Et in Arcadia egoJune 2005
This is where I started into the world of CG and 3d. All the projects that you find on this page are the result of an intensive study of Autodesk 3ds Max and Adobe Photoshop in 2004. I remember reading a few books about lighting and texturing and printing out the whole 3ds max 5.0 help file. (If you do this one day make sure to print on both sides to protect the environment. The help file covers many many pages) For the Arcadia scene I wrote a short story and did research on Nicolas Poussin and other artists from past centuries. This was also the time when I rediscovered "art history". When I was in High-School I hated that subject. I thought it is boring and artists are a little bit crazy. But I changed my mind on that when I was searching for solutions and found them exactly in the work of the great masters.
In the last years I was asked often about the content of Arcadia. Where are the two people in the background going? What kind of place is it where the airplane crashed? To be honest, there’s a very personal story behind it. It has something to do with leaving a familiar place and start into a new uncertain future. But I won’t tell you every detail. I heard so many different interpretations and all of them worked out well. People see parts of their own in the picture (as we often do when we fall in love with something) and that’s ok. If you should be interested in the technical aspect of creating this scene, don’t forget to check the short project overview in the article section.
The Soloist was the first finished scene that I have rendered in 3ds max. Before that I only rendered standard primitives and foremost teapots in all variations, big ones and small ones, with modifiers applied and without, with textures or in simple gray and so on. When I was at the point where I felt quite comfortable using the software I started to build up the scene bit by bit. I remember it was great fun to paint the textures for the bug in photoshop and applied these to the model. I couldn’t see colorize teapots any longer. I used the build-in scanline renderer and lots of spotlights.
It wasn’t planned to build a scene for the honey jar. I was playing around with the Vray renderer and the amazing Vray material and tested out how far I can go with the settings. The empty jar turned out quite good in my opinion and so I thought I should try to fill it up with something. At that time Richard Roseman released his Vray absorption tutorial and so I tried to recreate a substance that isn’t liquid like water. For the lighting I used Vray lights, reflection planes and a HDRI in the environment slot of vray.
This scene was in inspired by Carl Spitzwegs (German painter 1808 – 1885) "Ein Hypochonder" I removed the leading actor from the window and replaced it with the falling suitcase. I wasn’t brave enough to model his head. Nowadays I would try to rebuild him with Zbrush 🙂 When I look at the original I would definitely overwork my light setup.