Key to 3D Success - VRay

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Key to 3D Success - VRay
2nd edition
Key to 3D Success
by Alexander Vasiliuk aka VRayGuide
All rights reserved © 2009 www.vrayart.com
© 2010
Dear reader,
It is a great honour to link your desire with my intention to create
this unique self-help e-book for aspiring 3D Artists.
Here, you will find several TOP secrets which have never before
been revealed or listed in one place, as most professionals like to
keep them to themselves.
All the information has been gathered, tested, and explored from
thousands of different sources, in addition to my personal
experience of the last 8 years of working in the Architectural
visualization Industry.
Making mistakes, failing, solving problems and eventually
succeeding at those assignments could be a very painful learning
process. Some of you might even give up and switch to something
less stressful.
It is my mission to keep you on the right track to that aspiration of
becoming a truly significant 3D Artist, and share with you all my
failures and successes, so they can be useful to you in achieving
your final goal faster.
Make the best of this e Book, and see yourself on the reaching
excellence very soon 
Enjoy reading, and always remember, if you want to do it
Right!
DO it like a PRO!
Talk soon,
Alex
2
Content:
pages
Chapter #1 – Introduction
4
Chapter #2 – What is V-Ray? How does it work and
where is it going?
6
Chapter #3 – Fundamental Knowledge
11
Chapter #4 – System Configuration
14
Chapter #5 – Attitude
21
Chapter #6 – Character
28
Chapter #7 – How to avoid unpleasant working situations
35
Chapter #8 – How to get a JOB
39
Chapter #9 – Know your resources
46
Chapter #10 – Making of NUBA COR
51
Chapter #11 – BONUS #1 - Download NUBA COR
66
Chapter #12 – Exponential vs. Linear
68
Chapter #13 – Open your EYES and let them SEE
77
Chapter #14 – Freelance World
75
Chapter #15 – The most FAQ
78
Chapter #16 – Mind Set Paradigm
80
Chapter #17 – High Performance
84
Chapter #18 – Bonus #2 – VRay Master class 2011
96
3
Chapter #1 - Introduction
Let's begin.
Let me give you a quick introduction to the right use of this eBook,
just so you don’t get bored too much. You can always refresh your
eyes by clicking on the additional information links.
Here, you will find all my sources of inspiration, working materials,
ways of getting professional feedback and much more… therefore
be sure to look at the links and bookmark everything you find
useful.
This eBook has been created for a couple of reasons, and one of
them is the lack of professional knowledge sources for V-Ray users.
Of course, there are forums and online "V-Ray Tutorials" that you
can dig for hours and come up with some good results.
But most of the time you just get more confused by trying out
different techniques and getting your head full of unsolved problems
or even worse, wrong techniques.
Hey, I was there too, I’ve struggled every day for the past 8 years
trying to find a good solution that will allow me to achieve "photo
realistic" results. I’ve tried almost everything, from 3Ds Max to
Cinema 4D, from Metal Ray to Final Render and other rendering
engines. However, the more I was struggling the more I got
confused, because I saw all those amazing images coming from the
best 3D Artists world wide, and each one of them was using a
different program.
So then I got it. It didn't matter what program I used to achieve the
results; it was to do with how good my control over that program is.
That was really the "AHA..!" moment, cos' what I really needed was
to stop jumping and trying out all that technology around me, and
just stick to one program that made me feel most comfortable, and
DIG it deep, till I would have full control over what I’m trying to
achieve.
So that’s what I did. I’ve asked myself what I want to do. Do I want
to make games or movies, animation or architecture? What is the
most inspiring thing that motivates me to continuously trying to
improve myself? And that was simple, I wanted to do 3D
visualizations and specialize in architecture.
The next step was choosing a software, and I’ve searched the 'net
and found that the most successful 3D works were made with 3Ds
4
Max and V-Ray (in the architecture industry of course). Well, I was
not going to waste so much time, so, I got myself tons of learning
material, Books, DVD’s, 3D Trainings, Live Seminars and lots of
other useful sources like Critiques & Comments that were coming
from professional forums, such as CGtalk and Evermotion (don’t
worry I’ll post all the links below).
Anyway, all that was real fun but hard, I was struggling every day,
sleeping in the class during my studies, cos’ I was sitting night after
night till sunrise trying to figure that "3D photo realistic" thing out, I
was working nights and days, searching for every possible training
source for V-Ray (I'll post my sources later on). So after more than
8 years of working in the industry with 3Ds Max and 6 years using
V-Ray I have finally found a proper step by step method that will
lead me to a perfectly realistic 3D image, and it's these steps that
I’m about to share with you.
"Oh gush, that’s a relief…" That’s exactly how I would have felt
myself if I found this eBook 6 years ago. Well it will not be that
easy, you still have to do stuff, test, learn and understand how the
stuff works in our real world, and afterwards apply it to 3D, but I
can promise you it will be much easier and also much more fun to
have a good "V-Ray Guide" to help you in your quest.
So buckle up and get prepared to get yourself professionally
educated and finally to become the next outstanding 3D Artist in
the field, yes just like that, here we go!
Here are some really good sources! Get to know our CG community,
the best artist, interviews, good free V-Ray tutorials, and other cool
stuff, just sign in, and start digging:
www.evermotion.org – The #1 place for Arch. Vis. Artists.
www.V-Ray.info – Cool stuff about V-Ray, news, interviews, tutorials.
www.cgarchitect.com – One of the biggest Arch. Vis. communities.
www.cgtalk.com – The biggest world wide CG community.
www.cgarena.com – CG community, check their "Free tutorials" section.
www.3Dtotal.com – CG community with lots of interesting stuff.
www.cgrecord.net - Just to stay updated.
5
Chapter #2 - What is V-Ray? How
does it work and where's it going?
Here is a good start, for getting to understand the basic principles
of your future working tools. Yes! You guessed it right! I’m talking
about V-Ray.
My advice to you on this one will be, "If you want to be
professional, don't miss the perspective!"
Know the basics, know how to give simple explanations to those
who come asking, and know what developments are going to take
place in the future. If you can answer these questions, and back
them up with evidence, it’s a good start for becoming a professional
3D Artist, in other words you have gained perspective!
What is V-Ray?
V-Ray is a "rendering engine" (according to the Wikipedia) which
was developed around 1997 in Bulgaria by two guys, Vladimir
Koylazov and Peter Mitev. It was officially released for beta testing
in 2001 when they established a company named "Chaos Group".
Some of you might get confused in trying to explain those basic
principles to someone new if the field, so here’s a more
understandable explanation:
Rendering is the process of calculation that a computer performs
to produce an image out of the 3D program's data. The "render" is
the resulting image.
An Engine is an application, a plug-in that can be installed inside
the 3D program so that this calculation can be carried out.
In other words, V-Ray is a plug-in that runs a mathematical
algorithm of computation on a variety of 3D software so it can
produce an "output", which is our image.
How does it work?
Just to keep this short and simple. V-Ray is a "ray tracing"-based
engine, it emits "rays" and tracks them back, so the rays are being
"traced" in their interaction with the 3D environment such as 3D
objects, lights, or even the sky. These "traced rays" carry color
information and thus, are able to create a colour dot known as
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"pixel". Dot after dot, the rays are traced, and thus the render
process proceeds until, in the end, we get our image.
On what 3D software can I install V-Ray?
Good news for you guys, cos’ V-Ray can be installed on almost
every 3D application today. Well, at least the big boys are already
using it, such as 3Ds Max, Maya, Cinema 4D, Sketch Up, Rhino,
Blender. After beta testing is complete, V-Ray should be available
for Light Wave and Soft Image XSI too.
Isn’t it just great? All that V-Ray does is spread all around to every
available 3D application, and if you ask me it will be pretty much
the same thing for all the applications, but it will highlight the
advantages every individual 3D software offers, and what I mean by
that is…
"What is better – 3Ds Max or Maya?"
Basically, every 3D software is designed to do some task better
than the others. For example, 3Ds Max is very good for games and
architecture, all the features that it has, are designed to make the
working process easier, while on the other hand, Maya is the
leading program for creating 3D animation and character animation
as it has all the necessary tools to make your life much easier when
it comes to animation. Rhino and Blender are great for modelling
and have plenty of extremely useful tools and features to speed up
the modelling process. Sketch Up and Cinema 4D can also be very
good for architecture. Both of these programs are getting stronger
every day, but most of the working materials are designed for 3Ds
Max and it is definitely the leading program in the Architecture
Visualization Industry… So you see, every program has its own
advantages, but it all comes to the same point when you want to
see what you have created. And yes, this is when you do that
render thing and calculate the image from your 3D software.
Pretty nice, isn't it?
Well, all the 3D programs have their basic rendering
options/rendering engines, and some of them are pretty good, but
V-Ray has proven itself over the years as the fastest, easiest and
one of the highest-quality rendering engines on the market. The
popularity of V-Ray is growing so fast with each passing day that
I’m pretty sure it will be the main rendering software to be used in
the entertainment industry in the future. (See for yourself –
Architectural Visualization Industry Survey)
7
Well, good! But I’ve heard that there are much better rendering
engines, such as Mental Ray, Final Render, Brazil.
Heck yeah! And no! It is exactly what I was talking about in the
introduction chapter, "it is not about what software you use, it’s
about how you use it" (and what can you get out of it!). But let me
just tell you something you might be missing. With knowledge of VRay, it is much easier to get a job, plus it is the fastest rendering
engine out there, and fast results matter! So, if you are a freelancer
consider, that "time is money" and that is the main point of V-Ray.
By explaining that to your customer you show that you have your
priorities right.
Wait. There is more… V-Ray is about to become much faster, so fast
that you will not need to spend hours of sitting and waiting for your
render to be done, I’m talking about minutes, maybe even seconds,
for a complicated image to be rendered. For those who didn’t know,
rendering is a process that depends on your computer hardware, so
more RAM and a faster CPU mean shorter rendering times.
Hey… Wait a minute, what about the graphic card?
Well, that's kind of the point! Most of the graphic cards will provide
you with better performance while working with 3D scenes, and of
course modern graphic cards also have RAM memory and can help
during the kind of rendering called CPU Render (CPU = central
processing unit). In other words, your processor provides all this
power in order to produce the render, and it also has to operate
your entire system and all the software, everything you are using
on your PC, at the same time. While you’re making a render, it is
done by your processor, so you can imagine how hard it has to
work in order to operate everything at once. Therefore it is very
advisable to shut down all unnecessary programs while rendering,
so basically you are stuck and paralyzed! Read a book, or take a
walk.
But now it's getting real good! Imagine a strong graphic card that
can take over the entire task of rendering and leave your processor
to operate the computer, so you can proceed with other work while
your image is being rendered. Two benefits can be drawn from that:
1. You’re rendering faster.
2. You’re able to do other stuff at the same time.
I’m talking about GPU Render (G stands for "graphic"). Well, it must
be a heck of a graphic card, so it probably will be developed around
Star Trek age, right?..
8
I don’t think so! It’s close, and getting closer, and the good news is
that Chaos Group are going to release the brand new "GPU render"
technology this winter called VRay 2.0, and they will be the first to
do it. The rendering process will be done much, much faster, so that
renders which now take hours will be finished in several minutes.
"I don’t believe you! Where is the proof?"
The proof is right here, take a look at a video from the SIGGRAPH
2009 Chaos Group presentation
Great! So this is how you show your "perspective" - you make clear
explanations, and support them with evidence.
Industry report-Summer 2010 right after new VRay announcement.
Some important conclusions can be drawn from this:
1. You are confident with your knowledge because you know the
basics and fundamentals, and you know how it works!
2. You have extensive knowledge and a good orientation in
theory and so are able to give the right advice, like "what
works best for that particular project". That shows that you
are an expert, you know what’s going on and therefore, you
can be trusted.
3. You are being relevant and know what is about happen, and
therefore, you won't be caught by surprise, on the contrary,
you yourself are full of surprises as you are the first to know
the news and spread the word.
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In other words, You Know What You’re Doing!
So how do you do it? It is simple, you’re signing on to those forums,
news sites, you find them on Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn as
well, and you simply follow. As soon as something really good pops
up, you go and explore it! Read the article, see the video or
whatever it is, and share it with people by giving your opinion.
The more detailed this opinion, the more it will look like an expert
reaction.
I know that we’ve completely forgotten the title of this article,
"What is V-Ray? How does it work and where’s it going?", but I
want you to remember that this eBook is about becoming a
professional 3D Artist, and I must explain this "behind the scenes"
stuff, cos’ it’s made me write this eBook, and along with giving you
useful technical information, it is important that you to understand
how to use it correctly, in order to achieve that final goal… in
becoming a…
OK, OK… you got the point, enough chit chat... just make notes of
those important things, it will be easier to remember that way.
The next chapter is the real thing. Let me show you something that
professionals discover after a couple of years working in the
industry. Let me show you the real deal of being professional!
10
Chapter #3 – Fundamental
Knowledge
In order to be a professional 3D Artist you've got to have that basic
"Fundamental Knowledge" and to know how and where to use it,
followed by a logical explanation of your actions. In other words, to
have a good understanding of how things work in our REAL world;
cos’ this is the real down-to-earth fundamental thing.
That’s it. Turn off your computer, go to sleep. End of story.
No really, that sounds pretty clear but I’m pretty sure that not
many of the professional 3D Artists can explain that…
So let me just explain to you, why it is important to know that
fundamental stuff. Let's assume for a second that you learned how
to play tennis and now you want to get into a tournament and play
with the "big boys". But before you do that, you want to practice a
little. Well, so you take your tennis racket, go to the court, and start
to practice, but suddenly things start getting really rough! This is no
longer your back yard where you could hit the ball against the wall
for hours, this is more serious stuff going on here… you hear your
trainer saying things like "Your foot is a mess, get back on your
fundamental foot work"…"Your swing is a mess, you’re not going
from the high to low, you’re going from high to high"… and then you
realize that it’s really more difficlut than you thought, and you try to
figure out, why is that?
Well… this is just about it, "If you don’t know your fundamentals,
you have to work twice as hard to make that shot".
This is the most common mistake, most of the beginners make it,
and I've made it as well in the past.
"You're running too fast!"
You complete a tutorial, or get someone's scene and use it for your
renders, you get so exited from the first results that you think
you’re so awesome a 3D artist, and you just go on with it, and
forget about the basic learning and preparation that you need to do
before you give in to this temptation of using someone elses
settings or scenes. And what happens then? You keep on making
tutorials and try to build the whole "picture" from different pieces of
knowledge that you find in the internet, and you ask for other users'
rendering settings... and you test them... and test them...
11
Well personally I didn’t do it, but I see every day lots of users doing
it. You think that using other people's rendering settings is going to
help you becoming the greatest 3D Artist of all times? Well, I don’t
think so. Sorry to disappoint, but it’s true.
Have you ever tried reading and understanding the "rules of light"
or the "rules of design", and understand the basics behind those
things? Well, believe me, if you do that it will be much easier for
you to read a V-Ray manual and start practising your scene, cos’
you will know what you're after, and you will know what to expect
after the rendering is complete.
