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Once you've drawn your initial product design, it's time to take it to a 3D program for modeling. Veejay Gahir takes the initial sketch of a Formula 1 steering wheel from the first part of this series and shows you how to model and render a fully realized version in Maya. He shows how to import the sketch, use box and freeform modeling techniques to create the basic shape, and add details like buttons, dials, and decals. Finally, Veejay shows how to add texture and lights and render out the final view of your model.
This course uses an F1 wheel as an example project, but the techniques can be applied to any other automotive or consumer product. For more information, watch the first part of this series, Sketching an F1 Wheel in SketchBook.
This video I'm going to show you very quickly how to set up some light sources, and how I illuminated this F1 wheel. So in chapter 06, let's open the file 06_ 02_F1_Lighting. Let's go to our perspective view, and let's just go straight into a Pic Render. You'll notice that it's all cascilated, and hard-edged, because we're using my software. I want to switch this to Mental Ray. Let's take a look at some of our settings here. The first thing I always do with Mental Ray, is I make sure that I switch off Enable Default Lights. And our Quality tab right now is set to 0.5, and that's fine, we'll leave it at that.
And let's render again. So, the look that I was going for here, particularly using a black background, is to ensure that I've got some rim lighting. Rim lighting is lighting that comes from behind the model, that illuminates the inside of the handle, and also the outside profile of the paddles. If you look at the model itself, I've got one, two, three directional lights, one from the very top, and two from underneath for the rim lighting, then I had two spotlights on the outside like this. Let's go back to our perspective view.
Number four is wire frame, five is shaded, six is with textures, and seven shows the characteristics of the light on the model. So, let's set up some of these lights from scratch. So, I'm just going to pick these lights, holding the shift down, Delete, and we have one more back here. Let's go back to our home position. So very simple, we're going to go to our rendering shelf, let's go to directional lights, w to move, and with directional lights, it makes no difference on the scale of the light, it is purely a vector that we're considering here, so if I move it here, the illumination will be exactly the same as if I move it here.
We'll keep it, above the part like this. Go back to our Home position and render. That's not too bad. We could increase the intensity just a fraction. But, we'll leave it at that for the moment. Let's add some rim lighting. So, what I'm going to do is, control D to this, move it across, move it down, look from underneath E to rotate. And, we just bring the light source round like so. So, what I'm looking for now is, an indication that this lower portion here is being illuminated.
Control D, W, duplicate it, move another one out here, and E, and we're going to illuminate the rim along the top edge as well. Back to our home position. Let's open up our last render, we'll save that. Re-render again. If we compare the two, you'll notice that we have quite a different effect now, because of the rim lighting underneath. Let's save that. Let's go ahead and add our spotlights now, back to the rendering shelf, spotlight, W to move, I'm going to move this at the top, like this.
Now, with spotlights, it does make a difference in the size and position, so if I move the light source over the top, you can see that the light is tracking. And the cone angle also makes a difference, as well, so let's change that to 50 degrees, just so it does have an effect on the overall light. So, I'm going to go to E, let's rotate, let's go back to W. Let's do something like this, back to our home position. Render. So, you'll notice how on the left-hand side, the red handle is illuminated quite nicely, but we do have a sharp edge to that light source.
So, let's go into our penumbra angle, and let's just type in a value of say, five. Let's just re-render that region. And that's a nice effect. That, that'll do for now. Use Ctrl+D to duplicate or move it across. Ctrl+D, let's move it across. And then, illuminate this portion, too. In this view here I'm going to go in, and just try to just look at the relationship between the two and get them roughly the same.
Let's go to our home, and let's re-render everything. So, setting up lights and modes is very critical. It can actually make your part look very realistic, but it is very subjective. It's entirely up to you, depending on the kind of effect that you're looking for. But very simply that's how I set the lights up, in this particular model.
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