Posted In:Inspiration Archives | Greyscalegorilla

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Cineversity Tutorial: Simple Tools for Complex 3D Artwork and Animation

May 10, 2018 - By 
Cineversity Tutorial: Simple Tools for Complex 3D Artwork and Animations - Featured

Watch Barton Damer breakdown his fully-animated sneaker commercial using simple tools to create complex projects and 3D animations.

Barton Damer is a motion designer and digital artist who founded the design and motion graphics studio, Already Been Chewed. He and his team have created a variety of design, motion graphics and 3D animated content for some of the most iconic brands in the world including Nike, Vans, Star Wars, Harry Potter, and Marvel.

In this presentation, Barton breaks down the main element of a recently created 30-second animated CG commercial spot for Xtep Footwear. Barton will show you how he models a sidewalk using a single primitive and the MoGraph cloner.

The he’ll uses a deformer and effectors to create an animated wave effect when the shoe hits the ground.

Finally, he’ll use RedShift to add materials and HDR lighting to finish the project.

Check out his NAB presentation below, and thanks to Cineversity for the recording, and to Maxon for hosting these incredible speakers.

Here is a timestamped breakdown courtesy of Cineversity.

00:00 – Introduction
01:25 – Demo Reel
06:01 – Key Visual and Style Boards for Xtep Footwear Commercial Spot
07:29 – Final Xtep Footwear Commercial Spot
08:24 – A Behind the Scenes Edit
12:38 – Using a Primitive to Create the First Piece of the Sidewalk
16:56 – sing MoGraph Cloner to Create the Sidewalk
19:02 – Creating the Concrete Wave in the Sidewalk
30:52 – Adding Materials and Lighting to the Sidewalk


Want more Cinema 4D tips, tricks, and presentations? Check out these Cineversity videos.


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Watch This Stunning Tribute to Akira and See How It Was Created

May 3, 2018 - By 
Watch This Stunning Tribute to Akira and See How It Was Created - Pills Cover Feature

Revisit the world of Akira in this must-see short. Plus breakdown the entire process with hours of behind-the-scenes videos.

Designers Ash Thorp and Zaoeyo (XiaoLin Zeng) teamed up to create an absolutely beautiful tribute to Akira. Watch their short, Akira Awaken.

The tribute was a collaborative project that took over a year to create. For those wanting more, there is so much more content.

The Akira Awaken website not only includes the jaw-dropping renders and comparisons to original stills, but also hours of behind-the-scenes breakdowns.

Image via Ash Thorp / Zaoeyo.

Watch as the team shows you what went into creating each shot from the short. They’ll show you their sketches, as well as Cinema 4D and After Effects project files.

Image via Ash Thorp / Zaoeyo.

The guys tell you all about their challenges creating certain scenes, and having to turn to online tutorials and Wikipedia articles to help them learn.

Image via Ash Thorp / Zaoeyo.

Here’s a look at the first breakdown. There are a total of 26! Watch all of the videos on the Process section of the Akira Awaken site.

There are also some on set photos and a breakdown of the team shooting organic fluids for the project.

Image via Ash Thorp / Zaoeyo.

(If you are interested in playing with and compositing these type of fluid elements, I had the pleasure of making some free fluid elements with the team over at RocketStock. You can go download 19 free 4K fluids in their Nebula pack.)

Project Credits:

Be sure to head over to the Akira Awaken website for all the in-depth videos.

Image via Ash Thorp / Zaoeyo.


Want more?

If you are interested in more like this, check out our interview with Ash Thorp, in which he showed us how he created a cyberpunk western for Nike.

GIF via Ash Thorp / NIKE.


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Our Favorite Episodes of the Greyscalegorilla Podcast

April 27, 2018 - By 

We celebrate our 100th episode milestone by sharing a dozen of our favorite Greyscalegorilla podcasts.

To celebrate 100 episodes of the Greyscalegorilla podcast, we put together a list of some of our favorite episodes. In order of release, dive into these staff favorites.

Is this the end of the Mac?

Way back in one of our earliest episodes, we talked about Apple’s failure to meed the demands of creatives, especially 3D artists and C4D users.

Podcast: Is this the end of the Macintosh for C4D artists?
Episode: 009
Date: November 07, 2016
Listen to, or watch this episode.


Are You Too Old To Do 3D?

We are all getting older, but are we getting too old for this fast-paced and continuously evolving industry?

Podcast: Can you outgrow the motion design industry?
Episode: 046
Date: January 18, 2017
Listen to, or watch this episode.


Make Mornings Suck Less

This classic episode covers our morning routines and the odd habits we’ve picked up that help us get our day started. Like most other episodes, we also talk render wars.

Podcast: Make Mornings Suck Less
Episode: 051
Date: February 20, 2017
Listen to, or watch this episode.


Tips For Working Remotely

In this episode, we share all the good, bad, and lonely parts about working from home. From self discipline to tools, we cover tips and tricks on making working from home easier.

