In this advanced project-based class we will be modeling and rendering ancient Mayan ruins based on scientific descriptions, drawings and photos. We will primarily use the open source and free 3D software, Blender. The class will start with learning the basics of the Blender interface and 3D concepts, then move on synthesizing the provided research materials.

Second set of blueprints (zip files)

Texture and object resources:
Open Footage
Skymaps (Skydomes)
More free HDRi sets

First Assignment:
Create at least Five animations of ten seconds or more that exhibit the following critical concepts and techniques:

  • An functional understanding and navigability of the 3D space in Blender (positioning, arrangement, accuracy)
  • Basic polygonal modeling techniques – positioning, object/edit mode (vertices, edges, faces)
  • Basic camera usage, positioning, animating
  • Basic materials, textures and lighting techniques
  • Rendering and output methods (world settings, sampling, sequencing, resolutions, compression, finalizing)

Due Friday June 21.
30 points

Second Assignment:
Make something beautiful. It could be animated, or a still shot. (I’ll explain in class.)

Good article: 5 Tips for Learning Blender


Basic Blender Cityscape tutorial from class 6-12-13:

Basic Rendering:

Basic Materials and lighting:

Building wireframes, working with paths and the camera.

Realistic Rendering and Depth of Field:

Film Response Curves: