CGNetworks Reader Project
The Making of 'Octopus'
Bernardo Barbi (CG Artist, Platinum Studio), 19 November
CG artist Bernardo Barbi of Platinum
Studio, Brazil describes how he and his team created
a giant 3D octopus oozing out of a residential kitchen
for a print advertisement.
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Platinum is a graphics studio located in Rio de Janeiro. Working
for the advertising market worldwide, Platinum produces images
using photography, post production (in Photoshop) and 3D techniques.
We received the ‘Octopus' job from an advertising agency and the
challenge was to produce an image where a giant octopus was escaping
from a kitchen.
The first step was to divide the work between the photography
and CG staff. As soon as the location photographs were taken, we
went to research references for the octopus project. Since the
species of octopus was chosen, we began to model from photographic
references. As we progressed, we started designing the composition
for the octopus in the scene. We created an octopus mock-up and,
based on this, we created several sketches to define the octopus'
The work was divided into three parts: head, tentacles and suction
cups. In this way, the job became faster. The arms were done poly
by poly. The head was done with box-modeling and subdivision surface
sketch for 'Octopus', Bernardo Barbi
Based on drawings, we went to some effort to position the octopus
in the scene. The kitchen's geometry was a recreation, based upon
the typical size of a kitchen. For the tentacles we created a bone
system for each one and positioned this manually. For the suction
cups we made several models and deformed each one separately so
we could get more details and speed up the process.
Texturing and Lighting
All of the textures were based upon photos that we took of a real
octopus. We photographed it in several pieces, following the UV
map as reference. At this time, we defined the scene's most important
areas as the head, part of the eyes, tentacles and the bigger suction
cups. For the shading, we used procedural bump maps, specular maps
and reflection maps.
The most important tool for the realistic effect was the subsurface
scattering, especially for the light and thin surfaces areas such
as those on the suction cups. We utilized a HDRI map to simulate
the kitchen's lightning and set up some omni lights to create bright
areas in strategic parts of the model.
'Octopus', Bernardo Barbi
| Octopus' map reference, Bernardo
for 'Octopus', Bernardo Barbi
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