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Create a Futuristic Airship Scene in C4D – Part 2

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This post is part of a series called Create a Futuristic Airship Scene in C4D.
Create a Futuristic Airship Scene in C4D - Part 1

In the second part of this intermediate 2-part tutorial, Konstantin Muromtsev will be showing us how to finish up this futuristic aircraft scene using Cinema4D. After adding in the remaining ship, we'll create the environment, add lighting, and make use of the Camera shader from MoGraph 2. Finally, we'll then take a look at how Advanced Render post-effects such as Highlights and Glow can be used when compositing in Photoshop.

Step 1

We'll start off by creating the Display ship by utilising many of the same tools as we did for Day 1. So, first select the copy of the original ship made in Step 21 of Day 1 and make it visible. Select 6 polygons on the side of the ship as shown and use the Extrude Inner tool on them with an offset of approximately 3m. This will become the main display area.

Step 2

Extrude the selected polygons with a negative offset value of approximately 3m, and then use Extrude Inner on them with a similar negative offset value.

Step 3

Select 6 polygons on the front of the ship, and cut them in half using the Knife tool, with the Mode set to Plane, and the Plane set to X-Z.

Step 4

Select these 9 polygons and use the Extrude Inner tool to inset them as shown.

Step 5

Extrude the selected polygons into the ship by using a negative offset value, and then use Extrude Inner as shown.

Step 6

Finally Extrude the selected polygons back out so that they are on the same level (or just higher) than the main body of the ship. Use the Set Selection command as outlined in Day 1, Step 21.

Step 7

Select these 3 polygons on the sides below our previous extrusion, and cut them using the Knife tool with Mode set to Plane, the Plane set to X-Z, Cuts set to 2 with a Spacing of approximately 25m.

Step 8

Select the 3 polygons that run horizontally across the center of our newly cut section and Extrude them twice as shown.

Step 9

Now use Extrude Inner on our wing-tips, and then Extrude the polygons into the body of the wing as shown using a negative offset value. With this done, use Extrude Inner one more time on the selected polygons, however this time only use a very small distance - it should be barely noticeable! This is just to add a crease to the inside edge. Finally, add the selected polygons to a selection set called Nozzle using the Set Selection tool as before.

Step 10

We'll now move on to adding in the individual displays. First of all create a Cube object with dimensions of roughly 56m x 30m x 7m, and then make it editable.

Step 11

Select one of biggest side polygons, and then use Extrude Inner, followed by Extrude to create the mesh shown.

Step 12

Now, use Extrude Inner again, but this time use a negative offset value to essentially scale up the polygon so that it sticks through the sides of the box. With that done scale the selected polygon down on the Y-axis so it's only sticking through the sides and not the top and bottom, and then Set Selection.

Step 13

We'll now add a small amount of detail to the other side of the object, so first select the back polygon, then use Extrude Inner followed by an Extrude to get the following shape.

Step 14

Subdivide the object by going to Functions > Subdivide, and then changing the Subdivisions value to 2 and clicking Ok.

Step 15

Duplicate the object to fill up the display area. When you're happy with the layout, group all displays under a single null object by selecting all of the displays and hitting Alt-G.

Step 16

Now we need to group the displays group along with the main body, so select our new null group object, then the main body object and hit Alt-G again. With our new group null selected, we can add all of the objects to HyperNURBS by going to Objects > NURBS and then Alt-Clicking HyperNURBS. Now select the HyperNURBS object from the objects list, and in the Coord. tab of it's Attributes, change the S.x, S.y and S.z values to 3, 6 and 6 respectively to get the following result. And with that the ship is complete!

Step 17

So, onto the materials! First, create a new material and in the Material Editor, change it's Color to very light blue (in my case I used 236 239 255). For Texture, select Noise and then in the Shader Properties, select a grey for Color 1 and white for Color 2. Now change the Global Scale to something very high, around 1000-1500%, and change the Mix Mode (just off screen here) to Multiply.

