Novedge: Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do.
Bernd Haier: My name is Bernd Haier, I am 57 years old and work in an Architecture and trade fair office as a Computer Graphics Artist. I am responsible for 2D-3D graphics.
Novedge: What is your background, how did you become a Computer Graphic Artist?
Bernd Haier: At the age of 30 I started to deal with Computer Graphics. The first computer was the Amiga, with which I worked with the 3D software Turbosilver and Imagine and made the first animation with it. Later I worked with the 3D software Softimage. For 17 years I have been working with the 3D software 3D StudioMax. In the beginning, I had to be completely self taught, since the good 3D courses were almost all in America and they were not exactly cheap: D
Novedge: What is a recent project you have worked on ?
Bernd Haier: I've always wanted to create a sculpture from a cube, just like a real sculptor but using the tools of a 3D program. At first I did a lot of experiments on how to go from a basic form to a complex sculpture via animation. Morph targets in 3dsMax turned out to be a good solution. After many test phases I began to create a pre-animation and then render it. The music selection also took some time, but at the end I found something suitable!
Here is the pre animation: My next step was to create a suitable material in iray +; at the end, I added a dark background so there would be no distraction from the object of desire.
These are some of the material renders with 3 different shapes that I have extracted from the pre-animation:
When the time permits, I like to do something like that because the pictures can be of use later. Then I have to render every 50th picture of the final animation in small resolution so as not to experience a surprise! After all this I will render the final animation. The prep time to reach the final rendering takes approximately 2 months, including pre-animation. Here's the broken down times of the rendering time for the final animation: 10-15 minutes per picture with 5000 passes (3000-4000 passes probably would have been enough, but did not want to experience a surprise with noise flicker or similar which one seldom sees on single images); 2308 images with a total rendering time of over 500 hours.
And here is the link to the final animation, enjoy!
This second project is called "Gallery of Sculptures".
I often have to build 3D Architecture for Architects and at one point I decided to build something for myself. This was also a good opportunity to present my earlier works as sculptures. In the interior, it should be simple gypsum sculptures and in the outdoor area I wanted to depict the weather for a long time exposed rusted steel sculptures. Here's the video with Pre- and Finalrendering: Modeling with 3D studio max 16, rendering with Nvidia iray + Lightworks. Final pics rendertime 60-75min / 10,000 passes with 3 x GeForce Titan X 48 million polygon complete scene!
Novedge: What software do you use?
Bernd Haier: I work with 3dsmax 2016-17, renderer is NVIDIA Iray + Lightworks, plugin iToo iTree, MFG (Max Creation graph), and scripts, Photoshop, Premiere, After Effects, Illustrator, Sculptris and DAZ.
Novedge: Your reels and short animated videos on your YouTube channel are mesmerizing; how long does it take you to produce them on average?
Bernd Haier: For preparation, modeling, materials, test renderings, pre- and final animation I need 1-3 months (long rendering times included). I render with only one PC that is equipped with 3 graphics cards TitanX by Nvidia, as the renderer Nvidia Iray+ with the GPU's of the graphics card Render is multiple times faster than CPU Render!
Novedge: Do you have any tips for a perfect rendering?
Bernd Haier: I think photography helps very well to have a good eye for 3D scenes you want to get. Images are based on the real world, as light falls into a space, as seen materials / textures in reality from .............You should practice with simple bodies/spaces at the beginning, to experiment with materials and light. And it's important not to give up quickly when an image fails ;) Experimentation, multiple trials and practice always help to get a good result. Of course the internet (YouTube, Vimeo etc.) helps very much with many great tutorials !
Novedge: What excites you the most in your profession?
Bernd Haier: The most exciting thing is that I have been able to turn my favorite hobby into a profession! I am always happy when the image or the animation is done and looks good. Not all of my works are always fun, often I have deadlines and sometimes the pressure to finish a project in time will compromise the best results.
Novedge: What skills have you acquired in life that are now serving you in your profession?
Bernd Haier: I have experienced a lot of adversity in my life, but I carried on and never gave up! That is something that helps with 3D work , as you need to be very patient. Especially when you feel the urge to throw your PC out of the window . Persistence is necessary to get great results in the end.
Novedge: Complete the sentence: you could never work without.........
Bernd Haier: 3D modeling, rendering, good food, good film and good friends.
To sample more of Bernd Haier 's work, check out his YouTube and Vimeo channels. You can also find him on Artstation and Behance and follow him on Twitter. To get started on modeling and rendering check out Novedge for the best 3D Software deals.