I started working with MaxwellZone for about 1 year producing sets of materials based on photographic references found in the shop of this site. Lately trying to test Maxwell Render on interior projects I have produced a small setting and, talking with Mihai, we decided to share on the blog the main steps on which I based my work.
Leonardo Giomarelli (ilgioma on the Maxwell official forums), who is the creator of some great materials on MZ (Copper, Brass, Plastic) has been kind enough to give us a glimpse of his workflow in creating these beautiful interior renders of a modern bathroom.
Choosing a project
Personally I find most of the inspirations for my projects on Pinterest, I think this social media is structured in an exceptional way for those who need to check trends, color palettes, compositions etc. But we must be careful not to remain too faithful to a single image to avoid the replication effect that I do not like. If the project I want to do represents a bathroom, I’m also looking for references to bedrooms, kitchens or anything else from the images of the guidelines for the creation of my work. In any case, for my inspirations I always try to prefer photographic shots to other projects realized in CGI, it is always good to have something real as the first reference.
From idea to 3D
Here there is very little to say… knowing how to model well reproducing details will bring the project to a higher level right away. Obviously for the fabrics you can not do without Marvelous Designer.
Creating good lighting
Choosing the type of lighting is essential for creating engaging images. Of all the known techniques I have always preferred the Sky Dome because it offers me a neutral and very soft light to be used as primary light. Depending on the design and the type of product to be represented I always go to add support lights to enhance certain areas or to have a light complementary to the primary perhaps warmer so as to give dynamism to the shot. The following pictures show the Sky Dome settings and the layout of the lights used in this job.
A little trick: Generally as a basis of the architectonic I always put a disk or a floor to simulate a pavement outside the building that obviously contributes to bring into the room the light reflected by the Sky Dome. On this disc or plane (it makes no difference) I always apply a very simple material with a medium gray color RGB 180, never white. This is to avoid burning too much the areas near the openings.
Up to this point everything is relatively simple but, believe me, using approximate and “perfect” materials will cancel every effort. Metal materials in particular, can push the image towards photorealism if well calibrated. For my project I made extensive use of the materials available on MaxwellZone, so in addition to steel I also used the Ceramic Zirconia as a starting point for the tub and the elements of the radiators.
When I have to make simple glasses like the vase I rely on the Maxwell Render presets, I find it very easy to use and at the same time effective. For other materials concerning textiles and walls, I used textures on some models purchased on Bentanji. I think this is also a very useful resource for us Maxwell users.
The finishing touches
There is no rendering without post production but it is necessary to prepare well all the render passes. In the image I show which passes I always render out.
As for the Alpha Custom channels, I usually use them only if I have objects that are difficult to select with just MaterialID or ObjectID, in this case, branches and flowers. Below I will show the images that make up the project before and after the adjustments in Photoshop. As you will see, there are images that need very slight adjustments, while others need more work to show their full potential…
This image has been worked on very little, I only wanted to give a warm tone that in my opinion improves the look.
Here, however, the adjustments were more massive, I wanted it to come out an emotional shot and then I pushed on a bloom effect typical of backlighting. To obtain it, simply select the opening area, fill the selection with a white color and then use a blur filter to increase the value until a credible effect is obtained. The original shot was also underexposed, in this case I remedied directly on Photoshop, but I could do it with the Multilight.
Still little adjustments to even out the tonality of previous shots.
In the presence of metal details, I like to include some chromatic aberration in the renderings. It is an artifact present on the photos. Here’s a link where it’s explained how it is generated in photography and how to do it in Photoshop.