Introduction talking about the start point of this render
(later I’ll show you the making of)
Have you ever participated in a render contest?
Do you know how to start the planning to win?
What considerations must be in your mind to be satisfied with your result?
In this post, we explain you the path that we followed to get the first prize,
obviously, with a big dose of luck ?
The same 3D model were provided to all contestants. From here, your imagination was the only limitation.
You could deliver as many images as you wanted.
This type of competitions attract all kinds of competitors. There were with experience and novice ones. I do not know how many finally participated, but it was a worldwide competition and the level of the finalists very high. Without a doubt, we are proud of winning in these circumstances.
Our initial process (before render)
It was not the first time we took part in a competition. When they are so very open, it is hard to decide to go. What criteria choosing to win.
- Imaging what will be the composition of the jury and what they would value.
- Choosing a view and a frame.
- How to light the scene up: day, night, cloudy…
- What materials to use.
- In black and white or in color?
Anyway, many possibilities and many decisions to make.
We immediately found that the 3d model of Arya Siek was very versatile. It offered many views to be displayed.
Our working method is not subject to strict rules for decision-making. That is, with the same test, we checked whether the textures, lighting, perspective, etc. was working or not. Little by little we opted for one option.
It was as valid as the other we rejected.
So, we decided to visualize the model as if it had been abandoned. As if time had swallowed it.
Vegetation had grown up around and even inside. The original materials were not recognized.
Attractive render framings
As I already mentioned, the bridge was attractive from many points of view.
We considered the possibility of distant and even very close views. They all had something interesting.
In the end, to limit decisions, we focused on these three points of view.
For various reasons, more linked with aesthetic sensations than anything else, we kept the vertical framing.
Once again, the attention to detail for the render
Details make the difference between a good image and a winning image. We made additional efforts.
We wanted to show the deteriorating situation of the bridge. To do this, we made multiple actions on the 3d model:
We broke the windows, both on the deck as lower floor.
On the stairs, we eliminated some steps
In the handrail, we made a few notches.
Messy vegetation grew everywhere and some dry leaves appeared in the foreground.The standing water also helped.
In the end, we even put a few crows in 3d and the rusty barrel.
In the textures
Materials should appear, accordingly with the above, cracked, rusted, battered by time:
The other render image we submitted sought this desolate look with the lighting of a cloudy day.
It was the latest discovery. It was quite costly but it was the icing on the cake.
Render post production
Although we did some tests with the final image in black and white, which we liked very much, we decided to submit them in color.
Successive adjustments allowed us to reach the desired end and we sent the renders.
I do not know how long we dedicated the three team members. We did what we could and then, one of the most decisive factors in a competition, gave us as winners: luck.
Luck not understood as “I do anything and let’s see what happens”. I mean the jury take a liking to us. Another jury would probably have chosen another image (we believe there are several very good).
We are very happy and it gives us strength to continue.
We hope our clients find that, when they let us to do, we get the most brilliant render results.
YES, now, the making of
Once we have chosen the point of view and the aspect of the scene, we set out to search for reference images, which help us to get, as close as possible, the final render idea.
The fundamental keys of our image were the deterioration and the abandonment of the place.
We are looking for images that show that feeling, to apply it to our scene.
Therefore, the first search was made on bridges or similar locations with some deterioration.
We think also that, such scenario like this, it could be habitable place for some individual animals, whom often use this type of places or conditions for nesting, such as crows, vultures, etc …
So, this was the second search in internet.
After deciding that the scene would be lit like a night or evening ambiance and snow finally take part of our scene, we made a third and final search, searching dusk sunset skies, and places where the snow is present.
For snowy process, we used a plugin for Cinema 4D : MagicSnow.
This plugin had advantages and disadvantages when is used. The advantages were obvious, the scene brought something different and for us back in our work. The big drawback was that we had to “wait snowing”, since the snow go fill the scene, like in real time. There wasn’t something like an airbrush which go filling the snow scene. We “had to snow” the different objects in the scene, and see how they appear, depending on the values we gave them.
We also had an additional problem because the snow pure and simple geometry, computers resented if we tried to do the whole render scene at once.
We had to make it snow in parts, and adapting the final snow geometry to the scene, meanwhile in the distance, the snow could be less in quantity, resolution and definition.
Finally we were able to fill the scene after multiple render tests, since not always chose in the right values, mainly because it was a novelty for us to use this plugin for the first time.
Some screenshots of the snow process:
Initially, it was an element that was going to have some prominence, because we wanted to put in the foreground, and its inclusion in the surrondings, along with its values of reflection, diffusion, etc., would make it an attractive element in the scene . Finally, it is a “lost” element but still there giving more detail to the final image.
We sought photographic references to get an idea, although the water acquires multitude of aspects depending on multiple factors …
We used geometry and tried to liken as possible to reality. The puddle was more attractive when it was over. Finally stay in the background, but partly have fulfilled its function.
Regarding the issue of modeling vegetation we used “hair” of cinema, proxies for trees and pure and simple 3d model for the dry trees.
Finally back trees that seems placed in post-production, but, during the process, many tests of vegetation were conducted.
The trees were placed back in post-production, because we obtain more control, and we avoided having to “snow” that amount of trees, resulting polygons weight.
Also, we kept a large percentage of herbs and shrubs. Unfortunately, most of them were rather hidden by snow.
SINGULAR 3D MODELS
Some elements were modeled to be include in the scene.