Monday, March 28, 2011

Max-Creating A bedroom

There' a lot of 3dsMax models that you can use for your building or room (seats, windows, doors, trees, etc) whic you can find in stores or the internet, either for free or some you have to buy, like from archmodels. Using these models you can save a lot of time, because you don't have to model such supporting components for your presentation. You can even create your own library, which later you can upload or even sell on the internet.

For that you need to know how to properly import and exported 3dsMax files.  To import 3dsMax files to your scene, you're going to need to use Merge. But if you are importing different type of file, such as AutoCad or 3ds, you'll have to use Import. And you can't just copy 3dsMax file to another computer, since Max file connected to its texture, so for that, you'll need to Archive it.

We're going to learn all these using the plan that we've imported on our previous tutorial. But if you don't have any plan design you can use the picture below.

Bedroom Plan

Good luck!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Max-Importing AutoCAD

For me, as an Architect, AutoCAD is an insaparable part when creating 3dsMax presentation. At first, sometimes I even model some parts of Autocad, and then edit them in Max. Of course, I can make the Max presentation from only a freehand drawing, but if I have a Autocad plan and section, I can work a lot more precise and faster.

For that, I created this tutorial so you will know what parameter to use when Importing CAD. But you have to remember, when importing AutoCad, the version of Cad should be the same or lower than 3dsMax. If it doesn't then save Cad as more older version first before you import it to 3dsMax.

Good Luck!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Max-Classic Headbed using Spline

There's a lot of ways that you can use to convert a spline into a 3d objects. Spline

Loads of ways that can be used to convert Spline to be a model in 3ds max 3d. Spline includes all the base line, such as, Rectangle, circle, etc.. In this tutorial the modifier that were going to use to are:

  • Extrude
  • Loft, is to create an object turning certain path line using spline that shape in a certain ways, its really good to create a profile, corniche etc
  • Sweep, has the same function with loft, but easier to use. But Sweep is a bit limited to inelastic objects.
  • Lathe, you can also use lathe to create glass, bottle, and such

I'm also going to introduce you to the usement of alignment. It can make your 3dsMax object to be more precise. We're going to create using the head bed picture below.

Head bed that we're going to model

The result 

Good luck!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Max-Variation on Mapping

One of my favorite topic on 3dsMax is about Mapping. Mapping is how you put your texture to an object, and it can be done in so many ways. Using the right mapping, you can save a lot of time in modelling. For example, when you creating a carving on an object, you can model it of course but you can save a lot of time just by mapping it the right way. If you are talented both in modelling and mapping, it will be a very powerful combination!

Mapping combine with a good lighting will produce a very realistic object. Sometime, a simple design with a the right mapping and the right lighting will turn into a very impressive result.

But since there are so many methods of mapping, I have to start with the most basic ones. The ones that I use the most. If you are creative enough, you can combine them and develop it into the maximum result. The mapping that I'm going to discuss is using standard texture, but you can use it to other kind of texture to, such as Vray, Raytrace, and so on..

  1. UVW map : placing the texture in certain direction and size with bump and displacement
  2. Multi/Sub Object material, using this, you can map different texture in different parts of an object
  3. Blend material, mixing two textures into one material in a specific pattern
  4. Opacity on standard materials, so create a see through object using specific pattern.

The following materials will be used for mapping in my tutorial, you can copy from here if you like

Good luck!!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Max-A Bookshelf from One Box

Max02-Wardrobe from Editable Poly

You can save a lot of time if you know how to modify an Editable poly, because it has a lot of parameters that you can use. At first, since I've been using 3dsmax since the days of the dinasaurs, I only use Editable Mesh, or even combining some standard primitives using boolean or group. Really messy, and such a waste of time comes to think about it.

Some people even say that Editable poly is the more advance version from editable mesh, and that editable mesh should be removed from 3dsMax. But I still prefer using Editable mesh some time, for example when I'm using boolean. So don't remove it. I like having options. :)

Before I found out how to use Editable poly and its tool set, it took me about 30-45 minutes to create a book shelf, but as you can see on the video later, using editable poly, it will take less than 10 minutes to do it. Isn't it great? But I'm only introducing you to the basic tools. Later, at the more advance level, you can create more complicated stuff. So, let's begin!

Bookshelf from a Box

Oh, Btw, I'm going to use this bookshelf in the mapping tutorial.

Good luck!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Tips for faster 3dsMax Rendering

There are somethings that you can do so you can have smaller 3dsMax file, with less error and faster rendering time.
  1. Using Editable Poly instead of Editable mesh. Editable Poly in my opinion, is a development from Editable mesh, therefore it has more setting option, so it would be easier to model. Unless when I use boolean or pro boolean, then I'd rather use Editable mesh, because Editable poly's face/polygon usually ruin if I use those two.
  2. Use the Light that's suitable to the rendering engine. For example when you're using VRay rendering engine, then you better use Vray light, IEs, or Sun. Don't mix them with Omni, Direct Light, or any other default light from 3dsMax. It's doable, but you will have longer rendering time.
  3. Reduce Photon/Sample whe you setting your rendering engine. This apply to almost all rendering Engine. 
  4. Avoid using soft shadow, depends on the rendering engine that you are using. You can avoid this by reduce your light size, or disable the area shadow (if you're using Vray). But I must warn you that this methode will make the result less realistic.
  5. Reduce subdivision value, on anything that's has it. But not too much though, because it will create noise or spots on your rendering result.
  6. Reduce using bump and displacement when you map your texture
That's all, if you think there's more, I'll be glad to hear it.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

7 Steps for Sketchup's beginner

So you decide to use Google SketchUp (SU)? Here are seven tips that might help you when  you start using sketchup.

