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Introducing 3ds Max 9: 3D for Beginners

Introducing 3ds Max 9: 3D for Beginners

ISBN: 978-0-470-16948-3

Jul 2007

527 pages

Select type: E-Book


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Video game and feature-film artists have used 3ds Max to create Halo 2, King Kong, Myst V, and more. Now you can harness this popular animation software with the clear, step-by-step instructions in this easy-to-follow guide. This book breaks down the complexities of 3D modeling, texturing, animating, and visual effects. Clear-cut explanations, tutorials, and hands-on projects help build your skills and a special color insert includes real-world examples from talented 3ds Max beginners.

Note: CD-ROM/DVD and other supplementary materials are not included as part of eBook file.

Introduction xii

Chapter 1 Basic Concepts 1

How to Read This Book 2

What Is CGI? 2

Production Workflow 4

CG Workflow 8

CG Specialties 12

Core Concepts 14

Coordinate Systems 22

Basic Animation Concepts 23

Basic 3ds Max Terms and Concepts 27

Summary 30

Chapter 2 Your First Max Animation 31

Getting Around in 3ds Max 32

Project and File Management Workflow 32

The 3ds Max Interface 35

Jumping Headlong into Animation 41

Setting Up the Hierarchy 52

Summary 59

Chapter 3 The 3ds Max Interface 61

What Am I Looking At? 62

Managing Scene Objects 96

Summary 103

Chapter 4 Modeling in 3ds Max: Part I 105

Planning Your Model 106

Modeling Concepts 107

Look at the Mesh You Got Us Into! 119

Editable Poly Tools 129

Modeling a Chest of Drawers 137

Modeling a Hand 164

Summary 177

Chapter 5 Modeling in 3ds Max: Part II 179

Setting Up the Scene 180

The Editable Poly Tools 184

Lofting the Barrel 206

Lathing the Wheels 215

Using Snapshot to Create the Tracks 217

Summary 223

Chapter 6 Organic Poly Modeling 225

Setting Up the Scene 226

Creating the Basic Form 231

Adding Detail 254

Final Touches 271

Summary 273

Chapter 7 Materials and Mapping 275

Materials 276

The Material Editor 278

Mapping a Pool Ball 294

Mapping, Just a Little Bit More 302

Maps 305

More Mapping Exercises 309

Mapping Coordinates 315

Summary 323

Chapter 8 Introduction to Animation 325

Hierarchy in Animation: The Mobile Redux 326

Using Dummy Objects 330

Bouncing Ball 333

Using the Track Editor–Curve Editor 335

Track View 350

Anticipation and Momentum in

Knife Throwing 354

Summary 364

Chapter 9 Character Studio and IK Animation 365

Character Animation 366

Character Studio Workflow 366

Creating a Biped 368

Animating a Biped 376

Associating a Biped to a Character 391

Using Inverse Kinematics 399

Summary 404

Chapter 10 3ds Max Lighting 405

Basic Lighting Concepts 406

Three-Point Lighting 408

3ds Max Lights 411

Common Light Parameters 425

Ambient Light 432

Creating Shadows 432

Atmospheres and Effects 438

Light Lister 442

Summary 443

Chapter 11 3ds Max Rendering 445

Rendering Setup 446

Motion Blur 455

Previewing with ActiveShade 457

Cameras 457

Safe Frame 462

Render Elements 463

Rendering Effects 466

Raytraced Reflections and Refractions 470

Summary 477

Chapter 12 Particles and Dynamics 479

Understanding Particle Systems 480

Setting Up a Particle System 484

Particle Systems and Space Warps 499

Using Rigid Body Dynamics 504

Using Soft Body Dynamics 511

Summary 514

Index 515

  • Tutorials offer realistic, professional challenges for those new to 3D, and to those coming from another 3D application.
  • Each chapter leads with an introduction to the topic and explains methods, as well why certain methods are used.
  • Each chapter is richly illustrated with workflows and examples to make following the sometimes difficult subject matter much easier and fun.
  • The book evenly covers all aspects a beginner should be familiar with for a solid foundation of 3ds Max
  • Because 3ds Max is used extensively in game creation, the book offers readers extra information for 3D creation in a game pipeline, as well as traditional film and TV production environments.
  • Teaches the basics of modeling, texturing, animating, and visual effects to familiarize readers with the program as a whole and encourage them to find what aspects of the production pipeline appeal to them.
  •  Color insert provides real-world examples from talented beginning 3ds max users to attract readers who aspire to learn the software.
  • The CD includes all the files and support materials needed to create the tutorials in the book.