So I thought I'd take a crack at creating a dynamic and fantasy sword!
Seeing as I am a fan of gizmos, gadgets, wires and mechanical things I decided to take a makeshift turn to the project. I wanted my inspiration to be mechanical along with being very makeshift. So now with that, I took to google to find some imagery that may inspire me.
(really liked the katana style for the handle in this image, along with the gizmo directly above the handle. Gave me inspiration of a HUD element on the blade)
(I simply could not find a more makeshift reference then this image. It is as if the parts were scrambled from things in a garage, but this was the perfect reference point for a makeshift aspect to the blade)
Now for the fun part! I took to my sketchbook and started drawing shapes. While I was drawing, I started making a story up about the blade, started asking questions to myself such as who forged the weapon? why did he/she forge the blade? What is the "Power" of the blade? With the creative answers to these questions, I was able to makeshift parts together, generating answers such as "well, the top of the blade is forged from a space mineral, yet to extract its raw energy takes human enginuity, yet I am just a boy forging a sword never seen before. The handle was taken from the lost katana and the right shank was from a bull." This made the drawing stage quite fun and made the final product over the top and completely left wing from what I thought I would be generating, which is what I wanted; to try something completely new and exciting.
This ideology makes a story out of the sword and now taps directly into the fantasy element I wanted to grasp.
Using this ideology, along with very detailed lighting techniques provided in this class along with some lighting techniques I experimented with, I came up with the Fusion Blade Mark VI, a blade forged of many mystical parts along with parts that one may find in a basement.
Some challenges I faced were lighting some of the the odd shapes I have created (hydrolic pumps, element in the middle of the blade (fusion reactor), but using a mixture of radial and linear gradients I was able to overcome most of the shapes. The other oddl shapes that I could not overcome, (this is where I discovered a new means of lighting) I discovered that creating "light shapes" within the shape and then using gaussian blur to create a sense of gradient would solve the problem.
All in all, a mighty fun project, and a great way to let your creativity run a little wild.