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  1. Texturing With Topcoat 8 Comments


    Here is the live show all about Texturing and answering questions about Topcoat. During this 2 hour cast, I answer questions about Topcoat and about Texturing with Reflectance.

    Renders Made During The Live Show




    Texture And Topcoat Q&A Day 2

    Show Overview

    Why we don’t use the specular channel with reflectance (9:31)
    Why We Made Reflectance (20:00)
    Add Topcoat to an existing material (41:50)
    Cold Coffee And Dragons Blood, Why expectations matter (1:08:43)
    Texturing A Delorean (1:12:20)
    Many Textures At Once With Jake And Finn (1:45:50) – Get the model
    Texture Christmas Ornaments (1:54:54)
    A very special song I wrote just for you! (2:14:03)

    8 Comments Posted 4 days ago
  2. Topcoat: Making Reflectance Simple 31 Comments


    Maxon introduced Reflectance In Version R16. It completely replaced the Reflection channel and it gave us the ability to make realistic layered textures never before possible.

    As soon as I started seeing the results from this new Reflectance channel, I fell in love. It gave us layered looks and realistic renders that just weren’t possible in C4D before. Combine this new Reflectance with HDRIs and the Physical renderer and photoreal results were not only possible, they were possible without buying a third party renderer.

    I was so excited that we could get something that looked THIS great with built in Cinema 4D tools. Finally, anyone with Cinema 4D could render a scene that approached the quality I previously only have seen with Vray.

    However, there were a few problems. Sure, the renders were beautiful. But the new Reflectance channel brought quite a few hurdles for designers trying to get the most out of this new tool.

    Problem 1 – The Reflectance Interface

    The new Reflectance interface completely replaced the old reflection channel and specular channel that everyone was used to. In it’s place is a confusing set of names, modes, menus, and sliders. The power of these new channels are undeniable, but between the tedious list of reflection types and hidden drop-downs it was hard to navigate and tricky to make what used to be simple changes.

    The entire interface seems like something that was made by technicians, for technicians. It definitely wasn’t made for designers and everyday Cinema 4D users like us.


    Problem 2 – The Render Speed

    The beautiful results of Reflectance came at another price. VERY long render times. Combine blurry, layered reflections with the physical renderer and it’s a recipe for overnight renders or grainy results. The default presets that come with Cinema 4D don’t help much either. Anything over the medium quality settings and it was guaranteed that you will be waiting for that render for hours instead of minutes.


    Problem 3 – Can’t Change Multiple Textures At Once

    OK, this was the one that really got me. In almost every other parameter in Cinema 4D, you could select multiple similar objects and change their settings all at once. I did this all the time with textures. I would select half a dozen textures all at once and give them all the same reflection settings. It was super intuitive, useful, and a big part of my workflow.

    The reflectance channel removed that workflow entirely. There is no way to add reflection to multiple textures all at once, and even if you managed to make them similar, if you want to adjust them all together, that’s impossible too. It was the weirdest of all problems in this new Reflectance future.

    Now What?

    So here we are. Blessed with a beautiful first rate render engine and texture engine in Cinema 4D. But, it’s interface, speed hit, and non Cinema 4D like workflow got in the way of the average user to start using these tools. In fact, as we started talking to our customers, many people didn’t upgrade to new versions of Cinema 4D specifically because of the new Reflectance channel.

    Well, any time we see problems like this in Cinema 4D, our minds start spinning. Is there anything we can do to take this beautiful render engine and expose it’s beauty to designers without them knowing all the weird technical stuff of the current Reflectance Engine? Was there a way that we could speed up the rendering process to help studios and freelancers hit their deadlines with great looking renders? We have worked for months on this idea and I want to show it to you now.


    Introducing Topcoat™

    Topcoat is a new texturing tool from Greyscalegorilla that we think will help solve these problems and add a simple and fast workflow to your toolset for your next project. We want everyone to be able to use this new Reflectance layer and we think Topcoat is the answer.


    With Topcoat, we set out to build a tool that would make reflectance fun and easy to apply to your scene. Not a laborious task of sifting through settings. We also include our new Render Fast™ Presets to take the guess work out of picking the fastest and most beautiful Render Settings for your scene. We even brought back the ability for you to add reflection to multiple textures all at once.

    Mostly, we built a tool that helps you get the most from Reflectance and helps you add beautiful realistic textures and reflections to your next project.

    Combine eight custom paint coats and over 20 procedural bumps and masks together to make unique materials for your renders. It’s as easy as pointing and clicking.


    Free For Texture Kit Pro Customers

    To celebrate the launch of Topcoat, we are trying something brand new. We are giving all of our current Texture Kit Pro customers Topcoat for free to start using today. If you are a Texture Kit Pro customer or buy Texture Kit Pro before December 6th, you will get Topcoat for free. This way, you can start using it and see if it’s right for you. We think it will become a big part of your Cinema 4D workflow. You will have the option to renew your Topcoat license after one year.

    If you are a current Texture Kit Pro owner, you should get an email today explaining how to get Topcoat for free. We are so excited to get this plugin into your hands and see what textures you come up with.

    Live Show And Topcoat Q&A Today and Tomorrow

    Want to see Topcoat in action? Stop by the live show page today at 1PM CST to learn more about texturing with Topcoat. Bring any questions you have about our new plugin, too.

    Learn More About Topcoat Here

    31 Comments Posted 6 days ago
  3. Live Design Recording: Modeling a Character in Cinema 4D | Part 02 14 Comments

    Bull Model

    Here’s Part 02 of my modeling a character in Cinema 4D live stream! I finish making the arms, legs, and mouth on this bull character!

    Watch Part 01

    Follow my Youtube channel to get alerts on when I will hold future live streams!


    Live Recording:

    Visit for more from EJ

    14 Comments Posted 2 weeks ago
  4. Greyscalegorilla Podcast: Interview With EJ Hassenfratz from Eyedesyn 5 Comments

    In this episode, I talk to EJ Hassenfratz from Eyedesyn about his career and how he got started as a Motion Designer. EJ has been posting his excelent tutorials on Greyscalegorilla lately and also doing a live show over at youtube. You can follow him on twitter at Eyedesyn.

    Show Notes
    Sketch And Toon Model Pack
    EJ’s Tutorials

    Subscribe to the Greyscalegorilla Podcast At iTunes

    5 Comments Posted 2 weeks ago
  5. Live Design Recording: Modeling a Character in Cinema 4D | Part 01 5 Comments

    Bull Model Part 1

    Trying something new here and decided to give live streaming a go! I did a few test casts last week and I have to say I really like the format of a live stream and I’ve been getting great feedback thus far. Live streaming is way less formal than a tutorial and more conversational, especially when people in chat get involved and ask questions and even provide answers in the case of this live stream! The benefit of this live format is it allows viewers a bigger window into my thought process and my problem solving when attempting to model this little bull character. I’m admittedly not a very good modeler, but I learned quite a few things during this modeling exercise and I hope you learn something watching my workflow and my process in modeling this character!

    What do you think? Should I do more of these? Anything you would change? Let me know how you like these live design streams and if you’d like to see more!

    Watch Part 02

    Follow my Youtube channel to get alerts on when I will hold future live streams!

    Live Recording:

    Visit for more from EJ

    5 Comments Posted 2 weeks ago