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Andrew West

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  1. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Bo Atkinson in Example Images   
    Excellent work rmulley.  Hard to make any suggestions.  It is probably client driven but I would have snuck in a little more glossiness on the packaging if they allowed.  That along with an hdri light tends to add a lot of life to objects. 
    Here is one I have been playing around with.  It is actually an older project that was originally done in Maxwell.  I wanted to try V-ray on it to see how they compared.  No real difference other than the fact that V-ray was 100 times faster.  The lights were a little harder to set up in V-ray because Maxwell has the multilight function which is one of its greatest strengths.  If only we had that on all render engines!
     

  2. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Jaakko in Example Images   
    Excellent work Justin.  Thankfully I don't have to ask permission to post my images since it is written into my contract that I can use these for promotion of my business. 
    This could be the last image I post for a while. 😣  Now entering another recession which will mark the 5th since I started working in architecture in 1984.   I am not sure which business is exempt from the up and down swings of our volatile economy but I am open to suggestions.  Lets hope this doesn't drag on for an extended time.  At least I now have time to play around with more features of my various programs.  Maybe I will finally figure out Caustics!
     

  3. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Jaakko in Example Images   
    Excellent work Justin.  Thankfully I don't have to ask permission to post my images since it is written into my contract that I can use these for promotion of my business. 
    This could be the last image I post for a while. 😣  Now entering another recession which will mark the 5th since I started working in architecture in 1984.   I am not sure which business is exempt from the up and down swings of our volatile economy but I am open to suggestions.  Lets hope this doesn't drag on for an extended time.  At least I now have time to play around with more features of my various programs.  Maybe I will finally figure out Caustics!
     

  4. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Jaakko in Example Images   
    Excellent work Justin.  Thankfully I don't have to ask permission to post my images since it is written into my contract that I can use these for promotion of my business. 
    This could be the last image I post for a while. 😣  Now entering another recession which will mark the 5th since I started working in architecture in 1984.   I am not sure which business is exempt from the up and down swings of our volatile economy but I am open to suggestions.  Lets hope this doesn't drag on for an extended time.  At least I now have time to play around with more features of my various programs.  Maybe I will finally figure out Caustics!
     

  5. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Jaakko in Example Images   
    Exceptional.  Really hard to tell which is the real one and which is V-ray which is the whole point.  The only thing missing in your shot was the reflection in the glass but no one would notice but us.   Good job.
  6. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Justin Montoya in Example Images   
    I now need to update this post since I just found out something in V-ray that I did not know exist.   As I said before this feature requires a unique number assigned to each material.  In the past I assigned one manually to each using the Material Options button in the Material   Parameters window.  I just found a little button in the V-ray Settings window that automates this process.  If you go to the Render Elements drop down window you can pick your different render options ( I choose Material ID and Denoiser for instance)- then right under that window is a line called ID MANAGEMENT-  if you click on that there is an option to Assign Unique Material ID's to all materials.  I wait until I have created all my materials for a project and then click on it.  Not a huge time saver but it all adds up.  Hope this helps (or maybe everyone knew about this already).  

  7. Thanks
    Andrew West got a reaction from Chris lund in formZ models exchange site!   
    Anton
    Is there any chance that we could get this model site up and running again?  What would it take?  I have dozens of models that I would like to share.  I always felt that Form.z needed a site similar to the Sketchup Warehouse in order to expand their user base.  I would also like to share materials and texture maps that would help others.  I have hundreds that I could post.   
  8. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Justin Montoya in Vray displacement, caustics and subsurface scattering   
    After struggling for a long time to create a glowing lamp shade Justin and I have finally figured it out using SSS materials.  It was a little quirky at first and hard to get it to show properly.  When we first created the material it was small and then scaling it up caused the SSS to disappear again.  Eventually i got it right.  It all lies in the scatter distance setting.  DON"T MAKE IT TOO LARGE or TOO SMALL!  In my model I placed a v-ray sphere light inside my lamp shade and made it so that it does not touch any physical geometry.  I also tried this with a mesh light but that left strange shadows on the shade.  So I thought I would save everyone some time and load the vrmat material and map  here:
    Maybe some day we can set up a material sharing site similar to what Anton has set up for models
    lamp shade 2.vrmat


