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Normafa House

Victor Fretyan 2009-04-07 00:00 tutorial  > Making of  > compositing


Here is the pure render. It is saved in TGA format with the alpha channel as well. As you can see it is a bit far from the end result yet.
The first thing to do with the original render is some adjustments: some parts of the image remained dark while some are a bit burnt. To even things out I select a region and press ctrl+J. This will make a copy of that region on which I used exposure adjustments and shadow, highlights. When it looks okay I blend it in the original by using eraser tool on the edges of this region (hardness on 0).
 After the image feels balanced (no black nor burnt areas) comes color balancing: first thing to do here is to make the image a bit brighter. I go to exposure control again and set the gamma to around 1-1,5. This will make the image really bright and will spoil the contrast. But believe me it will work! Press ctrl+B now. Color balancing comes up. I used the following settings to set the right color tones:
These exact settings can't just be applied to any other image expecting to achieve the same result but the basic idea is to set the darker tones to the warmer colors and the midtones to the blueish color tone. Highlights remained untouched.

Here's the final result after I was done with the adjustments:


Next step for me was to give the concrete some dirt. I could have done this in max but I found this method much easier. This is how I made it: first I found a proper texture at (every texture I use is from that site). I copy paste it in the psd I was working in and set the layer to overlay instead of normal. By pressing ctrl+T I could adjust it correctly onto the walls. I also used erase tool a lot here and set the opacity to 50 percent. Here is the dirt layer (it is swithced back to normal from overlay to show you):
And here it is applied on the render:
At this point I flattened the image.

Now comes zdepth (rendered between 0 and 50 meters):

First thing was to use color-select tool to select the black areas on the zdepth layer and then swhitch back to the flattened image and press ctrl+J. Now we have only the things in the back on a seperate layer. I turned the gamma high up around 1,5-2,0 (exposure control) and set the midtones to cyan-blue (color balance, ctrl+b). This gave our scene a bit depth already by dividing the background and the forground. This was important to creat that atmospherical bluish "fog" caused by air in real life.

Now the depth of field:

I added some gaussian blur to the zdepth map (around 2,0).

Then I selected the whiter tones (color select again) and pressed ctr+J again on the render layer and added some lens blur on it (only the slightest!). I went to zdepth layer again and used color-select again but now on a smaller value. Ctrl+J (again) on the render layer and some lens blur (again...) on it (this time a bit stronger) and moved this layer to the top. I repeated this last move some more times but with smaller color-select value and higher lens blur.
This method for lens blur is a bit lame I know but I have tried several and this in the end nothing worked out perfectly.

Last thing to add here is the glowing effect of the sky through the leaves. For this I have used color select tool again on the white color then ctrl+J and then a very small gaussian blur (around 0,5-1,0 or even lower!) and duplicating this layer a lot of times. Then merging these layers and using erase tool on some parts of it and then it is set.

Here is the result so far: notice the bluish atmospherical fog in the back! Also I adjusted some on the colors of the grass again. The glowing of the sky rite now looks very inapropriate but it will change later on after applying the lens effects.


In the last part I flattened the image once more and added some effects using different plugins. First one was Knoll Light Factory. It is a great plugin! I recommend everyone to get it. I used it to create the lights in the sky. The one on the left is pretty obvious. It is a warm light for the sun. But I have another one slightly visible on the right side of the building that has a magenta color.
Next one is chromatic aberration done by 55mm Film Tool. Nowdays everyone is familiar with this effect but I find that most people don't seem to get it right. It is an effect that can be really annoying if you abuse it. I say if it is clearly visible it is already wrong! It's a matter of testing and finding the right balance. Here is my attempt:
Next one is vignetting also by 55mm Film Tool. First I duplicate the layer to be able to modify it later like erasing it from some parts wich I did in the top left corner of the image.
Last is the film grain for which I have used NIK color effects film effect tool. It is on a seperate layer whichs oppacity is set a bit lower (around 50-70 percent).
And here we are! We've come a long way! Check it out:
Author Name: Viktor Fretyan
Date of Birth: August 29, 1983
Gender: Male
Location: Budapest, Hungary
Author: Victor Fretyan
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Pedro José Quaresma 16:49:18  |  21-09-2010
ABSOLUTLY BRILANT, thanks so much, are there any more regarding this topic?
CDC1986 10:13:16  |  22-01-2011
CDC1986 10:15:51  |  22-01-2011
year! nice!I like it.
Cyrus3v 13:11:56  |  27-01-2011
Nice Tutorial. I have only on question. What is the gamma of the image without the post-process?
al80 20:49:56  |  01-05-2011
thnx for the tips...but I think post processing is a dangerous thing...I dont like the fct that your final image looks too overdone
abidabid 10:12:04  |  19-01-2012
deadoxygen 15:42:15  |  14-03-2012
Fabulous! Even the render itself looks already amazing. Did you use 3dmax to render this scene? And which material did you use for the house cladding? It's very attractive!