Production wasn't straightforward as the spot does not have a voice-over, which means the visuals alone have to tell the story (along with the sound effects). And on a technical level, the fact that the spot is basically one long sequence didn't make things easier.
- All elements except for the hands are animated in 3D.
- No concept art was used, apart from a few storyboard sketches. The look and feel of the spot was established during production.
- The school cafeteria was originally a market scene with all sorts of food and spices:
- My own artistic skills were used to create the children's drawing
Some technical details:
- The spot was rendered using the new Physical renderer (Cinema 4D R13) . Except for small things like color correction, no post work was applied.
- De growing plants and fluid sim were created using Dpit Plants & Effex. Apart from this, no plugins were used.
- Thanks to a few optimizations and tricks, each frame with Indirect Illumination rendered under 30 minutes a frame, which made it possible to render the spot in-house.
Although most of the work was done by me, I had some great help from Pavel who created a few models and Jean for rotoscoping the hands.
Have a look at the following animation - it's a technical test for volumetric clouds in Cinema 4D.
The setup for this scene is pretty easy. You basically need the following three things:
1. Create a simple 3D volume for the clouds (just using a magnet on a cube is fine, a very rough shape is good enough)
2. Fill the volume with particles (using thinking particles)
3. Add a pyrocluster material to your particles.
That's all there's to it! Of course, the final look heavily relies on how well you manage to tweak the settings. Your 3D volume should have believable cloud-shapes, your particlecount should be correct, and most of all, your pyroclustermaterial requires some tweaking to make it "cloudy" (and remember: lighting and texturing are not two separate things, they go hand in hand). Still, it's not a massive task, I managed to create the entire scene in one evening (okay, and a fair portion of the night - I always lose track of time when tweaking/rendering).
Rendertimes are in the region of 2 minutes per frame.
Keep me posted if you try to create a cloudy scene yourself!
Creating one of the promo-images for the new Cinema 4D release has had a huge impact on my exposure as a Cinema 4D artist, so I decided to dedicate a blogpost to these special grapes. Since the announcement in August 2011, the image has shown up in a lot of places I didn't expect it to, all thanks to the marketing guys at MAXON. It's been featured in publications, magazines, life-size banners, and more. The image below shows some printed examples I currently have in my possession. The calendar was sent to me by MAXON, the flyer and demo-CD on the right were handed out to me during a VFX conference.
I know there have been a few publications in magazines, but I don't have any of these in my possession since most of these magazines are international and therefore not available in Belgium. So if you happen to have anything in your collection and want to send me a picture, feel free to do so! I'll happily included it on the blog.
A little bit about the creation of the render: I wanted to create some sort of vegetable/fruit to test the new SSS functionality. I didn't want to spend a lot of time modelling a complex vegetable/fruit since it was only a simple test, so I decided to stick to the very simple shape of a grape, and just use a cloner and dynamics to create a bowl filled with grapes. After some initial tests, I liked the look of the image, so I developed the grapes shader a bit further, created some variation in the colors, and that was basically it. The total image was created in 1-2 hours, after which I spent probably a full day finetuning the colors and look of the image.
If you want to play around with the C4D scene or want to have a look at the grapes shader: it's available in the Content Browser that comes with R13 Studio.
I've been working on my short film project in between jobs, and wanted to show and discuss some of the changes I recently implemented. The changes are mostly related to the render pipeline.
The best way to show the implemented changes is by showing you an old scene in a new look: the garden.
The 2012 version (click for full-res):
And, as a reminder, the 2011 version:
The garden scene hasn't seen any changes to its geometry or overall shape, so the "only" thing that has changed are lighting, textures, and the general render pipeline (apart from a few minor things like the look of the eyebrows). There are two main reasons for the difference in appearance between the 2011 and 2012 versions:
1. Cinema 4D R13 offers some great new rendering functionality, and is able to deal with a lot of issues that couldn't be resolved with the old engine. The most obvious one in this picture would be the new SSS shader, which allows for a much more realistic/friendly skin texture, making the main character look less creepy and more appealing.
2. The cool thing about being busy with commercial projects is that you learn a lot from them. The research you often have to put in can come in handy, whether it's something very broad like improving your renderpipeline or something very specific like creating a leafshader for a tree. So for this scene which was almost one year old, I was able to implement many pipeline improvements, making the final image look better ánd making the process of coming to a final image a lot easier.
That's it for now, stay tuned for more updates!