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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.
In this video, we're going to talk a little bit about the MentalRay rendering capabilities within Maya. In chapter two, let's open up file 12 MentalRay. And we're going to go up to Windows, to the plugin manager. And at the very bottom, let's just make sure the Maya to MentalRay plugin is loaded. Next thing we want to do is go into rendering, and select a model, and select a blend. Just go into our blend mode, and change to a red. Next thing we'll do is we'll select that, press number three to smooth.
We're going to go to our View, Camera Settings, Resolution Gate. Let's re-frame this, this is just all the presets that I go through, before we start actually rendering in MentalRay. So under Render settings, make sure we have MentalRay selected, we're going to change our formats to a tiff, again you can use jpeg, that's just a preference. And for now we're going to change the quality down to 640, and with that let's do a quick rendering.
So that looks quite nice, and we're going to actually take it up a notch as far as realism goes. So the next thing I want to do here under the Comment Tab is under Render Options, I'm just going to switch off default lighting. And if we render again, you'll notice everything will be black because we have no lights now. So I'm going to add some lights using rendering shells. And let's just put in directional light like that. W to move, and R to scale, and W to move again.
Now, one thing about directional light, it doesn't really matter about the scale of the actual light, I can make it as large as I want to. It really doesn't matter, it's purely a vector. And let's rotate this, like so, and move it back up again. And again, with the position of the light, it makes no difference. And also, with the scales, so again we're only talking about vectors. So I can actually position the light here, and it would illuminate exactly the same, as if I positioned here. I can show you this by simply selecting four for wireframe, five for shading, six for textures, and seven is a representation of that particular light on that model.
So, as I move, you can see it makes no difference at all. So let's re-frame this, like so, or take our intensity out just a fraction, and let's re-render. So that's a really nice result, and you can see we're getting some nice shadows appearing. That's just the very basics of rendering with MentalRay. In 2014, made rendering of MentalRay even easier. If we go to our Render Settings, under Quality, you'll notice that we have unified sampling. And right it's simply a case of moving the slider, to get the sample quality that you're looking for.
You do have the option to go back to the Legacy Sampling Mode, but for this exercise it's just easier to stay with unified sampling. I'm going to leave the value at 0.25.
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