The biggest enemy of your success is your impatience, be patient
and it will come. Some learn faster some slower, but at the end
everybody gets it. Of course it is always good if there is someone to
guide you, and to instruct you, that’s why I’m here, telling you this,
and if you are still reading it, it means that you want to become a
PRO, maybe the next big thing!
So this is all theoretical, "You've got to learn the theory, before you
start your car". OK. I think you got it already, now to the question
is, how do you do it.
Quick basic rules that will not cost you any money:
1. Observation – you have to learn to observe "reality" correctly,
and to picture with your mind everything your eyes see. Remember,
"The best library you'll ever have is the one that’s in your head".
You must be able to pull out every scenario from your memory and
apply it to your work. Your "mind library" is the best tool you'll ever
have, and it will grow every day as soon as you start filling it up
"So, how do YOU do it?" Well, don’t just look, but observe. Behold
the great creativity of nature. Pay attention to all the small details,
try to remember every part of what you see, try to feel the light
and it's behaviour, pay good attention to the dark and bright parts
where the light hits the ground and creates the shadows.
If you’re in an industrial zone, or say in an underground metro
station, pay attention to the marble, to the reflections it creates. Is
it sharp or does it get blurred as it fades away? From what angle
can you see the lamp reflected in it? Try to understand that basic
behaviour of materials. It doesn’t matter if it’s wood or stone, a
marble plate or a wooden door, it’s the feeling that you get while
observing it. Practice your eye to take in the natural colours, the
behaviour of the materials and their interaction with our world, take
more than just a few seconds to watch it, stare at it, immerse
yourself in the material.
12
2. Practice – the best way of practising to understand the light's
behaviour is to paint it, so even if you can’t paint, do it! This is the
most important procedure, when your are eyes watching,
transmitting information to the brain, and then you try to apply it
on the paper, this is the best method for getting that fundamental
stuff. If you have difficulties in seeing and applying what you see,
take a picture, print it out, put it near by, and try to paint what you
have pictured.
The more you practice the better you get!
Make it "rule number one", if you want to be good at CG first create
it on paper, it doesn't have to be perfect, but you have to give it at
least 2 weeks before you power up your computer and try to create
something.
Another good practice tool is your photo camera, and the better it is,
the better practice you'll get. I’ve noticed that I could significantly
improve my control over the "VrayPhysicalCam" by practising with a
real SLR camera. I've got a Nikon D70, it’s a bit old, but perfect to
get a full understanding of the f/number, shutter speed, ISO, depth
of field, etc. You need to dig it first. This practice is the most
effective one you'll ever get, and it’s fun, I’ve made it my hobby.
The bottom line of all this is, if you read books, do tutorials, sit
nights and days at your computer trying to figure stuff out, it will
not bring you as far as "real-life" practice outside. In order to learn
the fundamentals you've got to feel them. You have to learn it by
first working with your hands, and that's the best training you can
dream of, believe me - I know.
Well, there are also a lot of shortcuts with different sources to do it,
and if you are prepared to invest some money, it might save you
lots of time: You can take a part in different practice sessions with
professional trainers, you can also join the community and get your
work criticised, improving it step by step or just ask for advice, but,
remember, every advice is something that comes from the personal
experience of some specific person, and your own experience might
turn out to be completely different.
So if you have some spare money and you want to improve yourself,
take painting lessons, or a photography course, do seminars and
never stop learning, every time you try to do something, do it with
all your heart, like it is the last thing you ever do.
If you want to build a perfect wall, every stone has to be perfectly
aligned, built with all your love and passion. Do it! It’s now the time
to take action, and enjoy what grows from these seeds.
13
Chapter #4 – System Configuration
This is the part where you see technological improvements in
yourself and learn how to configure a system that perfectly suits
you. These things you’re going to discover mostly from making
mistakes, on a "highway" of achievements until you get the desired
results. Eventually, you will learn something from doing these
mistakes, but it’s much better to learn from other people's
mistakes, some of which I’ve already told you about in the previous
chapter.
Anyway, here's the deal, if you want to do 3D like a PRO, you have
got to know your system, to know what you are working with and
how to adjust it, so it will help you produce those high-end
visualizations. Setting up your workflow properly relies on a good
fundamental knowledge. In order to create physically correct
images you have to know what you are dealing with, and your
hardware and software have to be set up correctly. Also, you'll need
a good computer in order to create 3D images fast - the specific
computer configuration will be covered at the end of this chapter.
All right - let’s do it!
Technology is something that is improving every day, but there are
some principles that haven’t changed a bit for the last 8 years. One
of the most important things in the professional workflow of a 3D
artist is the right colour setup. In order to see natural colours
correctly you need to calibrate your working system, meaning both
the monitor and the software, in our case 3Ds Max V-Ray.
Monitor calibration is a process that brings the monitor's colour
display back to its original quality which is defined by the
manufacturer's factory settings. Let’s start from the beginning, it
will help us to understand the process.
Monitors, like every other technical equipment, get warm while
working, and that is the main reason why monitors start to lose
their colour productivity. Every monitor works on 3 colours (RGB red, green, blue) and the loss of each of these colours doesn't
happen uniformly. Some monitors lose more red, some get
problems with green, others lose the blue part... Even monitors of
the same model from the same manufacturer will start displaying
the same image slightly differently after a time, because of that
"colour loss phenomenon".
"So what do we do ? How can we bring those colours back?"
14
Aha! Here, a nice piece of equipment comes in very handy, as it
restores the colours and sets the monitor profile to the correct value
of gamma 2.2.
For monitor calibration, I use the eye-one
display 2, it’s a great calibration device and I’m
personally very satisfied with it. I’ve tried to use
"Spider", but gave it back and took the "eyeone display 2″ instead. So I strongly
recommend it, if you want to have the right
colours, and knock everybody off their feet with
your images, calibrate your monitor. Now I
know you might say…
"But most people aren't doing it, how come I should?"
Well, simply because professional 3D Artists, who can really give
you good feedback on your image, or accept you to work with them,
do calibrate their monitors, yes, I’m talking about the big boys, so if
you want to play in their league, you better come with the correct
colours.
Monitor Calibration with EYE1 Display 2
Software – OK so after you have calibrated your monitor, you need
to calibrate your 3Ds Max and set it to gamma 2.2. It doesn’t
have to be done at the same time, these are two independent
procedures, but you should make at least this one right now!
15
Go to 3Ds Max, and at the main control panel, select "Customize –>
Preferences –> Gamma and LUT" and make these changes.
OK now we have set our software to the professional mode.
I’m sorry, but what did we do exactly?
- We "Enabled Gamma /LUT colour correction" in our 3Ds Max
program.
- We made it possible to "Load files with that Status.." -If you’ll be
loading some old scenes with a different (older) gamma setup, you
will get a message, so ignore it, otherwise you get a wholly different
render. It is advisable to start a new scene from scratch in that
mode.
- "Display" – we made it possible to see everything correctly in our
system, now 3Ds Max will display all the information with gamma
2.2 on our monitor. By the way, Photoshop got that option built in.
- "Affect Colour selection" and "Affect Material Editor" – Gamma 2.2
will take effect on our colours' and materials' appearance in the
Material Editor, so basically you'll finally be getting the correct
appearance!
- "Input Gamma" – all textures that will be imported to 3Ds Max will
automatically get the gamma 2.2 colour correction. (Sometimes
textures appear too dark, it is because of double gamma 2.2, what
you can do in this case is just change the gamma of the texture
manually in the "open bitmap dialogue" while importing the texture
in to 3Ds Max).
16
Congratulations! You are on the right track now!
You've probably noticed
that your materials editor
have become much
brighter, and it doesn’t
feel right for your eyes,
well I got some good
news for you, it is the old
colour management that
was not right! Don’t
worry, after a week you’ll
get used to it, and you will
be amazed to see how
awful it looks with gamma
1.0. I went through this
as well, so you'll get over
it too, don’t worry.
before: gamma 1.0
after: gamma 2.2
Now look here, if you just click on the colour selector at your
material you will notice how much colour range it got now, WOW,
we missed all that colour, and you didn’t even know about it! Well,
now you got it.
colour selector: gamma=1.0
colour selector: gamma=2.2
OK great! Now if you could just explain what happened and
why we're doing all this?
Well, to explain it better let me just give you a simple example on
what is happening. Let’s say we're sitting in a dark room, and
suddenly we go outside, and it’s a really sunny day, so what will
happen? Yes, you'll be going temporarily blind.
Imagine the opposite situation, when you’re at some party, and you
decide to go home, you step outside and suddenly someone closes
17
the door, and you cannot see anything, but not for long, if you keep
standing there for about a minute your eyes will adapt to the
environment so you can slowly start seeing something.
Let’s analyze it, I’m not a doctor but I assume that we have some
sort of sensor in our eyes that adjusts its light sensitivity so it's
good enough to see the details in extremely different situations. If it
is very bright we still can see those shadowed places and they
aren't overexposed on the white colour, while that's what probably
would happen if we took a picture with a photo camera. Vice versa
in a dark environment we're still able to see something, even
though light is very low, though I really doubt that we could take a
picture in such situation.
Anyway, the logic behind this is simple, this "eye sensor" allows the
light to be less intensive in the dark/bright situations and that
allows us to see more details, and the image that our brain creates
is not overexposed or underexposed. That is what we want to
achieve in 3D.
So what happens in CG, we are not going outside and have to adapt
"ourselves" to the environment, we stay in one place and this is our
starting point, gamma 2.2 (monitor and software calibration). At
this starting point, we are trying to adapt the "3D" to it’s origin, and
the name of this starting point is:
Linear Work Flow = LWF.
This is exactly what we did by calibrating the monitor and adjusting
the 3Ds Max Gamma/LUT. The best way is to show you this, by two
Rendered 2 examples:
Render with Gamma = 1.0
Render with gamma = 2.2
18
So what we see here, is a simple example of a render with gamma
1.0 (3Ds Max default system configurations) and with gamma 2.2
(our manually managed professional configuration).
Just to analyse the phenomenon, we can draw a conclusion, that
bringing gamma to 2.2 is the same idea as that of the "eye-sensor"
that allows us to adapt to better environment lighting. In other
words, the light does not have to work as hard in order to illuminate
enough space, so that we can see all necessary objects.
Just assume for a second what would happen if we tried to work
with gamma 1.0?
We would increase the intensity of the light in order to see all
objects in the scene, but we'd probably get overexposed areas and
burnt-out areas close to the light source.
OK, nice! but, please, tell me why?
Our eyes adjust the colour automatically, but in 3D, this appears to
be different, because 3Ds Max does not know how to adjust to a
"real-life" situation automatically like the human brain. Therefore,
we have to create that starting point of gamma 2.2 in the 3Ds Max
system and calibrate our monitor to gamma 2.2. And it’s better to
put the value of gamma 2.2 in the colour mapping when adjusting
the light, so we do not overexpose or underexpose our renders.
Capice?
Good, by the way did you know that SLR cameras have got the
same function as well, and they apply gamma correction 2.2
automatically to every image we take. Just so you know, most of
the pictures on the internet are already with gamma 2.2 adjustment
built-in in their image profile.
Oh, and one more thing, all the MAC users, it’s better if you
calibrate your monitors too, but you should know if your monitor (if
it’s a new one) already has gamma 2.2 correction, while the old
ones are calibrated to gamma 1.8.
So to end this chapter, calibrate your monitors at least once a
month; it’s an easy procedure and should not take more than a few
minutes, and believe me, you’ll be much happier to notice the
difference.
Oh! I almost forgot, your PRO 3D computer configuration:
19
The best you can get for a good price and with high performance is
this, I’ve paid 1500$ for the entire system:
QuadDualCore™ i7 processor
Motherboard ASUS – P6T
Graphic Card NVidia GeForce GTX260XXX or GTX 285
DIMM 6GB DDR3-1333 Tri-Kit (take it double = 12 GB RAM)
Hard disk, really sent matter I took hd752lj 750 GB
DVD-RW – lg gh-22lp20
Cooling system has to be a good one, nh-u12p se1366
Power supply as well, straight power bqt e6-600w
I’ve added 2 more fans just for air circulation, af12025 pwm
And found a really cheap 23'' monitor, a Samsung Syncmaster
However, if you can afford an Apple Cinema 30", I would do that if I
were you.
As to the mouse, I recommend a Logitech Revolution MX, it's really
nice to the touch
OK, now you're good to go!
20
Chapter #5 - Attitude
"Attitude" describes how you arrange your work, how you plan
your moves, how you find potential clients on the internet and how
you work with them.
This is really about the "Healthy way of Communication", so that
you don't damage yourself or your business, and earn a great
reputation among the CG community.
I’ll try to cover the most important things that you should know as a
3D artist. It will help to build your good name in the industry.
Positioning yourself as an expert so that the other users see you as
"The Man", who can answer and help others by providing really
helpful solutions. I see this one as the best way of becoming a "PRO
3D V-Ray Artist". If you are able to do that right, you will no longer
be jobless and your life will become much more interesting. You’ll
get invited to seminars to give a speech, you’ll be invited to
companies to give your personal opinion on the pipe-line, and most
important you’ll be paid lots of good money for your services. You
might say
"Well I don’t need all that, I’m good as I am".
Sure, you don’t have to be involved in all that activity going on
around you, but at least let’s agree on one thing! "Time is Money",
and you want to manage it wisely, so that you get paid well for
what you do, and be able to take a break in order to "Recharge your
Batteries" when you need it. That way you can produce things more
efficiently, and not lose all the fun, that you enjoy so much, from
3D creation.
Agreed?
OK, first things first, and I’ll be starting this chapter with the
biggest one, which is "Planning your work". That’s a big and
common mistake among many of us, and not only 3D artists, it can
do serious damage to your life, business, nerve system, and be
really unhealthy in all possible aspects. Doing that right will save
you a lot of time (=money!), so before you start planning
something please understand why it is so important to you.
OK? Good, let’s start.
Let's assume you have found someone who is interested in your
services, or someone has found you, or you just got a new project
21
at your work place… So what you do is, turn on your computer and
start importing files in to your program.
"Ha, got you!"
No, no, no, it's the most common mistake #1.
1. Prepare yourself for a project: In order to plan your project
well, and avoid unpleasant surprises, you must build an exact timeline of your work, and that can be done only by knowing your deadlines. By which date the sketches must be approved, by which date
the project must be finished, if there is any date flexibility…etc. If
you have no dates, you have to make them by yourself, from my
experience it is the only way of accomplishing projects, it will
improve your intuition regarding future project management.
Quick example: you might think that several things can take X
hours to make, but you might be surprised to discover that this
took twice longer than expected. So you need to trace your work
and make notes on every stage, plus it will help you be better
organised, by following your progress of your improvement; so
habituate yourself to work this way all the time.
So the first thing you do is, prepare a time-line with notes and
deadlines.
