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3D background Tutorial by yuumei 3D background Tutorial by yuumei


Other 3D programs

:bulletblue: Sketchup - Here is the link for those of you too lazy to google it :I [link]

:bulletblue: 3DS Max - Fully functional 3D program that can be used for modeling, animation, games, etc. It comes with Mental ray, a fairly good renderer. It's not specifically designed for making buildings, so it's harder to use than Sketchup in that regard, but it has awesome free plugins like the ones listed below. It is not free, but they offer free versions to students in participating schools (usually most colleges) which means as long as you have an e-mail account registered to your school, you can download it for free. [link]

:bulletblue: Ghost Town - A free 3DS Max plugin that will procedurally generate cities within minutes. It is still in development so expect it to have bugs, but it still works well enough for me. [link]

:bulletblue: Building Generator - Another free 3DS MAX plugin. It automatically generates buildings within seconds. These buildings are more detailed and customizable than the ones in Ghost Town, but it only generates one building at a time. Also, it does not generate interior furnishing, only the exterior. [link]

:bulletblue: Blender - 100% free fully functioning 3D program that can be used for character modeling, animation, games, etc. Best used with the plugin below [link]

:bulletblue: Suicidator city generator - a Blender plugin that comes in both free and pro version. It has ups and downs compared to Ghost Town so it's good to check out both and use them both to best fit your needs. [link]

:bulletblue: City Engine - It's a crazy complicated 3D program that generates super realistic and customizable cities. However, it is also crazy expensive and will immediately crash if your computer doesn't have 16-24 gigs of RAM. Not really recommended unless you want to base your entire career on drawing cities [link]

:bulletblue: CityScape - An amazing and easy to use program that used to come free with 3DS Max but stupid stuff happened and now the program doesn't exist at all; you can't even buy it. However, if you know your google well, and knows the dark corners of the internet, you can still find a student version of it. No link because it technically doesn't exist anymore (or does it? ಠ_ಠ )

:bulletblue: Kerkythea - A free external rendering program capable of photo-realistic results. I just found out about it and haven't used it yet but it sounds pretty cool on top of being free.

:bulletblue: V-ray - a render plugin for 3DS Max, Sketchup, and other 3D programs. It can render realistic and non-photo-realistic images (i.e. cartoon line art), it also has cool fisheye lens and other effects. It renders directly within the 3D program so you don't have to switch to another render program to use it. It is not free ): [link]

Other Drawing programs

:bulletred: Paint tool SAI - Love this program. Very easy to draw with compared to Photoshop, which is better for editing than drawing. It's also very cheap. Only around $50 when I bought it [link]

:bulletred: Corel Painter - Good for mimicing traditional materials such as oil paint and water color. Ideal for adding that extra hand painted feel to 3D images. Not free and not cheap ): [link]

:bulletred: Photoshop - Everyone has heard of it. Like the name, it's best at editing photos (or 3D images). It's also used by many artists to paint, but I prefer SAI. [link]

Too poor to buy any of these?

Most of us are not rich or just too young and mom said "NO"... well, I'm NOT encouraging this, but a standard rule is: If there is a program, a free cracked version of it exists somewhere on the internet. Usually google is enough to find them, if not, try 3D forums.

Good luck! :la:

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Daily Deviation

Given 2012-08-06
[Stock & Resources] 3D background Tutorial by `yuumei A detailed and expansive tutorial ( Suggested by DamaiMikaz and Featured by Elandria )
AndromedAno Featured By Owner Jun 25, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks this will be very useful :)
Ewalynn Featured By Owner Jun 13, 2015
Thanks for the tutorial! It really helps!
jurc61098 Featured By Owner Apr 5, 2015  Student General Artist
very wonderful!! XD I was wondering how other comic artist do that incredible background pieces
Just-To-Look1 Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2015  Student Traditional Artist
Most of us are not rich or just too young and mom said "NO"...

Haha very true :XD:
jurc61098 Featured By Owner Apr 5, 2015  Student General Artist
I feel this. and my PC's limited RAM is bothering me. it's hard to get an upgrade without the cash you need.
Just-To-Look1 Featured By Owner Apr 5, 2015  Student Traditional Artist
Especially if you haven't turned 18 yet… D:
jurc61098 Featured By Owner Apr 5, 2015  Student General Artist
yes! *cries* it's hard to earn money
Renard-Magiconirique Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you for all your tips, it's REALLY helpful.
Raven-Hawk Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2015
clever girl, but seriously great idea awesome job
milovanf Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Now I know how movie producers makes atmosphere look sooo realistic. Thanks! :dummy: I'm using it.
mattmikemo Featured By Owner Jan 10, 2015  Student Filmographer
Does Cinema 4D work?
wildthing423 Featured By Owner Jan 10, 2015  Professional Filmographer
seriously, this is a great tutorial.  I really like it.
Mi-chan785 Featured By Owner Dec 5, 2014
oh. My. God. This is SO helpful...! Thank you for sharing this!!!
Euterpe-The-Egret Featured By Owner Nov 18, 2014  Student Traditional Artist
This was incredibly helpful. I was reading through fish eye placebo and I was astounded at your background details! I am starting my own webcomic and wanted to have detailed backgrounds but wasn't sure of how to find the time to do them as well as you do. Thank you so much for your tutorial!!!
sleepcircle Featured By Owner Oct 25, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
this is not really a good idea.

