Feel­ing ready to take on the Rolls-Royce of ren­der en­gines? This epic course from CG spe­cial­ist Stephen DeLalla will help

ImagineFX - - Contents -

Chaos Group’s V-Ray is ar­guably the Rolls-Royce of third-party ren­der en­gines, soft­ware you can bolt onto your ex­ist­ing CG soft­ware to gen­er­ate su­pe­rior re­sults. Its su­perb ren­der­ings are achieved via no small amount of set­tings, cus­tom ma­te­ri­als and lights. This puts the chal­lenge of cre­at­ing an ac­ces­si­ble in­tro­duc­tion to V-Ray on about the same plane as writ­ing an in­tro­duc­tion to quan­tum physics.

So it shouldn’t come as any sur­prise that Stephen DeLalla’s In­tro­duc­tion to V-Ray video runs for over 10 hours and re­quires both prior knowl­edge of CG prin­ci­ples and a readi­ness to re­visit. In this re­spect, ‘In­tro­duc­tion’ is a lit­tle mis­lead­ing – those new to the prin­ci­ples of 3D soft­ware are best off look­ing else­where for guid­ance.

Stephen starts with a half-hour tour of how the soft­ware in­te­grates with Maya: some de­tails will be dif­fer­ent if you’re us­ing an­other host pro­gram, such as 3ds Max, but the bulk of the video is ap­pli­ca­ble to V-Ray with any host. Then it’s time to dive in, with over­views of lin­ear work­flow, Adap­tive DMC (the sys­tem V-Ray uses to cal­cu­late the ren­der) and ma­te­ri­als. Stephen moves on to top­ics in­clud­ing V-Ray’s own lights, us­ing Global Il­lu­mi­na­tion and Ren­der El­e­ments. The fi­nal hour brings every­thing to­gether as Stephen ex­plains how to cre­ate and ren­der a sin­gle im­age, to help your un­der­stand­ing of how to start with the end-stage of V-Ray in mind.

Nearly 2GB of Maya files are supplied if you want to study any set­tings in even more de­tail than Stephen’s of­fered. It adds up to a mon­u­men­tal en­deav­our that’s worth the time of any­one who works with V-Ray.

In com­mon with other Gnomon Work­shop re­leases, In­tro­duc­tion to V-Ray is avail­able only in a monthly or an­nual sub­scrip­tion to Gnomon’s train­ing li­brary, and not as a stand­alone down­load.

Stephen DaLalla’s ex­haus­tive video re­veals how to achieve top re­sults in V-Ray, but you’ll need to have some prior 3D knowl­edge. With its semi­translu­cent qual­i­ties and com­plex tex­tures, skin is one of the most dif­fi­cult sur­faces for artists to de­pict. Early chap­ters cover some of the ba­sics of work­ing with V-Ray ma­te­ri­als and shaders. The fi­nal hour sees Stephen guid­ing you through the process of cre­at­ing the video’s promo im­age.

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