2. Collect all necessary information: this you might get from
your client or your boss, or leading artist, but it doesn’t mean that
they did a good job, or they provided you with all "your" needs. You
have to know "your needs!" if you don’t have that necessary
information about your project, things like: required design, colours
to use, atmosphere, is it day or night, winter or summer, you need
to define it to yourself, and approve it upfront with the client.
You need to know where
you're "driving", cos’ "driving
no where will get you no
where!".So collect all the
references for what you’re
about to create, put them
around you on the table and
make a simple sketch. This
sketch must be approved, so
you don't have to make it
twice.
With difficult clients or bosses you'd rather announce it clearly from
the beginning, "I’m going to do this and that". You can show this
22
sketch to clients who have a good imagination and sketch
understanding, but not everyone can "dig" it, so don’t forget that.
The best way of course is to meet with the person and to do the
"sketch" together, that way you both agree on the same thing at
the same time.
So the second thing you do, is finding references and creating a
sketch.
3. Planning: after you've done your preparations and collected all
necessary data about the project you’re going to create, and you
know what you're needed for and expected to do, now is the time
for planning!
"Plan more, do less!"
This is so true, most of my projects where I’ve planed my moves
came out half of the time and much better performance! "The more
you plan, the smoother it goes". You have no idea how important
this is to invest effort in planning your work, if you need to do some
test, do them, but not over do it, know your limit between testing
and producing. Know to be fast and extremely exact in your specific
target, if you need to find the answer that will help you to make
that decision, do it, but not over do it, know to stop when you get
it.
Are we cool?
Good, so planning basically exists from the time-line that you have
scheduled in the previous stage and the preparations with first
sketches that you’ve made. Two of these are your working material
and from them you build a plan, this part should take most of the
project time, I would say 80% planning 20% doing.
"Yeah, but it sucks! I want do things right now!"
Well, it depends on what you want do? If you want to do
unprofessional crappy work that everybody will laugh and say "man
this is lamest work I’ve ever seen", go ahead, make them laugh at
you all the way, but if you want do a professional job and be proud
of what you’ve done, and when people ask you "Wow man, how did
you do it, it’s so brilliant", then you can answer, "That’s what the
3D pro’s do!" and play it big shot like it was piece of cake.
"Sweet!"
So the third thing you do is…. Exactly! you plan your work.
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4. Work in Progress (WIP): This is the best part of your work
and you’re going to enjoy it the most if you did the previous stages
well. I just want to repeat my self, please, do the preparing,
collecting and planning, it doesn’t have to be long process, only if
you decide so, if it must be quick and you don’t have much time, to
do it quick, but do it in 5 – 10 minutes, what ever you've got, but
do it! it will make your life a thousand times easier, and your clients
a lot happier.
OK! So let’s move to making!
One of the methods of speeding up your work, is to have a library,
and a good organised library, so you don't have to spend hours of
searching for information on the internet, or whatever you do to
find what you need. All the textures, models, backgrounds, IES
lights, HDRI maps, have to be in the correct folder, with a suitable
name. For example:
../textures/stone/marble/red_marble.jpg
../textures/wood/oak/dark_oak.jpg
../models/chairs/modern/barcelona_chair.max
../lights/ies/interior/spot_small.ies
OK, so you get the idea, "English" letters, no slang or trans-lit, so it
would be easier to find, and not only for you. If you work in the
office, it must be easy for other people to navigate through your
stuff. It’s a great tip for life "Treat people like you would like to be
treated", yes, and that goes specially for your library organisation.
5. Logical thinking: Now here you need to be very strategic about
your thoughts. Everything you create or design must be logically
explained, there can NOT be illogical elements in your scene.
"It brings contrast to the composition"
"It gives balance to the scene"
"It illuminates the dark part that we need to see"
"It gives a more dynamic look to the camera angle"
These are the answers that you should give while adding models or
lights or adjusting camera angle of your scene. If you don’t sure
about something, that means it should not be there. The client will
always appreciate if you point at those mistakes, but don’t over do
24
it. "The client is always right!" if you want to prove that you are
right, show 2 variations and explain why yours is correct, if the
client still wants to have it his way, then you should agree with
that, cos’ its his vision and he is paying you money to do your job.
The most common mistake is to do something else just because you
think it looks better, this makes clients or bosses very angry, cos’
they spent their time explaining you how they want things to be,
and they expect to get what you both agreed on. Doing something
else might invite some serious trouble, so just stick to the plan and
everything will be all right. If you still think that what you are
suggesting is better, make it as a bonus, but stay on the main
course of pleasing the client.
6. Feedback: It's important to get feedback on your work. While
working on the project for a long time, you’re loosing your sense of
self judgement, and you can not see the small mistakes that just
pop up for others, so community exists exactly for ruff moments
like these. I’ve posted some links in my first chapter, for these
forums and online communities, where you can get a professional
comments & critiques, but before you do it, make sure that you are
allowed to make such posts, that is, regarding this particular project
on the internet. This is important, and I don’t want you to get into
trouble for showing something that is very classified to the whole
world.
There are also clients, your co workers, project managers. You can
always show them your work in order to get it improvised. So try to
get as much as possible good helping comments, OK?
Great!
Remember, do your stuff till you think you’re good with it, don’t
show something to someone that is not complete, learn to know
exactly when you can show your work. Sometimes, it is important
to show your work on very early stages, so you know that you’re in
the right direction. Wouldn’t it suck if you show the complete
project, and you stand there with a smile waiting to get good
criticism (and maybe applause!), but, you get only disappointment,
and discover that you did the whole thing wrong! Well, avoid such
situations, while planning your work, you will know when and to
whom you need to show it. It’s a good indicator, use it!
So what do you do when you get a feedback? Well you collect all of
it, and apply these changes all in once, then you make another
render. Remember, this is the stage when you use low rendering
setting and low resolution render, these previews go to "go out" as
fast as possible, in order to allow you to move on. Something like
25
1200 pix on 800 pix, should be enough to criticise. Final tuning
comes after you complete your mission of reaching the vision of
your client, or your boss.
7. How to post your work on the internet: Well, congratulations!
You did a good job! Now when everybody is happy you can finally
post your work and get some social recognition. This is important
stage in the development of your "3D artist persona", and I’ll get
down to it in the next chapter of social media stuff, but here are
some practical tips that will help you to entice clients or professional
3D artists and finally get the recognition you deserve.
Introduce yourself, if you’re new to the community – mostly in such
forums people know each other, and you will be welcome if you
behave like you should, same thing if you came in to their "House"
on you know on their "Door".
Write as much information as possible about your project, rendering
times, software, technical stuff, dates, crew (people that were
involved), difficulties and problem solving – professional 3D artists
and potential clients like reading this, so you show them your level
of professionalism and that you well organised and that you care!
That is the key to the heart of the community, to care about other
people. You can post also your sketches and planning material, that
brings much more taste to your working style.
Be polite, and never get people to get on your nerves, many of
users are not polite, or they have problems in live, and they might
get jealous of seeing you succeed, don’t ever, ever, let them get to
you. Lately, I see lots of useless discussions in forums, it just a
waste of time. It is not personal, and if you know who you are,
that’s what you should keep in mind. So stay cool, it not worth
losing your reputation because of some comments, it's not worth
even a second of your time.
8. "Recharging your batteries" OK great! So the job well done,
and you got good critiques, you’re been accepted as a 3D artist,
people just love to see your work and to get your attention.
"What next?"
Take a break! No seriously, it is not less important as doing 3D,
after long exhausting project you must reward yourself, and how do
you do it? You do something just for "FUN". Go outside, meet some
people, go to nature, get your head clear…
Yes, just like that!
26
That is the only way you can get enough distraction to relax your
mind, and forget for a moment about work, projects, stress,
computer and other energy sucking activity, and get finally what
you really need, and that is:
"Recharging your batteries"
And don’t come back till you feel that you are full with energy,
motivation, and the thirst to create more ground breaking stuff.
Just so you know, I've seen lots of people "get burned" because
they didn’t know when to take a break, and that damages their life,
their clients' projects, and some of them got fired, not so nice ha…
Well, how do you know when to do it? Obviously before you get
sick of doing 3D, then it’s too late! If you feel stuck, lost, idea-less
and you don’t know how to go on, make a pause, step outside,
breathe some fresh air! And don’t come back till you want to.
"Every time I feel that I’m losing it, and getting tired of doing this, I
try to find ways with places where I get filled again."
27
Chapter #6 – Character
In this chapter I’m going to share some theoretical issues that most
people are missing. By the way, I’m wearing a jacket as I’m writing
this article, and that’s for a reason, cos’ today’s chapter is all going
to be about "The package".
How to improve your character in order to succeed in the 3D
visualization business.
If you follow these fundamental rules your chances of bringing that
project home, or getting another potential client, is much higher
than you could ever imagine! So what are these principles that I’m
talking about:
1. The Package: One of the most important aspects of achieving
the goals in your life is your look! As you already know you, have to
"look good" in order to make that first impression to become
extremely successful. And what I mean by that is:
Every person has an "Association Image" running in their head, as
someone pronounces your name, and in most cases, this
"Association Image" will be attached to that first moment that you
have met that person. Those very first 7 seconds of the first
impression, are most likely to stick in our heads, in order to refer
our mind again to that particular person.
28
Of course if we are talking about a very close person, you might get
other "Association Images", that refer to the sweet moments of
your life, and other positive or negative experiences attached to
that particular moment, or moments that were spent with that
person. However, if we take the example of a business or client
for example, you probably get only one image, and that most likely
will be that memory from your first meeting.
OK, now that you are aware of that, you can not neglect your look
any more, and you can not afford to let this project slip away,
just because of your clumsy or too arty a look. I know that in
today’s world, looking like a "Bum" has become a phenomenal
behaviour among celebrities, and some people try it out as an
everyday look, but believe me, business has got less to do with the
"Bum" look than wearing a "Jacket"!
And we all know what a "Jacket" symbolizes: seriousness,
confidence, wealth, in other words a "Successful Businessman". Yes,
that’s how we remember them, if he is wearing a jacket he must be
very successful person!
Why?
Because he can not allow to himself to look unsuccessful! This will
damage his reputation and might even lower his authority among
his business clients, in other words…
"You get less respect if you don’t know how to dress"
So make sure that you give that first impression of a very serious
person, that people can count on and do business with. The
package includes: a nice jacket, good hair cut, done nails, strong
perfume that goes on shaved face!
2. Communication touch down: By meeting people and making
different business appointment, I’ve noticed that most of the time,
when an employee or a freelancer looking for a job or a project,
he/she concentrate on themselves, on what they’ve done, what
they’ve achieved in their life…
I’m sorry, but how is this going to help me to solve my
problem?
Exactly!
While meeting with a client, concentrate on his needs, on what you
can do for him, of course if he is asking about your background, you
29
can shortly answer him, learn to say all relevant information about
you in 30 seconds. For example:
"My name is Alexander Vasiliuk, I’m the Associate engineer for
Interactive Communication, professional 3D Artist and a CEO of VRayART company. During the last 7 years working in the industry,
I’ve accomplished over 1000 successful projects, which have
allowed me to become an author, speaker, seminar leader, and a
personal trainer for 3D architectural visualizations".
And that’s not even 25 seconds! Just to make it clear, most of the
time the client doesn't want to know more than that, just include
your education, professional record, and your goals.
Let him speak, see if he is excited, or if he is calm. See if he is
talking fast or slow, and try to catch up with his temper, if you’ll be
able to measure his conversation speed, and answer in the same
way (temper), it will be much easier from him to understand you!
And of course it will increase your chances to work together in the
future.
But if he is talking slow, and you are all excited and talk fast, and
he tries to discuss only one solution, and you giving ten different
options, on what might not even work, you are definitely missing
the "communication touch down" point.
So make sure you are not too excited when it comes to business
communication, learn to control yourself, not the conversation, cos’
in most such cases, the "Boss" is the one who should control it! Not
you.
3. Fail your way to the TOP: Don’t be afraid to fail, but also don’t
do it in purpose, now that you aware of "How to look?" and "How to
talk?", use that knowledge to analyse your failures and improve
yourself each time you fail! And take it with a smile, cos’ the more
you fail, the more you learn to avoid making that same mistake
again, and it might help you in the future when you do become a
PRO 3D Artist.
As they say, "The smart learn from their own mistakes, but the
clever ones learn from other people's mistakes", so I want you to be
clever one this one, and learn from my experience, and from what I
did wrong. But if I hadn't made those mistakes, and hadn't
improved my self each time, I wouldn’t probably be where I’m now!
30
So don’t be in a hurry to make your own mistakes, and learn from
them, if you didn’t succeed at a meeting, or even if you failed to
accomplish a project on time, or perhaps the client wasn’t satisfied.
You just sit down, take some notes and try to figure out what went
wrong where. But hesitating in taking that step, or skip taking that
project, will never bring you the answer! So in my opinion it is much
better to "Make a mistake and regard it, rather than regret for not
making it!"
If you believe in yourself, you will do it! Our life is made from
problems and their solutions.
"Take it or leave it" Ha! I think you have no other options.
"Eat them or be eaten alive", I mean the problems, or they get
you…
OK, OK, enough with metaphoric language, I think you got the point
already!
Go get them "Tiger"!
4. Change your mind, change your body, change your life:
Oh, this one is a beauty, I can guarantee you that at least 80% of
this paragraph you will not even consider as a way of becoming a
PRO 3D Artist, in other words a really successful one!
Most of the people do not consider these simple things that make
our day, a good day.
"Happiness" is one of the main cores to attract positive energy,
and along with that, a bunch of positive people. You might never
know how this positive thinking and feeling makes a tremendous
impact on our everyday life, and our future income. Well believe it
or not, but nobody wants to be around negative people. People that
are yapping all the time, people that never satisfied with their life or
the results that they getting…I think you know what I’m talking
about.
This is the first thing you need to do in order to get yourself to the
right positive balance, do it for one month and you will see how
your life changes dramatically!
1. Avoid communication with negative people! They will only
influence you negatively . Negative energy is a very sticky
behaviour, as well as positive, so if you get enough positive
31
people around you, you will attract more positive energy. But,
most of the time, positive people come together with that
positive activity, that they do everyday, and number one in
that activity list, is avoiding negative stuff. Yes, simple as
that, lets just break it down, so it will be easy for you to catch
up.
2. Don’t watch news before you go to bed! I even don’t have a
TV in my house, I can catch up with "What’s going on in the
world" during my breakfast. So make it as a rule: "It is
absolutely forbidden to watch the news before going to sleep".
Remember what your parents told you when you where a kid,
about watching horror films at night, well this is exactly the
same thing. All that negative information being processed in
your brain while we sleep, and afterwards it influences us the
next day. Just think of these days, when you get up, and you
didn’t sleep well, and you say "Oh man, the day is ruined
again"… Yes, avoid that bad sleeping, that’s how.
