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Traditional Chinese Screen

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It's been ages since I posted any work, mainly due to personal projects getting sidelined by work stuff & ending up half-finished.

Anyway, I have a tendancy to just post things when they're done but this time I want to do more of an actual WIP, although I have obviously put quite a bit of work in already.


Over christmas, I visited the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford with family & was inspired by a Chinese Coromandel Screen:


The aim will be to produce a lightly-animated picture - I plan to follow the layout of these screens & have a main central picture, with the panels around the edges showing close-ups of different camera angles on parts of the scene.


Characteristic of these paintings is the use of perspective where the horizontals & verticals are straight & there is no vanishing point.

There is one type of Camera Projection in Cinema 4D that emulates this type of perspective - the 'Gentleman' projection. I quickly discovered that only the Standard & Physical render engines can support this projection. I had hoped to use this project as a test-bed for Cycles 4D but although it can do true Parallel cameras via it's 'Orthographic' option, it doesn't have anything like the 'Gentleman' projection with straight verticals & horizontals. Octane lacks even true parallel projection support, so that was out. It seems even Pro-Render can't support this projection, although I'm far from convinced it's as good as  Standard/ Physical anyway.

Ultimately the perspective is more important than the render engine - I don't want to just make an isometric compromise. I'm at least using it as a chance to finally explore node materials & the PBR workflow - using reflection as GI.


I'm leaning on the excellent 'Chinese Patterns' C4D content browser download from right here on C4D Cafe. For plants I'll be using Forester as always & I've just begun to introduce some. Obviously the composition & landscape is  super-WIP right now, although I've put a fair bit of time into modelling the buildings.




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Okay, made a bit of an update today -  the rocks at the back will eventually be a waterfall.

The ground will probably be rendered black in the final thing but leaving it white while I develop it.

Got a couple more buidlings to model yet, I think.


White Ground 01.jpg

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On 1/5/2020 at 8:06 PM, Igor said:

This is going to be epic, I can already say it. But you must nail textures. @Cerberus check this out...

I'm planning to use it as an opportunity to learn substance painter, although I do expect the texuring stage to be quite time consuming.


19 hours ago, EAlexander said:

Keep going! 

Thanks !

Anyway, just a small update - A WIP of the top level of what will be a 3-tier Pagoda.

The buildings are pretty time-consuming but at least I'm building up a kit of parts & techniques, so it gets a little easier as I go on.

Main thing is the roof tiles - every slight variation of roof shape requires a slightly different layout. Thank goodness for cloners & mograph anyway.


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  • 8 months later...

Well, I got bored of this project & put it aside, but now my enthusiasm has returned.

Started on some texturing with Substance Painter, have to say I love this program, it's so fun to use. Nothing too fancy, as the buildings will be seen from far away.

R23 UV tools really helped to make the preparation fairly painless.

I'm toying with the idea of trying to do all the rendering with the viewport render, now that it has improved again.




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