Step 4: Finish the modeling
Finally, I finished modeling the front of the vehicle. All parts of the vehicle were modeled to be as accurate as possible according to the photo references I have collected.
It is important to model your vehicle to scale, in real world units, so you can make sure you are modeling things accurately and to the correct proportions. For example, you know a footstep is about 6” long or you can go out and measure a windshield wiper on a semi truck to make sure you are modeling your windows at the right size. You can then figure out the size of uncommon parts by measuring against the familiar parts and comparing them in your reference photos.
These images show the occlusion and wireframe renders of the entire vehicle
Step 5: Creating Materials
At this stage, I started applying basic materials to my model. I didn't want to UV this vehicle as I had already spent a lot of time completing the model, so I decided I would texture my vehicle in 2D in Photoshop as a part of the final render composite.
To create the materials, I used the mental ray mia_material_x materials. If you click on presets you can choose from a list of different material options that you can adjust to your personal preferences. For example, choose the glass preset for the windows or rubber for the tires, etc…
This image demonstrates the mia_material_x_ presets
Step 6: Lighting
For the lighting setup, I usually just use the Physical Sun and Sky in mental ray. It's really simple to use and gives a subtle, but realistic, feel to your renders. I like to add 1 Secondary Diffuse Bounce to Final Gather to give the lighting a little more color bounce in the render.
I rendered out the final passes with a linear workflow, which is a bit complicated to set up, but it really gives a vivid, photorealistic quality to your renders. I suggest looking up how to do this in mental ray if you are interested in creating photorealistic renders with the mia_material_x materials. I followed a step by step tutorial on how to set this up properly, and you can find how to do this by doing a basic internet search for 'rendering with a linear workflow Maya.'
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Here you can see the Physical Sun and Sky settings with Final Gather Secondary Diffuse Bounce