3. Instead, write on a piece of paper, all the good things that
happened to you during the day, and all the goals that you
want to accomplish, be thankful for what you have in your
life, APPRECIATION! That’s right, before you go to bed, it’s
the best time for your "Appreciation self talk", learn to love
your life, and then you smile while you are asleep. If you have
other methods of getting in positive mood, like meditation, or
praying, go ahead, keep on doing it as long as you are being
thankful and cherish yourself, your surroundings, and the rest
of the world. In addition to that, exercise, write down things
that you want to happen to you, but write them as if the have
already happened, this is how you "program your future" and
help this desire to become reality. Start doing it, and you
won't even notice, how soon your wishes become your life.
4. Exercise, at least 3 times per week, for at least 30 minutes!
I’m exercising 6 times per week, every evening. I’ve started
from walking around my hood, after 2 weeks I’ve started
running, and after a month I’ve began to practice marshal
arts. O Yea! That hooked me up, the feeling of being "ALIVE!"
Simple explanation for that one: "Your happy hormones are
Serotonin, which is produced during the sports activity and
Melatonin, which is produced at night. If you are happy during
the day and sleep soundly at night, then your happy
hormones are working fine."
32
But if you are not doing any exercises, and filling your brain
with negative information before getting in to bed, these
hormones of happiness are not being produced, and you
simply feel depressed, weak and unwilling to do better in your
life, in other words "ZERO Motivation". So make sure to
exercise in order to get your brain to produce "Serotonin" "Hormones of Happiness". Here is a free work out program
http://www.mensworkoutguide.com/ and here is one for
women http://www.womensworkoutguide.com/, you can also
search the internet, YouTube for example, and find lots of
other free training programs.
Don’t just sit there, go ahead and do it! Make a list, a
schedule, that every day, well at least 3 times per week, you
do a little exercise, for at least 30 minutes long. Of course if
you never took any training program, or had a long pause,
don’t jump in to intensive training, do it like me! Start walking
around the hood, and after 2 weeks increase that tension and
start jogging, after you do that, find a good program and stick
to it, till you move to the next one. The main thing to
understand here: "If you want to feel good, if you want to
have a good functional brain and eventually BE HAPPY, you
need to exercise".
5. Don’t put junk in your mouth: Ouch! Got you on that one,
didn’t I? We all love junk food, but it doesn’t mean that we
need to eat it every day. If you can’t live without McDonald's,
or Pizza Hut, that’s fine. Make a day when you go out to eat
that junk, but it has to be one day, and it has to be one meal,
call it a "Cheat Meal".
However I encourage you to eat healthy, like "BIO Food".
Avoid Cholesterol, and "NO Animal FAT!" Yes, I know, you
might say, "But I love that fat around my steak", or give me
another excuse like, "I have no other option", "I can’t cook or
take food with me to my working place", or "I have no
possibility to warm my food at work", "I need to eat and
except junk food I have no other option".
Well, then that really sucks, but at least try to make your best
in taking some avocado with you, it’s a great source for
healthy fat, oil that exist in avocado is really what your body
needs, and as soon as you consuming that healthy fat, your
body will absorb less fat from that junk food.
Oh, and another great source, is a "OMEGA 3", fish oil in
capsules, you can get them in every pharmacy store, they are
really great for your brain and body functionality.
33
Oh and you might take a look at the book "Don’t eat this, eat
that", it’s exactly about this junk food menu, so it basically
tells you what you can eat in fast food restaurant, and what
you really shouldn’t.
But I really suggest you to eat, fruits, vegetables, eggs, nuts,
and all BIO products that you might find.
And the last and final thing, 80% of our population is
dehydrated, so drink 1.5 litter of water every day, I drink at
least 2, if you can catch up with me, do what you can in order
to fill yourself with enough amount of fluids, every day!
Oh, yea, almost forgot, try to take some natural vitamins, I
take multi-vitamin, all in one, keeps me healthy all year long!
So you see it’s not that complicated…
Do it for one month, and you’ll be amazed to see how simple that
was, and you will be feeling good, fresh, full with energy and
happiness, willing to conquer the world!
Sounds great doesn’t it?
Yeah I’ve been through this and I always wonder how could I live
my life , and how could I damage my body and brain so much.
Since then I’ve lost weight, got really nice people around me, and I
wake up every day with a smile on my face!
So you see, I’ve changed my mind, by changing my body, by losing
my bad habits, like coffee, cigarettes, junk food, and I started
playing sports, so basically by changing the present I’ve improved
my future.
I think everybody can do it, and lots of people are doing it, most of
my friends now, so I guess all this does exist, but people do not
reach that because of their old bad habits… Yea, yea.. I’m talking
about, junk food, cigarettes, coffee, no exercise, bad sleep, bad
energy, and of course less success in business / career.
So if your'e ready to experience that "Good Life", it’s all up to you,
how badly you want it, I gave you my tips and shared with you my
lifetime experiences, now it is your chance to take them, implement
them and rule the field you choose to master!
Remember, the power is in your hands, and if you really, no I mean
REALLY! want to do it RIGHT, Do it like a PRO!
34
Chapter #7 – How to avoid
unpleasant working situations
Hey, I hope you did a little thinking, regarding those last words in
the previous chapter. Cos’ for this one you’ll need a lot of positive
energy, and you already know how to get it!
So let’s talk about some useful tips on "World Wide Working
Standards", things that you might want to clarify with your client
before you dive into the project. These are tips that I’ve gathered
over the years by working in Europe, Russia and the Middle East, so
you might want take a look at them first, because it could save you
some money and prevent you from getting into unpleasant working
situations.
Those rules basically apply for all the freelancers out there, but the
regular workers should also know these fundamental principles!
1. Contract: this is the first thing that you might want to start with,
right after you get the project requirements from your client, you
plan your work in order to make a decent proposal. Don’t start
working before you clarify working conditions, and what do I mean
by that is:
Both sides, you and your client have to be aware of all the
conditions, terms of use, delivering times, payment conditions, and
everything that might show up during the project that could delay
35
or interrupt your working process and eventually might turn against
you, so it seemed like "it was your fault".
The best thing to do, in order to protect yourself from a variety of
unpleasant situations, is of course, to write a "Contract", clarify all
the above written as a statement, and make both sides sign it, so if,
and only if, something doesn't go as planned - you can defend
yourself with this paper.
Clients / Bosses / Project managers / Team leaders… and so on, got
their task, to get from you a "Work well done", in a short time, and
less money. Well this is what they get paid for, to make sure that
the project will come out at it best, as economically as possible and
as soon as possible.
So you have to understand that, and by the way that is OK, cos’ if
you were in their place you would do the same.
Co-operation is the key to make this happen and if both sides are
cooperative, both will be happy.
Let’s just break it down in to small topics, all the things that we
might miss during the creations of "Project Proposal" – "Working
contract".
Conditions: on what conditions do you work, what you can and
what you must not do, where should you apply your creativity or
your professional skills.
Who is the project manager? Who is responsible for delivering the
necessary working materials on time, because if they are delayed,
the whole process will be too.
In this section you should clarify, "What will you deliver?". This
seems like an easy one, but I’ve find that most clients have a
different idea of what they are paying for.
For example, the most common question occurs on the final stage,
when you get the payment and you need to deliver the
visualization, several times I was asked to deliver the whole 3D
scene, with all its components - 3D models, such as trees, cars,
furniture, etc.
Well you’ve paid for the models but the client paid for visualization /
special design. Most of the time the prepared models are not part of
the deal. You must make this very clear, before you start to work
and sign the proposal, cos’ the project budget might not cover that
part. If the client wants to have the models, you just simply add it
36
to the proposal as "Additional Materials", if there is no budget for
that, you just take the models out, and deliver the scene without
them.
Terms of use: this basically is the question of confidentiality and
the project's possible use. Where can you show this project? Your
website? Social networks? Forums?
"Giving credits" - what should you write when showing it? Most of
the big commercial projects are classified regarding the industry
competition, however, private projects are mostly free for
commercial use, so just be aware of that you might never be able to
put this particular project in your show case.
Delivery times: after getting work materials and project
requirements, you should be able to create a working plan, or a sort
of a time line, where you clarify, what and when you will deliver?
What should be approved in exact dates? If the project is urgent,
every exception in the schedule will cause delay in delivering times.
Here you must also clarify when you are getting all the "Approvals"
and other "Helping materials". Delays might occur from the clients'
side and he should not blame you for that. So simply write these
dates down and make sure that the client understands their
importance.
Payment conditions: This is the painful part. Ahem, that’s right,
everybody loves to get their job well done, but nobody loves to pay
good money for that. So in order to prevent, unpleasant situations,
make some rules or statements for getting your "Safety Payment".
Working on-line or distant, while making freelance projects, has a
whole different attitude for getting paid, for example, I take 50%
before and 50% after the job was done, and I clarify that I will not
deliver the final product till I get the whole sum. It’s a healthy way
to work as a freelancer on "Online projects".
If someone's got a problem with that, you simply say "This is our
policy and we don’t work any other way". Everything might go
wrong, the client may go broke, get sick or even vanish from this
world (Good Lord! hope that doesn't happen to anybody), I’m just
saying that anything can happen, also the client could find someone
3 or 4 times cheaper than you, and may switch, however this
should not be your concern, and you should not "Run" after your
money! That’s why my suggestion to you is, set exact days for
getting your payment, if it’s a long term project, make several
payment days, after each part, but do not start working, investing
your time without backing it up.
37
The last "Tip" for protecting your work, is to "Water Mark everything
you do", your name should be on all your out going materials, all
the previews, sketches, developments, designs all the work that
was made by you, or your working team.
"Water mark": your Logo with contact details, should not interfere
seriously with the "main character" which is the primary content of
what you’re showing, so make it with 20% opacity and put it in the
corner of your image.
It saved me several times, when people were trying to steal my
projects and represent them as their own.
I think I’m done here, if you follow these simple rules your work
should be much better organized, so you could concentrate on
creativity and not on the jockey problem solving.
Remember to stay professional!
38
Chapter #8 – How to get a JOB as
3D Artist
I think I’m really going to enjoy writing this chapter, it will be all
about the new media and the best way of using it! I have tested
those principles in my business, and I have to say it works!
So it doesn’t matter if you are a freelancer or a regular employee,
eventually you are a human being, well at least I hope so..heh just
kidding. What I’m trying to say, is that you need to buy things in
order to exist, and for that purpose you need money!
Well Duh! Get to the point already!
OK, so you all get it, getting paid or earning a job is the subject, so
all freelancers that seeking new project or fresh students that have
just finished their studies or a training program, or just those who
want to increase their monthly income, get around and listen
carefully, take some notes if you need to…
Unfortunately not every teacher or school direct their graduates in
getting a job in the industry, or even give simple tasks on
"What to do next?"
39
Well here are the simple rules and a list of things that you should
obtain in order to have that privilege. All of these are going to
increase your chances and give you an advantage upon others, the
ones who are exactly like you seeking that J.O.B. thing.
First of all you need to decide on your "Label name":
How you want to label yourself in the industry?
Is it going to be your name, your nickname, your firm name?
Well anyway this "label" should be something that's easy to
remember, cos’ you gonna stick with it at least for the next year or
two. If you’re not sure, don’t get too stressed about it, you probably
have a few "labels" or projects in your life while working on a
professional level, so just pick something that you feel good about
and start promoting it as a "label".
OK Great! But How?
This is how! let me give you a good example of labelling yourself.
My friend Stanislav labels him self as: "Stanislav Orekhov Studio".
In every forum posting, conversation, presentation, website,
invoice, email signature, everywhere he can he sticks his name on,
and the good thing that his "firm name" is his personal name as
well. He has been doing it for the last 8 years now, so basically that
name has grown with him world wide, plus he has made awesome
3D visualizations and posted them on the internet.
So you see he did everything that people could remember him with,
he had built good reputation among 3D Architectural Visualization
industry and social communities. That’s a good example of labelling
yourself, and promoting your name as your company.
OK Great, so you get the idea, I’m not going to repeat that labelling
stuff again, it just was very important for me to make that point
clear enough for your understanding. So after deciding on a label
and designing your logo, you have got to do couple of things in
order to promote it well, and put THIS LABEL NAME on them:
1. Business card: Yes that’s right, the good old-fashioned business
card. You're probably thinking now, with all that digital media and
virtual communication stuff, who needs a business card in our
days… well I just got some news for you, a card can work even after
10 years! So put some thinking into creating your card, and put
your contact details, website, and social media like Facebook,
Twitter and LinkedIn (will talk about those just in a second) on it.
40
2. Website: This will be your face on the internet, so make sure to
do a good design, something that represents what you do, your
style, you can check some examples of web site templates.
I don’t need templates, I can do websites with my eyes
closed!
Sure, but there's one important note: if you're thinking of making a
Flash website, sorry, NO GO!
Why?
Well for Google, Flash is like a black hole, your website will not be
categorized, scanned or promoted by Google.
I’m a 3D Artist! I don’t need Google!
OK now seriously, why do we all need Google? Well simply because
you might want that the people will find you, in order to cooperate
with you, this is an essential step in your carrier development as 3D
artist. So just remember making a website communicable with
Google (and that means NO Flash sites). Google will provide you
leads, traffic and will categorize you among 3D community, so that
you’ll be very happy to know that you’re not alone.
You can make a Flash header, a banner, but I suggest you to avoid
Flash websites completely and instead to use JOOMLA or WordPress
that provide extensions, and free cool templates that you might
modify as you wish.
3. CV/Resume: You all probably know what this is, and to tell you
the truth I’ve seen lots of them, and some were even very
impressive with Pixar and Dreamworks backgrounds, but you know
what was the common thing about them, they where simple DOC or
PDF files, with very little design, clear and readable text, easy to
follow or print. So keep that in mind while creating one, and don’t
mix it with your portfolio! That we are about to discuss in a
moment.
4. Portfolio/Demo Reel: I’ve put these two together, cos’ the
principles for creating them are the same, the only difference is that
a portfolio is made of static images of 3D visualizations that you can
print or put onto your web site while a Demo Reel is a moving
sequence, a short clip that represents the best capabilities of your
skills. Anyway, how to create it? And what should be in it?
Well the very first thing that you need to do, is to target your
industry, but you need to know that you are good enough for
creating a honourable demo reel or portfolio, but, if you are an
41
architect and you want to be an animator, well you need to do some
animation studies in order to be competitive on the market,
otherwise it will be just a waste of time.
My suggestion is, concentrate on what you can do best at this
moment, and create a winning show reel.
Include the most recent works of yours that represent the best
things/skills that you can create, don’t put something that you
aren’t good at, for example making a website portfolio with static
images or a slide show will look much better than making a clip with
moving images, cos’ it just looks cheap and shows that your
animation or editing skills end up in moving pictures left and right
with some sound track from a movie.
Don’t put other peoples' work in your reel, your reel should include
your stuff only, and if there was a team work, specify who did what,
and put it at the end or at the middle, but don’t start from it.
Why?