Podcast: Tips for working remotely
Episode: 057
Date: April 03, 2017
Listen to, or watch this episode.


Our take on Apple’s WWDC 2017

Between this and the previous Mac episode, you may see our growing frustrations over the years. Here’s what we though about the newest (at the time) Apple products.

Podcast: Our take on WWDC 2017
Episode: 065
Date: June 06, 2017
Listen to, or watch this episode.


What would you tell your past self?

In this podcast episode, we all share the things we wish we would have known sooner. Whether it’s learning new skills or breaking down your decisions, this is all about questioning your path.

Podcast: What would you tell your past self?
Episode: 078
Date: September 26, 2017
Listen to, or watch this episode.


Learning how to learn

Back-to-back favorite episodes? You better believe it. Following up to self-advice to our younger selves, we then dive into the unique ways we as creatives learn, or even learn how to learn.

Podcast: Learning how to learn
Episode: 079
Date: October 04, 2017
Listen to, or watch this episode.


Wrangling client expectations

Whether your dealing with clients face to face or through a studio CD or Producer, this can be a tricky minefield to navigate. The guys share strategies around wrangling client expectations, using plenty of their trademark metaphors.

Podcast: Wrangling client expectations
Episode: 081
Date: October 17, 2017
Listen to, or watch this episode.


Our favorite things we’ve learned in mograph

We answer a bunch of questions including our favorite things we’ve learned in mograph. We touch on just about everything on this one, including 3D tools, production strategies, and inspirational posters.

Podcast: Our favorite things we’ve learned in mograph
Episode: 083
Date: October 31, 2017
Listen to, or watch this episode.


PROJECT BREAKDOWN

This is a special episode that breaks away from our standard format, Chad and Chris breakdown the animated trailer they created for The Happy Toolbox. You’ll want to watch this episode, so you can see our workspace and renders.

Podcast: The Happy Toolbox project breakdown
Episode: 084
Date: November 14, 2017
Listen to, or watch this episode.


Good Money. Good Work. Good Life Balance. Pick Two.

How do you strike a balance between work and life, and how do you keep the important stuff from falling away? The group talks about freelancing versus going staff, and finding balance and ultimately happiness in this crazy creative business.

Podcast: Good Money. Good Work. Good Life Balance. Pick Two.
Episode: 086
Date: November 27, 2017
Listen to, or watch this episode.


Where did we go wrong?

We managed to make episode 100 an all time favorite. We share stories, many we never have, about our failures. Whether we failed at a job, or made life mistakes, our failures helped lead us to where we are and what we know. Bonus, we have some free downloads to giveaway!

Podcast: Where did we go wrong?
Episode: 100
Date: April 26, 2017
Listen to, or watch this episode.


Did your favorite episode not make the list? Let us know down in the comments which podcasts you loved. If you are looking for more episodes, check out the podcast page for every episode.


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PureRef is a Must-Use Reference Image Tool for All Creatives

April 24, 2018 - By 
PureRef is a Must-Use Reference Image Tool for All Creatives - Featured Image

Keep your reference images and project notes in your sight at all times with PureRef. No more tabbing between windows and programs.

Once in a while, a productivity tool comes along and changes the way I work. Now to be clear, I think of a good coffee cup as a productivity tool, so that should give a bit of insight into my obsession with honing in my toolset. When a tool can drastically improve your work or your life, I feel compelled to tell people about it. So this is me yelling from the rooftop about my latest obsession, PureRef.

PureRef is a straightforward utility app for Windows, Mac, and Linux with a very simple premise. Keep your reference images in view at all times. The app places your references in a window that stay on top of all your active programs and tools. 

All day I bounce back and forth between my DCC (digital content creation) apps to random reference bookmarks or folders on my machine. Sometimes even dragging images into the Cinema 4D picture viewer just to keep them in sight.

With PureRef, you can create a new canvas and drag as many images onto its infinite canvas as you’d like. The best part is that you can tell PureRef to stay on top of all your open applications and windows. While you’re working, you can dial in your look while having all your reference imagery sitting right next to your preview render (IPR).

The ability to save canvases means you can start keeping multiple PureRef projects to suit your current needs. It’s a huge time saver. I also love how you can quickly zoom, resize, and re-arrange your images anytime you’d like, saving the changes for the next time you need instant inspiration.

This tool improved the look of my work on first use. I was able to take 20 minutes assembling reference imagery, and during my look-dev process, I was able to hit the look I was after in minutes. You can even add notes to yourself within the PureRef canvas. 

Having reference imagery sitting an inch away from your IPR is something I will no longer be able to live without. You will see a lot of it in the future in my tutorials. So do yourself a favor, find an excellent sturdy coffee cup and go download PureRef right now.

About PureRef and Download

PureRef allows you to drag-and-drop files from your machine, or directly from browsers. You can also edit photos in your canvas to meet your needs, including rotation, scale, crop, opacity, and more. You can also customize the canvas and keyboard shortcuts to speed things up.

