This course focus on a physically correct approach to lighting inside of Softimage. As the viewer, you will learn important concepts like Linear Workflow, Light Decay, Hard and Soft Shadowing, and the different kinds of lights we have in real life so you never have to use ugly hacks in rendering again. The use of a real production scene will be a great opportunity for everyone to understand how lighting can set the mood of the scene, and how to avoid common rendering bottlenecks. As the cherry on top of our CG cake, you will understand how the use of Softimage’s powerful passes system can leverage your work in the compositing stage, and how you can use Softimage’s FXTree to solve preComp issues in your pipeline.
Although some content in this course is Mental Ray specific we try to make it as broad as possible and teach tools that can be used with any render engine available to SI out there.
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Before learning the concepts we need first to get acquainted with the tool itself. We will learn how to navigate around the UI and inspect the tools that we will be using all while learning the shortcuts that can speed up our process.
Have you heard about linear workflow? It is kind of a hot topic these days, but do you know how and why one should use it? We will investigate this topic,learning why this is so crucial to photo-realistic 3d rendering and how it functions inside of Autodesk Softimage.
Lights And Lightshaders
Softimage has many different light objects we can use to illuminate our scene. In this chapter, we will understand how these different types of lights work, what are they’re counterparts in real life and how to use lights in a photo-realistic way. We also learn about light shaders and how they change the behavior of your lights.
Before placing our lights we will learn how to set up environments, for both Image Based Lighting and Reflections. We will also learn how to set up Mental Ray in order to get fast preview and maximize the number of iterations in your work.
The fun stuff! Here is where we use all the knowledge so far to give mood to our scene. We will choose, place and color our lights learning some artistic and technical tricks along the way.
Setting Up For Rendering
Before pushing the Render button, there are a few things we need to know. Let’s learn about all the customizable parameters available to us in the way Softimage outputs images, and some good practices on following through.
Render Channels And Render Passes
There is much more to rendering than the “Beauty Pass”. Softimage has a robust render pass system which allows for the output of many frame buffers per rendering (render channels). We will understand these two workflows, use them in our scene, and check/composite our images in Softimage’s built in compositor called the FXTree.
About The Artist
Gustavo E Boehs is a generalist 3d artist from Brazil. He started his career as a Graphic Designer, but soon became very interested in 3d. He moved to São Paulo (Brazils financial capital) looking for good education in this field. The institution he attended used Softimage as its main tool, and what a tool it is to start your 3d venture! Having created a short film, and many advertisement pieces, he has dealt with most aspects of 3d and compositing and gained a deep all around knowledge of SI’s tools and workflow, as well as some experience in other packages like Maya, Max and Cinema 4d.
Special thanks to the artist Michelangelo Almeida (http://michelangelo.cghub.com/) for creating, modeling and so kindly sharing this character with us.
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