Because it’s simply not yours, and you want to show what you can
do, and not what your friends can do, directors or team leader know
that, and they do not like much seeing stuff thats not relevant to
you. Eventually they are hiring you, not your friends.
Of course if you are promoting your firm/studio, and you got a team
that you working with, and you need to promote that team, go
ahead! Make that happen! Create the best show reel in the industry,
just don’t forget to mention names and positions and who did what.
Put your "Best Work-First!", at the very beginning not towards the
end. A common mistake, just so you know that, most managers or
directors that observe your work do not have much time, so mostly
they do not reach to see the end. So give your best right in the
beginning.
Remember! The most critical moments of your reel or show case, is
the first 30 seconds, most of them do not get even that time of
watching. So keep that in mind while planning/creating your reel,
start REALLY STRONG! So that the observer says WOW!
That’s the response you want to get, this is the key word! If 90% of
people saying "WOW" after seeing it, or after 30 seconds of, then
you are in the right direction.
Keep it short, don’t bore people to death, they could very well just
turn it off, or switch to someone next in the list. So follow the
rhythm, and stay dynamic. Good Luck!
42
5. Social networks: OK, great after creating your reel / portfolio
you need to show it, you need to get as much exposure as you can
get, here are some handy tips with a wide variety of massive
communication possibilities. This will help you to draw tonnes of
attention, and good traffic to your website, yes I’m talking about
social networking:

YouTube: we all know the world wide exposure that YouTube
provides to it’s users, but my suggestion use TubeMogul in
order to upload your movies to more than 20 places in one
upload, such as vimeo, zippy, BlipTV, veoh etc. So with one
action you will automatically upload your movie in to different
video-viewing media sites. Don’t forget to provide a link to
your website, so cross link it, and it will provide traffic back to
your website. Pretty sneaky ha?

Facebook: great social communication source! Here you
need to be careful not to mix your private life with
professional. Some people live their private life as a
professional, I guess then it’s fine. Just don’t put you drunk
picture in your profile, so that all your clients will see, how
serious you are!
In that case you can create a "Page" / "Group" / "Business
profile" and promote it with your works, reels, articles,
researches, program tests, seminars and other professional or
educational information.
By the way another great feature by Facebook is a "Like"
button you can create it here
http://developers.facebook.com/docs/reference/plugins/like
and put it in your web site, under your images or articles, that
way your work will be very easy to share! Check out my Blog,
you will find "Like" buttons under every post. www.VRayguide.com

Twitter: it is very advisable to have a Twitter profile, and
don't forget to configure it properly! You can also connect it to
your Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn profile so it will
automatically update all in one. Be sure to post the really
useful information about you or your work, people will like it
and re-tweet it, you might never know where your tweet will
end, and who might see it.

LinkedIn: very professional social working platform, here
you can get lots of good contacts, meet professional co’
workers for your future projects. Upload your portfolio
images, reels, create a good working profile with CV. That
43
way it will be easier to find all necessary information, and
understand how it is possible to work with you. I would really
suggest you to invest some time in creating a good profile in
LinkedIn, and use all the possible options that this platform
offers.

Forums: Public forums are the great source of getting
attention among our community. Good posts with detailed
information about your creations will attract professionals that
could collaborate with you in the near future. Just don’t forget
to put links to your site or blog at the signature. I got lots of
potential clients from being active in public forums, so could
you!
here is a list where you can post your 3D works:
http://forums.cgsociety.org/
http://www.evermotion.org/
http://forum.cgarena.com/
http://forums.3dtotal.com/
XING: A very popular business network platform, mostly in
Europe. Same principles as LinkedIn, you might want to check
it out. In Germany, this platform is the most used one, so if
you are seeking for some project or you want to move living
and working in Germany, you must have their profile.
https://www.xing.com
Architecture Linked: An architecture social network, it’s
pretty new and still in beta testing, but I think it will spread
really fast, I got to make really fast contacts there, with
architects all over the world. So you might want check it out
as well. www.architecturelinked.com
All right! These are the main ones, of course there is more, but
these get the most activity in today’s community.
Last advice on that one, is to find your local forums, in your local
countries, on your local language, and be active there, as from my
experience most of the firms prefer to work with freelancers that
are not so far way.
I think this is it, go check those places where you can publish your
work and earn a good reputation in your community.
44
I’ve started from writing good critique, and users could really
implement what I was saying, so that’s how people began noticing
me and my work. So don’t be lazy, make good profiles and start
writing and giving feedbacks, good or bad, it doesn’t matter as long
as you improve yourself. Stay polite and give respect and
appreciation to others work, you’ll be good to remember.
Just remember, that on the internet you might never know where
your comment or post ended up, or who might see it, may be it’s
your next client! So make sure to do it Right! like a PRO!
Warning! Please consider one more point!
This social networking thing is very addictive and time-consuming!
So if you must do some project, disconnect from it and concentrate
on your work! More than once I’ve found my self spending hours on
social networks and not getting my job done.
So be aware of the dangers, don’t let it damage your income!
45
Chapter #9 - Know your Resources
OK, now that we've got some really nice theoretical and practical
information, it’s time to get our hands on a "Real Deal" stuff! Let
me share with you some useful link for "Free Working Resources"
that every PRO 3D Artist must have!
As you all know already, heaving a library of high quality models,
textures, HDRI maps, in other words "Working Resources", is a very
valuable thing, but what is a much more valuable time saver, is…
To know what is where, and be able to grab every particular model
or texture in a seconds, without wasting time on searching it.
By the way, that is the most common mistake, having a large
library but not knowing what’s in there, and then spending hours in
finding that thing that you needed. That’s a good case, sometimes
you might even not find it, and again you turn to internet in order
to get it.
So here are some useful links that might help you to find what you
need, in order to build your library. These resources are from my
private collection, that I’ve gathered for the past 8 years:
"All in One" Resources – These are the number one world wide,
the largest resources of all, they contain models, textures, HDRI
maps…etc. All you need in order to create perfect 3D visualizations,
and of course they are for FREE!
46
http://www.evermotion.org/vbulletin/forumdisplay.php?f=341 –
Evermotion's "Free Stuff" section, most of them made with V-Ray.
http://www.turbosquid.com/ – One of the biggest 3D resources,
just type in "Free Model" and see the results. For example if you are
looking for a chair, just type in "free chair", and press the search
button.
http://www.mrcad.com/ - Really big portal for free downloads.
These guys have got so much stuff in there, such as, models,
textures, interviews, tutorials, demo reels and clips, plug ins,
animations… And the list goes on. You can spend hours digging that
site.
http://www.doschdesign.com/samples.php – Free section from
DOSCH DESIGN,3D Models, Textures, HDRI maps, Photoshop
people, check this from time to time, they're most likely to add
some cool stuff for downloads.
Free Models:
http://loadproject.blogspot.com/ – Designer Furniture, really nice
source for exclusive interior designs. These fellows are really
generous.
http://www.flyingarchitecture.com/ – Large library for any kind of
models, from teeth to cars and apples, furniture and plains.
http://3dats.com/3D_Share/?page=1& – Free trees and vegetation
for download, made with ONYX Tree Plugin, from 3DATS.
Free V-Ray Materials:
http://www.V-Ray-materials.de/ – The number one resource for
Free V-Ray materials. Here you can get any V-Ray material you
want, just type what you are looking for. Don’t forget to check out
the commercial usage, some of them require confirmation.
http://www.immi.hu/free_textures.php?lng=en – Free V-Ray
materials for download from IMMI, Hungarian Multimedia Institute.
Free Textures:
http://www.cgtextures.com/ – The number one resource for free
textures of all kinds, even seamless, check them out, I use them
consistently to create my stuff.
47
http://perspectives.trespa.com/naturals/us/index.html – High Res.
Textures free for download. Huge resolution of wood textures.
http://www.illoft.com/download_textiles_materials.php?lang=en –
Free collection of wall texture and wallpapers in color variety.
Free IES Lights:
http://www.photometricviewer.com/ – IES viewer, to view your IES
light structure shape.
1589835-nice – Really nice IES, the most used by 3D Artist, and
that’s for a reason!
BestIES vol.1 – Nice selection of IES colored lights, free download.
http://lithonia.com/Photometrics.aspx – Huge library of IES and
other technical photometric data.
Download Free IES Lights – great collection of different IES lights
for free download. Check other resources links on your right.
48
Free References & Catalogs:
http://www.ligne-roset.com/ -great modern design furniture, you
can order their catalog for free.
http://www.e-interiors.net/ – Resources for great references, free
catalogs, and 2D with 3D files for free download. Check out the
catalog section, you can order catalogs from 8 different companies.
http://www.rolfbenz.com/ – great German design furniture, here as
well, catalog available for free.
http://www.rochebobois.com/ – Unfortunately these 3 amazing
French catalogues are 15 Euro per order, but I’ve ordered them,
and believe me they're worth it, they are my favourite!
These are the most useful links, so I’m giving you only practical
information here, I didn’t want to overload this page with useful
stuff, so I took only what is very high qualified, and already in VRay. I have more that 100 links of other 3D resources, some of
them just 3Ds files, some of them only DWG drawings or reference
images. If you like to have them, just write a comment on my blog
and I’ll be happy share them with you.
Be sure to use only what you need! And know what is where.
Know your Resources!
49
50
Chapter # 10 – Making of NUBA COR
Here I want to show you the
way I've created this scene,
it was made with 3Dsmax
2011 & V-Ray SP5.
You can repeat these
principles while creating your
project, if it's working for me,
it should work for you as
well!
Ok, enough chit chat, let’s get down to business, and start exploring
some useful tips & tricks that I’ve used to create this project.
Introduction: One day I went thought some internet images, and
reached this particular photo, that was made by COR company. I’ve
stared for about 5 minutes, speechless, simply amazed by the
lighting presence in that image. I think I’ve felt in love from the first
moment I saw it, right then I knew, I've got to create it in 3D. So I
went though the COR website to check for some references, and
was surprised to discover a free ordering option for their magazine.
Without a second thought, I clicked the button and ordered it. In
the next few days COR magazine arrived. I was so happy to find
that lovely image in there, and then I knew, I had all it needs in
order to stop wasting time, and get my self busy. I took some more
close up pictures with my camera, in order to have high quality
reference images, for my next creation.
So I knew that I need to
create this big painting, and
the lamp with the Chinese
girl, and the small miniature
vases. I just took a big
closeup of the sofa just to
understand the materials'
structure although I had a
magazine, I wanted to zoom
in just a little bit more, in order to really get a clear understanding
of what was going on there.
Oh, by the way, lots of people have asked me, “How did I know that
the picture of the Japanese girl was a “Light Box” eventually?”
Simple as it could be, it’s a really bright box, and it has a depth of
51
at least 10 cm, and it's got a cable attached to it. So what could it
be inside it except a lamp? Simple logic, I think.
Modeling: I went trough my old working files, and I’ve found a
really old architecture plan, that was so basic, just one room in
classic style. Perfect! I knew that today was my day, and I got lucky
in finding exactly what I needed. I imported it as it is.
Although it came as one piece, and I could have divided it in
AutoCAD to 5 pieces, LEFT, RIGHT, FRONT, BACK, TOP. But I’ve
decided to cut it all in 3DsMax. I know that you might think, that it’s
a waste of time, and I should think of doing it in a sketch program,
but, as you get lucky once, a double stroke of luck in that day was
probably too much. I had reinstalled my operating system, and
what I had installed in that particular moment, was only 3DsMax
and VRay. OK, I accepted the challenges, and took it easy.
Then, I attached all the pieces in to one object (the plan by the way
was made from small different pieces, and all were in different
layers) so in order to work clean, I had to make one spline object
from that messy plan, put it in one layer (PLAN), delete all
unnecessary ones, and start detaching it into 5 different elements
that could fit in every view
52
port.
So as was mentioned before, 5 view ports, LEFT, RIGHT, FRONT,
BACK, TOP, everyone of them got his particular plan. As you see I’ve
rotated them, and positioned each one of them by using the TOP
view, because only the TOP view could provide me the correct
indication for positioning those parts. That’s how I knew which one
goes where. The last thing was to give them a proper color, so it
would be easy to identify.
I’ve used splines with a snap tool option in order to remodel the
walls, and after that to extrude them in to walls (later on spline +
snap tool option will be demonstrated).
53
You might ask “Why simply not extrude from plan ?” Well one of the
reasons that I like to delete plans at the final rendering stage: I had
experienced so much trouble during the render, because of leaving
the plains, modeling from them, so I never take the chances again.
It is really “Dumb”, I know, but from 8 years of experience working
in the industry, I’ve decided not to take any chances again.
Note: If you are experiencing bug renders like, weird light dots that
covering like all your scene, looking like “Disco lights”, or stuff that
looks like “Snow”, small little dots, and you really did all possible
operations to removing them, but they simply are here to stay…well
thats probably it. So by collapsing the whole scene, converting it
into editable mesh, opening a new scene and importing all into it,
will not solve the “Disco Lights” problem. You should probably know
this bug causing this particular plan, and the reason for it, I
assume, its the connection “link” to the original plan. So find this
object and delete it from your scene. Use the spline + snap tool
option in order to remodel and extrude it again. Bottom line, don’t
extrude from plains, use them only for quick modeling with snap
tool.”
Next I’ve modeled the ceiling and the floor, positioned it at the
height of 310 cm, I really wanted to have a wide open space with
lots of freedom for light to travel. I’m kinda a fan of bright rooms,
big windows. I mean I’m not claustrophobic, even if it sounds like
I’m one, but I guess I’m just a bit minimalistic in my opinion, and I
don’t like stuff interrupting my way while I’m moving around. So
high ceiling was the choice of COR and it was definitely mine as
well.
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After positioning the additional walls for the windows, (which by the
way where also modelled with the spline + snap tool option, in
order to avoid holes between them), I’ve started modeling windows
by using, “Box modeling” technique.
Of course, the window glass was made in the separate layers. The
reason for that is: by the time you reach final rendering stage, it is
very comfortable to render “Ambient Occlusion” pass, and hiding all
the glass element by one mouse click. Although new VRay now has
this AO pass for glass built into the render elements, I still find it
really handy to use free Lele’s plug-in for rendering AO the old way.
(This method will be shown later on rendering stage).
This is a good time to start applying materials to the objects.
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You don’t want to model it all at once without heaving any textures
applied. The reason is that, when I model things like windows,
doors, and their entry frames, I duplicate and modify those objects.
There is no reason to model the same object twice, and I think you
will totally agree with me on that one.
Doors and curtains were inserted from my private library. There
was no reason for modeling them, because they where just not part
of the scene, I mean I could not see them on the reference image,
but I’ve just inserted them in case there are any reflections on the
glass or vases, and I thought that perhaps it could be fun to render
some additional angles of the room.
Then I moved to modeling the NUBA.
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I did have the exact dimensions, found them in the technical data
PDF on the COR website. I’ve used “Poly modeling” here, and
adjusted manually all the couch folds (imperfect segments), that
naturally occurred with the time, after using the couch for a while.
