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Alex Jenyon 07-14-2011 10:13 AM

Improving your matte paintings with CGtantra
Myself (Alex Jenyon) and Nick Marshall are helping to run the matte painting challenges over on CGtantra.

Some of the previous challenges were big, epic and fairly open-ended briefs, which sometimes resulted in people running out of time, trying to do something too ambitious, or getting a bit lost with their ideas.

Over the next few challenges we are going to try a slightly different approach. Each challenge will be designed to be faster to complete, have a more limited brief, and will concentrate on a particular aspect or technical skill required for matte painting. This months challenge is about creative use of limited reference photos, which is more common than you might think in production...

If you are trying to put together an entry-level matte painting portfolio, or want to develop your skills, this is one of the ways you could do it. It's always easier with a deadline, a brief, and an incentive.

Thanks for reading


nickmarshallvfx 07-14-2011 06:11 PM

As Alex mentioned, we are really hoping to ground these challenges and make them more like real world briefs. If you want to push towards a more professional level of work or just have an opportunity to get some feedback on your work while getting an interesting brief, head over and take a look.

Hope to see some of you there.


brujahbart 07-15-2011 12:37 PM

Ive had a look at this challenge and it is certainly an interesting one. gonna be quite challenging to get the most out of the images provided but none the less it looks fun

nickmarshallvfx 09-21-2011 03:35 PM

Just a heads up to anyone who is interested. After the great turnout on the previous challenge, the final CGTantra Matte Painting Challenge (at least for this year) has just kicked off!
This month, the brief is focussed on creating a photoreal matte painting from a basic CG layout. Alex and myself will be judging the entries again for the last time. For anyone who is interested, head over and check out the entry overview and start getting together some ideas!

Hope to see some of you over there soon!


gfilmman 09-21-2011 04:24 PM

Interesting! How detailed can we get with the 3d geometry modeling? I presume by no 3D renders in the final you guys mean we can start off working from an ambient occlusion pass of a detailed 3d model, and then paint/texture/light it in Photoshop? Is any 3d texturing or lighting allowed? Some clarity around this rule would be greatly appreciated.


nickmarshallvfx 09-21-2011 06:52 PM

Doing some more detailed modelling that you will later light and texture in photoshop is fine. That whole thing is a bit of a grey area, but what we are trying to do is discourage super high detailed modelling, texturimg, lighting and redering, and then just a quick slap comp together to create the final painting. Yes, this is sometimes done in production, but the actual modelling, texturing, lighting and rendering would most likely be done by a TD so that the matte painters can focus on the creation of the painting an everything that comes with it.
We dont want this turning into a free-for-all where more 3d generalists are submitting than matte painters. Thats especially possible in a challenge like this, so we just want to ensure that the focus is the 2D matte painting work, as this is all to test matte painting ability.

Does that clear it up a little, ir just add to the confusion..?


gfilmman 09-22-2011 06:41 AM

Yes, it does. Thanks Nick.

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