  9. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Justin Montoya in Vray displacement, caustics and subsurface scattering   
    After struggling for a long time to create a glowing lamp shade Justin and I have finally figured it out using SSS materials.  It was a little quirky at first and hard to get it to show properly.  When we first created the material it was small and then scaling it up caused the SSS to disappear again.  Eventually i got it right.  It all lies in the scatter distance setting.  DON"T MAKE IT TOO LARGE or TOO SMALL!  In my model I placed a v-ray sphere light inside my lamp shade and made it so that it does not touch any physical geometry.  I also tried this with a mesh light but that left strange shadows on the shade.  So I thought I would save everyone some time and load the vrmat material and map  here:
    Maybe some day we can set up a material sharing site similar to what Anton has set up for models
    lamp shade 2.vrmat


  10. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Justin Montoya in Vray displacement, caustics and subsurface scattering   
    After struggling for a long time to create a glowing lamp shade Justin and I have finally figured it out using SSS materials.  It was a little quirky at first and hard to get it to show properly.  When we first created the material it was small and then scaling it up caused the SSS to disappear again.  Eventually i got it right.  It all lies in the scatter distance setting.  DON"T MAKE IT TOO LARGE or TOO SMALL!  In my model I placed a v-ray sphere light inside my lamp shade and made it so that it does not touch any physical geometry.  I also tried this with a mesh light but that left strange shadows on the shade.  So I thought I would save everyone some time and load the vrmat material and map  here:
    Maybe some day we can set up a material sharing site similar to what Anton has set up for models
    lamp shade 2.vrmat


  11. Thanks
    Andrew West got a reaction from -andrew- in How do I get a bigger grid?   
    Something is terribly wrong with the grid system when I try to do this.  You are not doing anything wrong from what I can tell.  I bumped up the numerical accuracy thinking that might have an effect but it did not.  Out of curiosity what are you trying to build that is so tiny?  I work in architecture so I never need to get that small.  
  12. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Spannerhead in Glass Opaque when using Alpha Channel Background in RenderZone   
    While I have not used Renderzone now for years since Maxwell and Vray came out I still remember the good old solution that I used to use.  This is really quite simple.
    Create a solid 1/2" thick plane.  Use material Glass Accurate in the  reflections channel.  Within the Reflection channel set reflection to 90%.  Set the transparency to 0.  Leave the other settings alone.
    Then below the Reflection channel you have your transparency channel.  Open that and set it to your desired amount.  I use 85% for most windows. 
    Make sure you to to your glass objects and turn off shadow casting and shadow receiving. 
    Now go to your Display Options palette and under Renderzone options go to Scene and change your background tab to Alpha Channel. 
    Now export out your renderzone image as a TIFF file.  Open it in Photoshop and under your Channels tab you will see your alpha channel. 
    Does that do what you want it to? 
    Andrew
    PS. For those of you who might say that I am  creating a double transparency object I say so what.  It has never given me any issues over 30 years.  
  13. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from andrew in Why isn't formz more popular?   
    If you want more people to use this program the company needs to get it taught in schools.  Right now it is not in any meaningful way.  Part of the problem is what happened when Chris Yessios decided to let the program die several years ago and also when the main programmer Paul Helm  actually died.   If it weren't for a single  programmer that wanted to keep it alive it would have ended a while back.  Now it is a challenge to both keep it going and create new and exciting buzz about its capabilities and its future.  The introduction of V-ray was an important first step but it does feel that it might be too little too late.  I personally am doing everything I can to promote Form.z through the images I submit to the website along with tagging it everywhere I can.  All of us can help in that regard.  
  14. Thanks
    Andrew West got a reaction from AHTOH in Why isn't formz more popular?   
    To all
    I apologize if I made a wrong assumption about Paul and Chris.  I was told not long ago that "the main developer was willing to let this program die but another developer decided to step in to keep it alive".  That was obviously David stepping in.  Over the years Paul was an invaluable help to me in both technical know how and guidance on how to improve the program.  I falsely assumed that he was also a main developer.  His knowledge of the program was unmatched by anyone I encountered.  After he was gone things got real quiet for quite a while which was unfortunate and led to a lot of assumptions.  
    Moving forward with suggestions on how to improve Form.z I have a general question for everyone.  One thing that makes programs like 3DS stand out to me are the plethora of third party plugins available that can be integrated directly into the interface.  Plants (x-frog) Environments (like Vue) Smoke, fire, particle systems, Rendering engines, etc.  I don't know how one would even go about convincing third parties to expand their offering to include Form.z but it is worth discussing here.  I also can't help but wonder if Autodesk has any legal restrictions on these third party plugins that make it exclusive to their platform.  Given how aggressive they can be it wouldn't surprise me a bit.   It is also worth noting that many of the features in Max were actually introduced as plugins before they were totally integrated into the main program.  This is actually one of their great short comings as the program certainly feels like a collection of plugins.  
    Here are a few  that I would love to see in the future in my perfect program:
    Any plant generator along with an environment generation tool similar to Vue x-stream
    A cloth generator similar to the one in Max
    A gravity tool that allows one to drop an object onto any surface below.
    A  tool for creating UVW maps directly
    Integration into Unreal or Keyshot that maintains all texture maps properly
    A tool similar to Turbo Smooth in Max that can smooth out any geometry and optimize it.  It would also need a Pro Optimizer tool for reducing geometry interactively by the number of points
    A tool to "paint" texture maps directly onto geometry in selective areas.  
    A tool for sculpting meshes with a touch sensitive brush (similar to Vue and Z-brush).  We had something somewhat similar in 6.7 where we could push and pull meshes a bit more interactively.  
    And the list goes on and on but those are the ones that I use outside of Z most regularly.  
    Open to suggestions
    Andrew
  15. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from archigraphica in slope a spline   
    I use the ramp tool (stair) when I have a uniform width slope.  When the width or shape of the ramp is non uniform then I create a spline on the XY plane, move the control points up to their desired positions,  offset the spline for the inside of the curve, adjust the control points to where I need them,  Then form a nurbz plane between the two splines.  Now that I have my nurbs plane I can extend and add onto it pretty easily to complete my roadways.  The terrain tool works as well but it feels so antiquated.  Probably because it has been around for at least 25 years in its current state.
  16. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from setz in Offset Nurbs Edge Like in Rhino   
    Like this?

