The 3D image process begins with a wire frame model. I have 28 years of experience building these computer models from scratch. An alternate method of acquiring wire frames is to translate Computer Aided Design data. CAD files are the “blueprints” used for manufacturing real-world products, (think car parts). CAD data is a good template but it often needs to be re-worked before it can be used to make great looking images. 3D computer models are also called: "geometry".
This is the part of the process where we assign the surface attributes to our 3D geometry. Chrome becomes reflective, glass becomes transparent, stone becomes bumpy, ...
CGI Lighting techniques parallel real-world lighting. A Gaffer on a movie set decides the placement, color and intensity of lights. The CGI artist doe’s the same. Poor lighting can ruin an otherwise good shot.
Sometimes CGI Artists will use a digital photograph to help light the shot. This technique is called I.B.L., (Image Based Lighting). This technique is common when combining CGI elements with video footage.
“Rigging” is a term used to describe the process of setting up how a 3D model can be deformed. For example: A character may need to have knees and elbows that bend. A vehicle will need to have wheels that rotate on only one axis and pivot around the hubs.
This is the step where we move items around in 3D space. 3D objects, lights, cameras and textures are are animatable.
This is the last step in the process. During the render, the computer calculates each pixel of each frame. The higher the resolution, the longer the render time. The longer the animation, the longer the render time. When a project has the specific deadline, “rendering time” needs to be considered. Some animations can take days to render.
"Motion Graphics" is the term for a style of animation that is not cell animation or 3D animation. Think of Motion Graphics as being "flat" art that moves around in 2D space. When Motion Graphics are primarily made with text, they are known as "Kinetic Type" or "Info-Graphics".
This is a 30 second TV commercial that I scripted, produced, directed and animated. The graphics were created using Photoshop and Apple Motion. This commercial won two Telly Awards, one for the script and one for motion graphics.
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