Tag Archives: Software

5-a-side win!

The Microspot 5-a-side football team won 14-8 last night after a superb match! A game like that shows we are so much more than graphic designers, sales, marketing and 2D/3D software developers 🙂

Continuing work with a bigger smile today 🙂

Screen Shot 2013-05-17 at 09.29.53

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Tips and Tricks for Working With Renderers #10:

Tips and Tricks for use with Microspot Interiors #10:

Working With Renderers

Best advice for rendering high quality images.
When working in 3D there is often a need to generate high quality, high DPI images. Doing this can sometimes take a long time, depending on the complexity of your scene and it is important to try and get things right the first time. Just about every 3D scene or model will include textures, therefore it is important for you to remember that the size of the textures you use should correlate to the render you are creating.

If you are using repeatable textures then the quality of the textures you are using does not always need to be changed, but if you are use standard textures that do not repeat, then you will need to increase their pixel size to suit the large render that you will be creating. If I am rendering an image at 4000 x 4000 pixels, I will always try and make my non-repeatable textures 2000 x 2000 pixels. Then when you add them to the scene, you must hold the Shift key down when dragging in, that way the textures will not get sample by the application.

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Tips and Tricks for Working With Renderers #9:

Tips and Tricks for use with Microspot Interiors #9:

Working With Renderers

Always remember to check how your scene looks?

When creating 3D models it is always important to keep an eye of renderings of the model or scene. Interiors has a preview renderer that allows you to quickly render your scene and get an idea of how it looks with the lighting and shadows and will give you insight into areas of the scene that may need more work and attention. The RayShade renderer can take more time to generate, if you are using it to preview then my advise is to make the window size of your document small.

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Tips and Tricks for Working With Renderers #8:

Tips and Tricks for use with Microspot Interiors #8:

Working With Renderers

The best way to set up the lighting of a 3D Model.
Creating a 3D model and a 3D interior scene require 2 different styles in lighting. The interior scenes will use the default methods with sun, ambient and any other light sources you add, whereas rendering a 3D model requires a little more attention to the lighting aspects of the scene and also the renderer you use. Over the years I have been able to develop a working method when wanting to render a 3D Model in Interiors Pro using the RayShade renderer, where by the use of point lights and sun direction with the Ambient light turned off. The key points to remember are:

– Always turn the Ambient light off, so that the model does not get over exposed by light.

– Make sure the sun light is pointing at the model, coming from the opposite direct to where the camera is looking at.

– Add point and spot lights to the scene and control their brightness using the Info palette.

– Make the background color of your document black so that it does not create a washed out effect when rendering.
If you use these techniques when rendering with the RayShade renderer, you will get a more realistic looking effect to the reflections and the surfaces that you have.

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Tips and Tricks for Working With Textures #7:

Tips and Tricks for use with Microspot Interiors #7:

Working With Textures

The illusion of using a texture for repeatable detail.
One of the hugest problems in 3D modelling is when complex models slow the application you are using down. A prime example of this is if you were trying to 3D model a panel or grill. To remove all of the cuts outs in 3D, especially if they are curved will generate a huge number of triangles on the surface. If the object you are trying to create is not for close up rendering then the best way I have found to overcome this issue is to use textures to give the illusion of a 3D cut out. Create a repeatable texture that has a surface with a area that you want cut out set as a bevel or emboss effect. This will give the effect of a piece of material cut away from the surface.

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Tips and Tricks for Working With Textures #6:

Tips and Tricks for use with Microspot Interiors #6:

Working With Textures

What is the best format and size for textures?

When working with textures there are a number of factors that you will need to take into account. The best thing to do is to create a repeatable texture, so that you can keep the pixel size of the texture down, but when added into the 3D model it will repeat itself perfectly. The best size of textures for a standard 3D scene is 512 x 512 repeatable, however if you are looking to create a high dpi and pixel render then you may need to use 1024 x1024. The key thing to remember when using textures in 3D scenes is that the more different ones you have and the larger they are the slower the scene will become. If you find that you need to use larger textures then the best thing for you to do is try to leave them out of the scene until the end, and then add them last before you render. You can add them in during the design process to see how the model looks, but can remove them using the Delete option in the Edit menu.

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Tips and Tricks for Creating 3D Models #4:

Tips and Tricks for use with Microspot Interiors #4:

Creating 3D Models

How to make a realistic shiny glass screen?

One of the biggest things I have been asked over the years is how do I create a realistic looking glass covering. The problem is not with the rendering attributes, like reflectivity and color that people assign it’s actually with the 3D modelling style they use. The common mistake is to have a surface that acts as a screen and apply an image and then apply the reflectivity to that. This is not the best method, although it will work it won’t create a realistic effect. Lets take a mobile phone screen as an example:

Screen Shot 2013-01-11 at 16.18.49

When working on this the most common way to create the screen would be to apply the screen shot of the screen you are trying to create and set the mirror setting on that to create the reflective glass effect. The way I do it is to create something much like what is in real life. Build the screen up in layers. The first would be the under frame for the screen, the second being the screen itself and the third being the glass covering.

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Tips and Tricks for Creating 3D Models #3:

Tips and Tricks for use with Microspot Interiors #3:

Creating 3D Models

How to create a hollowed out curved shape?
It’s much easier to create a hollow out shape for a box or something with square surfaces, but what is sometimes overlooked is the complexity of creating a curved surface. In this tip I am going to outline the best way to create a hollowed out curved surface in Interiors Pro. Lets take a Bowl as an example and look at the ways to create the profile for it. There are many key points to remember to successfully create this 3D shape:

– To create a precise shape for this example we will need to use the Lathe tool. The Lathe tool is perfect for creating a cross-section for a given circular revolution shape.

– The Lathe tool can be used to define the axis of revolution for the cross-section you are creating.

– The way the lathe tool works is simple. You decide the axis of revolution, then you have to draw the section at which you want the tool to extrude around the axis.

Below is 2 images, one showing the cross section you draw when using the lathe tool and the other is the 3D profile that is created from the Lathe extrusion.

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You can see from the main image, the Section Palette and the section that has been put together to create the simple bowl shape.

Here is the best tip for this, when you use the lathe tool only place the basic points, then you can edit the detail of the cross- section in the Section palette afterwards. This will save a lot of time in the long run and will make it easier for you to customize the design of the shape that you are trying to create.

There are 3 stages to using the Lathe tool, as follows:

– Draw the axis line for which the section will revolve around.

– Then you will need to click the start point for the section.

– Start drawing the basic points for the section and double click when you are happy.

Now use the Section palette to edit the cross-section.

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Tips and Tricks for Creating 3D Models #2:

Tips and Tricks for use with Microspot Interiors #2:

Creating 3D Models

Understanding the Model you are trying to create.
3D Modelling can sometimes be a difficult if you do not know how to build the model. The best way to overcome this confusion is to try to understand how an object is built in real life. Lets take a Kitchen Cabinet door as an example. Above is an image that shows how one is constructed, you can use this to help you understand how to build the 3D Model, to get the best and most realistic outcome.

Screen Shot 2013-01-11 at 15.21.34

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Tips and Tricks for use with DWG Viewer #5:

Tips and Tricks for use with Microspot DWG Viewer #5:

Always check before you print your annotated DWG file.
I have always found the best practice when intending to print your annotated DWG file is to use the Save As PDF with Annotations option to double check that it is laid out how you want it to be.

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