Create a 3D Scene with Maya and Photoshop. Pt. 1 | 2 | WebReference

Create a 3D Scene with Maya and Photoshop. Pt. 1 | 2

Create a 3D Scene with Maya and Photoshop. Pt. 1

Note: Be careful. If you don’t right-click exactly on the line, all the control points for the saucer become selected, which is not what you want. If that happens, select Window>Outliner and try again. Clicking on Curve 1 will display only the control vertex points on that line. If necessary, switch to the Perspective View, tap on the spacebar to enlarge it, then dolly and tumble the camera as necessary so you can select the curve. Save the file as flying_saucer.mb.

Next, you’ll add a dome to the bottom of the saucer, which will become apparent later. Activate the Side View, then select Create>NURBS Primitives>Sphere and click on the square to the right of the word Sphere. This brings up the NURBS Sphere Options dialog box. In the parameter fields, set Start Sweep Angle to 180 and the End Sweep Angle to 0. Set the Radius to “2” and the number of Sections to 16. Click on Create.

A half sphere is created near the bottom of the saucer. Next, select the Move tool and click on the Y Axis only (in the Perspective View), moving the sphere to the bottom of the saucer. As a final touch, flatten the half sphere by entering .75 beside Scale Y in the Channels menu on the right. Name this object “Dome.”


Apply Materials to the Saucer

In this section, you’ll apply a mottled metallic silver to the saucer and a transparent red for the dome. Right-click on the saucer in any View and from the marking menu, choose Materials>Assign New Material>Lambert.

The default material appears in the Attribute Editor on the right.

Click on the gray box to the right of Color to open the Color Chooser. In the Color Chooser, click on the light gray swatch at the top (a value of .800). Click Accept to close the Color Chooser. In the Attribute Editor, scroll down to the Diffuse heading and click on the Map button to the right of the Diffuse Slider. Under 3D Textures in the Create Render Node, click on Solid Fractal. The Solid Fractal Attributes appears. Set the Frequency Ratio to 4.7.

Next, activate the Side View and press 5 on your keyboard to activate Smooth Shade All. Select the Dome object. Repeat the above steps, and choose Phong E instead of Lambert. In the Color Chooser, pick Red and make sure the color is saturated. From there, you’ll create a glowing effect on the Dome. In the Attribute Editor, scroll down to Specular Shading and set the Highlight Size to 0. Scroll down some more and open Special Effects. Set the Glow Intensity to .500 and leave Hide Source unchecked. From there, activate the Perspective View, then dolly and tumble the Camera so you see below the Saucer. Click on the Rendering Tab; then click on the Render the current frame into a render view window button. The saucer is rendered with a red glow around the dome. Save your file.

That's it for now. Next month, you'll learn how to create a Nebula in Photoshop.


Adobe Photoshop. Industry standard image manipulation software.
Alias Maya. 3D animation software.
CG Talk. Digital Visual Effects Professionals.
3D Café. A source for 3D imagery, tutorials, textures and more.
Highend 3D. 3D Resource and Community web site.
JSC Digital Image Collection. NASA JSC Digital Image Collection.

Created: June 5, 2003
Revised: August 28, 2004