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Global Illumination abuse

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I've only been using Cinema 4D for two years and only one of them professionally. I constantly see people using Global Illumination on the simplest things. Basically creating long renders for very little reward. Am I crazy? Or are people really abusing it?

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I'm actually exporting with GI right now but like monovich said ... It may take some extra time but it does look alot better. Most of the time I don't use GI ... Anytime I use it, it's mostly for stills and the like

 

Cheers

Florio

Edited by florio

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Or are people really abusing it?

 

They are on some level. I'm certainly not the greatest lighting and texturing artist, either, but how sometimes people use some cheap AO and GI to "add depth" and disguise deficiencies in their modeling or lighting setups is ridiculous. That more than anything else is why after 18 years of doing 3D, I still try to avoid going that road (along with the usual deadline considerations). There is nothing wrong with AO and radiosity, it just needs to be used with restraint and based on an educated decision rather than as a last resort - like anything. Of course some stuff makes it almost mandatory, if you think of specific visualization types, but I'm not convinced that logos and candy graphics necessarily look better with GI. Sometimes it even defeats its own purpose - it's many times possible to create a more stylized "GI-ish" look by simply overcranking lights and playing with specular/ diffuse shading as well as distance and incidence based gradients... Hell, my favorite trick in Lightwave still is simply painting a weight map and feeding that into gradient textures....

 

Mylenium

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Guest Sao_Bento

It's 3D's version of a drop shadow. Adds depth and contrast while not drawing attention to the fact that you painted yourself into a corner because of your choice of colors.

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It's 3D's version of a drop shadow. Adds depth and contrast while not drawing attention to the fact that you painted yourself into a corner because of your choice of colors.

I was going to say it was 3D's version of auto-tune.

It was rather nice when it was used to boost quality 10% but now everybody just turns it to 100%.

 

Meh. Of the things that can be abused... I mostly find it non-offensive*.

 

-m

 

 

 

* (artistically that is... god help you if you hand me a bloated GI scenefile on a job. your sorry ass will be mocked.)

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I think another reason you see it more is that it takes so much less time to render now, be that because of faster computers or better renderers. I definitely don't think twice about using it even in light of tight deadlines. Its probably the modern equivalent of turning on ray traced shadows 15 years ago.

 

But since we're complaining, how about the over use of the purple tinted vintage photograph look? It has gotten completely out of control and over-used, and its only going to get worse.

 

And the whole triangle tessellation thing is now officially easy for anyone to do. Its everywhere, and I haven't even gotten to use it in a project yet (dammit!).

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I think another reason you see it more is that it takes so much less time to render now, be that because of faster computers or better renderers.

 

Yes, definitely a valid point. Though, and that's probably the whole concern here, just turning it on doesn't necessarily produce better pictures, just a specific kind of look which may not always represent the best option for a given situation.

 

I definitely don't think twice about using it even in light of tight deadlines.

 

I definitely do... Radiosity is still a nightmare with transparencies and micro detailing as it regularly occurs in CAD visualization even in fast renderers like Ligtwave's or modo's.

 

Mylenium

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But since we're complaining, how about the over use of the purple tinted vintage photograph look? It has gotten completely out of control and over-used, and its only going to get worse.

 

 

That so funny because a couple years ago I spent a whack of time correcting shitty old photos for a corporate piece. The photos all looked just like that. If only trends happened at convenient times.

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I definitely don't think twice about using it even in light of tight deadlines.

 

 

I sometimes use it because of tight deadlines. It's easier than doing a million render tests to make sure my lights are all positioned correctly and when I have had GI issues I've only had to rerender a couple of frames to fix them.

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GI looks good guys, sorry to break it to you, so do crossed processed colors. normal renders are boring and perfect texturing enters the great valley (of jealousy, among other things.)

 

Monovich, you should "hipstamatic" your GI renders and blow some minds! haha

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I do see a lot of times where the 3D is used for illustrative purposes (like a graph or text or something) and the GI and AO are cranked way up. Yeah, I have to agree, a little tired of that. If your design can't hold up without the GI, are you really designing? I think it's a style choice though, do you want your 3D to look realistic or more graphic? In reference to what Sao said, drop shadows aren't the devil, I use a shitload of drop shadows, but you just have to make a conscious choice to use them, don't just turn them on because your design sucks.

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I definitely don't think twice about using it even in light of tight deadlines.

 

Hey Monovich do you use online render farms or have your own mini render farm going? Just finished a project for the first time with a bunch o GI and the render hit was pretty big, actually got lucky there were no client changes, but definitely had to really think hard before going that route. Just curious how people handle budgeting the time and CPUs for GI

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I have a little five computer render farm but it isn't incredibly powerful (Its a bunch of Q6600 machines, pre i7)

 

Unlike 90% of mograph people I use Lightwave for 3d and its renderer is pretty good at chewing through GI scenes very quickly. Definitely way faster than the built-in Cinema renderer. I also use a 3rd party renderer called FPrime that sometimes chews through GI in seemingly near realtime.

 

I think VRay for Cinema is supposed to be pretty awesome for GI and speed, judging by all the gushing tweets about it.

 

For deadlines I know plenty of people just hire out to an external render farm, of which there are many.

 

I don't mark up the budget for GI, at least not as a line item.

Edited by monovich

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Unlike 90% of mograph people I use Lightwave for 3d and its renderer is pretty good at chewing through GI scenes very quickly. Definitely way faster than the built-in Cinema renderer. I also use a 3rd party renderer called FPrime that sometimes chews through GI in seemingly near realtime.

 

Holy crap!! I used Lightwave for years and still have ridiculous issues with achieving motion graphics. Pretty much the reason why I switched to C4D. I saw your demo reel and now that you say it was Lightwave, I am just completely dumbfounded. Damn!!!

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I used Lightwave for years and still have ridiculous issues with achieving motion graphics. Pretty much the reason why I switched to C4D.

 

Not to threadjack, but you definitely had to suffer through the 6.x and 7.x years. 8.x wasn't horrible. 9.x started getting good again. 10.x has been pretty rad.

 

That said, it still has plenty of Achilles heels and I have no problem recommending to most people that they just go with C4D for the sake of mograph and ease of use. For someone like me know knows LW inside out (including bugs) its worth sticking around.

 

We did just get a fantastic 1 click AE syncing plugin that will make the few faithful LW mograph peeps very happy.

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Awww good to know! I stopped at 9.6.... Well not really. I use Lightwave to do modeling and then I import that model into C4D. I really need to learn how to just do it within C4D. Anyway, I will ask my employer about v10. Thanks for the info.

One more thing. Would you mind giving me a few examples of the updates that you saw useful in ver 10 in PM when you have time? I don't want this to thread to become a Lightwave questions thread. Thanks!!

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