Making Of 'Behind The Years'


This is my first tutorial...I will show you the making of my latest scene "Behind The Years", I done the scene with 3dsmax 6, Vray and Photoshop. It'll contain modelling, texturing, lighting, rendering and post production...Not very detailed, but I hope it's useful


Modelling part is professional stuff to do, just basics...

Sofas: Cushions are just boxes ( Length:70 ,Width:70 ,Height:14 ) segments:( Length:23, Width:18, Height:5) and a couple displace modifiers applied to give the cushions a realistic look, I used a Bitmap images that I made in Photoshop for the Bitmap slots, then I tweak with the axis until I reach the desired result.

Pillows are also boxes ( Length:30, Width:30, Height:0.5 ) segments:( Length:11, Width:12, Height:1), with the same displace modifiers that I used for cushions but with different Bitmaps.

Table: The table is easy, just several chamfered boxes, with a boolean at the top for the glass.

Curtain: The curtain is just a plane with cloth modifier, then animated with reactor to give it seamless shape.

Door: A box with editable mesh modifier to give it those beveled and extruded faces and chamfered edges.

The stuff on the table are also simple: the coffee cup is a lathed line, the book is boxes with editable mesh, the glasses are just two circles and 3 modified lines with renderable checked on.

Chandelier: I started with a simple line then modified it, at the top I created a tube with a taper modifier
at the base of the tube I created a simple torus, and finally arrayed them around the center. Maybe you are wondering about the plants...well, plants are not models, they are Bitmaps from Total Textures v10 CD.


When it comes to texturing, I keep looking for the right colours, imagining how the colours will get together, I chose several textures from Total Textures V6, it contains the best high quality and high resolution textures. Also nothing professional here, just some Multi/Sub object materials and several UVW mapping.

Here are thumbnails for the Total Textures v6 that I used:

Coffee cup: A standard white material with a VRay HDRI map for the reflection slot. Same VRay HDRI map used for the Chandelier Reflection. I used the "Kitchen probe" hdri, you can download it from

Table glass top: A VRay material with these settings: (diffuse: 128,128,128 - Reflect: 37,37,37 - Refract : 248,248,248 - IOR :1.01).

The dirt on the wall and the door were added to the final rendered image by Photoshop...don't worry I'll explain how in the post production part.


Well, lighting can't be easier...Just 2 VRay lights, one from the door: (Multiplier:12 - Color:White - Ignore light normals on - Smooth surface shadows on) and the other one from the window: (Multiplier:2 - Color:White - Ignore light normals on - Smooth surface shadows on).


I used Vray 1.09, no secret settings, I just turned on the indirect illumination and kept the default GI settings as they are and used catmul-rom Antialiasing filter then turned on the Skylight and reflection/refraction, light Grey for the skylight and White for the reflection/refraction...Render time was 5 hours with 1500 pixels.

Post Production and improvements

This part is the most interesting which made by Photoshop: First step was adding the plants and tree to scene and to correct the plants shadows to fit the light in the scene. I picked those plants and the tree from the big collection of plants and trees in the Total Textures v10.

Then, in a new layer I added the dirt to the wall by selecting the desired area and feathered it to about 10, painted the selection black by the paint bucket then I applied the Fibers filter (Filters > Render > Fibers), and finally changed the blending mode to Multiply or Overlay and played with the opacity.

Same method used to add the dirt to other areas.

After finishing with the dirt, it was the time to improve the scene. To increase the image sharpness I used the sharpen filter (Filter > Sharpen > Sharpen) after that I duplicated the whole image and blurred it with Gaussian blur filter then decreased the opacity Value to about 40%....and this is the final result

Big thanks to the 3DTotal team, who gave me the chance to make this tutorial and for these amazing Total Textures CDs that improved my work.