Bridges, Cracked Ice, and Detailed Stone Work: From Images to Splines to Geometry

February 23, 2016


In a recent daily render I got to use a technique I haven’t played with in awhile and I thought it would be fun to share. In this tutorial we’ll create black and white images in C4D and Photoshop, convert them to splines via Photoshop paths or a C4D Vectorizer, then play with a combination of different setups to generate different styles of geometry! There is a lot of potential to create many completely different models.


Bonus Renders!





Tutorial Focus:  
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  • I don’t know about anyone else, but the audio is only coming out of 1 ear. Doesn’t seem to be stereo.

  • This is a great tutorial but the audio is only on the right side!

  • It’s a very wealthy tutorial, need to watch it again and again thanks for the great share…

  • Hi. Very great tutorial. The use of photoshop to convert bitmaps into splines via selection and path is awesome ! I would never though about it.

  • Hey Chris, that one was a lot of fun. big thanks

  • could you make these tuts downloadable? I’ve got a weak internet connection, so I usually download the tutorials and watch em from my hard drive.

  • Is this a part one because it would be cool to see how the ice and stuff is textured.

  • WOW Chris, another great tutorial!! Is there anything you can’t solve in C4D?

  • Stunning tutorial!

  • Very cool! Thanks Chris:D

  • Amazing tutorial, thanks Chris for sharing !!!

  • Hi Mike, nice tutorial as always.

    This can help you keep everything parametrical within C4D without the hassle of exporting and reimporting from/to PSD and Ai

  • Hey guys, can you turn on social sharing, i’d like to share some of these tutorials, and it’s always difficult to do so. Thanks!

  • Thank you Chris!
    This one will certainly play on repeat !!!
    Great tutorial!

  • Thanks Chris for reminding us it’s not all about sculpting or what not when it comes to modeling. These are very practical tips that turn great results.

  • Your tutorials are great. I learn so much with just one of your tutorial rather than hours of online video courses. Thank you!

  • Looking absolutely great . I really like how you improved your design skills. Also shows in your daily renders.

  • i was teased with snow in the final render…… I really wanted to know about how to make the snow as well….

    With that said the bridge is awesome…..

    • If there is interest in the snow stuff we can take it another tutorial!

      • I would love to see how the snow is done. And the moss on the bonus render (the one that is the banner on the homepage right now). I am assuming it’s a mask or a falloff shader in the alpha, or something. but seeing it done practically would be super helpful as combining textures like this has been a hurdle for me lately.

      • i would like to learn how to make the snow and ice too πŸ™‚

      • One, I wanted to chime in and say this really was an amazing tutorial!

        Two, I would also be interested in seeing how you did the snow.

        Thanks for all your great work guys!

      • Please do, I’d love to see it!
        Great lesson by the way.

      • I would also love to see how u actually finished the whole scene with snow and ice and everything, amphesising more on the render and material part if possible.

  • Great, GREAT tutorial. You guys are just killing it. I’ve been trying to figure out an easy way to make rocks (would think this would be simple) and this actually worked.

  • woo hoo! you made it again Chris!


  • Great technique Chris. Sooooo many possibilities.

  • Awesome tutorial! Tnx !
    I used it in my work here, where is a fire scene for making a cracked ground :

  • Great tutorial, but you the info in the beginning about the border and then getting it back is a bit awkward. Why the extra steps to get the wbig white spots?

    The info on the levels is wrong, your clipping image info. There for your taking away information and thus details. By clipping the black and the whites your taking out every step in between, so not adding info.

    To get cleaner iport on the mesh use simplify in illustrator, you can narrow down the number of vertices or anchor points as ill calls them. Just a tip ;0

  • Amazing Tutorial Chris! You guys Never cease to amaze! The possibilities are only limited to one’s mind. You really unlock limitless possibilities! Awesome bro!!!

    Also, Roman,
    You implementation of this tutorial on that cracked ground within the Feel Real video was dope!!! Great job overall! Depth of field is on point!

  • Just a word:FANTASTIC!!!
    Thank you.

  • Thank you this is awesome!!!
    i add myself to the list of people that would like to be tutorialized about snow and ice!

  • Quick tip with filling layers with color in Photoshop.

    To fill the layer (or selection) with a color there is a great shortcut – Shift – BACK button. This brings the Fill dialog box.

    BUT if you click on CMD – BACK you get an immediate fill of the background color.

    AND if you click ALT – BACK, you get an immediate fill of the Foreground color.

    Hope that helps.

  • Thanks GSG it is nice tutorial…..

  • Thank you man. It’s a lot of effort thank you very much.

  • This alone was worth the monthly Patreon sub. Brilliant technique thoroughly explained, with tons of potential uses. Thanks, Chris, this was was really great.

  • Chris, thank you for all these axcellent techniques. I really missed the weekly-Chris tuts but this one is really really astonishing.

    I’ve been to Playgrounds Amsterdam last year and one of the presentors was Andrew Thomas Huang. He made clips for Bjork and more awesome stuff. But I was wondering if you have an idea about tackling the colored head in this song: mutual core. (3:35 min). Is this facial tracked?

  • Pure inspiration! Thanks a lott.

  • good tutorial

  • I Learn so much from you guys thank you! You said you’d like to see what people did with your advice so here is my interpretation!1894&authkey=!ALTBD5L9RT8IZ1w&v=3&ithint=photo%2cpng

  • Great tutorial, inspired me πŸ™‚

    greetings from Slovakia

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