Making of 'Mercedes Benz CLS550'

by Soroosh Ghaffarian

Soroosh, Ghaffarian, Mercedes, Benz, CLS550,

Software Used:

Maya, mental ray and Photoshop

Hi everyone, I'm Soroosh Ghaffarian, a 3D artist. In this tutorial, I'm going to share my knowledge on how I modeled and rendered the Mercedes Benz CLS550.

First of all, as far as the modeling of cars and vehicles are concerned, it’s really important to gather a variety of references and the right blueprints. It’s not a difficult process but it shouldn’t be rushed. I found blueprints which were pretty accurate, so there was no need to squeeze or skew them in order to make the views align better. I ended up gathering more than 100 references to model my car and below are some of the photos that I used.

I should say that when I started gathering my reference images I thought that one of the best sources would be Mercedes themselves. So I decided to email them about it, but they just told me they didn’t have any images of that particular car model and that I should look on the internet. So that’s life and I ended up Googling for images instead (Fig.01 – 02).

Soroosh, Ghaffarian, Mercedes, Benz, CLS550, refrences,


Soroosh, Ghaffarian, Mercedes, Benz, CLS550, blue,print, sketchs,

Now it was time to start modeling. I began by setting up the blueprints in Maya. I’m sure there are plenty of tutorials on the internet explaining how to set up blueprints, so I’m not going to cover it here. But I will say that having the right measurements is the most important thing when you want to model a car. You really need to find the right blueprint and perfectly adjust it inside Photoshop before starting the modeling. If you do not get it right, your model will end up looking a bit odd.

My chosen modeling technique was polygon modeling. I started modeling from a simple plane and then used a variety of tools and options including Extrude, Insert Edge, Delete Edge, Merge Vertex, Split Polygon etc. In my mind, polygon modeling is lovely because it's very easy to create what you’re imagining and solving any problems and finding a solution is easy.

For modeling a car, it's vital to consider the position of each point and line in relation to its angles in the space. It must be accurate or the model won’t have a nice shape and form. As a result, the final render will be jerky, and reflections will not be clear. As always, the most challenging problem is to get the overall shape just right.

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