i don't care about the legal aspect of this, tbh. it's just this has nothing to do with 'how to draw' backgrounds. you're not drawing them at all; the computer is doing all the work. and i don't mean like this is 'cheating' like it's morally wrong or something, but:

i can sketch scenes quickly in 3d because i practiced, and the fact that i can see things in 3d in my head (from all the practice) means that all other parts of my drawings are improved as well. you are crippling your ability to improve at drawing, by doing this stuff. every time you let the computer carry you through, you are denying yourself 100 opportunities to get better.

it's the butterfly metaphor. the butterfly needs to fight out of the cocoon to survive. if you cut the cocoon so the butterfly can go free easily, it will never have the strength needed to fly.
i-stamp Featured By Owner Dec 13, 2014
From the artist's own words: "People need to keep in mind that different artists have different goals. Yours may be to perfect drawing everything from imagination, mine happens to be to illustrate a story before I’m 70, because unlike Pixar, I am a one woman team doing research, paying rent, and working on 2 graphic novels at the same time. (though this story won’t be released until 2013).

... Artists aren’t clones programmed to have one goal in mind. That’s not saying we shouldn’t try to improve ours skills without 3D, because it will come in handy for many other situations. I honestly wouldn’t be able to integrate 3D and 2D if I didn’t learn how to draw everything in 2D the old fashioned way. Sketchup just speeds up the process.

So before you closed mindedly shut off the potentials of 3D, ask yourself, what are your goals as an artist, and what’s the best way to get there? Is it to practice until you can show off and say “look at all the backgrounds I can draw without Sketchup!” or is to create something greater than an image about skills? Pixar did, and they seem pretty damn successful to me. "
sleepcircle Featured By Owner Dec 13, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
this is not what i meant. i am certain you misread me.

i wasn't trying to 'show off', because nobody really cares about backgrounds. i almost don't even care, myself.

i am trying to make a graphic novel and it doesn't matter how nice the backgrounds are, I can't tell a personal story about people with them. no-one's going to be emotionally invested in 300 pages of random backgrounds.

like, yeah, WHO CARES if i just walk in and say 'oh look i can draw backgrounds', it's not about how 'great' i am for doing it. it's the fact that it's a valuable ability, and i want other people to have it as well!

the fact that i can see things in 3d in my head (from all the practice) means that all other parts of my drawings are improved as well. including people, composition, etc. etc. etc.

it's not about practicing until you can 'show off and say look at all the backgrounds i can draw without sketchup', it's about learning to create any shape you want, with fidelity! tracing can get you rigid, geometric backgrounds quickly, but it can't get you organic, dense backgrounds, or characters and expressions, different poses, etc. etc., you know? drawing is a holistic activity, where all techniques are interconnected! if you isolate different parts of it and avoid practicing on them, everything else you draw will suffer somehow.

if you want, you could create your scene in sketchup, pick your camera angle, and then try to draw the background using the picture as a reference instead of tracing it. it will have the best of both worlds: a complicated reference for a specific scene with all the angles planned out, as well as a lot of valuable practice getting your hand and visualization ability (in the reproduction) to do exactly what you want them to.

i-stamp Featured By Owner Dec 13, 2014
I disagree. You can make just as much organic and rich content by incorporating fully 3d stylized objects as drawing it out from a reference, which is an unnecessary waste of valuable time when you're working with deadlines. 
sleepcircle Featured By Owner Edited Dec 13, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
i'd need to see some examples of what you're talking about, first, before i could form an opinion on what you're saying here—but you didn't respond to the other things i said in my reply!
i-stamp Featured By Owner Dec 13, 2014
Seen Paperman and Feast? Both were done with incorporated and stylized 3d models with added (traced) line work. 

Im in at work so my posts have to be brief between clients. What question do you have?
sleepcircle Featured By Owner Edited Dec 13, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
i don't really have a particular question, but your reply only mentioned one tiny part of my post, which it disagreed with. does that mean you agree with the rest of my post?

anyway, paperman took about a year to make. I mean those 3d models and rigs would've gone through dozens of revisions. not to mention all the animating which--even though it is rendered in 3d--was all ANIMATED by hand. the whole work was run as a 3d animation pipeline, NOT a 2d one, and the whole thing would've taken months. some of those sets would've taken a LONG TIME to make! not to mention the render times. the tracing effect in paperman wasn't actually so much tracing, it was sparse hand-drawings which were attached to the existing 3d animation (which would've taken a long time to do btw) and dragged around by the 'meander' software system. not only that, but artists would actually draw a thing and then go back and adjust the cg to make it look more like the drawing. it would've taken forever and been very painstaking, and certainly was responsible for the 'organic richness' you mentioned, instead of the other way around.

back in the 2d animation days, disney only accepted people with giant portfolios full of life drawings, scenes, designs, etc. etc., and they expected you to have drawn it all by hand, not just traced off a photo you took.

