Welcome To Signs101.com: Largest Forum for Signmaking Professionals

Signs101.com: Largest Forum for Signmaking Professionals is the LARGEST online community & discussion forum for professional sign-makers and graphic designers.

 


  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Compositing with 3ds Max

Discussion in 'General Software' started by Sturm, Nov 30, 2011.

  1. Sturm

    Sturm New Member

    2
    0
    0
    Sep 9, 2009
    I'm pretty good with 3ds Max and lately I've been using it, along with V-Ray, to render proofs of architectural signs, channel letters, awnings, and cabinet signs. Customers want to see how their sign will look on their building, so I have been learning how to composite the signs I create in Max onto a photo of their storefront. It isn't easy, and I was wondering if anyone else out there knew of some good tricks to make it work better.
     
  2. sowinski_t

    sowinski_t Member

    49
    0
    0
    Nov 22, 2011
    been a while since I did any work in Max, but my approach for doing mock-ups like goes like this:

    Showing flat graphics (ex: window/door graphics)

    Skip Max and go straight to photoshop. Copy from Illustrator (I'm assuming you're working in Adobe here) and paste as a smart object. Transform it to match the perspective and you're good to go.

    Showing dimensional items (ex: 3D lettering/foam work, etc.)

    Figure out your camera's lens settings. If you're shooting with a DSLR this is easy (just look at what zoom you're on. ex: 55mm, 35mm, etc.) but with a non-DSLR I would recommend fully unzooming your lens to shoot the picture and then looking up in the manual or online what lens your camera is fitter with.
    Then simply set that in your camera properties in Max and the perspectives should line up quite well.

    Hope that helps!
     
  3. Sturm

    Sturm New Member

    2
    0
    0
    Sep 9, 2009
    Thanks for the reply, Sowinski. I don't really have any trouble with the camera settings. My salesperson uses his iPhone 3GS, which has an effective focal length of 37mm. The rest of the settings are saved in EXIF data in the JPG, such as the f-stop, ISO, and shutter speed. I just use those settings in the V-Ray Physical Camera.

    My problem lies in lighting the scene. I've been using either a V-Ray dome light with an HDRI or a V-Ray sun, depending on whether the photo was taken on a cloudy day or a sun-lit day. I use the salesperson's photo as an environment background and display it in the viewport.

    I then create a plane to represent the wall where the channel lettering (or whatever) is going and try to set the camera up at about 70" from the ground and about where my salesperson was standing in the photo. Once I've got the perspective right, I give the wall a VrayWrapper material and set it up so it's like a Matte/Shadow material, so that it can catch shadows and lights and look like the objects are casting shadows on the background image.

    So what is the best way to light & render the scene using V-Ray so that my Max-created objects will look like they're a part of the background photo? I guess what I'm trying to do is a sort of rotoscoping.
     
  4. sowinski_t

    sowinski_t Member

    49
    0
    0
    Nov 22, 2011
    I would maybe just light it in HDRI, that's worked well for me generally. The trick is to find the right one. There's some good resources for that on the web, you should be able to find a lighting map that resembles the background for the scene.
    Also had an idea about the process overall; what about rendering the background as one file, the lettering as another, and then compositing in photoshop? (I think you might be able to export a layered PSD directly from VRay but I can't remember for sure...) That might give you a little more flexibility. I would then soften the edges, add a slight gausian blur and add a little (1.5-2.5%) noise. This has the effect of "roughing up" your rendering and hopefully make it more likely to blend into the background.
     
  5. artbot

    artbot Very Active Member

    3,164
    9
    38
    Feb 18, 2010
    Houston TX
    i've been doing what i call "virtual installs" for years. in rhino, i've been building the part then exporting to a 3d object in photoshop to drop the object on to a photo.

    but i find photoshops 3d tools for rotating etc very aggravating.

    i can i avoid rhino all together and fake the 3d in photoshop. in the end it comes out quicker and cleaner.

    one thing. the quality of the photo as far as angle and flatness is key. get you elevations just perfect. it's not complicated to just scale the space right there in photoshop.

    example of recent virtual installs


    http://www.flickr.com/photos/alldredge/sets/72157627827224314/show/

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/alldredge/sets/72157627778067058/show/

    using rhino/photoshop

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/alldredge/sets/72157626982740560/show/

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/alldredge/sets/72157626816232558/show/
     
  6. SignManiac

    SignManiac Major Contributor

    8,494
    29
    48
    Mar 25, 2006
    Mars Florida
    artbot you do some outstanding work!
     
  7. artbot

    artbot Very Active Member

    3,164
    9
    38
    Feb 18, 2010
    Houston TX
    thanks. unfortunately i think three these proposals were dead ends for one reason or another. i get about 50% of the projects which is enough.

    nemours is a spring project. so who know, i may be batting "0"?
     
Loading...
Similar Threads - Compositing 3ds Max
  1. MDS
    Replies:
    0
    Views:
    147

Share This Page

 


Loading...