Computer Graphics World

March/April 2013

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Review By DAVID BALSUTO n n n n Animation Maxon Cinema 4D R14 W hen I took over the animation program at San Marino High School, I was certain of two things: I wanted to teach the kids the basics of Adobe After Effects, and I wanted to teach them a 3D program that was easy to learn, and consistently getting easier to use. As I look back at my decision to go with Maxon Cinema 4D, I now know I really made the right choice. Not only did most students "just get it," but they were creating amazing models and animations. Also, seeing Maxon's progress at trade shows, such as NAB, and watching its progression with the product has created a lifelong learner in me. I just love how creative I can be using it. In the latest release, Release 14, Release 14 of Maxon's Cinema 4D contains a number of new features, including fully integrated sculpting tools. Maxon is offering a new sculpting system (a personal fave that I will explore more this review), camera matching, the ability to send C4D into Ado- am having a heck of a time exploring this creative function. be Photoshop Extended, and a plethora of UI and workflow enhanceAs we move more and more into photorealism with 3D models, it ments, as well. I tested it out on my MacBook Pro. is important to play nice with Adobe Photoshop. Import your C4D file effortlessly into Photoshop Extended and change geometry, textures, lights, and cameras, too. Want to keep your textures as is? Bake them A Closer Look Cinema 4D R14's new fully integrated digital sculpting tools alone are in Cinema 4D first. The ability to integrate with Photoshop Extended reason enough to buy this version. The level of detail you can sculpt is really opens the floodgates to professionals who want to sell their phoamazing. Subdivide your model up to 12 levels and millions of poly- torealistic hard work. gons. Pull, smooth, flatten, and grab the areas you want to effortlessly. It truly feels like playing with virtual clay! Lights, Camera, Placement As a Wacom tablet user, I loved the ability to tweak settings of my pen A rock-star new addition to the application is the new Camera Calibrain the Effector Setting menu. This really nailed tilt, pressure, and direc- tor. I have to say it's always been a bit of a struggle to align 3D images tion to my liking. A nice addition. on an object without camera trackers. In After Effects CS6 it's a breeze, Also, now available in the sculpting mode is the ability to use but not in some other 3D programs I have used. Cinema 4D's Camera stamps and stencils. While I have yet to put it to real-world use, I Calibrator makes it extremely simple to specify vanishing point, focal length, rotation, and 3D coordinates, allowing you to place your object accurately in the scene. The Camera Calibrator is tremendously useful for previs mock-ups Maxon Cinema 4D R14 Studio and designers who want to present their creations. I can now grab a Cinema 4D R14 Studio $3,695 still from a video I have shot, import that still into Cinema 4D, use the Cinema 4D Prime R14 starts at $995 Camera Calibrator, and work on that set extension or the addition of a spaceship . . . or, well, you get the idea. Very forward thinking. March/April 2013 CGW0313-review-edit-backpfin.indd 45 45 3/14/13 12:05 PM

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