Making Of 'Silent House'
Sérgio Merêces gives us a rundown of the workflow behind his arch-viz image Silent House
I'd like to share the process of creating of my last personal work: Silent House. My idea for this image was to produce a house in a quiet, silent and almost forgotten place that illustrates all the peaceful attributes of nature.
Before I start working on a project I need to feel inspired to create it. For me this is one of the most important steps! I lose time here, thinking and looking into references (these can be almost everything - like a photo, painting, movie, or simple everyday things) that inspire me to form my main idea for the project. After I get my idea I began to do quick drafts in 3D and begin to test the composition and cameras.
I will first show you how I set up my Gamma in my projects. In 3ds Max, I always set Space Gamma to 2.2, this will allow you to work in a linear workflow.
For the house modeling, I began with a simple box which I extruded and divided all the parts with edge loops. Then I modeled the window frames with the same technique, and for the wood floor I use the Floor Generator script. This is an awesome script to produce floor tiles, and you can find it here: www.cg-source.com/floorgenerator.php
Textures and materials
I like to spend more time in this step, and test all the materials and textures to get the desired look. I used the following textures as shown in these images...
For the grass, bushes and trees I used different types of foliage. To spread and create the eco-system I used the
For the camera setup, I usually do a few different cameras and I test it to see what the best camera angle for the image and final composition will be. Finally, I opted for the camera shown below because it was the best option for what I had in mind for my composition.
For the lighting I used a V-Ray Dome light with HDRI, with the VRayCamera. The following three images show my settings.
For the rendering I like to choose all the passes that I will need use to do the post-production. The render settings are also shown below. After 6 hours of rendering, I then had the raw render, ready for me to start the post-production.
This was the final stage and the most important, because it was where I could fix some render errors and get the final desired look.
Top tip: atmosphere and ambience
One the most important things is to get a good atmosphere into your image. In 3ds Max, I created the volumetric light and fog with the VRayEnvironmentFog, because for this image I want cool sun rays coming through the trees, and a morning fog effect, as you see in the V-Ray environment pass here.
To see more by Sérgio Merêces, check out Digital Art Masters: Volume 9