textures for my 3d models, opacity maps, backgrounds and so on.