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In this course, author Dan Ablan walks through the process of understanding the MODO workflow while learning to create 3D models and animations. The course teaches fundamental tasks, such as modeling polygons and applying materials with the Shader Tree, while exploring scene building in depth through advanced lighting, camera, and animation techniques. The course also covers MODO's schematic tools and shows how to render animations for various playback media.
Adding realism to your scenes in modo is really pretty easy to do. You've seen how we can put in some very nice light types with reflective light, area lights, and key lights, but what if you want to give more of a daylight look to your scene? I've loaded up the AutoSet from the Chapter 6 folder, and this is an Alfa Romeo from the Luxology assets, and just a simple flat plane. Let's press the O key on a computer and go to Inactive Meshes and change this from Wireframe to Same as Active Mesh. That way everything is in full OpenGL.
Well, in this scene we've got our default lights that we put in from the beginning. Let's take those out altogether, except for the Directional Light. So select them all. We'll right-click and delete. That leaves us with one directional light. We'll jump over to the Render and here you see that default directional light. Well, this thing kind of looks like daylight, but computer technology has advanced quite a bit in the last ten years, so you don't have to do things like this. And what's great about modo is that a lot of these presets are here for you.
So I'm going to expands this view, and I'm going to click and hold on this list and go to Environments. And here you'll see Indoor, Outdoor, and Studio. There are number different studio environments that we can put in, but in this case we are going to go to Outdoor. What these are high dynamic range images, or probe images. You can see that they're panoramic in a way. They're stretched-out images that have been created to create this environment for your scene, and when you double-click to add one, it'll wrap itself invisibly around the scene, and you can use that to cast light. Let's do that.
I'm going to double-click this desert right here, and that adds that environment to the scene; you'll see update. But it doesn't look like much is happening. The reason is we have to go to the Render and then under Global Illumination, turn on Indirect Illumination, and suddenly we have this look like where we are outside. The ground of course is pretty basic. Let's change that, and the way we're going to do that--let's make sure this one has a material right here. Here's the ground material.
We're going to come back to our Material presets and go, down all the way, and take a look at Stone, and there is Architectural, Brick, Paving. And we can just choose Asphalt and drag it right on. That way we get rid of that plain white backdrop that was there originally. What happened when we added that environment is this. We'll come up to the environment in the Shader tree.
We're going to open that up, and what it did was add this desert image as an environment color. Let me show you what that image looks like. I'll go to the Images tab, and we'll scroll down, and I'll double-click, and you'll see this open. That image is now wrapped around my scene. This image is also a probe image, a high dynamic range, and what that means is it has more data in it than your normal eye can see, and because of that, it's strong enough to actually light the scene. It's still little hot here, so I need to remember that in the Items list I could turn off this Directional Light.
Now we get that desert-sunset kind of look like we're hidden behind a mountain. Let me call up another one, just to see you what it looks like. You'll go back up to Environments > Outdoor, and let's choose a brighter one, like Daylight. And the only thing lighting the scene is that environment. And just that simply, you can very easily put together a very complex-looking scene without worrying about a lot of lights and lot of balancing. You got more city shots down here you can play with, and you can also buy a lot of these images from Luxology, and there is other third-party people that sell probe images as well that you can put in.
What's also great about this is that you have the reflections which help add to the realism. It's very subtle, but it fools your brain, that you're looking at something that's outside, because you pick up on those reflections. Try this out. Load some of the assets from the Layout tab in the Meshes categories, some of the presets, put some of those textures on the ground, use some of the presets for the outdoor probes, and see what you can come up with.
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