12.07.2014
D3hree create a set of 3d illustrations for Chewits
We have been commissioned by Chewits to create a set of 3d illustrations for them to re-create their famous historic adverts. Chewits want to capitalise on the recent retro trends and want to start offering merchandising with imagery of their famous tv adverts from the 70's/80's. Unfortunately because of the age of the tv adverts the footage is grainy and it's resolution is too small to have printed. The original tv work was created by Aardman Animations. When approached with this project Aardman wanted too high a budget thus making the project unrealistic. Chewits approached us to see if we could help. Of course we can!
3d illustration chewits reference
LEFT: The references for creating the Chewits 3d illustrations were taken from the old tv adverts. They were grainy and blurred.
Our task is to rebuild the character "Chewey", a cute a friendly Godzilla beast, and use him to recreate shots from the tv spots. Our 3d illustrations need to be at a high enough resolution to enable them to be used across many platforms.
The first step is to create the "Chewey" 3d model. While that is being done we can simultaneously begin work on the backgrounds and landscapes for each of the 3d illustrations. The biggest hurdle is a lack of reference from the old tv spots. They are small and grainy so our ilustrations will have to use a little artistic license.
3d illustration chewits building
ABOVE: we simultaneously built the background details for each of the Chewits 3d illustrations while we were creating the "Chewey" 3d character model.
BELOW: The full set of finished Chewits 3d illustrations
Chewits 3d illustration New York

- Chewits New York 3d illustration

Chewits Pisa 3d Illustration

- Chewits Leaning Tower of Pisa 3d Illustration

Chewits 3d illustration Taj Mahal

- Chewits 3d illustration of The Taj Mahal

Chewits 3d Illustration Barrow

- Chewits 3d illustration of Barrow In Furness Bus Depot

 
01.05.2014
D3hree create Architectural Walkthrough Animation of Formula 1 V.I.P. Suite
Our links with the world of Formula 1 has lead to us being commissioned to create the Exxon Mobil V.I.P. suite that is installed in the V.I.P. Paddock at Grand Prix races. Exxon Mobil use this suite to entertain their guests during the course of a race weekend.

 

They can enjoy fine dining and view various exhibits that show how important Exxon Mobil is to the McLaren formula 1 team.
ABOVE:An early test animation for this project. A wireframe preview is a quick and easy output to give us a good indication of how the project is progressing.
The first step in a project like this is to get the script approved, once approved it can be recorded by the chosen voice over artist. This recorded voice over gives us our timings so we know how long we need to animate the walkthrough for. In this particular instance the voice over also tells us how long we need to pause the camera for while the particular exhibits are being discussed.
As the project progresses we will continue to fine tune the animation while also creating the lighting solution and adjusting the materials to get a perfect look throughout the timeline. We continue to create previews so that the client is kept up to date throughout the process.
ABOVE:An early test animation for this project. A wireframe preview is a quick and easy output to give us a good indication of how the project is progressing.
BELOW: The finished 3d animation. Exxon Mobil provide this film to their affiliates so that they are fully aware of what to expect during their visit to the Grand Prix .
 
03.04.2014
D3hree create a set of marketing 3d illustrations of the McLaren Mp4-29
This is a huge task that we undertake annually. We generate "generic" 3d illustrations that depict the McLaren Formula 1 car at differing angles and weather conditions. These 3d illustrations are then used World Wide for various marketing and advertising remits.
3d illustration used as a graphic on the side of a coach
LEFT: Our 3d illustrations are used for a wide variety of marketing remits. This photograph shows a previous 3d illustration being used as a graphic on the side of a coach. The size and resolution of our illustration allowed it to be scaled up so that the wheels on the F1 car match those of the bus.
We have very little time from when the car is launched to the start of the F1 season. During this short period we have to create the 3d model, texture it and then create 24 x poster-sized 3d illustrations, a massive undertaking that we do time and time again.
Work starts as soon as possible once the views have been decided on. While the car is being created we start work building the 3d backgrounds using a proxy car for reference. Each of these 3d illustrations are 6000x4420 pixels so even the backgrounds need to be highly detailed and accurate.
3d illustration Abu Dhabi billboard
ABOVE: Our 3d illustrations are used World Wide. Here you can see a previous illustration from 2010 being used as a bill board graphic in Abu Dhabi.
BELOW: A small selection of the finished set of 3d illustrations
3d marcom illustration 01

