Make A Festive Holiday Wreath With Cinema 4D

December 12, 2013

In this tutorial, I will show you how to make this holiday wreath using Mograph, Dynamics, Hair and custom materials. Then, we will light the scene using HDRI Studio Pack and the new GI in Cinema 4D R15.



Tutorial Focus:  , , , ,
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  • Not really a wreath but sort of similar. I used the volume effector for these effects

  • Paul van der Molen December 12, 2013 at 12:29 pm

    and again and again. you make C4d look really simple.
    most of all the planning(howto) is moooooore important than the execution of the job

  • Can i do it with Cinema 4D r13 ? I know it says R15 and up but i guess is it only because of the new GI ?

  • Absolutly awesome !!!

  • As always Nick your tutorials are a wealth (wreath) of information. This one helped me get the Christmas spirit. Happy holidays to you and yours at Greyscalegorilla!

  • Nick u r up for a noble cause of spreading u r wealth of knowledge far n wide…u mite have not realised but u r a reason for many ppls livelyhood best wishes wide u fella..

    • Totally agree. I wouldnt be where I am without Nicks tutorials. Amazing to see someone still offer free, high quaility tutorials.

  • Happy Holidays to you to Nick !!

  • I didn’t find the Hair optiom

    • You need the Studio version of Cinema 4D to use Hair.

      • Damn. I’m stuck too since I have Broadcast. Maybe saying “Studio version needed” at the top would be helpful. I’ve followed a few tutorials here only to get to a point where I realize “Crap that’s not in Broadcast.” and I just stop.

        • Sorry about that joe. I have been trying to say things like that at the beginning of the video, but maybe a text warning will help, too.

        • Just throwing it out there: It wouldn’t work in every instance, especially where the hair dynamics are important, but I bet you could get away with creating a simple plane with 1×3 or 1×4 polygons, and either editing it or using a bend deformer to shape it a little, then use a cloner object with a random effector to distribute it around the wreath in a quasi-realistic way. I’ve had to monkey around with it that way when I wanted to add some DOF to a render in post since hair in C4D doesn’t render in a Depth pass. Not über-efficient, but better than nothing for Broadcast users, maybe?

  • Christmas has come early 🙂 Cheers

  • A suggestion about both variations of the chrome spheres. All they really need is a reflection channel set to 100%, no fresnel, and colour the reflection the colour you want the ball to be. Instant 1 channel, ultra-real chrome. Yours are nice, but they look more glassy than metal. Just a thought…

    • Jay,
      Are’nt x-mas-balls made out of glass?
      In Germany they are … The real ones …

      Happy holydays, even with metal balls 🙂

      • They are made of glass, but coated in that near 100% reflective paint, which is pretty much all you see unless they are backlit.

        Also, tinsel could be better by being made geometry, and then assigned a similar, all-reflective texture to give a shininess that the hair specularity channel can’t really do…

        Festive Robins !

        • This is going totally of track but it got me wondering why aren’t they made out of a plastic instead, I mean if they are covered in reflective paint anyway, plastic seems like a more durable material… Is it just planned obsolescence?

  • Awesome tutorial, as always!

    I actually finished this about five minutes before I saw your new tutorial was up:

  • Hey, my name is Paulo i´m from Chile!!!
    sorry for my english, it´s very basic… i have a question for you… i wanna buy a Mac but, what do you think it´s better for cinema 4d and after effects?

    iMac 27″ Quad Core i5 3.4GHz + 32GB Ram GeForce GTX 775M 2GB, 512 GB SSD or
    Macbook Pro Retina Intel Quad Core i7 2.3 GHz +16GB Ram NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M 2GB, 512 GB SSD

    Thank´s for the help friends!!!

    • Hi Paulo, im not really into this Apple Stuff, but for a smooth work with Cinema 4D there are two things important: The CPU Power/Amount of single Cores (much important for rendering) and the amount of RAM. I own a I7 3930 K with 6 Cores/12 Threads. When i do some Renderings, the Rendertimes are really good in most of my creations…(of course: If you put in alot of stuff like reflections, area shadows, ambient occlusion, and so on and so on the Rendertime is always increasing. Nick has a great tutorial about rendertimeshere on the site) . Bigger Scenes with more objects and textures are better to handle with a nice amount of RAM. So i have 32 GB RAM in my System and i can work really smooth in the C4D Editor….

