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Making of 'Peterbilt 379'

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Date Added: 9th December 2009
Software used:


Greetings all, my name is Andrey and I'm from Russia. First of all, I wish to thank the 3DTotal team for featuring my work and this 'making of' article.

To begin, I would like to say that I'm basically a 3D modeller, and so for the creation of this work it was necessary for me to study many articles about the adjustment of lights, renders, materials, and so on. This experience proved to be very useful for me in the creation of this artwork, despite the amount of time spent researching. In general, I think that before starting to do something, it is necessary to have the necessary experience in order to be 100% assured that all will turn out OK in the end.

In this making of article, I will not show you the entire process of creation of the work in detail, but I will go through just the basic stages of production for you and cover some of the things which proved helpful with this particular image.

References & Drawings

After you get an idea for an artwork, it is necessary to then find as much research material as possible to support it and help you to develop your concept. The best assistants in this area are your camera and, of course, the Internet. After several days of research I had photographs of practically all units of the model, and, more importantly, I found some excellent quality blueprints!

Here is my first tip: before placing any drawings in 3ds Max, I go over them to make them harder and darker. By doing this, the colours of the allocated objects and sub-objects will not merge with the colours of the blueprint and cause confusion (Fig.01 - Spline is not visible; Fig.02 - Spline is visible in a window projection). Now we are ready to start modelling!

Fig. 01
Fig. 02

Modelling - The Body

This truck has a simple form, so I decided to refuse the application of the Meshsmooth modifier (which is present only on the discs, seats and on some of the other details). I began modelling the body with the construction of the basic contours using splines. Further various modifiers were applied to them, and only at the end was the model converted into Editable Poly. The most important thing when using this technique is that you never work with separate parts of the model in the initial stage, only with groups. This very much facilitates and accelerates the process. There is no need to work on each part of the mesh; only after converting to Editable Poly does the cutting and influence on each area begin.

The unique complex moment here was in the creation of chamfers:

Fig. 03 - Basic operations

258_tid_4.jpg 258_tid_5.jpg
Fig. 04 - Select edges                                             Fig. 05 - Extrude edges

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Fig. 06 - Select edges                                             Fig. 07 - Chamfer edges

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Fig. 08 - Select edges                                             Fig. 09 - Chamfer edges

Fig. 10
Fig. 11
Fig. 12

By the way, there is one material which I constantly use, allowing me to very easily control the correctness of the form of the object. Create a standard material with adjustments approximately as shown in the image, and apply it to the object (Fig.14 - Material for control shape of objects).

The patch of light allows me to see any mistakes and discrepancies in the form. If you see an equal patch of light, it means that all is well and it is possible to move on to the next stage (Fig.15 - Light Patches).

Fig.13 - Render result

Fig. 14
Fig. 15

Modelling - Frame, Suspension Bracket, Transmission & Other Details

These units consisted of huge quantities of details, but to model them was very simple. I basically drew splines, extruded them, and then applied the Lathe modifier or used standard primitives. So here it was all rather simple (some parts of the modelling work for this stage are shown below).

Modelling - Lights

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Fig.16 - Basic shapes drawn and vertexes placed correctly                   Fig.17 - Spline was ready for edit patch modifier to be applied

258_tid_18.jpg 258_tid_19.jpg 258_tid_20.jpg
Fig. 18                                           Fig. 19                                         Fig. 20
                        Patch edited                           Converted to poly and turbosmooth modifier     Details added, like glass, lamp and reflector

continued on next page >

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Readers Comments (Newest on Top)
Arturxd on Sun, 14 July 2013 8:38pm
where you found the blueprint of the Peterbilt?
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