New Feature: Playlist Center! Pick a topic and let our playlists guide the way.

Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member

Modeling an environment sphere

From: Creating Product Shots in 3ds Max

Video: Modeling an environment sphere

The Solidworks CAD model from Gabriel Corbett did not have a wrist band, and so This is not a modeling course, so I'm not going to go over how I modeled We'll go ahead and create a sphere in the create panel; Cool, so there's that.

Modeling an environment sphere

The Solidworks CAD model from Gabriel Corbett did not have a wrist band, and so I had to model that so we would have something to render for this course. This is not a modeling course, so I'm not going to go over how I modeled the wrist band, but it was done with polygon modeling and just simple subdivision surface techniques. Nothing fancy. If you feel like you need a refresher on modeling, then I suggest you look at some of the other courses here in the online training library. But in this case, I just created the model for us, and usually that's what will happen when you receive a product.

It will not need any modeling work dune to it. Okay, so I've created this wrist band and I've put it on the display layer and also linked it to the helper objects, so it's attached to the rest of the hierarchy. We want to do now is to create an environment, and this is going to be a super simple environment because we're just going to render a watch against a simple white background, but we need some shiny reflections here on the front of the watch, and for that we'll want to create a piece of geometry, just a hemisphere that can have a self illuminated material on it.

We'll go ahead and create a sphere in the create panel; click on sphere and click and drag to create that sphere. Right click to exit the tool and maybe dial it back a little bit, and with it still selected go to the Modify panel and set the radius to 100 centimeters. The number of segments we'll set to 64, just give it a little bit more detail. And down at the bottom we want to disable Real World Mapsize because we want to control the map tiling from the Material Editor, and we don't want it to be based upon any real world measurements.

So, turn that off. And then finally, the hemisphere parameter we'll set to 0.5, so we've got a hemisphere. Cool, so there's that. Let's rotate it, grab the rotate tool, and rotate it 90 degrees in x with the angle snaps still turned on so that it's facing forward. I've got 85 down here, so I'll just type in 90. All right, there's that, and we want to just move it back a little bit. Grab the move tool, go to the left view with Alt+W, get in a little bit closer here. We just want to push that back in the x axis and we want to make sure that the elevation here is zero.

So this is x-axis relative to the left view port, which is actually y-axis in the world. So x we want to be set to zero, which is the centering left and right. Set that to zero, so that's x in role coordinates, and then y is the offset that we've pushed it back there. So, don't let that confuse you. You know, it's because we're in the view coordinates system and it switches back and forth depending upon what we're doing. So, we've got it set up now so that when it's not, when we're not actually selecting the tool, x is zero, and z is zero.

All right, there's that. Okay, so we want to be able to see through this as well. And to do that, we'll put it on a display layer, and we'll also add a normal modifier in order to flip its normal, so we can see the other side of the surface. With the object still selected, go up to the manage layers dialogue and then click to create a new layer containing the selected objects, and we can just directly go into the layer dialogue, right-click, and choose layer properties. We want to enable back base call, which means that it will only be a one sided surface instead of a two sided surface and we'll be able to see through one side.

And also we'll turn off show frozen in gray while we're in here. Click OK, and we'll rename it. Call it environment. Okay, with it still selected, in the modify panel, go to the modifier list and choose normal. That's going to flip it inside out. Because we have backbase calling enabled, we have can only see one side, the interior. All right, and if we want, we can freeze it. We have done it now. We have actually created the environment and we have put it on the display layer and we are good to go.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Creating Product Shots in 3ds Max
Creating Product Shots in 3ds Max

42 video lessons · 821 viewers

Aaron F. Ross

Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 5m 50s
    1. Welcome
      1m 1s
    2. Using the exercise files
      4m 49s
  2. 32m 32s
    1. Setting the Customize UI and Defaults Switcher
      1m 43s
    2. Choosing units and grid options
      1m 13s
    3. Importing a CAD file
      5m 12s
    4. Managing the scene hierarchy
      7m 46s
    5. Managing display layers
      3m 52s
    6. Working with Body objects
      2m 53s
    7. Modeling an environment sphere
      4m 17s
    8. Creating a camera
      2m 44s
    9. Framing the shot
      2m 52s
  3. 16m 46s
    1. Creating mental ray area spot lights
      4m 31s
    2. Creating photometric spot lights
      5m 9s
    3. Setting exposure for studio lighting
      3m 9s
    4. Controlling Final Gather
      3m 57s
  4. 1h 1m
    1. Creating Arch & Design materials
      7m 26s
    2. Creating an environment material
      6m 14s
    3. Enabling self-illumination
      5m 33s
    4. Applying procedural textures
      7m 20s
    5. Working with reflectivity
      7m 10s
    6. Creating a metal material
      4m 33s
    7. Adjusting highlights
      5m 4s
    8. Varying highlights with a bump map
      6m 43s
    9. Working with transparency
      4m 44s
    10. Adding ambient-occlusion nodes
      6m 40s
  5. 37m 47s
    1. Understanding image-based lighting
      2m 42s
    2. Creating a skylight
      2m 10s
    3. Adding a spherical environment map
      2m 51s
    4. Controlling bitmap coordinates
      4m 5s
    5. Setting exposure for image-based lighting
      7m 36s
    6. Adjusting materials
      5m 38s
    7. Modeling environment geometry
      5m 42s
    8. Self-illuminated image-based lighting
      7m 3s
  6. 50m 6s
    1. Controlling mental ray Sampling Quality
      5m 18s
    2. Rendering to the high-dynamic-range EXR format
      5m 52s
    3. Defining After Effects color settings
      4m 0s
    4. Adjusting the image
      10m 4s
    5. Setting up render elements
      7m 51s
    6. Creating ambient-occlusion materials
      6m 9s
    7. Layering specularity and reflections
      3m 47s
    8. Adding all render-element layers
      7m 5s
  7. 49s
    1. Goodbye

Start learning today

Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.

Become a member
Sometimes @lynda teaches me how to use a program and sometimes changes my life forever. @JosefShutter
@lynda is an absolute life saver when it comes to learning todays software. Definitely recommend it! #higherlearning @Michael_Caraway
@lynda The best thing online! Your database of courses is great! To the mark and very helpful. Thanks! @ru22more
Got to create something yesterday I never thought I could do. #thanks @lynda @Ngventurella
I really do love @lynda as a learning platform. Never stop learning and developing, it’s probably our greatest gift as a species! @soundslikedavid
@lynda just subscribed to all I can say its brilliant join now trust me @ButchSamurai
@lynda is an awesome resource. The membership is priceless if you take advantage of it. @diabetic_techie
One of the best decision I made this year. Buy a 1yr subscription to @lynda @cybercaptive
guys (@lynda) is the best. So far I’ve learned Java, principles of OO programming, and now learning about MS project @lucasmitchell
Signed back up to @lynda dot com. I’ve missed it!! Proper geeking out right now! #timetolearn #geek @JayGodbold

Are you sure you want to delete this note?


Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.

Sign up and receive emails about and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from

Sign up and receive emails about and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.