      In your case i would prefer the IMac instead of the Macbook. In the case of the IMac i would buy one with a i7 CPU (More Cores and more Threads).
      Sorry for my english, but it´s not my native language…

      Hope this was useful.

      Greetings Michael

    • Paulo,
      Im using the late 2013 model Macbook Pro Retina Intel Quad Core i7 2.3 GHz +16GB Ram NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M 2GB, 512 GB SSD.

      Cinema 4d runs great on it. i have done many of the tutorials on here with no problem and my render times are just as good as the ones shown in these tutorials.
      If i was you i would go with the mbp.

    • Dont buy a mac out right, I suggest you build a pc. Head over to
      I’d suggest getting a i7 4770k or a xeon e5 at least.
      You would want a graphics with high vram and lots of cuda cores, though nvidia is much better with this type of stuff.
      Lots of ram is also important

  • Beautiful tutorial as always, and as it is that time of year, I’d just like to say I appreciate (a hell of a lot) the wealth of knowledge and training your website and team has to offer. Without it, I would not be where I am today. 🙂 Merry Christmas guys!

  • What is with ambient occlusion in this case?

  • As always, great tutorial. Whenever I’m feeling creatively drained, one of your tutorials inspires me right back into action. Happy holidays and happy New Year to you and the GSG team!

  • Hi Greyscale nick….Your tutorials are awesome… I following your blog from long time… i try to learn texture mapping…but its really hard to map textures in the object…. can you please teach me the texture mapping subject. i saw you tutorial about uv mapping but i want to know about texture mapping.. please nick….. and GSG Team.

  • Hi Nick,

    as always i really appreciate your efforts to make this tutorials. Your a great inspiration and i follow you since many years. But most of your tutorals are for Studio Users and not for people like me using Broadcast. I work with cinema since 1999 and i spent a lot of money into this software and also a lot of time by getting better (most of them by trial and error, other stuff by books, and tutorials). But it is still a hobby for me, like swimming or football for other people. I dont have 3500 Bucks for buying C4D Studio, but i want to learn like other people…I know i´m not alone with Broadcast or Prime, there are many many people outhere with this versions. So please do us a favour and do some Tutorials for us. And by splitting up this Tutorials in two parts for example you can do a extended Version for all the Studio Users too…Sincerly Michael

  • Where did you get presets in GI? I can’t understand :\

  • great thanks the Gorilla !
    happy holidays in advance 🙂

  • Nick (or anyone else who has a thought),

    1st: Happy holidays!

    ?: The hair makes its way through the spheres (looks like sprouting hair) and it looks a little scrappy. Any way to get the hair to respect the space the spheres take up?

    I’ve tried various dynamic settings but nothing that works yet.


    • I’m also having trouble with intersecting hair..
      I know you can give objects a hair collider tag so it would bounce off, but it doesn’t work a 100%.
      Does someone know how you can completely block hairs to go through certain objects?

  • Great Tutorial. I’ve found all your stuff useful.
    Here is my effort, didn’t go way out of the box on it but I did use your Texture Kit Pro 🙂


  • I was following your tutorials since long time.. and it helps me to learn cinema 4d. But from 2 or 3 days I am not able to see any of your video (not even the video window) on my screen. please help me
    I am using i7, 8 gm ram with windows 7 …(which was working fine )
    no h/w or s/w changes done.

  • Can you make the wreathe circular shape into a custom shape?

  • My baubles don’t look right…they are too uniform around the radius..there’s no randomness in their position around the torus…even with everything followed…I am so confused!!!

  • I`ve tried everything I can think of and I still can not get the hair (tinsel) to not go through the ornaments. Put tags several different ways. Even tried messing with dropping the hair down on the ornaments and nope still didin`t work. It always sticks through. Is it that C4d`s hair dynamics just are not that good or is there a way to do that.

  • Hello Mr Nick. I am very glad to know you.
    I love you with cinema 4 d of good things for me.
    I ‘m interested in this software. Vtaz·h have started working with it.
    Can you send me e- learning software tutorials to help. Thanks to you

  • If you’re having trouble with getting the balls to stop “rolling” (I’m using R14) – go to your Rigid body tag and under the Force tag increase the linear and angular dampening values.

    Linear dampening will pop the balls out to their final resting points quicker while Angular dampening will eliminate the ball’s rotation.


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