Anyway I never saw perfect flat couches, even when they are
coming out from the factory - there always will be pleats on tension
places.
As you see here all the imperfections where made manually by
moving vertexes on soft selection mode.
The NUBA was created and was ready to be inserted into the scene.
Lighting: Now was the best time for starting to test some lighting
variations.
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Even though the scene was not complete, detailed attention could
wait. By positioning VRayLights on portal mode at the openings,
VRaySun + VRaySky was created.
Important thing here: while positioning the VRayLight at the
opening, make sure that there is no interaction with the object.
Such a miss could cause light leaks and other different strange light
bugs.
Now was the perfect time for the VRayPhysicalCamera to be
inserted into the scene and some first test renderings to be made.
Don't forget to turn on the “show frame” option, so that you have
safe frames while positioning you camera. Otherwise you will just
waste your time by doing that, and be surprised to see a different
frame when activating it later on.
By using really low rendering settings with override material option,
and by setting gamma to 2.2 in color mapping, I was able to
execute some fast rendering results.
Eventually, after running some tests for the suns' position and the
scene illumination, I was satisfied with the lighting results.
Although, the suns shadows were not placed exactly like in the
photo, it made me comfortable with the global atmosphere that was
present in the scene.
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Detail Modeling & Texturing: Now I could proceed to the really
detailed modeling of all the small aspects of the scene.
This part took most of my time, cos’ I couldn’t be satisfied by doing
things OK, I wanted to make them look perfect. Just like in the
photo.
So for the cornice, I’ve used loft, simply by creating a spline that
will go all over the room perimeter, and using another spline for it’s
shape. Vases were created in the same principle, cycle was used for
the “Get Path” option and another spline as “Get shape”. Other
elements where created as “Box modeling”.
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Ceiling was one of the complicated modeling procedure in this
project - I think. Although I could also be doing it with the
“Displacement Map”, but after making some tests, I’ve realized that
it would be better to make it as a model.
I’ve made this designation for a couple of reasons. First one was,
that I wanted to have better control on it’s dimensions, so I could
move it and modify it by seeing exactly what I’m doing. With
“Displacement Map”, sometimes very hard to get the exact
centimeter of the desirable displace.
Second reason was that, I knew exactly how I'm going to create it
with splines and modify their extrude value.
So by simply drawing the shape on a piece of paper I could realize
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my exact order of actions. It’s a great quick solution, for many
complicated shapes, that just could be a waste of time for figuring
out by making them directly in 3D.
Last stage on details modelings was the creation of books, and
their texture. I really love those magazines, and I work with them
instantly, so I’ve really enjoyed taking those pictures and later on
applying them to 3D models.
Books modeling was simple “Box modeling”, so there is nothing to
explore really, lets move next stage of this article, one that made
me to go out side for a walk. yep, I’m talking about…
Rendering: Here I knew that, if I wanted a really high quality
images, I needed to wait a while and let the computer do the job.
So without hesitating, I turned on antialiasing, and went on really
high parameters with Image sampler and QMC sampler. This stuff
depends on your hardware, the stronger it is, the higher you can
go! So I will avoid on giving you any exact number suggestions, you
can take a pick on the print screen, but be aware that it might not
be the suitable solution for you.
But if you have an “QuadCore – i7″ technology like me, with 12 GB
of RAM, you can go ahead and blow this render with high values.
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Anyway, after a long 8 hours the render was finally complete, I did
use a bit higher parameters eventually for this particular render,
with value of 3 on “Global samples”, but you should really be careful
with that, cos’ it really doubles, or in my case triples all the samples
that are taken in consideration, and I’m talking about, texture,
light, all that are being sampled 3 timer more than it’s original value
if you put 3 on “Global switches”. So try not to over do it.
As you all can see, I’ve turned on the “Save separate render
channels” on frame buffer, and activated more than 14 passes on
“Render Element” dialog, simply because I’m using almost all of
them in order to have really full control over my image at the post
production stage, and that we are about to explore right now.
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Post Production: My post works always begins from applying the
basic color correction to the rendered image. You just might want to
check the automatic options that Photoshop has got to offer. Stuff
like, auto levels, auto color, auto contrast.
Just duplicate the layer and adjust it’s opacity in order to control the
effect appliance. Regarding passes combination, there is really not
that many options for adding passes one upon the other, most used
one is the overlay. I suggest you just try to experiment with
different mode options, and see what works better for you, because
if I start to explain here about every pass and the way it can be
used, I will end up with a writing a book. But believe me it’s not
that complicated.
For “Ambient Occlusion” I’ve used free “Lele’s”, drag and drop plug-
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in. Really easy to use, and works fine for me, for the last 4 years.
You can get it here, www.scriptspot.com/3ds-max/scripts/vrayambient-occlusion Just increase the camera ISO parameters in
order to get bright enough exposure.
While using it in Photoshop, put it on the “Multiple” mode, adjust
the “Levels” in order to get more accurate density, and add some
color balance to fit the ambience of the scene, and you are good to
go.
I’ve used Photoshop and Motiva Real Camera to get that wicked
look of my images. Motiva is a free software that can be
downloaded from their website www.motivacg.com feel free to
explore it!
The best tip that I can give you on this stage is to practice drawing
light, even making photographs (which is also considered as
drawing with light) might improve your eye for getting the natural
colors and the right exposure with contrast. I really could not
understand, how the greatest 3D artists make such amazing
visualizations, only by using Photoshop or After Effects on their post
production stage. The answer is simple, they have developed their
eye to get those natural colors, there is no secret, no trick. It's
really as simple as that! They practice a lot! and I mean really
nailed it down, to the point that saturated or under-exposed colors
are really popping out for them, and they see it clear as “crystal
water”. All color correction processes come to them naturally,
because they've got enough experience, practice and their eye can
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not get wrong colors any more. They just hit it right each time they
do it. That’s it!
So I’ll leave you with this thought “ON”. Just “practice the light” and
you get there.
This is how the final image looks, you can visit my blog at
www.vrayguide.com and check it out. There some more renders
that were made during this project. I hope you have enjoyed
reading this “Making Of” NUBA – COR project, and I wish it could
help you somehow in becoming a truly amazing, the next Big
Thing!
Post a comment, question or a suggestion, if you think there is
something that was unclear or can be done better.
This was Alex, your VRayGuide. Have a sweet day, and always
remember, if you wan to do it RIGHT! do it like a PRO!
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Chapter #11 - Download NUBA COR
Hey, I think this is what you have been waiting for, NUBA COR 3DsMax V-Ray Scene, free for commercial use!
I’ve created this scene especially for you, so you could check out
the most valuable thing, LIGHTING & RENDERING settings.
However, post production is needed in order to achieve the look in
my final images, but believe me it’s not that far from origin.
One important note, I've turned off the
"Displacement" on "Global switches",
because the sofa material also has
displacement and it just won't render
the close-ups. So turn it on when you
want to re-render the long shots.
Enjoy!
This scene can be downloaded under the “Welcome” tab in our
platform.
Also would like to remind you to check out the LIVE Webinars that
we did in VRay Master class 2011.
Enjoy!
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Hey, Hey, Hey  one year has passed since I’ve released 1st edition
of “Key to 3D Success” SO now is the perfect time to make this
update and share with you some FRESH techniques that can bring
you to even higher level of performance, satisfied clients and the
good life you have always wanted.
In this update we are going to discuss multiple challenges/problems
that many of you are facing or might be facing in the future of
freelancing world.
We are going to explore some professional platforms for working
online; some of these platforms has brought me good co-workers
and established really useful connections.
We’re also going to talk about the “Mind Set -Paradigm”. Something
that I learned from the world’s leading marketers. These techniques
brought them their millions so I think that if you could use at least
20% of those methods you’ll all good to go.
This update is based on the most Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
that I’ve gathered during this year from our students and off course
my own discoveries that were made during “never ending learning
process”, as you know already it’s better to learn from others
mistakes than from your own!
As a bonus you’ll get optimised NUBA scene for fast renderings, this
scene went through bit map images optimization and rendering
settings to allow slower computers take action and get HIGH-END
rendering results.
And off course the special bonus of this update is the VRay Master
Class 2011 LIVE Webinars, over 8 hours of professional training.
Where you’re going to see exactly how to deal with 3D renders and
bring them to photorealistic level.
OK, we all set and ready to begin the journey in to 2nd edition of
“Key to 3D success”.
Sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride!
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Chapter #12 – Exponential vs. Linear
This one was tricky for many of you, therefore I’ve decided to write
chapter plus video explanation about 2 main types color spaces in
VRay, it’s a hard topic but if you dig it, you’ll get it!
So you might ask what is better Exponential or Linear? What should
I use? What if I get better result with Linear? Should I still setup my
Gamma/LUT to 2.2? Do I still need to calibrate my monitor?
Well the answer is simple, work with what can supply you with
better results! It’s really doesn’t matter what do you use, as long as
you get to produce photorealistic images, you’re in the right place.
Now, I know that this is not what you wanted to hear, but it’s true!
Nevertheless there is something that you should setup as your
default statement, and that is gamma 2.2.
Tell you the truth I haven’t seen PRO 3D Artist that do not use
Gamma 2.2 in Arch. Viz. But I’m pretty sure that there will be such
person, simply because awesome 3D renders were made with VRay
10 years ago, and this concept of setting up your system to gamma
2.2 wasn’t exist back in those days. It’s all was in Photoshop,
getting the right colors and look to the image.
So you see it really doesn’t matter as long as you reach the desired
result and get to please your clients.
Hmm..but what’s the real deal here, Exponential or Linear?
Although the exponential method was represented in this eBook,
and NUBA COR project got outstanding results, this is not the real
LWF (Linear Work Flow), well at least it’s not physically correct
when it comes to passes combination.
It supplies good results and makes images look pretty but it’s far
from being in LWF.
You see when we talking about correct LWF, that is when you setup
your system to work linearly (on one line/level) with all your
available technology, and that goes to your:
1. 3Ds Max & VRay
2. Monitor calibration
3. Printer calibration
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This is when you get the exactly same image when you print it or
see it on the monitor, yep, this what LWF is all about.
Now the interesting thing, when it comes to passes combination“render elements”, is that you can combine all passes in postproduction program (about 20 passes) and get the same image that
looks exactly as your render.
So here comes the trick, you can change the color of your lights,
increase the reflections, or make more transparent the water only
by changing the look of that particular pass (render element).
And all this without re-rendering the image again. Big time saver!
Pretty festinating ha?
So by using exponential method we “burn” pixels in to our image,
and therefore some pro 3D artist might claim that this is the wrong
way to work, and only with Linear method “Physically correct” result
can be achieved.
However I’ve found unique way to use “render elements” (passes),
in Photoshop and get pretty good results, NUBA COR is the perfect
example for that.
Anyways just so you know, professional post-production programs,
like After Effects, Nuke, Fusion and so on, can combine your image
(in a “Physically correct” way) only if you work with Linear method,
as long as it comes to Photoshop same result cannot be achieved
simply because Photoshop is not “node based system” it’s a layer
based system, and you’ll hit the wall pretty soon if you try to
perform same operations as if you were working with Nuke or
Fusion.
Ok I know that it might get a bit confusing, simply because it’s a
huge subject and I can write a whole book on this subject, but as
far as it being related to architectural visualization, you should
remember these 2 basic principles:
When you work with Photoshop it’s really doesn’t matter if you use
Linear or Exponential. This start be paly role when you want to
combine passes by using Pro post-production programs.
Anyways I’m pretty sure that Photoshop will come up with some
plugins in order to allow us proper passes combination, simply
because most of us do use Photoshop for color correction or passes
composing.
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OK, now that we’ve gathered a bit information about how this LWF
thing work, we can continue and see some advantages and
disadvantages for Linear vs. Exponential methods.
When it comes to Exponential, it’s pretty easy, you can render
images as PNG or TIFF (JPG’s are compressed format and not
recommended for hi-res renders), 3Ds Max will save then with 16
bit channel, that is enough to make good color correction. You can
also save 32 bit channel, that will allow you even deeper pixel
depth, and you’ll be able to recover missing data, like overexposed
walls or too dark shadows.
Anyways light and easy, do not take a lot of disk space and the
work flow pretty smooth, just because you work with PNG 16 bit in
Photoshop.
Linear is a bit heavy for in compare to exponential. In order to use
Linear work properly you need to save your render as OpenEXR or
HDRI file, that allows you full control over exposure and gamma,
but the images are very heavy and requires good working station.
And when it comes to animations you’ll need proper computer to do
the editing, color correction, passes combination and of course a lot
of disk space. Anyways I find Linear method to be very heavy
although it’s “Physically correct”, it was designed more for
production studios and less for individuals.
Here is short video that could bring more light for understanding
this subject.
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Chapter #13 – Open your “EYES”
and let them “SEE”
This chapter is a continuity of what we’ve discussed earlier, it really
doesn’t matter what program or rendering method you use, all at
the end comes to one place. Yep, I’m talking about Photoshop or
other programs similar to that.
Believe it or not, but at this ending point everyone is equal. It
doesn’t matter how big your knowledge is or how many methods
you use, all at the end comes to one place. Yep, I’m talking about
Photoshop or other program similar to that.
Believe it or not, but at this ending point everyone is equal.
It doesn’t matter how advanced your knowledge in VRay or how
many years of experience you have working in the architectural
industry, if your eyes do not see the natural colors you will not be
able to pull this off.
Say WHAT?
Yep, it’s all in your eyes. If you are able to observe any image and
say this grass is too green or too saturated, the color of the stone
doesn’t look natural it got too much red color in it, the wood looks
over washed…if you are at this stage, then you have achieved PRO
Level!
Being Professional 3D artist is not only relays on speed of work of
constructional modeling, it’s way beyond that.
Good 3D artist is a combination of painter, photographer, composer
/ designer, if you’ve achieved perfection in all of these three
aspects, then you can surely claim PRO status.
And if not, then you need constantly practice those fields and order
to master them in the future. Remember?!
“If you’re not getting better, you’re getting worse!”
That’s right, practice painting and drawing, because later on postproduction stage you’ll have to paint the light in order to make
photorealistic image.
As well as, practice photography, because you need to know how
the physical camera works in VRay, this can be achieved only by
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putting your hands on real DSLR camera, same thing goes for
camera angles – choosing frame.
Design, is one of the most important aspect of good visualization, if
you don’t have balance, color combination and harmony in you 3D
image, realistic render will not make it better looking. Same works
vice versa, if you have good design and cool camera angle this will
compensate on the lack of rendering quality.
In other words, good design looks better than just good render.
So how can I practice those?
Google is your best friend, start to research on those subject and
you’ll find what suits you better. There is workshops, online
webinars, eBook, private 1:1 trainings..etc.
I do it all the time, I take courses in community colleges, because I
like to work with people, and I take online workshops if the subject
is rare to find in colleges, I also by books and DVD’s.