  • Compatibility
    • Windows 7+
    • Mac OS X 10.9+
    • Linux Ubuntu 14.04+
  • Supported Image Formats
    • BMP, DDS, GIF, ICNS, ICO, JPEG, JP2, MNG, PBM, PGM, PNG, PNM, PPM, PSD, TIFF, WEBP, XBM, XPM, TGA(TrueVision 2.0)

PureRef is a name your own price download, and you can get it here. It’s well worth throwing them a few dollars if you can.


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Guest Daily Render Artist: Rick Lundskow

February 2, 2017 - By 

 

Rick Lundskow aka @lundskow

We’d like to welcome Daily Render Guest Artist Rick Lundskow @lundskow to our ongoing series of awesomeness.

Follow the GSG Daily Render Series on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr


What is your name, position, and where do you currently work?

Rick Lundskow

Art Director

Cornerstone Church

 

How did you get into Cinema 4D?

I’m almost positive I saw a motion graphics video on vimeo back in 2010/2011. It was so impactful that I wanted to learn how to create art like it. I immediately downloaded the trial version and started watching Greyscalegorilla tutorials. After the trial expired I used the demo version. The demo wouldn’t let you save or render out projects, which was a slight bummer because some of the pieces were sweet. However, I could recreate them if I really wanted them.

Once I moved to Michigan to work at Cornerstone, I budgeted for Cinema 4d Studio. That’s when the real fun began.

 

When did you start your daily render practice?

I tried to start daily renders but they took too much time or I ran out of ideas too quickly. I got in my head too much… Each piece had to be amazing, but often times they were not great by any stretch of the imagination.

At Half Rez this past year I had a chance to talk to Beeple, the master of daily renders. He really encouraged me that it wasn’t as big of a deal as I was making it out to be. I just needed to make something happen. I don’t know what it was, but it clicked in my brain and I started the next day, September 15th.

What is the hardest part about doing a daily render?

Time would probably be the most difficult part of a daily render for me. Some nights I don’t get home until 10pm-12am and I haven’t even started on my project. The worst is when I get home late and I don’t even have a concept. On those nights, I wanted to give up. And there were many of those nights. However I’m sure other people have had that same exact excuse but have continued anyway. So I told myself that I couldn’t have any excuses for missing a day.

 

What have you learned by making something every day?

Probably the most significant thing I’ve learned is lighting and reflections. Lighting can make or break your render, so I experimented with different techniques until I found something that works for me. Since I don’t have a fancy render (which might change very soon), I wanted to learn the most with the tools that I had on hand.

As far a basic life skills go, I learned that I can put too much pressure on the creativity. I want the design to be better than the day before it, or create a compelling piece that will sell to millions of people. The former is stressful and the latter hasn’t happened yet. Daily renders are more like experiments. No pressure on the outcome. You try an idea that doesn’t work, but you fix those mistakes the next day and publish your findings. It’s important for me to realize that when I fail, I just found another way of not doing something.

What Hardware and Software do you use to make your work?

I do most of my work on a 2012 MacBook Pro. Nothing too fancy about it but it gets the job done. If I stay late at work, or have some free time over lunch, I’ll create piece on my Mac Pro with 12GB of ram. Then render it out using Team Render across 3-4 of the other machines in the office.

Aside from using Cinema, I use Illustrator a lot to create splines. The shape builder inside Illustrator is incredibly powerful for making custom shapes for lathes, sweeps, and extrudes. I recently purchased ZBrush core. While Cinema’s sculpting tools are great, there were a few features about ZBrush that made it easier to sculpt heads.

 

What is your day to day like at work?

My work schedule changes on a daily basis. I tend to have a theme to each week day though. Mondays are meeting days. A nice easy transition into the work week. Tuesdays are typically my big project day. I can get the most done without a ton of distractions. Wednesdays are a big filming day. We do video announcements in our Sunday services and we record & edit them mid-week. Thursdays are the busiest days because we’re trying to finish the work week strong. So I’ll finish projects that I didn’t quite complete the other work days. Coffee is a requirement for Thursdays. The great thing about my job is that I don’t work Fridays. Actually, I don’t think I’ve had a job in the past 10 years that required me to work Fridays. It’s pretty amazing.

Anything advice to anyone out there just getting started?

Great art isn’t about having the best resources, it’s about using what you have. There’s something special about taking what little resources you do have to create something beautiful. It gives you an appreciation for the things around you. When you hit a roadblock, figure a way around it. Don’t let circumstances hold you back from accomplishing what you want to do.

Also, don’t make it more complicated than it needs to be. Start with a 5 minute idea and work from there. Most of my projects come from a small element I see in my day to day world. Find something that inspires you and run with that idea.

 

Where can people learn more about you?

I’m currently rebuilding my website from scratch, so currently I don’t have more info available.


 






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