Step 18

Turn on the Luminance checkbox and in the Luminance properties change Color to blue (in my case 63 76 181), and change the Brightness value to approximately 20%.

Step 19

Now turn on Reflection, change it's Color to a light blue (approximately 200 221 255), it's Brightness to around 90% and it's Mix Mode to Multiply. For Texture, add in a white to grey Fresnel.

Step 20

Turn on Bump, change the Strength value to approximately 10%, and in the Texture slot, add Noise with the Color values set to white and grey, and then set the Global Scale to just less than 1000%.

Step 21

Now to finalise this material, add in Specular. Change the Width to approximately 30%, the Height to around 150%, the Falloff to -15%, and set the Inner Width to about 10%. Our windshield material is now ready.

Step 22

Create one last material for the ship. Turn on Luminance, and use Noise as the Texture, and change the Global Scale to something very low (in my case 4%). Our static display material is ready!

Step 23

Assign our existing base metal material to both the displays group and the ship.

Step 24

Assign the existing nozzle material to our new nozzles selection set.

Step 25

Assign the windshield material to the main windshield area.

Step 26

Finally, assign our static display material to any of the displays that you don't want to be turned on in the final image.

Step 27

Now onto scene creation! First, create a Landscape object by going to Objects > Primitive > Landscape. In the Object tab of it's attributes, change the Size to very large values (something like 65000x2500x65000), the Width and Height to approximately 200, the Rough Furrows and Fine Furrows to 100%, and finally the Scale to around 6.

Step 28

Create a Sky object by going to Objects > Sky > Create Sky. In the Time and Location tab of it's attributes, change the time to a mid-evening, approximately 20:00. All of the other options are not important for now, however feel free to change them when experimenting with the final render!

Step 29

In the Sky tab, change Turbidity to 100%, Ozone to approximately 20%, and the Atmosphere Strength to around 30%. Then uncheck both Physical Sky and Custom Horizon.

Step 30

Back in the Basic tab, uncheck Sun and turn on Clouds. Head over to the Clouds tab, and add in a black to white gradient for the Rolloff as shown below. For now, leave only one layer checked and start experimenting with the options to get a look that you like! My settings are shown below :

Step 31

Check Fog in the Basic tab and then head over to the Fog attributes tab. As we are not at ground level, we need to change the Start Height to a negative value; I used -1500m. Then change the End Height to around 3000-4000m, the Max. Distance to approximately 90000m, and the Density to around 35%. Add in a very big values for the Scale, somewhere around 2000%-6000%. Finally change Shadow density to 5% and the Illumination Intensity to 15%, to ensure that we can see it clearly in our final render.

Step 32

To light our scene, we'll create an Infinite Light by going to Objects > Scene > Infinite Light. In it's attributes, change Color to very light green (in my case 239 246 244), Intensity to around 130%, and finally change Shadow to use Shadow Maps (Soft).

Step 33

We'll now move on to texturing the landscape. So first create another new material, change it's Color to white, it's Mix Mode to Multiply, and then add Layer in the Texture slot.

Step 34

Click on the word Layer to access it's properties, and then, using the Shader button on the Shader attributes tab, add one Gradient layer and 3 Noise layers. Click on the Gradient thumbnail and set it to be a dark orange to light grey gradient. Then change the Type to be 3D - Linear, the Start to be 0 500 0, the End to be 0 -3500 0, and the Space to World.

Step 35

Click the back arrow to return to our Layer attributes. Go through each of the Noise layers and change the Scale and Type values to 400% & FBM, 50-100% & Poxo, and 10-30% with Buya noise, respectively.

Step 36

Click back again to return to our main material attributes, and in the Basic tab turn on Diffusion. In the Texture channel, add a Noise shader, and then alter it's properties so that the Noise type is Luka, and the scale is somewhere between 600%-900%. Back in the Diffusion tab, set the Mix Strength to a low value, around 10%-20%.

Step 37

Back in our main material attributes, turn on Bump and change it's Strength to approximately 70%. Add in a Layer shader in the texture slot. In the Layer shader's attributes, add two noises as before, the first with a low-scaled Turbulence noise type, and the second with a high-scaled Stupl or Luka noise type.

