Legend of Arad :: short film :: environment design! - looking for collaboration

Started by sepehr, November 03, 2009, 06:42:02 pm

Previous topic - Next topic


Hi JimB,

These are very interesting questions. As far as EXR, are you sure that it will output into a single layer one? That changes my workflow.  :(

Here are some answers. Hope that is helps:

What resolution is your final output?
In order to be able to finish this film on time, we have decided to finish in HD 720p even though we shot in much higher rez. good thing is that now we are very flexible to choose frames within the shot frame. The aspect ratio will be 2.39:1 which works for epic films. I wish we could finish in full resolution but I don't have the budget/time for that.

What colour space will you be working in? (linear / log / 16-bit / 32-bit / etc...)
linear, 32-bit

Will you pre-grade plates for the environment artist to match to, or will all grading of elements be done in comp and then go through a final DI?
I plan to have references and concept art that are color corrected for environment artist to begin with. But the final grading will be done in comp.

Will you be providing lighting instructions (a map showing where the Sun is, etc)? (This is important; there's nothing worse than being told late in the day that the Sun needs to be somewhere else - even if you did put it in the right place but a certain look is requested... ahem)
Fortunately we have a very clear idea about that. The story starts at sunrise and ends in sunset so it takes one whole day. We have a map for  hero's journey which shows its relationship to other elements in the movie at different times.

Do you have a full VFX breakdown yet?
We're working on it. It is not a full VFX breakdown since we're still editing

What other 3D apps are you using, and will there need to be a strict workflow and pipeline if necessary?
Ideally we should have a strict pipeline but since the team is scattered throughout different continents, it is not possible to have a strict pipeline. However, there are some elements in the pipeline that have to be fixed:

Keying can be done in any app but final comp will be in Nuke
Tracking is being done in Bojou
Modeling environment elements can be done in any app but they will all be imported to Maya.
Foreground and middle ground elements will be rendered in Renderman and occasionally Mental Ray
Rendering atmosphere and large scale landscape will be done in Terragen

Do you have lens info, per shot, that is converted into raw FOV in degrees?

How many shots do you need covering, and, of those, how many can be covered by a single background at very high resolution? (Whoops, just saw you need 50 or so. My bad. Second part of the question still applies, though)
Whenever possible, I'm totally into using a single BG plate and other cheats. I will tell you the number of shots that have that potential very soon but it should be a big number of shots. Also when there is camera movement, we could still have matte painting/Terragen still image renders for background objects.

Is it a stipulation that everything must be TG2 (it's not a Renderosity competition after all   ), or can photographic elements be mixed in?
Photographic elements are more than welcome. We care about the final result more than how it is created.

Do you have any existing 3D assets necessary for any of the shots already, or do these also need to be created by the artists here?
I'm trying to gather a team for modeling the assets. The continuity from shot to shot is very important so the Terragen artists will be given a set of models they can use. However if someone here really enjoys modeling elements for a shot, and it matches the rest of movie, that should work well too.

Will each landscape element need to be provided by the artist as a separate render, and/or do you need masks for tweaking in comp? (Land, sky, clouds, etc)
I'm still new to Terragen but we should go with the method that gives us the highest degree of control in comp. If masks work well, I guess that is easier than rendering separate renders.

Who will be art directing the backgrounds?
Hmm. That's a difficult question. ;) It's me.

And last, but not least..... What's the deadline?
May 2010 for picture lock

Please don't hesitate to ask me more questions.



DD actually uses TG almost entirely for terrains, not atmospheres, or at least not clouds. They have their own proprietary volumetrics system for that called "Storm". TG2 (or "Engen" as they call it) is used for fast, detailed terrain rendering with complex displacements, etc. They don't even use it for object rendering, that's done with another app too.

- Oshyan


Hmm, that's very interesting. A friend of mine who worked working on stealth at DD told me about atmospheres rendering in TG...
Thanks for clarification.


The "atmosphere" (e.g. the color on terrain with distance, and the background sky) probably was TG, but I think most people would also take that to mean clouds and I'm fairly sure most, if not all of the clouds were not TG. Not that it would not be capable of the level of realism, but DD does have an existing in-house tool for that kind of thing anyway.

- Oshyan



Just wanted to say that since I posted in this forum, a number of great Terragen artists have joined our team.

Please feel free to contact me if you are interested in joining us. It is a big project and there are always some great shots that you could be interested in working on!




I'm honored that so many great artists have contributed to the project. The team is around 70 people now.

Please check out Legend of Arad website for more info:
If you are interested, please drop me a line on the website:




Hello everybody,

We are looking for Terragen Artists for an underground cave scene. Please check the project's website at http://film.cgtal.com and let me know if you are interested in joining us through the contacts page of website.

Thank you,