Long life to Embark studio and its fabulous procedural artists dream team !
Adam Nordgren is a great artist, who does some amazing 3d visuals. In our exclusive interview he talked about the benefits of using Blender for 3d modelling and the way this software can benefit your 3d production.
My interest in 3D production started around 2006 when I downloaded SketchUp and I could sit at home and easily create 3D models of houses and cars. I was 15 then and it was just about time to choose school’s direction.
I went with the media program and after 2 weeks I realized all the other classmates were so different than me and the only 3D we would be doing was a class in the 3rd year or something like that. I changed program to business and administration program instead and so that dream was dead.
Time passed and I finished school and became unemployed for a year or so, tried a few workplaces but quickly realised I needed creative work for me to function!
I tried 3ds Max and Maya but I felt there was to much to learn and I just couldn’t get into it at those times. I always had that dream of taking the step into 3D and so about 2 years ago I finally did.
The reason I went with Blender was that when I wanted to dive into 3D and really dedicate my self there wasn’t much online tutorials for the big softwares and Blender was open source and had lots of tutorials and so I went with that.
After some intense few months of actually doing architectural work for a construction company and at the same time learning I decided I had toattend some kind of school.
I actually found a school located just 2 hours away from me that taught 3D In Blender, however it was only one semester and a distance class but I took it anyway. After that I bought a few online courses and went trough all free ones I could find.
That was over a year ago and I’m still on a constant learning curve to become a better artist.
As of now I work freelance with mostly architectural visualization and a bit of product visualization.
The biggest visualization project I’ve worked with is a timber central that I’m actually waiting for the client to publish any day now. It is an entire 4 minute film with trucks and trains and several different timber working vehicles that I’ve been working on for about 3 months. It’s something that is a bit controversial but will probably be received positively by the inhabitant of this town and hopefully be the water cooler talk of the month around here.
Something I always think about when doing 3D visualization is that it’s not that different from photography and I haven’t really heard that from any teacher I’ve dealt with, so my advice is to get a camera and take an online course and go out and shoot some awesome photographs. It really boosts your visualization work.
Pooh’s House Environment
The idea behind the Pooh’s House picture came when I was playing a quiz game and the question “what’s the text above Winnie The Pooh’s door?” came up. Who knows that? I didn’t and had to Google and I was amazed by his house (or hole, cave, cavern w/e).
I saw it as a challenge to create something like his home and try to sharpen my environment skill for future arch-viz projects along the way. The challenging part about that picture is as you probably can imagine the grass and flowers, however I am going to confess that I did not create the models for those myself at all as it was a grass models pack I bought from “Blenderguru” called “The Grass Essentials” which really feels like cheating but it’s really useful for my kind of work.You basically just apply hair particle effect to the ground, import the models you want and tweak it around for a while and viola, realistic grass.
Back to why I choose Blender, or maybe more why I still use it as my main tool. Since I started learning in it and I actually liked the user interface (unlike some others) it just grew on me. I have had some investment plans to buy either a Modo license or a 3Ds Max license but the step is to big for me right now since I constantly have unfinished work in Blender. Maybe some day will come when I have to change but as for now I’m staying with Blender. I’m not looking forward to relearning everything!
Blender gets the job done however some stuff is a real hassle to do in Blender, like overlaying a 3d object unto a photo (people tell me that’s really easy in other programs). Fortunately there’s an add-on for about everything you can think of in the program.
Light production in my scenes often involve HDRIs and if not it’s usually some variation of a three point lighting. I have studied a few books about lighting and it’s the same here, photography is the answer. In photography light is the most important part to tell a story with a picture, whether it be a dramatic hard light or a soft smooth light it always gives the impression of a mood or story. The summer afternoon look of this picture is thanks to a RGB curve tweak on a HDRI map and some post production to change the overall color temperature.