Learn how to manage course assets in project folders.
- [Instructor] Before we begin, we'll want to set up a project for 3ds Max to hold the scene files we'll be working with. If you have access to the exercise files that I created for the course, you can go ahead and download those, extract them and place them in a convenient location such as on your desktop. If you don't have those files, then you can still follow the demonstrations using your own assets. If you're on a mobile device, or you simply don't have 3ds Max in front of you, you can still learn by observation.
Let's talk about setting up a project if you don't have the exercise files. You want to create a folder somewhere, for example, on the desktop here. Right click and choose new, folder, I'll call it advanced lighting. Then launch 3ds Max and we can create a default project folder structure. In 3ds Max, the project folder commands are found in the file menu under project. We can also use the toolbar, and that's kind of handy because it shows us the currently active project.
So right click on any one of the textured bars on a toolbar, such as this one here, right click on one of those, and then activate the projects toolbar. And here it appears in the upper right of the main toolbar, telling me that the current project is in users, Aaron F. Ross, documents, 3dsMax. We've created an empty folder, and now we want to populate that with the default folder structure. There's a button here for that, and it's labeled create default.
That means create the default project folder structure. So click on that, and in the choose a folder window, navigate to the desktop, select that empty folder we created a minute ago, advanced lighting, and click select folder. And now the currently active project is users, Aaron F. Ross, desktop, advanced lighting. And we can check in on that, if we minimize 3ds Max. Open up that advanced lighting folder, and here we see all of the default 3ds Max project folders.
Okay, so if you don't have the project files, you can just save scenes and scene assets into these folders here. If you do have the project files, then we can point 3ds Max at this exercise files folder. So go back to 3ds Max, which I've got minimized, and we can go back up to the project toolbar, and then click the button labeled set active project. It's the one with the little gear on it. And then once again, just navigate to wherever we need to, and here we have desktop exercise files.
Select that, and then click select folder. And now our current project is desktop exercise files. If we now go into the file menu, and open a scene, we're taken to our current project, desktop, exercise files, scenes. And here are all the dot max scene files for this course. There's usually a scene file for every movie. In some cases, there's actually two scene files for a movie, there will be the begin state, which is just labeled with the movie name, and then the end state, which is labeled finished example.
If there is no finished example, then the next movie in the sequence will be the end state. So in other words, 0204 exposure is the begin state for that movie, 0205 adjust sun is the end state for the movie before it. So you pretty much always have a before and after for each scene. Okay, I don't actually need to open a scene file. So I'll just cancel out of this. That's how to set up 3ds Max project folders, whether or not you have the exercise files for the course.
Alright, let's begin with 3ds Max advanced lighting by looking at some concepts.
- Physical lighting and gamma correction
- High dynamic range and exposure control
- Global illumination
- Exterior daylight
- Image-based lighting
- Advanced environment options
- Geometric backdrops and material emission
- Interior daylight
- Importing photometric data
- Studio lighting
- Spot light image projection
- Atmospheric effects