  17. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Justin Montoya in Layout fonts outlined   
    Anton
    Drafting has never been a form.z strength, especially when you compare it to a true drafting program like Autocad. However, I have on occasion used it for drafting and I find that the font you use is critical to a nice clean look.  I personally like to use City Blueprint for my font which is a little old school but comes across well. 
  18. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Justin Montoya in Layout fonts outlined   
    Anton
    Drafting has never been a form.z strength, especially when you compare it to a true drafting program like Autocad. However, I have on occasion used it for drafting and I find that the font you use is critical to a nice clean look.  I personally like to use City Blueprint for my font which is a little old school but comes across well. 
  19. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Des in Example Images   
    Nice images.  How are you applying the decals?
     More examples will hopefully help build our little community. Here is one of mine. The nice thing about this image is that no matter how many lights I throw in the mix it still renders fairly quickly. 

  20. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Des in Example Images   
    Nice images.  How are you applying the decals?
     More examples will hopefully help build our little community. Here is one of mine. The nice thing about this image is that no matter how many lights I throw in the mix it still renders fairly quickly. 

  21. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Des in Example Images   
    Nice images.  How are you applying the decals?
     More examples will hopefully help build our little community. Here is one of mine. The nice thing about this image is that no matter how many lights I throw in the mix it still renders fairly quickly. 

  22. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Jaakko in Example Images   
    It has been a while since posting anything here so I want to see if we can keep this going.  The point being that the more we show people what the capabilities of Form.z and V-ray are the more attention the program will get.  That in turn could lead to more sales and money for development.  So here is another little project I have been working on lately. 
     

  23. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Jaakko in Example Images   
    It has been a while since posting anything here so I want to see if we can keep this going.  The point being that the more we show people what the capabilities of Form.z and V-ray are the more attention the program will get.  That in turn could lead to more sales and money for development.  So here is another little project I have been working on lately. 
     

  24. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Jaakko in Example Images   
    It has been a while since posting anything here so I want to see if we can keep this going.  The point being that the more we show people what the capabilities of Form.z and V-ray are the more attention the program will get.  That in turn could lead to more sales and money for development.  So here is another little project I have been working on lately. 
     

  25. Like
    Andrew West got a reaction from Jaakko in Example Images   
    It has been a while since posting anything here so I want to see if we can keep this going.  The point being that the more we show people what the capabilities of Form.z and V-ray are the more attention the program will get.  That in turn could lead to more sales and money for development.  So here is another little project I have been working on lately. 
     

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