- 3d illustration of Jenson Button stood infront of the McLaren Mp4-29

3d marcom illustration 02

- 3d illustration of the McLaren Mp4-29 racing around a bend

3d marcom illustration 03

- Overhead 3d illustration of the McLaren Mp4-29

3d marcom illustration 04

- 3d illustration of both McLaren Mp4-29's

3d marcom illustration 05

- 3d illustration of the McLaren Mp4-29 in the rain

3d marcom illustration 06

- 3d illustration of the McLaren Mp4-29 with a sunset backdrop

 
07.03.2014
D3hree create Ghosted 3d illustration of McLaren Mp4-29
The first 3d illustration for this formula 1 season, a ghosted view of the McLaren MP4-29 showing some of its internal components. This is the 8th year we have created this 3d illustration so we are quite familiar with the work.
3d illustration of v6 formula 1 engine
LEFT: Once the 3d model of the Mp4-29 has been created we then set about creating the 3d models for the internal components. This year has seen numerous changes in the Formula 1 world, most notibly the introduction of the v6 naturally aspirated engine with turbo.
The angle of the car has remained the same over the years. It not only shows the relevant internal components well but it is also a good angle to show the sponsor logos well, something that is very important when creating 3d illustrations within the formula 1 arena.
This 3d illustration is all about the photoshop work. Once we are happy with the lighting and style of the illustration we then render out numerous layers that will enable us to create the ghosting effects. A background in technical illustration is a huge advantage when it comes to creating ghosted 3d illustrations and we have proven time and time again that we have the neccessary skills to get this poster looking great.
3d illustration cutaway poster close up
ABOVE: A close up of the 3d illustration. Here you can see a small amount of the detail that we add to our 3d illustrations.
BELOW: An example of a finished 3d illustration using the 3d model of the McLaren MP4-29.
ghosted 3d illustration of McLaren Mp4-29
 
29.01.2014
D3hree create 3d model of McLaren Mp4-29
Here it is again, the start of another formula 1 season. As always this time of year our work begins in earnest for our F1 clients. The first step, a journey to Woking and McLaren Technology Centre to take a multitude of reference photographs of the new Mp4-29. We use the reference photos together with a couple of known measurements to start to build the 3d model.
3d model reference
LEFT: We visit McLaren Technology Centre usually the day before the car is launched and take 100's of reference photographs to use to create the 3d model.
The car is created as nurbs but additional polygon details are added further down the timeline.

 

We know that the 3d model will be used for a wide variety of media at varying resolutions throughout the year so we have to ensure that it is correct from all angles and highly detailed. We also have to ensure that the 3d model requires as little retouching in photoshop as possible even with high pixel resolutions. Working within the Formula 1 arena leaves little time to retouch 3d illustrations even if they are life sized.
3d model of McLaren mp4-29
ABOVE: The nurbs stage of the 3d model. Nurbs stands for non-uniform rational basis splines. It is a method of creating 3d models that ensures perfect curves and radii, perfect for creating 3d illustrations of cars.
Of course there are a multitude of animations requested with the same 3d model so it has to look good for animation too.

 

Apart from a couple of specific body panels the car is symetrical so only half of it is created to then be mirrored when finished.
3d model detail
LEFT: The devil is in the details. We create the 3d model to be millimeter accurate and also add in numerous details. Each body panel has a radius added to it to ensure it picks up the necessary highlights to look realistic in the 3d illustrations. Here we see a close up of what will be a rivet, as you can see even the rivet has a radius applied to its edges so it looks realistic when texture mapped.
When the nurbs aspect of the 3d model is complete the half car is mirrored and the polygonal details are added. As with every step in the process, a keen eye for detail is adopted to ensure accuracy and realsim of the finished 3d model.

 

We create two versions of each of the drivers car's. A studio version and an "on-track" version. When a formula 1 car doesn't have a driver in it and isn't  travelling at break neck speeds it sits higher because there isn't the downforce of the air pushing it closer to the track. Also the tyres are nicely polished. It's these small details that we add to our 3d illustrations that ensures our repeat business with even the most demanding clients.
3d model of McLaren mp4-29 with polyonal details
ABOVE: After the nurbs stage of the 3d model is completed we mirror the car and add additional polygonal details to the 3d model. Attention to detail is crucial to arrive at a 3d model that can be rendered from any angle and at any resolution.
Once the model has been finalised we then move onto the texture mapping.

 

The Mp4-29, as with it's recent predecessors, has a chrome finish to the paint work. This chrome finish requires several texturemaps to be applied to body panels where there is either a sponsor decal applied or areas of the car that are airbrushed and treated differently to the chrome. We use black and white texture maps to mask out areas on the car that we dont want treated like chrome and blend materials to add different paint effects.
3d model texture map
LEFT: A black and white texture map masks various material finishes from one another. They also are used as bump maps to simulate vinyl stickers in the finished 3d illustrations.
The black and white mask texture maps also double as bump maps so we can add slightly raised logos to the car so that they realistically look like vinyl decals applied to the body work. The studio car being finalised usually co-incides with the driver's helmet 3d models being finished and so work can begin on the "on-track" version of each car. Once both versions of each of the driver's cars are finished then the fun really begins.

 

BELOW: An example of a finished 3d illustration using the 3d model of the McLaren MP4-29.
3d illustration showing the finished 3d model