Recreating ‘Tales From The Crypt’ in 3D
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Recreating 'Tales From The Crypt' in 3D
21 April, 2017
Interview
Damien Peinoit talked about the production of the Tales From The Crypt production in 3d.

Introduction

Hi there, I am Damien Peinoit, a CG artist from France, scenery specialist. I’ve started my career by working on adverts and design but I quickly focused on environments creation which is more fun to do. I’ve worked for many French studios but since 2012 I’ve been working as a freelancer for Blur studio. I’ve worked on some trailers for Dark Souls 2, The Crew, ZombiU and the Halo/Halo Wars series.

Tales From the Crypt FanArt

So I’ve met Adel in a french studio based in Paris and we’ve worked together on some TV adverts. We became friends and today we’re sharing the same passion for horror stories, even if I think that Adel is much more into that than me haha. The main idea was to make a sort of “comeback” from our favorite TV show “Tales from the crypt”. We wanted to create the entire generic in CG for introducing new gags with the CryptKeeper. So that’s how we decided to work on that project, we wanted to practice the creation of an entire CG animation for challenging ourself and of course for the love of CG.

Due to the right restrictions we finally decided to release only the generic.

Pipeline

We are both working in 3ds Max and V-Ray. I’ve only used few plugins for the exterior like the excellent ForestPack and Railclone for the interior (the stair). Our pipeline was simple, try to end this project hahaha. So no special way of working, it was difficult because we were both working outside so we only had spare time for completing the film. Except at the end, I took some “vacancies” for finishing this animation with Adel.  Our main tools were our personal computers and our hands.

Modeling

I was in charge of the exterior and the first part of the interior. I’ve started to create the ground with Zbrush and created some grass in spline. I’ve used some evermotions kits for few bushes. After that Adel started to create a layout from the old TV show to get the cameras for modeling only what we saw on screen. It was really helpful and saved a lot of time too. 

After that we used a ZBrush ground, added some grass with Forestpack. I’ve started to create the lights and the shaders. The house was made in another Xref file. It was more easy to work that way because we didn’t have the 1080 Pascal graphic card haha. So our computers were dying. Anyway we wanted to create living sets for every scene. I don’t really like to do much compositing and I rather like to render everything in the file (exept for the FX and fog). So at the end I’ve added the house and completed the lights, tweaks the shaders. I finally added an animated tree from Speedtree and did the wheel animation with Physics. Same for the grass. I’ve used FFD modifier for creating the wind. The rain was done with 3ds Max thanks to Particule flow. I’ve used Forestpack for the ground/objects Splashing.

Environment Design

We asked someone to help us clean the camera and create a correlation between every scenery. Like a real “one shot” sequence. So it was more easy for us to render every set separately and create the continuity in After Effects with only one camera. We both modeled these objects and tried adding as much details details as possible. Unfortunately,  because of the time constraint we were not able to do everything we wanted. 

I invite you to watch our making of it – helpful for understanding our pipeline and you will see how we created environments.

Textures

We’re trying to work on detailed objets as much as possible to add only the small details with the textures. In the house every wood plank was modeled. I know that can sound like a waste of time but it was an exercise! Same for the stairs. 

Render

We used Vray for the renders and used our computers.  It took 22 days to render so my electricity invoice was badly high. We got help from a cloud render company for the interior. It was simple and we didn’t have any issues. The max/Vray mix is really efficient today. And we’ve choose this connection because we were familiar with Max and Vray by using them in studios. And I think Vray is the fastest for this kind of production. Especially with the new Brute force for the exterior.

Time

We spent 6 months of hard work on this animation. We wanted to do something really realistic like a real trailer. So realism can take a lot of time, and the challenge was really to finish the movie. You know when you’re alone, without budget, with a personal life, every homemade project can be a struggle. 

Damien Peinoit, CG artist

Interview conducted by Kirill Tokarev

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