Making Of 'Joyride'


Hello there, my name is Richard Homola and in this article I'd like to show you how I created the Joyride image. I used 3ds max for creating all the elements in the scene and finalRender Stage-1 for rendering.

It all started like any other car model. Setting up the blueprints and polymodelling the car. I didn't find any actual blueprints so I had to use photos. That means the model is not 100% accurate but I tried to be as close to the original as possible. Nothing special to add about the modelling, it's made the same way as the thousands of other cars you can see on web.

As I didn't want to make just another car visualization like everyone does these days, I had to come up with something more original. After some hard brainstorming the idea of cartoon scene came to my mind. I decided to tune the car a bit so I added the horns to the front part, some chrome plates to the front and sides and raised the ''wings" on the rear.

The car is ready so let's move to the environment. I didn't want anything complex because the viewer was still supposed to focus on the car. So I just created simple desert with few details like small stones and cracks in the ground. Everything modelled with basic polymodelling again as you can see on the pictures

For the stones I used only spheres and displaced them with a procedural cellular map.


The lighting was very simple. Just one direct light with area shadow and blue skylight as you can see below.

I wanted the image to be a bit dynamic and show some action. So the best way was giving it an illusion that the car is speeding through the desert. I positioned the car like it was coming close around the camera and then I had to make a dust behind it.

After few tests I decided to use Glu3D for it. I created a simple particle cloud system and used Glu3D to create a blobmesh around it. Then I collapsed the whole thing into editable poly. I fixed the shape with FFD modifier into the right shape that I wanted and added some displacement with cellular map again to make it more "bumpy". There was no plan to make an animation with it so I just made everything for this particular frame and point of view. You can see the result below.

Last thing was to add the driver. I realized that we'll only see his silhouette so I decided not to model him in detail and just made a very simple head and hat for him.


The scene is finished and now it's time to have some fun with materials. The image was supposed to look like a cartoon but I wanted something more than the usual flat two-color look. I wanted to put some depth in the image and keep the objects shaded.

I used finalToon materials for most of the objects except the chrome parts on the car. I thought it was good idea to keep the chrome reflective and more real and it enhanced the final effect.

As you can see on the pictures, I didn't use any special maps in the materials. Everything is quite simple and the material shading gave me exctly what I wanted. Only the dust material was special because it looked too hard with the basic shading. So I used a falloff map for the color that made the light / dark transition at the edges. As I mentioned the chrome material was an exception and I made it with fR-Advanced material with usual reflective settings and an environment map in it.

Click to Enlarge

I made the background mostly in Photoshop. I didn't want classic cartoon clouds and rather tried something between a paint and a photo. So I took a few photos with clouds, cut some parts that I liked and put them together to form the clouds as I needed. I blurred them and played with Levels and Curves until I got the result I liked. For the sky color I used a gradient with blue / orange transition. Finally I made some simple geometry for the distant rocks and put it over the clouds in Photoshop. Finally I used this image as a reflection map in my chrome material on the car as well as a background for the scene.


Finally I rendered the image with few separate layers so I could make some additional adjustments in Photoshop if needed

The slight bloom effect was made the usual way. I took the specular layer, put it over the image, blurred it and played with the opacity until it looked as I wanted.

And that's all folks. Thanks for reading!

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