This is a never ending learning process, and providing this
knowledge to you gives me motivation and “hunger” to do better,
and learn something new.
A lot of times I felt like I’m drifting on the place, like I have learned
a lot and there is very little till I reach the end, but every time I’ve
looked my “rolling models” work, like Alex roman, Marek Denko,
Stanislav Orechov, I understood that there is a long way to go.
So how long does it take to reach this level?
Well from my observation between 4-6 years in general, there is
always exceptions. I saw some artists that achieved PRO level in 3
years, but they studied every day from the best! And there is also
people that after 10 years create the same thing that they created 5
years ago.
So it’s all up to you, how badly you want to become PRO 3D Artist?
I can guarantee you that professional trainings will bring you further
in no time and will shorten at least 2 years of self-education.
For 3 years I was self-educated VRay Artist, and that didn’t brought
me much forward, I was struggling with tutorial on the internet,
never ending renderings, computer crashes so altogether turned to
be a lot of sleepless nights.
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I was average 3D artist till I started to take workshops and
trainings. That significantly boosted my level of production, just
because the material was well organised and took me the whole
what from a-z, then all started to make sense.
The problem with internet tutorials is that they teach specific
subject, but not really concentrating on the whole process, it’s like
trying to build a puzzle without any reference picture. You collect
different pieces here, and some parts there, but you do not
understand how to connect them to one piece.
So do yourself a favour, don’t skip the basics, learn it from the
professionals, be patient and knock down your fundamental
knowledge first!
Practice with your hands before you turn on the computer.
So let’s wrap this up:
In order to do good visualisation, LIKE A PRO, you need to have
perfect vision for natural colors, harmony, balance and composition.
This can be achieved by working with real worlds equipment.
Analysing images is one thing; trying to recreate them is another.
Don’t afraid to copy your favourite artists. Michelangelo was coping
Leonardo Da Vinci, back in those times, this is how he got better
and developed his own style latter on.
See this video; it might give you a hint for understanding light.
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Chapter #14 – Freelance World
Someone asked me: “How much should I charge for the project?”
So I’ve answered: “How much are you worth?”
Well actually what I’ve meant to say, is how much is your “time”
worth?
Different projects, different requirements, different skills level,
hardware, software, working from home or having office to pay for…
All this is taken in to confederation while calculation your price.
So talking general all depends on the market. For example in
Germany people take 1000-2000 Euro per image. In China/India
$50-100...sometimes even less.
It’s all depends with what company do you work, some companies
can pay good money some don't, so do your research on your client
first, try to see with whom this company worked before, then you’ll
be able to draw conclusions.
In Russian market we take $500-800 per room, we supply 2-3
renders. When the room is ready it's easy to make more than one
render to satisfy the client. Give it as a bonus, you’ll get much
appreciation, and win a coming back client.
After all it’s all about building good contacts. Satisfied clients always
will recommend you to their friends and you’ll be able to grow on
this positive wave of success.
Building good reputation sometimes more important than just
making money!
This is the basic strategy our business.
Important note: You can always “spy” on the competition and see
how much money other freelancers get for doing their job. Of
course the level of performance has to be the same, I’m not taking
about newbies trying to cash “Hollywood Film” budgets, so be real
and reasonable.
Ok so how do you do it?
How much money you need to charge for a project?
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Here’s a simple procedure that is very essential for your market
investigation. So you’ll be aware of competition and prices for
different job offers.
The easiest way is to make an account at freelancers platforms,
likewww.freelancer.com www.odesk.com www.99deisigns.com
And see how much money those freelancers charge and how much
money firm got to offer. From my knowledge prices range are
between $15-60 per hour, depends on the country, Indian and
Philippians can work for a whole month and get $300-400 dollars.
However European will ask for much more.
But I tell you from my experience that professional firms prefer to
work with freelancers that close or at least at their time zone.
So you can make a search for jobs by demographics, and the best
sites to do that are:
http://www.utopiapeople.com/
http://www.smoothdevil.com/
http://www.3djobs.com/
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If you still couldn’t find something close to you, I warmly
recommend you to sign in to those websites in order to get instant
updates about the job market. Who knows? Maybe the next job in
their list was meant for you. So by subscribing to their newsletter
you’ll be one of the first to see that offer.
Another thing to do is to call or send email to a company and ask
them to make you a proposal for designing a room, write all the
details you want to know, like, 3Dsmax and VRay, classic
design..etc. Send it to several companies that supply 3D images
similar to your level. There are a lot of companies or freelancers
that do not provide High-End 3D renders, just google them. You
can send them their work as well and say that you want to make
something similar to that, and get a proposal from them about the
times and money. I do it every time when I move to the new
country and I need to get familiar with the prices.
There are a huge amount of platforms and job offers, I just gave
you the most interesting in today’s market. But here is few more,
go to their Jobs board and see what these guys got to offer.
http://www.3dtotal.com/ http://www.cgarena.com/ http://www.gamasutra.com
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Chapter #15 – The most FAQ
-
Alex I have a problem, my client is a good man, we became
good friends with the time, but he takes advantage of our
relationship and delays with payments, what should I do?
This is one of the common relationships that might happen with
returning clients. You simply get to close to each other and business
becomes casual. We try so hard to please them that at some point
they might view this as a weak point. However, getting very close,
with your client, and even becoming friends while working on
collaborative project, is sometimes a very essential thing to happen.
If I were in your place I would have a serious talk with your client,
and I would try to show him the situation where I’m delaying the
work and asking for payment up front, how does will make him
feel?
Second thing, after explaining the situation and getting to the heart
of your client, is to cover your “butt” ;) so that this thing will not
repeat itself.
How you do it?
Easy, “water mark”, put it on all your outgoing materials and do not
remove it till you get the payment, this is an inside advertisement
for you as well, make sure you have your name, company name
and contact details on that “water mark”. Make it 20-50% of opacity
and put it at the corner of you preview image.
-
Alex, how can I improve my visualization? I do everything
correctly, but my images do not look pretty.
Well this one is common to a lot of 3D artists, one of my favourite
answers is, go get some Architectural/Design Magazines, or don’t
even go get them order them online, some of them for free, I’ve
shared the links in the “Know your resources” chapter.
See images, analyse the camera angles, keep these image in front
of you all the time, as soon as opportunity pops up try to make it.
Try to avoid too low (cat’s view) or too high angles, they do not
look natural.
Think logically what you are trying to do/to show. If there is a need
to concentrate on the central object then think how you can achieve
it compositionally or artistically by using Depth of Feld (DOF).
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See how Pro Photographers use these techniques to hide or reveal
object, direct eye and concentrate it where it needs to be.
Personally, I like Residence Decoration
Composition + Design = the main key to pretty images!
-
My images are too dark or too light and sometimes I don’t
even know till I get your feedback. What can I do to learn
doing it the right way?
Exposure and lighting is an artistic approach, camera can control
brightness and contrast, you only need to learn working with it 
ISO is the first parameter in VRay camera that you want to change
for enhancing the exposure. Most of my work done with shutter
speed to 100 and f/number 4 (in rare occasions 5.6 or 2.8 -one fstop higher or lower). Anyways the most exposure control done
with ISO, we can go higher as 1600 if needed in closed places.
I find that ISO is the best tool to control camera exposure with
VRayPhysCam.
Nevertheless the best way for knowing where you going is to have
guidance such as reference. Find some similar places
(images) with similar lighting and composition. Try to recap that
atmosphere that you see in the image. Also advisable to print those
references and observe them closely (while creating your scene).
One of the rules here is that black colors (like black wood) observe
light and white colors (like walls) bounce it. So by giving enough
reflections to the material you can actually avoid underexposed
areas.
Make sure also to have calibrated monitor, sometimes it’s just a
monitor problem. Try to see how it looks on other monitor as well.
If you have more questions to different subject you are very
welcome to upload them to our private FORUM.
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Chapter #16 – Mind-Set Paradigm
You see well all human beings are made from molecules, actually
the whole our world made from them, and as a fact all molecules
are in constant vibration, in matter effect everything is in rotation in
inside the molecule, and the distance between electrons is greater
than the mass is self, so that means it’s all empty inside, but not
quite it’s in rotation that causes instant vibration of everything,
including our brain.
However our eyes set to see things differently, we see and feel all
as a solid mass.
But that doesn’t mean that can’t communicate on the same
vibrational wave (level).
Our mind set to communicate on “subconscious” level, however if
will be able to make this communication from “conscious” level, will
be able to create positive communication touch down.
Our “subconscious” always know what’s real or not, but our
“conscious” can’t tell if this really happened or just fantasy, similar
to how hypnosis works.
Hmm…Yeah, heavy stuff, I know!
So I’m not suggesting that you should hypnotize your clients, but if
you’ll be able to set up your mind to that positive vibration, you’ll
get way better communication results, such as getting projects,
understanding the client needs, make business opportunities, create
your own mind-set that suites you the best.
Of course this is not easy as it sounds, you need to work hard in
order to clear your mind from negative stuff and load it with
positive motivation.
But as soon as you do that you’ll start getting incredible result,
you’ll be amazed from having these changes in your every day’s life
routine.
Here are some nice exercises that helped me to achieve pretty good
performance in of my mind-set paradigm.
Do it every day for 20 minutes at least, you can do it even one hour
if you want. So it goes like this:
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If you can meditate, do it. If you can pray, go ahead. If you can do
some spiritual exercise, like Tai-chi, that’s also cool 
And if you don’t know what to do, do it like me: I take a piece of
paper every evening before I go to bed and I write all the things
that I’m proud of and appreciate in my life, then the second part of
the page will be about thing that I want to happened in the future,
but I talk about them like they happened already.
This called “Future Programming”: you setting up your mind to
positive thinking and imagining that situation as present, that’s how
you can put stuff in to your “conscious” and when the time is right
your brain will accept the situation as already happened, won’t get
stressed or frustrated, and everything will go smooth as you “wrote
on your paper”.
Yep simple as that, you can write about your work, meetings,
people contacts…anything willing to happened or achieve in your
life. Well it doesn’t have to be stuff 10 years from now, just simple
small things that you want to get done really well.
I’ve never believed this, but when I stated doing it, it really
shortens the process and made things happened faster than I ever
expected.
Practice this every day together with previous tips that where
represented in this eBook, and you’ll get there. Just remember that
your body is one whole living organism, lack in physical condition
may delay mind-set progression, same goes for junk food
consumption.
You are what you “eat”. AND what your brain absorbs, also
considered as brain feeding.
So don’t feed yourself with “junk food”, trust me you feel better.
OK, enough philosophy let’s get to some practical tips!
Stay out of the loops: don’t repeat same stuff over and over
again, do it differently, find new ways to achieve the same result.
Make it as a habit, take different way while jogging, try not to
repeat the last 5 actions over again…This can be opening email,
make something to drink, checking up facebook..etc.
Do it differently each time!
This will open your mind to different variations/combinations that
you might missing while being in the LOOP.
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And my favourite!
Start random conversation in random places!
Be funny, make people laugh, say creative things…etc. This will
actually increase understanding of other people mind-set.
Exercising this will make you feel comfortable and confident with
your sayings and you will look natural in your message.
This is when the real “communication touchdown” exist, in your
present, in your actions, in what you are transmitting to the next
standing in front of you and listening to what you have to say.
Do this and you’ll see how all the world around you starts to twist
and all the things you ever wanted starting to get define their place
in your life.
I know this is heavy stuff, took me a while to understand it, but I’m
happy to deliver it to you, just because I think this is the “Key to 3D
Success”.
This is very powerful
P.S.
Take a moment to think about it.
Just remember! By using techniques that where represented in
previous chapters you can achieve your mind-set.
Now this stuff determines deeper understanding of your inner
purpose and how exactly you can set-it-up to the right vibe.
Let me give you some examples of different situations that might be
blocking you from achieving it.
Now free your mind and try to follow this as much you can.
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Chapter #17 – High Performance
Have you ever asked yourself: “Am I achieving things that I
could, based on my potential?”
It can be in your daily work, relationship, business or creative stuff.
SO “Are you achieving the highest level of performance that
you could?”
And if not, why not?
I’ve asked several people that question and got really interesting
answers. So when I asked “Hey, are you really achieving your
potential right now?”, they started to think and come up with
different excuses why they don’t.
So I said "ok, let’s try to scale this thing and from 0% 100%, what level of your potential are you achieving right
now?"
And suddenly they got their brain thinking and came up with
answers like 50%, some of them sad 30-40%...some of them even
sad that they feeling like they achieving only 10% from what they
could.
What does it take to start achieving your maximum
potential? <<Your highest performance in life>>
When you look at sport stars or celebrities and these people are
achieving their highest level of performance you ask yourself a
question “How come they can achieve all that and other
people can’t?”
Well I did my research on that and it was all about being connected
between your physical, mental and spiritual condition and it’s all
leads to the highest level of performance.
The common mistake between people is that they think if they could
double the amount of work that they’re doing they definitely could
double their performance so that they could reach their highest
level. For example if someone right now achieving only 50% of their
potential, he/she could double the amount of work that they’re
doing so by that they could reach 100%.
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Unfortunately this theory is not true. Most of the time it’s not about
how much work you’re doing, it’s most of the time about what work
are you doing AND HOW YOU’RE DOING YOUR WORK.
This aspect consists from basic element that drive your motivation,
one of them is “passion”!
Just think about your work:
-
What excites you?
-
What drives you?
-
What makes you enthusiastic?
By answering those questions, you’ll get your indication
for excellence!
And this is exactly what drives those people to be the best at what
they’re doing.
We can see that in every culture, one problem, it’s not something
that relevant to you. Those people that been driven by
the “excellence” have to be the best they can in what they are
doing. And if they’re not achieving it they begin feeling guilty. So
it’s not about to be the best in your culture, unless you’re a spots
athlete, but you’re probably not, so it’s about being the BEST YOU
CAN BE.
There is an element of perfectionism that drives a lot of high
performance. They just want to get it RIGHT! Of course they are all
doing it intelligently, so that they could maintain high level of
performance without putting themselves under too much stress, or
ending up “Burned Out”.
This is the basic 2 values of high performance psychology: They are
all driven by passion and willing to achieve excellence.
But there is a 3rd one, and this is: Service – Doing something
meaningful that might change people life or to add to the
community in other words: “Make a difference”!
Piece a cake, huh?
Well there’s got to be more, you are probably passionate about
what you do, but you’re not achieving that level of potential you
could.
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And you’re probably willing to achieve excellence, by getting the
things RIGHT! But your level of performance is not there yet.
And you're probably the one who wants to make a difference, but
you feel again that you’re not achieving your level of potential.
So the question is: How you can get there?
Thanks to my research I’ll be able to share this with you right now.
There is 4 elements that can be tweaked out in order to get to
the “High Level of Performance”, with a help of these you’ll be
able to achieve the wealth that you wanted, get the influence that
you need and preserve the necessary impact in your daily life.
The point is that, it will be hard to achieve stuff that you want in
your life unless you’ll be able to improve these 4 elements.