Step 38

In the Specular attributes for our main material, change the Width to something very low (I used 2%), and then change the Height to 15%.

Step 39

In the Illumination tab, change the Model to Oren-Nayar, the Diffuse Falloff to approximately -15%, and finally the Roughness to about 35%. Our landscape material is complete!

Step 40

Assign our new landscape material to our landscape object, and then add the object to HyperNURBS.

Step 41

We'll now finalise the layout of our scene. Position the Display ship and the Camera ships around it. Make sure that the cameras at the very front of the camera ships have good points of view, as this'll become important in a second!

Step 42

Create one final new material. Turn on Luminance and then in the Luminance attributes, add in a Camera Shader from the Mograph menu option as our Texture. Now duplicate this material for every screen you want to be turned on in the final render!

Step 43

For each material with the Camera Shader applied, go into the Camera Shader attributes, and then drag the relevant camera object from the front of a camera ship into the Camera slot.

Step 44

Final, assign the materials to the screens on the side of the main ship.

Step 45

You'll want to duplicate all of the ships several times so that they have something to reflect in the final render.

Step 46

Choose a good point of view using the Editor Camera from the viewport Cameras menu, and once you're happy, create a new Camera object. With the camera selected in the objects list, go to Tags > Cinema 4D Tags > Compositing to add a compositing tag, and then in the Compositing tag's attributes, go to the Object Buffer tab and enable the first check-box. This will be used with the glow effect later on in the process.

Step 47

Now open the Render Settings by going to Render > Render Settings, or by hitting Ctrl+B. Tweak the Output and Save options as required. I typically save a Multi-Pass output in .PSD Photoshop format.

Step 48

Now check the Multi-Pass option and using the Multi-Pass menu button, add in all of the used channels as seen below, along with the Object Buffer pass :

Step 49

In the Anti-Aliasing section, change Anti-Aliasing to Best and the Filter to Sinc which should give us the sharpest results.

Step 50

Select Glow using the Effect menu button to add the Glow effect to our scene. In the Glow settings, change the Object ID to match the Object Buffer number found in the camera's Compositing tag. Here I've used 10, though by default this will be set to 1. Now slightly lower the Luminosity value, which will turn down the amount of glow in our scene.

Step 51

Just as with the glow, add a Highlights effect from the Effects menu button. In the settings, raise the Threshold value to around 150%, and then lower the Maximum Flare Intensity and the Flare Size values as shown. This is to prevent the final render appearing blown-out. Finally, choose a presets that you like or you could even create your own using the Edit button. We're now ready to render!

Step 52

With our scene rendered it's onto the final post-production! Open the rendered .psd file in Photoshop, and then merge all of the layers except the Highlights layer into a brand new layer by selecting them and hitting Ctrl+E (or CMD-E on a Mac).

Step 53

Now we need to add in some motion blue. First of all, switch over to the Channels tab and Ctrl+click on the Depth channel thumbnail. Then invert your selection by pressing Ctrl+Shift+i, which will select everything except the ships (we don't want these to be blurred! With the merged layer selected, go to Filter > Blur > Motion Blur. In the Motion Blur dialog, choose an Angle that matches the ship's direction and a large Distance value (I used something around 150-200 pixels). Click OK to apply.

Step 54

Now, deselect everything using the Ctrl-D shortcut, and then with the same layer selected, go to Filters > Blur > Lens Blur. In the Lens Blur settings, change the Source to Depth, change the Radius to approximately 25 and the noise Amount to around 5. Click OK to apply.

Step 55

Duplicate the Atmosphere layer by selecting it and going to Layer > Duplicate Layer, and then clicking OK. Place the new copy on top of the layer stack and change it's fill value to 30-40% to fade it out slightly.

Step 56

Finally, place the Highlights layer on top of the stack, and if needs be, erase some of the areas where they are a little overblown. The image is now complete! Feel free to leave me any comments below and I'll try to get back to you when I can. Thanks!

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