There’s nothing new about 3D cars. You see them all the time in movies and television commercials. The fun 3D cars like the animated cars in PIXAR’s “CARS” movie are pretty easy to spot. But some of the 3D cars found in live action movies may be harder to spot. That car barrel rolling over the top of the heroin’s head in the big chase scene is probably a 3D car blended into the live action shot. Now my cars may not be done on the same level of the big movie studios (I’m using an ancient version of Lightwave 3D to create my cars), but I think they’re still pretty good. I’m one of the few 3D artists on the net that is doing full engine, suspension, and interior details. The car you see driving across the rollercoaster highway, through the skyscrapers in the latest tire commercial, only has exterior details (and maybe minor interior detail). But for me, it’s all about the detail, and creating car out of my head.
These cars were all created on my ancient PC using Lightwave 3D (LW) and PhotoShop CS. The LW program “builds” the cars from scratch. I’ll put a side (and rear) photo of the car into the background. Then using the program I’ll create the shape using thousands of tiny polygons. That statement really over simplifies it, but I would have to write a whole book on the step-by-step construction of a 3D car! Once you have the shape, you “name” the surface, and apply a texture to that surface. There are some “pre-set” surfaces in the program, but most of the surfaces use photographs to create the detail. Elsewhere in this book you’ll find my brother-in-law’s black Mustang I recreated in 3D along with close up photos of the car that I used to create the “textures” on the 3D model. Notice how much more realistic the headlights or the dashboard details are when we use photos of the real car.
Close to a 100 full color renderings are showcased here!
Freelance graphic artist / photographer / journalist