Making Of 'Guitar At Construction Site'


This is an old project that I started about a year ago and only finished recently, because my free time kept getting interrupted.


When I started this project, I didn't have an exact concept for what the final image would look like. I only had a rough vision in my mind; I knew that I wanted to put a guitar in an unsuitable place, where it could contrast with its environment, but that was about it. Starting a project without having a clear concept is not something I would recommend, but I'm used to it by now.

However, it did mean that I ended up making lots of different textures and models that I didn't use, but I don't see the time as wasted because it allowed me to develop my skills and my experience.

These are some of the images of construction sites that I found on Google and then used to make my environment. (Fig01, Fig02 and Fig03)

Fig. 03

Fig. 03


I don't normally work a lot in Modo and this project gave me a good chance to improve my skills. So it was important
to me to make a very accurate model, even if not everything would be visible in the final image. I wanted to make sure that whatever position the camera was in, it wouldn't uncover parts of the model, or any objects, that were lacking in detail.

In terms of the guitar, the first thing I did was take photos of my own instrument, so that I could use them as references and a source for textures. Then I drew sketches of all the small details on the guitar and marked all the necessary measurements. It was pretty useful to be able to model my own guitar, because it was much easier then trying to find good reference photos on Google. However, I did end up taking the front view photo from the Ibanez website, because although it's not exactly my guitar, it's similar enough (Fig04, Fig05, Fig06, Fig07, Fig08 and Fig09).

I'm not going to go into much detail about the modelling process. Modelling in Modo is not too different from other similar software packages. I made many interim saves of the project in separate files, so that I can show the different stages of modelling (Fig10, Fig11, Fig12, Fig13 and Fig14).

And final result close up (Fig15, Fig16, Fig17, Fig18, Fig19, Fig20 and Fig21).


Mapping was another area where I didn't have any issues - Modo have very good tools that allow you to make a UV map quickly. Only some of the objects had to be unwrapped, others needed a simple box or planar mapping, and some didn't need any mapping at all.

For the environment, I used textures from (Fig22, Fig23, Fig24 and Fig25).

You can see how I made the texture for the concrete wall (Fig26).

Fig. 26

Fig. 26

When I made the grill for the amplifier and cab, I used four pairs of textures, opacity and normal maps. This method allowed me to use several small tiled textures instead of one huge texture, while at the same time it still looks like a high resolution map (Fig27 and Fig28).

Here you can see other textures that were used (Fig29).

Fig. 29

Fig. 29

Adjusting materials is pretty simple in Modo as it doesn't have tricks and fakes, such as VRay has. Combining
BSDF layers with different material properties is the only ruse I used. Glossy with rough gave an interesting effect,
but remember: more layers means more render time. These images show some of the materials that were used
(Fig30 and Fig31).

Environment And Rendering

All the light sources I used are simple plane objects with a Maxwell Material emitter. I used the Highlight tool in max to make a nice reflected light source in a specific place on the object.

I applied a noise modifier to subdivide the wall so that it didn't look too flat (Fig32, Fig33, Fig34 and Fig35).

As you can see, the main image (guitar with an amplifier) doesn't make it possible to see all the details. So I decided to make additional renders, but in a different environment - such as a studio (Fig36 and Fig37).

As this image shows, there aren't any specific settings. Everything is extremely simple (Fig38).

Fig. 38

Fig. 38

The most important thing is the camera settings, because the camera in Maxwell is similar to a real camera (Fig39).

Fig. 39

Fig. 39

Some Tips

Closed rooms increases render time due to the many reflections of rays of light. Exterior renders are much faster, so let the light rays flow out from scene.

Naturally, many light sources increase the render time too.

Multilight features increase memory usage. To get around this, I make one separate material for each light source and then I make a test render with Multilight, adjusting the light's intensity and remembering the value. Finally, I edit the value in the material according to Multilight in the render. For example, 200 units in Multilight for 50 watt light would correspond to a 100 watt light. Now you can disable Multilight in render properties, have the same result and save memory.

Here you can see some of the render tests (Fig40, Fig41 and Fig42)

Fig. 40

Fig. 40

Post Processing

Postprocessing was the easiest stage. I used Curves for colour-correction, with the settings that you can see on the image below. It gave everything a green hue and added some blue to the shadows (Fig43).

I also used 'Filter>Distortion>Lens Correction' with the set up Chromatic Aberration and Vignette, Lens Flare Effect and Add Noise Filter (Fig44).

Fig. 43

Fig. 43

Fig. 44

Fig. 44

I then made fingerprints and glow in Photoshop.

The step by step stages of post-processing can be seen from left to right and up to down (Fig45 and Fig46).

And here is the finished image. I have supplied some close-up shots which you can see in (Fig47, Fig48, Fig49 and Fig50).

Final Render (Fig51).

Fig. 51

Fetching comments...

Post a comment