V-Ray lights are very effective and give very good results, very quickly. With V-Ray lights you can create physically accurate area lights. They are easy to configure and give you an overall better result due to their direct connection with the V-Ray renderer. Fig.06 shows the configuration of my first V-Ray light.
Fig.07 shows the configuration of the second V-Ray light.
I used a lot of complex shaders for this image and did a lot of work through the texturing phase of the project. I used a lot of V-Ray dirt maps and a lot of reflective shaders.
For my renderer, I did some tests with both mental ray and V-Ray, but chose V-Ray in the end for overall speed and render value. I created a quite simple light rig and did a lot of work with the V-Ray exposure control settings so I could have 90% of the look done in 3ds Max and not in post-production applications such as After Effects.
Each frame took almost three hours of render time. I focused on the depth of the light and on the camera a lot because a lot of the edge of the shot was achieved through lens distortion and effects such as depth of field. I overexposed it a little bit so the eye can focus on the interior and not on the background.
I composited the shot in a lot of passes, such as diffuse, specular, reflection, refraction, shadows and self-illumination, as well as almost every V-Ray pass to achieve the final look.
I employed a very strange technique to create the final image. I used all the passes in a normal compositing way, but also used some of the other passes like vrayglobalillumination and vrayrawlighting as blending filters. This gave me a lot of different, depths and looks each time.
I composited all the passes in After Effects. I did a lot of tests with the final look, using some small unorthodox compositing methods, to give me the final look (Fig.08).
Fig.09 shows the final image before I added some color correction and filters in After Effects.
Fig.10 shows the final image composited and color corrected in After Effects.
I enjoy doing both interiors and exteriors, but mostly interiors because there's a lot of work and you can't hide anywhere. I really enjoyed this project; it was a lot of hard work, but I'm pleased with the final result. I hope you can be inspired by it.