Making of 'Walther P99'
Hello everybody, I would like to present you with the making of my latest image: "Walther P99".
Before starting to model the P99, I searched for as many different reference photos as I could find on the Internet, so that I could understand the form of the object better.
I decided to start the image by modelling the cylinder head, because it was the easiest. Then I attacked the modelling of the pistol grip. For this step, I started with a box in editable patch, and then converted it to edit poly to add the details. I finally finished with the silencer, which seemed very easy to make after modelling the pistol grip! (Fig.01 - Fig.05)
As far as the materials were concerned, in the scene I essentially used Arch & Design. Starting with the plastic of the pistol grip, I used a noise to recreate the grainy appearance of the material. I then added rounded corners to create the soft edges on the model (Fig.06).
For the metal parts of the pistol, I created a map in black and white in Photoshop, drawing on the reference photos that I had. This map served for the bump and the anisotropy of the material. For the diffuse, I used RGB Multiply to give a tint to my material, without forgetting the rounded corners (Fig.07).
And finally, for the ground I used a high definition map of concrete. I added a gradient ramp to recreate the dark area present in the background of the image, and an RGB Multiply to tint the diffuse (Fig.08).
For the lighting, I used a simple skylight with an HDR map (Fig.09 & Fig.10).
I wanted to render a high definition image in this scene using a minimum rendering time to justify the use of a normal pass, rather than creating a three-point lighting setup which would need a longer rendering time and less work in post-production.
For the indirect lighting, I used Final Gather with the settings shown in Fig.11.
I think I succeeded in correctly making a render in high definition (1950x1100), with a minimal calculation time - only 1 hour, 30 minutes to make the scene, with all the passes, on an old Pentium 4. The 3ds Max output image can be seen in Fig.12.
Post production was the most important step in the project. Up until this stage, I just had an image with a flat light created by the skylight. Because of this, I rendered a normal pass so that I could play in real time with a three-point lighting setup. I also rendered a pass to recreate the rounded corners on the normal pass and an ambient occlusion pass allowed me to recreate, the shadows present on the output image from Max. Once done, I extracted the red, green and blue layers to play with my three-point lighting in real time. I added a little depth of field... and voila! (Fig.13)
The final image can be seen in Fig.14.
I really loved working on this image, and I particularly enjoyed the techniques I got to use in post-production. They proved very efficient for a fixed image and allowed me to considerably reduce the rendering time!
I hope you have enjoyed this "Making Of".