HIGH PERFORMANCE ELEMENTS
1. Psychology – This element drives all your success. It’s how you
think about the world, yourself, other people and success in
general. All your values, beliefs and principles, all this, lives in your
psychology. Therefore this is the exact area of life that you need to
master in order to get through to other elements. It’s all starts
from Mastering your Mind.
If you’re thoughts and believes, that running through your mind
every day, aren’t supporting your mind you’ll not be able to lift
yourself up to the higher level of performance, or achieving it at any
point. It’s just going on auto-pilot through the day and not making
much of a change.
We all being programmed every day to support the system that we
live in. Television, radio and newspaper pulling the right triggers to
maintain our mind-sets. Just turn on your TV and see some
commercials, what they are all saying is that, you’re not good
enough, smart enough, pretty enough…and so on.
So if you’ll be able to re-program your mind and set it up to the
right vibe where you are proud of yourself and happy with what you
are, you will notice significant changes in your surrounding area
(that includes people as well).
By setting this up I’ve noticed that I’ve become happier and excited
about even small changes in my life. I also started to treat
“problems” differently -now I call them “challenges”. I’ve stopped
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being closed and nervous around people. My communication skills
have improved, and it’s become easier to get projects.
2. Physiology – It’s your body, and it does the same thing that
Psychology does, its supports YOUR ability to achieve high level of
performance. It’s just all about feeling the best and doing your best
you can on a daily basis, in a very easy way, it’s just happens,
when you have that energy flow in your body.
Being present in the business meeting while you’re trying to get a
project or communication with the person via skype, it’s really
doesn’t matter, what matter is your physiology to support you in
those moments. “Say the right things and do the right
actions” in proper time – means to be present in that moment, and
this can be achieved only through trained body that sustains energy
thought the day.
I was following one very successful guy, cos’ I was just thrilled by
his high performance, and in one if his seminars he said this “People
who can’t achieve high performance are those people who don’t
have natural stamina to make it through the day”.
If you don’t have the physical body that supports you throughout
the day, you simply have not conditioned your body to have high
levels of energy.
And it’s not about being cute and skinny, it’s all about having the
natural energy and rhythm that supports your body in any situation.
If you are in the meeting, and you are the person with the most
energy you like to get stuff that you want.
The person with the most energy WINS (in life)!
Doesn’t matter if you’re a 3D artist or sports star, the principle to
have enough presence and be able to respond quickly to any
situation will put on top of others!
Just think about what you eat or drink, how you exercise, how you
sleep. Most people poisoning their body to the degree that they are
tiered throughout the day, and they drag themselves from the bed,
so that they could drag themselves to the “Starbucks” in order to
start their day.
If you’re in that category of people, you got to change that!
Psychology and Physiology is the fundamental of High Performance!
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3. Productivity – One of the important characteristics is the ability
to achieve – to make things done. If you can’t major(manage?)
things that you need to be done throughout the day, you’ll be facing
huge amount of obstacles that will be dragged along with you.
Changing your calendar or rearranging your “to do list” has less got
to do with productivity. This is more of a mind-set, putting those
deadlines and make sure done even before time.
Knowing exactly where to stop.
Perfectionism is the biggest enemy of productivity, and it’s your
task to find the perfect balance between them so that you’ll be
proud of your work.
Just ask yourself how you can avoid destruction so that you can
focus systematically on one thing and achieving it by going exactly
where you wanna go.
This is what “High Performers” learned to do! This is why they can
master their lives.
If you have your productivity “down”, you’ll be able to achieve
things in one week in compare to other people that can do the same
in a month.
Master your productivity – and earn life style you want.
4. Persuasion – Ability to influence other people to achieve what
you want.
If you can manage your time all day long that’s awesome, but if you
can’t influence people to come along with you on a “journey” -like a
working project or to help them in getting what they need from you.
If you don’t have that ability, you will not have the ability to
influence levels of achievement in your life.
If you can’t persuade other people to join you on a journey, your
journey will be very long.
High levels of performance has been indicated by high levels
of influence on other people.
So these are the 4 elements of “High Performance”. If you can think
about increasing each one of these just by little, massive change
happens in your life.
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Just imagine what if you could increase each one of them just by
10%. If you get your physical condition increased by 10% how this
affect your productivity, and what would happened if you could
influence people more, just by 10%.
Yep, this is where the changes begin to happen, your mind-set will
be driven differently throughout the day, your clients circle will start
to take other shape, your income will get different numbers.
It’s all about mastering your high performance so that you’ll have
your own financial freedom to do whatever you want.
Here is the graph of the 4 elements, and now that you’ve learned
what it takes to be a “High Performer” let’s put our knowledge in
to practice.
Productivity
Persuasion
Psychology
Physiology
I would recommend you to print this out so you could track your
improvement.
Enough said! Let’s Practice!
I’m going to give you my daily plan and you can take anything you
want from it. Anything that suits you the best. You can change/add
stuff that you think will work better for you. I’ll leave it open for
options.
The main goal here is to tweak it so you could use it and feel good
about it.
My Daily Plan:
I must say that it took me over 10 years to gather this knowledge
and over the past 6 years I was tweaking it, testing it, and finally I
can say that this is one of the most advanced daily planers that you
can find in the internet/book/magazines.
So here we go!
I start my day from a light warm up and jog, every day for the few
years now. When I wake up I drink a big glass of water, twist my
joins for about 5 minutes together with 20 squats and 10 situps, put
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my training shoes on and go out (don’t forget to brush your teeth).
I’ve started from just walking for 30-45 minutes, after a month I
could jog for 20 minutes and walk for about the same amount of
time. Today I just lightly jog for about 45 minutes and I feel really
good about it!
Why to jog on empty stomach?
Well, I’m not a doctor, so you better to get an advice from someone
that is a real doctor, but from my personal research I’ve discovered
some amazing facts: when we’re sleeping our body sorts and
prepares fats that we’ve ate on the previous day, so as soon as we
wake up this fat is been prepared to be used as energy. As simple
as that!
We have different sources for energy in our body, like sugar (which
is very low in the morning), muscle (body can break muscle and
produce energy from it) and the last one is fat (storage) everything
that was not used (burned throughout the day) is literally going to
our “storage”, belly fat and “muffin top” (side fat).
So by lightly jogging or walking on the empty stomach we use
storage fat, because it’s the most convenient energy source at this
time. If you start to do some extreme exercise you definitely going
to break your muscle, but light jogging on the empty stomach is
nothing to be afraid of.
So what you doing is:
1. Busting up your metabolism - your blood circulates better
(faster) and your nutrition exchange have better performance so
you can recover faster.
2. While exercising you produce Serotonin – hormones of happiness
(during the day) and Melatonin (during the night), so you sleep
better, and feel happier the next day.
3. You encouraging to produce natural energy – your body used to
get it from supplements, like coffee, energy drinks, sugar
drinks…and so on. While doing sport activities you encourage your
body to bring that function of natural energy source back.
Ok so the first part is covered, don’t forget to do 5 minutes warm
up, this is essential to prepare your body for physical activity.
After I’m done with my jogging I’m taking a short shower, hot water
for 5 minutes, at the and I slowly turn the water to cold and for 40
seconds I shower in cold water.
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No, I’m not insane.
This is old Chinese medicine trick, it helps to burn fat, increase
blood circulation but the most amazing this about this is that you
feel FRESH and ready to concur the world! After you step out of the
shower.
Next is the breakfast, the rule about that meal is that this is the
most important meal in your day.
WHY?
Well simply because your body will burn everything from that meal
during the day, this I can’t really say about lunch and definitely not
about the supper.
So what do I eat? And How I eat it?
Rule of thumbs, avoid animal fat, this fat is very sticky and it’s hard
to get rid of it latter. So no bacon in your morning omelet.
I warmly recommend you to use healthy fats, like avocado, nuts
and fish oil (omega 3). Before you consume bad fats. You see your
body need at least 10% of fats in your daily consume, so by giving
it healthy fats first the bad fats will be less absorbed - Tricky ha?
Here’s nice morning meal for you: 1-tomato, 1 small avocado, a bit
of green onions, 200gr of cottage cheese (till 4% of fat) a spoon of
olive oil, you can add also some salt and paper to have a good taste
(I rather avoid salt). Add 2 bread toast to it and voila you got
yourself a high class breakfast.
Now remember the brad must be “Whole Grain” and high of fiber,
actually all your food got to be high of fiber. Stuff like Broccoli,
Spinach, Cauliflower is a good source for high fiber.
2.5 hours later I have a snack, ounce of almonds and a glass of
orange juice, it can be an apple or and orange. You must eat at
least 2 fruits during the day (unless you taking some multi
vitamins), and eat green vegetables (there is a lot of iron in green
veggies).
Another rule of thumb is to keep your body hydrated during the
day, never get thirsty, if you are thirsty it’s too late- go get
hydrated.
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So every 2-2.5 hours, stand up, stretch, let the blood circulate from
your but to your legs and back again. Drink a glass of water, have a
snack.
Personally I rather have snacks all day long, if you’re able to do it
that a way to go. Anyways around the noon, when you get to eat
your lunch, make it smaller – half size. You’ll be amazed how this
also can work for you.
The trick here is to have 6 small meals during the day, break it in to
3 small meals, breakfast, lunch, dinner, and 3 small snacks in
between (water juice with some fruits).
The main problem of most people that they eat 3 large meals during
the day, the amount of food that they put in to their stomach is not
being used, it being converted to energy but not being burned out
during the day – and it all goes to the storage, well at least half of
it.
Now by eating small portions, you’ll be able to burn it immediately,
so every meal that get in will be converted in to energy and used,
simply because you’re not overloading your body and there is no
need to put stuff in to “storage”.
What happens if you do eat big meal? Nothing good for sure, first of
all your body gets in to stress, cos’ your hungry and you wait too
much for the next meal. Your stomach sends signals to your brain
(asking for food) but your brain respond negatively to your stomach
request. The consequence from this, is that your body gets in to
stress cos’ it doesn’t know when the food (energy) is going to
arrive, and when it does, your brain simply sends signals to your
stomach to keep something a side (to put something in to
“storage”), cos’ he doesn’t know when is the next time you’re going
to eat.
Wow, all this happening in my body?
Yes, and the best way to treat this is to have a constant schedule,
for example: 9, 11, 1pm, 3pm, 5pm, 7pm.
Eat in those hours and your body will get used to it, your brain will
know when is the next meal and will not get stressed about pouting
stuff to “storage” on the contrary, it will start burn food (energy)
faster just because he is expecting to get some more in the next
few hours.
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Try not to eat much after 7, you will not burn it, if you still hungry
eat vegetables, cucumbers with low fat sour cream, basically it’s all
water.
Now that we’ve gathered this information it’s a good time to do
check list.
GOOD KARMA – Check list
Don’t watch NEWS (TV or internet) before you go to bed – Your
is brain categorizing and sorting information that you’ve gathered
during the day, let it have good one. The recent information comes
first-In that case do some mind-set practice.
 Mind-Set practice- Take a piece of paper and write stuff
that you’re proud of, write stuff that you proud about
yourself. (For example I’m proud about my ability to achieve
things in life, today I did this…and that…and I’m proud of it).
Give yourself appreciation; it’s the essential training for your
inner soul confidence. The second part of your “letter” fill out
with things that you want to happened, but write it down as
it is already happened (I’m in good relationship with my boss
and he gave me a salary rise, now I have bought this
car…etc). This called –Future programming, very essential
for your mind-set.
 Avoid negative stuff- It refers to everything that
surrounds you, it can be people, it can be objects, activity of
any kind, stuff that you see on media or you phone,
whatever that is, and it’s got negative aspects, avoid it! It
poisons your brains, it doesn’t matter if it’s a “talk show” or
a newspaper bad news, this or the other way don’t follow it
unconsciously to find out more.
 Stop poisoning your body- Buy some plastic boxes and
put some healthy fruits and veggies – Take them with you.
Don’t get seduced by “junk food”, it can make more damage
than you think. If you want to eat it, make it right, have a
“cheat meal” day-on this day you can eat one meal (but only
one) and it can be your favorite “junk food”. When you plan
it your body knows how to treat it. But, when you get it
without planning your body doesn’t know what to do with it
and it takes the short cut. Yep,–“Storage”.
 Drink water- Get enough water in to your body (at least
1.5 litter per day), after all 80% of us is water, keep it high
and you’ll notice the change. You’ll have more energy, you’ll
feel light and fresh-so if you didn’t get it we are functioning
on water, make sure to have enough, all the time!
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 Do sports- Exercise your body and avoid future failure.
People get problems with joints, and get old faster- Now you
know why. Encourage your body to produce necessary
natural supplies, the sooner you take care of it the better.
 Love yourself and be proud of what you do – you can
write it down every day on a piece of paper and major
changes start happening.
Alright so this is the “check list” and the “Key” for the right mindset. Practice this every single day for about a month and you will
never want to go back to your previous life.
I never believed it, till I started doing it, there is a lot of trainings
on that subject, Mind-Set Paradigm, Self Hypnosis…and so on.
However I tried a lot of them and this one worked for me the best.
Feel free to ask any questions on the forum or email me and I’ll be
more than glad to assist you. You can also adjust, tweak and
change things that might work better for you. If you meditate and it
works for setting up your mind-set, that a way to go.
There is no one legit way to achieve your self-purpose, you need to
find it on your own. I just gave you my tools, but it’s your task to
take them to the next level.
Don’t copy me, be original and find your own way.
The destination is less important than the way to that destination.
That’s it!
Use this knowledge, it’s powerful tool!
P.S.
If you want to learn more about architectural visualization, and
reach professional level by learning from the best in the industry.
Join our upcoming online trainings and get to the PRO level Just as
quickly as you can imagine J
Simply remember…
If you want to do it RIGHT, Do it like a PRO!
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Chapter #18 – BUNUS #2
4 VRay Master Class Webinars
Hey! Here is something that you might VERY find useful 
1 Webinar – Exterior setup Linear 1,1,1 and Color processing
2 Webinar – Post Production Techniques and HDRI Setup
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3 Webinar – VRay Parameters, F/number, White balance in
Photoshop Color correction and BG photomontage.
4 Webinar - Photoshop techniques and VRay FREE Materials
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Closing Theme
hey don't be sad
It’s TIME to say
GODD BYE
Just kidding!
No one leaving nowhere, this is the
beginning of a great new
Friendship!
Just say
HELLO
To the bright new future of
BECOMING
A PRO
3D ARTIST
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You can post your questions and request in the Forum and I’ll be
more that glad to answer you. The common Q&A will get in to the
next update of this eBook and in order to help others, as these
might help YOU.
Thank you very much for your time and effort!
www.vray-studio.com
eBook - Key to 3D success – 2nd edition 2011
How to become a PRO 3D Artist
www.HowToBecomeApro3Dartist.com
by Alexander Vasiliuk aka VRayGuide
www.vrayguide.com
All rights reserved www.vrayart.com © 2009 VrayART
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