Exploring LEGO Material Part 2

In this blog post, I would like to take a closer look at how to actually render LEGO. If you missed Part 1, you can still read it if you like smile Because I grew up in the 90s and I love the old LEGO pirates sets, I decided to do the lookdev for the infamous Captian Redbeard.


Maya & Scene Management   While Maya gets more bells and whistles with every release it is still pretty useless in a production if there is no one, caring about all the data management. The problem is, if scene/cache imports, exports and versioning is done manually we tend to produce a big ugly mess. Especially if we are in a hurry. Nobody wants to spend time typing in data, prepare scenes, or […] Read More

Exploring LEGO Material Part 1

LEGO is – without a doubt – the best toy in the world. The problem is: sitting on the floor the whole day hurts, big time! Luckily, with all the modern 3D tools and thanks to ldraw and mecabricks I’m still able to play with it digitally. Up to now, I’ve made two brickfilms already. A stop motion one and a CG one. At the time of making those movies, I was pretty proud. From […] Read More

Ford Thunderbird & The Painted Ladies

  Finally, I found some time to create a scene inspired by Steiner St with the beautiful Painted Ladies. I love the Thunderbird and Victorian Architecture, and I thought this would work together nicely. This is my first Redshift rendering. “Ludicrously fast production quality rendering” – so they say. And they are not exaggerating. Even with my ancient GTX 670 I can iterate pretty fast and final frame speed is great. smile Probably more to […] Read More

Wacom tablet and Photoshop CC pressure sensitivity

With Photoshop CC 2014 Adobe introduced the stupidest “feature” Adobe has ever introduced. (And that’s saying something!) From now on Photoshop uses Microsoft’s Windows Ink API, which simply doesn’t work. There are odd circles appearing around your cursor, right click doesn’t work reliable and pressing alt (to pick a color for example) takes ages to temporary switch the tool. Luckily it is possible to disable this Windows Ink thing.

modify normal map intensity in maya

I have never been a big fan of normal maps. It’s difficult to manipulate them, it’s hard to guess how they might influence your shading and – probably the worst part – it’s not possible to modify their strength in maya. This is why I avoided them most of the time in favour of bump maps even though normal maps can look a lot better. Luckily, I found this thread where NextDesign posted […] Read More

Das ist kein Hexenwerk

There it is. Our short film “Das ist kein Hexenwerk”. Word for word translated it means: “that is no witchcraft”, but actually it’s a german saying with the same meaning as “It’s not rocket science”. This is supposed to be funny (not really after I had to explain it…) because in fact this short is about a witch… never mind, let’s move on. Willa the witch wants to pass her […] Read More

Beautiful Grain

  There are different types of grain nodes in nuke, but the problem is, while they may accuratly emulate specific types of filmgrain, they make your image – to put it mildly – really ugly. This is why I decided to create a “beautiful” grain gizmo. The key thing in my opinion is, that noise shouldn’t modify chroma, but luminance. I exposed knobs to control intensity and grain size (just a blur essentially). […] Read More

How to nCloth

A few months ago, I took a closer look at maya’s nucleus.  I learned a lot and I thought it would be a good idea to write everything down. This is not intended to be a step by step tutorial and I’m not going to discuss every single parameter. I just wanted to throw together all the “wow, now I got it!” moments and I hope that this is maybe a good starting […] Read More

Framebuffer Shuffling

No matter what you are rendering, at the end of the day you probably need to setup a nuke comp, and shuffle your framebuffers/passes/AOVs – you name it, to recreate your beauty. This is why I wrote a little script that does this tedious job for you.