nowadays, disney and pixar wouldn't hire a visual artist based on their ability to trace—if the artist didn't have any paintings, drawings, design-work, etc. They might hire a visual artist as a background and prop modeller, but they would almost certainly have this person working from DRAWN concept art, to make 3d models that look more like the drawings, instead of the other way around.

and then there are the lighting specialists and the camera specialists, the riggers and modellers, the texture painters who must understand all kinds of photorealistic textures before understanding how to stylize them. ask any industry professional and i am certain they will tell you the same thing!
i-stamp Featured By Owner Dec 13, 2014
Sorry I really don't have time to answer all this. All I'll say is Paperman's planning (including inventing a new software to help track 2D lines to 3D objects) and storyboard took longer than the execution. There was a lot of line tracing of the 3D model involved, and manipulation of 3D objects which are visible even in the final scene. Very little of any part of this project could be described as free handed. 

Once you you have a system, stylized 3D illustrative work isn't that hard. I've dabbled in it myself (though I was mimicking comics not cel shading-….
There is a very real and applicable market for what Yuumei is doing and it shouldn't be discouraged just because it's not a traditional method or because it saves time. 
(1 Reply)
Biiiscoito Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2014
Dude. Just. Dude.
This is AWESOME!!!
Faving that and putting it to good use for sure! *V*
DerpLogicDD Featured By Owner Oct 5, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
OH MY GOD!!! I LOVE YOU!! Thank you so much for this.. I know i'm eons away from actually creating something as good as yours, but this is a very great help for me... Thanks a lot.. :D
Reechu Featured By Owner Oct 5, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
You. Are my hero.
delacci Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2014  Student General Artist
Thank you very much! (:
mochichama Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
i like how you advise at the last sentences "NO" lmao
Lauuhh Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2014  Hobbyist
This is super helpful! Thank you so much for your amazing tutorials! 
ArtySpartyGirl Featured By Owner Aug 19, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
denzel94 Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2014  Student Digital Artist
Do you know of any programs that allow you to generate architecture styles from different regions like Asia or Europe?
Noevr Featured By Owner Edited Jul 27, 2014
Hi! Is it legal to use this method for creating a background for a short animated movie, a cartoon (for some festivals for example)?
Drawstoria Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2014
i know this might be and probably is stupid, but is it legal to use these in comics ?
Rynkimi Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2014
This is a great tutorial, but there are artists that can draw structural backgrounds without hesitating... ^^;
Keimichi Featured By Owner Jul 10, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
It's not really a question of being able to draw without hesitating or not
i believe this is for people who needs to draw the same background over and over again (like those drawing comics, for example) It doesn't mean these artists can't draw by themselves, it's just that having a premade background that they can just draw over will save them a lot of time. 
ko-yuki-chan Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Really helpful ! can I ask question ? you took a city (later) and said "made by same process" but this city is not a 3D model just a picture. do you make line one by one for making this ? or 3D software can make all city's lineart itself ? thank you !
Rhavencroft Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2014  Student Digital Artist
I hope you don't mind me making a comment here. ^^; Do you mean the cityscape near the bottom? I do believe that is in fact a 3D model, since there are many straight edges to the building and the background fades into gray very quickly at the end of the street, which is something it wouldn't do if it was a real photo. Not to mention the lack of textures on the cars. Looking back at it again, I don't think there actually is any photos used in this tutorial
ko-yuki-chan Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you for reply! Yep i meant the city! Looked like photo really impressive OO; i didn't know what can do 3d nowadays! Seems real. I'll try this tuto! 
Rhavencroft Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2014  Student Digital Artist
Sure, no problem. :)
FFA Featured By Owner Jun 14, 2014
This was really helpful, thanks!
Yumi-chuu Featured By Owner Jun 2, 2014  Student Digital Artist
So much work ; V ; . Thank you so much for the tutorial!
eightsnake Featured By Owner May 17, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is great, thank you!
AlyaShabrina Featured By Owner May 6, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you so much! La la la la 
ekoajinugroho Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
setelah sekian lama mencari tutorial seperti ini, akhirnya dapet juga,, :D hontouni arigatou!
GotIt2 Featured By Owner Apr 10, 2014  Student Digital Artist
ViolaRae Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2014
Yuumei, you are amazing. Amazing. And I love you. This is going to help me so much.
luzylouiz Featured By Owner Apr 4, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
what a technique !!
thanks :)
Schwannie Featured By Owner Mar 27, 2014
A little tip: you could suggest Gimp to those who can't buy the drawing programs you recommended :aww: It's free and has nearly the same features as Photoshop, even animation :dance:
Kuin-Shi Featured By Owner Mar 19, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This tutorial is extremely helpful. It's really fantastic that google sketch up let's one use all the resources for free. I have a question though.. How do you get that lineart style that you ended up with? I've looked quite a bit through google sketch up's settings but I can't find how to get nice thin lines like that. In the end I just took a screencapture of the model I had created and inked it... but is there any easier way? Thank you for this tutorial, by the way. :)
JohnAmiel Featured By Owner Mar 12, 2014  Hobbyist Artist
Question: Does sketchup only have urban models or does it also have old medieval models or far eastern city models?
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