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Making Of: Primateran

| Your Rating:
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(Score 4.25 out of 5 after 8 Votes)
| Comments 2
Date Added: 24th November 2009
Software used:


Hello, my name is Tamás Gyermán. I've been interested in Sci-Fi since my childhood; I love spaceships, creatures and all kinds of fantasy stuff.

For this picture, I wanted to create a scene that showed a part of the world of the "Primaterans" - a civilization that prefers dark corners of the galaxy, hiding from their enemies until their armada is strong enough to destroy them.

The idea was to create huge, blue planet in a dust cloud, with a meteor field and ships.

This image was created from scratch. I didn't produce any concept sketches or use any kinds of references - I just used my imagination.


The starfield was the first thing that I created. It was built up of many smaller images and then I put the perspective lines over it (Fig.01).

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Fig: 01

The scene was split in three main parts: foreground, background and the middle region. I gave each part a different color specification.

After setting up the perspective lines, I started modeling the first ship (Fig.02). As you can see in the image, I used basic objects like cylinders and cubes, in combination with the Extrude function.

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Fig: 02

When creating ships, I always begin with the basic body form. Later on I create smaller things like the propulsion or the weapons. By using the Knife tool, I sliced new areas into existing polygon objects. This is a simple method to create a well detailed model and each of my ships was created in this way

After I'd finished all the models, I started to create the textures. I used three kinds of textures: Diffuse, Specular and Bump-maps. The Diffuse channel was a combination of a metal texture and a procedural cloud (to achieve a dirt-like looking metal). The Specular channel contained a colored version of the diffuse texture, which was smoother than the original texture and had no detailed parts, in comparison to the helmet (Fig.03).

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Fig: 03

I used several projection modes in combination with the Selection tag. I used UV projection for the bigger objects and Cube projection for the smaller ones. Lighting parts or other textured surfaces had a different selection (Fig.04).

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Fig: 04

After finishing the textures, I started working on the lighting setup, with and without the textures. Because of the high poly count I had to render each ship separately and this meant that each ship was a single C4D file. Only the lighting setup was the same, but I had to take care with the ships' angles and the position of the sun.

I used a Main light (acting as the Sun) for the lighting setup and three Infinite lights with Sun Mode applied. Furthermore, there were also light sources in front and to the left and right sides of the ship (Fig.05).

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Fig: 05

The ships were rendered to PNG with the Alpha channel.In the render settings I used Global Illumination and Ambient Occlusion; GI was in the RAW file and AO in a different layer (Fig.06).

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Fig: 06

I used the dongle tool to delete the AO parts I didn't need and to brighten the window areas of the ship. The glow effect was hand drawn; it was just another layer that I put over the original ship's images and I drew it with an Alpha brush. The booster engines were done the same way.

After finishing the first ship in the final scene, I started to build up the composition. First of all I took a high-res globe and cloud picture and then I placed some fog over it, simply by combining the "visible light" (hand drawn fog) with some noise. Comets were also needed.

The nebula parts were added into the picture later on to highlight the ships from the background (Fig.07).

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Fig: 07

continued on next page >

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Readers Comments (Newest on Top)
James on Sun, 27 May 2012 9:48pm
This is awsome, should so make a short 10 second clip of the spaceships travelling through space
IvisibleCat on Sat, 12 May 2012 1:56am
this is breathtaking ! i would love to see this in 3ds max, build from scratch as an video tut ! greetz
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