Identity Transmute: Behind The Scenes

July 18, 2013 - By 

Art Director David Brodeur made this wonderful spot called Identity Transmute. I asked him a few questions about his process and how he used Light Kit Pro and Texture Kit Pro to help make this beautiful branding piece.

What Renderer did you use for this? It looks beautiful.

All renders were made using Cinema 4D and the Physical Render engine.

Where Did You Go To School?

I am a graduate of Ringling College of Art and Design. I majored in Graphic Design and always try to put design first. You mentioned it in a talk you had before and I always repeat it: ” Always start with the fundamentals, the things in design that don’t change, composition, color theory and typography.”

Where do you Work Today?

I am currently Art Director at Leviathan here in Chicago.

Why Did You Choose Greyscalegorilla Tools When Making This Piece? How Did They Help?

As a designer I do not enjoy being a super technical guy, I want to get into a program or tool and start creating. I try to use GSG products as much as possible in my workflow because of their ease of use, right out of the box quality, and because they are fully adjustable. A main reason I try to avoid plugins and presets is because you end up getting work that is all the same and recognizable to the tools you are using. GSG products allow me to alter and make changes to so many aspects of the tools and materials that by the end I feel I have something that is completely custom to my design.

Behind The Scenes Video

David made this great behind the scenes video to show some of this animation, texturing, and lighting process.

What Texture Kit Pro Textures did you use?

Texture kit pro was a base for a lot of my textures and once I had my base textures down I was able to adjust and manipulate them. An example using the bow-tie: I went through a lot of the fabric textures in your kit. I ended up selecting “Fabric Orange Red”. Because the way the textures are set up I was easily able to control the color I needed over the whole texture. After that I wanted to add more realism to the fabric. I started out using the “hair fuzz” material as my base. I adjusted the length, color and added frizz, bend and curl. I will attach a picture of my light set up but I used your overhead soft box in addition with a top light, back light and a bounce light. My render setting were the physical render set to adaptive medium with indirect illumination also the addition of AO. In AE all I needed to do was some adjustment curves and it was good to go.

I did steps like this for a lot of the materials I used from texture kit pro. All the control you have over the materials is the reason why I used them. I felt like after I was done with the textures I didn’t have a texture that looked like I used a kit but yet something that was original.

More Screen Grabs Of David’s Project





  • AWEsOMEnesSS!!!!

  • John Robert Moore July 18, 2013 at 6:14 pm

    That ruled. Thanks for sharing Dave!

  • ” I felt like after I was done with the textures I didn’t have a texture that looked like I used a kit but yet something that was original.”

    me too!

  • Thanks for sharing!
    BTW what is the theme you are using, i really like it, can you let me know where can i get this WP theme.
    Thanks in advance 🙂

  • Awesome video! GSG has wonderful tools.

  • David, great work. Everything went so fast but told a fun and compelling story that made me watch it and re-watch it at least 5 times. Great use of the textures.

    And Nick, GSG keeps that bar high and you make it so easy for people to fall in love with C4D with how well your extras are tied into the software. Bravo Team.

    Now go get yourselves a beer, or two.

  • Beautiful work, thanks for sharing the breakdown. I’m dying to hear a word or two about how that final receding paper-cut out type look was made to have such a beautiful jiggle. Just offset the keyframes on different layers, I’m guessing? or some mograph effector work?

    Also, that beaitful fluid pour near the end – is that just some clever mask work in AE or something more clever-er?

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Thanks for the comments everyone!
      @ Partick
      The final animated paper-cut look was made by animating the cutout shape on a plane, then dropping this into a Cloner Object. A Step Effector was applied to offset the animation. After the animation was timed out I applied a Delay Effector set to “spring” to give the whole animation a nice bounce. Pretty simple stuff.
      The pour at the end was made in AE with a few animated masks to get the fluid correct. Thanks for the questions!

      • Excellent! Thanks so much for the helpful response. I’m just starting to dig around in mograph now so it’s good to hear my instincts were (mostly) correct. Time to do some experimenting…

  • I love Leviathan’s work. HUGE inspiration. Thank you for putting this together guys!

  • I think that was awesome!
    I am also writing to say that Nick, the support email form seems to be broken…it gives me an “We couldn’t send your message because undefined Try again?” error. Then I am stuck in a cyclic redundancy loop!


  • Hey Nick, can you do a office tour? I am sure everyone will love it.

  • Hello,
    I discovered your site at the same time I do my learning Cinema 4D Lite software (supplied with the latest version of the Creative Cloud).
    A big thank you for all these tutorials that allow me to learn the basics of this software. On the other hand I love the handwriting font logo on your site, could you give me the name of this one.
    Thank you in advance for your reply and thank you again for all your instructional videos.

  • hey! This really impressed me from a design PoV! loved it so much! That orange made me thing of a logo product shot I was remaking and it needed condensation on an orange, that would be awesome to have a tutorial on how to do water drops on objects, or splashes

  • What was used for the TNT explosion? It looked insane! Great work man, beautiful idea.

    • Thanks Mine! I used a couple techniques for the TNT explosion. In short I painted vertex weights on my logo object and applied a jiggle deformer with attractor, gravity and turbulence applied to its forces tab. Bit confusing to type out but I hope that helps.

  • Hi guys;
    Just working on a project for a client and was wondering if you can get shapes duplicated by the cloner to land in a certain shape. I’ve made a few different sparkplugs, Nuts, And bolts and put them into a cloner. Now i need to get them to land in a shape of a G. Is it possible and how?

    Thanks for your time.

    Joel L-B

  • In a compositing tag it is possible to uncheck seen by reflection. However, it is possible to control the amount of reflection seen by another object?
    I have a scene where I am using an HDR studio rig reflecting on some steel bricks. I also have a sky object with nice clouds. I would like an amount of the sky to reflect in the bricks without obscuring all of the HRD rig reflection. Is this possible?

  • Great inspiration buddy, but the timing part is fabulous. thanks for share
    have a good day

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