  1. Turn on all of the toolbar. Go to View> Toolbars, and then turn on all the available toolbars. Then save this toolbar settings (save toolbar only available in SU 8 or up). So when I start the tutorial, it'll be easier for you to find the right command.
  2. Group every time you created a new object. Because if not, it will merge to another object (unless if you meant for it to stick). For example after creating a rectangle, group it, the edit it.
  3. Learn Shortcuts. As in Autocad, 3dsMax, and everything else, it's easier if you know all the shortcuts in Sketchup. Go to Window> Preferences> Shortcuts. 
  4. Tape Measure. Use the command Tape measure (T) for drawing reference, I explain about this in my Sketchup Tutorial-Interface Introduction 2
  5. Put Layer, Entity Info, Materials and Component windows at the top right corner of the layer. Then leave it there, don't close it. If you're not using it, just minimized it. Because when the modelling become too complex ,this will save loading time.
  6.  Layers. If you are planning to make a room or a machine with high compexity, separate some parts using layers. So when you need them you can freeze them. You can't use hide, because you use hide, the object will remain editable. Those of you who are familiar with AutoCAD won't have a hard time understanding this concept.
  7. Lastly, before you start reading or watching the tutorial, first try ALL the commands in sketchup. Because, sketchup is so easy that  some commands can be directly learned without looking at the tutorial. This will speed up your learning time.

OK, and now ...Have a nice time learning!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Max-Things to know when you started learning 3dsMax

So you've decided to learn Max? Then, welcome to the dark side, rwahahaha... (sorry, I got carried away ^_^). But seriously, you might find it a bit confusing and for some people, it might get boring really soon. But once you pull through, when you can see how many things you can create from Max, like me, you can't stop. But then again, I'm a Max nerd :P.

But there are four basic things that you need to remember when you start learning Max:

Memorize the hotkeys! It's ok to use Icons at first, but gradually, you have to learned most of the hotkeys by heart. For example for T = Top View, P = Perspective and so on. There are tons of 3dsmax hotkeys there, All you need to do is google them.

Don't forget to save and save the file often. Save it in different names if you have to. Because, eventhough Max has Autoback, just save the file every 15-20 minutes. Because depends of your computer, the season, your rendering engine or just with no reason at all, 3ds Max gets cranky and then drop dead. And when that happens, whoaaarrgghhhhh ... There is no word to express the feeling. I really hope you will never find out.

Adjust your render setting with your computer speed and what you are going to do with the rendering result. For example, if you are going to print it in have a page of letter size paper. Don't waste time setting the rendering to such detail that turns out not so visible when you print it.

Practice and practice! A lot! Practice on anything that tutorials provide for you. There are tons of tutorials on the internet, from cushions, windows, lights, whatever, even when it's not really related to your line of work. There will be new things you will learn from each tutorial, and ultimately, it will be useful for you, when you least expected.

This is the video that will introduce you to 3ds Max Interface, this is really basic. But hopefully, this will be a good start so you can go on up to the very Advance level.

Have a nice time learning! ^_^

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Sketchup or 3dsMax?

Just starting to learn 3d? Trying to decide which one youre going to choose, Google Sketchup (SU) or 3dsMax? Here are the things that you can take into consideration:

Google Sketchup:
  1. FREE! Just download it from google, then install it directly to your computer, and you're ready to go. And there's a lot of ready to use model, such as furniture, people, plants, cars, that you can download for free to your scene at google sketchup directory. All you need to do, search, download, and use, and...once again, it's free! 
  2. The parameters are quite simple, personally it only took me 2 days to be able to model using sketchup . 
  3. Sketchup is very quick and light for my computer to buld simple geometric shapes, such as minimalist style of furniture or building. But once you create complex polygon shapes, it turns very heavy. 
  4. Once completed, Sketchup can be exported directly in the form of working drawing such as, Plan or Section, and 3d, complete with its measurements.This is very useful to the Engineers, Architects, interior designers.
  5. You can export and link your sketchup to AutoCAD. So when you revise your 3d, your working drawing will be revised automatically, very simple! 

  1. Very nice for a complex and organic shapes. 3ds Max is even used for animated movies like Avatar, 2012, Iron Man (!), Etc. 
  2. Max can provide your needs for realistic result. 
  3. Max takes a long time to learn, because its parameters that you need to use, so if you get bored easily, may be Max is not a good idea for you. 
  4. 3dsMax is very expensive, so look out for discount! ^_^ 
  5. The computer requirement is a bit high. So basically, in my opinion, Sketchup is more for the practical use and 3dsMax is more about realistic result. Since I need them both, then I learned to use them both. But then again I'm a 3d nerd. :)

So in conclusion, Sketchup is more to the practical side and Max is for the realistic side. But hey, that's my opinion. I'd love to hear your thoughts on this ^_^.

Hey, maybe this pictures can help you!

This one made using Google Sketchup

This one made using 3dsMax
What do you think? For me, it's not helping at all, so I learned to use both. All I can say is, what ever you decide, have a nice time learning!