Monday, September 11, 2017

3D Interior Design Rendering

3D Renderings of Interior Design by Thom Schillinger 3D Conceptual Designer

3D Interior Design Rendering

Upon graduation from Art Center I immediately started doing Set Design for Television Commercials back in 1992 out of Hollywood, CA. I have always had a love for Architecture both Interior and Exterior Design, so getting to jump into this right out of College was a great area to hone these skills.

I eventually moved into working on some Restaurant Designs, and with a background as a cabinet builder this assisted me with designing functional interiors which was also a part of the design curriculum at Art Center when you a part of the Industrial Design[ ID] program, called Environmental Design.

I eventually started doing Theme Park design as a Show Designer, this furthered my contact with great Architects and Designers building themed entertainment venues. I worked on both interior and exteriors in this field.

During the Dot.Com boom in late 1999, I moved over to create virtual architecture for the Launch City full design revision, this allowed me to fully use the past experience to create virtual environments to green-screen in live band performances for the DR CD ROM Magazine industry, though short lived as that industry was.

As I moved into Theatrical Entertainment doing Key Art for Movie Posters, this virtual set work continues to this day to be a large part of what I do on a regular basis. I will typically recreate a set piece from a film at a very specific angle for a one sheet, and this allows the client to have a pre-masked smart 3D asset, with total control for editing after the photo shoot is done. Also a virtual set is never taken down, so I can re-access it and adjust for new renders in the future[ Like a Home entertainment Key Art package after the film leaves theaters].

If you have a need for traditional Architectural rendering, or themed work, please contact me for a bid.

I also will have a new button to the right as well.

                                                   Cheers, THOM

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

What is the difference between a 3D Artist and a 3D Conceptual Designer?

What is the difference between a 3D Artist and a 3D Conceptual Designer?

     First off there is no hard-line difference per say, however there are big differences between these two titles. I myself, have worked as both and each position is a little different.

The title of 3D Artist usually is an artist who works in a 3D computer program to create dimensional work in CAD or one of the various 3D Software packages [ 3ds Max, Maya , C4D, Sketch Up,etc]. 3D Artists are primarily trained in the 3D Program or programs of choice , and work in a variety of industries to build out, light, texture, and animate their creation they have built. 3D is a dimensional world rather than a flat world like Photoshop and Illustrator tend to be. It is also not required as a 3D Artist to be trained as a 2D or 3D sketch artist, though many do this.

A Conceptual Designer is a trained designer that works on concept art, usually for the film and game industry. The first Conceptual Designer, or Concept Artist I met was back in 1986, Syd Mead. Syd did all the futuristic designs for films such as 2001, Blade Runner and Tron. His path took him through Industrial Design [ ID], and I followed this path myself. ID trained concept artists understand how things are made, and usually are builders in the real world on some level, and this real world training translates directly in the way they do 3D.

Once I saw Syd's work at a presentation in college, and more importantly, heard him describe his work back in Michigan in the Winter of 86'. I knew this was my path, so I transferred to Art Center in Pasadena to complete my training as an Industrial Designer with a plan to do Entertainment Design that last semester in Detroit.

A 3D Conceptual Designer is someone who is double trained in both of these disciplines. And this training takes place both in school and on the job. I have worked as all three, starting my career with 2D Concept Art, and now I do a bit of all three roles depending on the clients needs, but primarily I do 3D now.

The big advantage to being double trained is that, first I am open to more work opportunities, and second the client themselves get a two for one, in that I can design and build my own creations for them, cutting out the most expensive part in the middle of translating a design from one person to another so it can be accurately built as a final product. With me you get both. Finally, as a designer myself I can read and translate other designers work very fast, so I can build other peoples work much quicker and closer to their original concepts.

So today I am posting this link to my Traditional Hand sketching and Marker Rendering work that I do that is the basis for my title of 3D Conceptual Designer.

As a Industrial Designer trained in Transportation Design[ Car Designer], there is a moment in our education that we make a connection between our clay models and sketching. After this connection is made you sketch much more realistic, and accurately as the end product is real and dimensional. This is what happens when I sketch now, I draw more accurately now that I do a majority 3D.

If you have a need for 2D Concept work I still break out the velum, so contact me for a bid.

NOTE: I have added a permanent button to the right menu like this.

                   Cheers, THOM

As to my 2D work here are some specific links for this work.
Phantom 2040 2D Animated:

Theme Park[ some 3D]:

Art Center[ some 3D]:

Napkin Sketching:

Frum-Unders 2D Character Development; 

Tuesday, August 29, 2017



       As a 3D Conceptual Designer I bounce around quite a bit as evidenced in my TAG's to the right from 3D Illustration, 3D Modeling, Architectural Visualization, Virtual Photo Shoots, Automotive Phototreal rendering, Product Rendering to name a few, however 3D Logos are one of the main tasks that I do for existing clients, as well as one off jobs. 

I have been doing 3D Logos since I started work in Theatrical Advertising for Key Art for Movie Posters, Home Entertainment,as well as Motion Graphics, and websites since back in 2001.

Over the past 16 years I have rendered out well over 10,000 3D Logos. I have worked on hundreds of Key Art film campaigns as well as doing 3D logos for a variety of outside clients, from very small jobs of just 2 hours, to full re-branding for a variety in Corporate Advertising clients.

Most Agency's I work with do not have an in-house 3D Artist, so I get called in to to a 3D-Assist , and develop a 3D logo that they have already designed out in 2D in-house.

For some jobs, like X-Men 2, I did 212 3D Logos for our first presentation, this was one of the larger presentations. Most jobs I do a dozen or more, then refine them down to finals.

I take on jobs small to large, so I can do a 3D logo for a client on a tight budget and deadline for as little as $150,oo dollars. 

Trained in Art Centers Transportation Design program I am skilled in advanced surfacing. Though most logos are flat extrusions with some sort of light bevel to an edge, I hand build many more complex logos, all as a subdivision [Quad] model so that the end product can be used in extreme close ups for my Motion Graphics clients that buy the 3D Model as well as the 3D Renderings. 

I have developed many looks in logos from 3D Glass Logos, 3D Metal Logos, to the chiseled center-bevel or Single Point Bevel  type that has be a popular staple since around 2002. I have whole alphabets already built for some of the more popular fonts used, so I can save time re-setting it out for many clients and be on budget.

If you have a need for a 3D Logo please contact me for a quote.

Cheers, THOM

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Project Review: Hatfield and McCoy Diner Show-Virtual Video Wall Set Design 2016

Here is the final full color render for the Video Wall Set Extension for the Diner Theater

I did a black and white version as well

 I also provide an Ambient Occlusion Dirt pass to overlay the render to add aging to the objects at geometry intersections
Built out mostly in Quads here is the base geometry with Subdivision [ Turbosmooth / Meshsmooth ] added

 A Birds-eye show all objects in the scene built with a forced perspective I learned when I did Set Design right out of Art Center.

Details in the front booths on the sides of the gates without Sub-D added.

 Close up[Base Geometry] of the fireworks and various signage out front.

Elevated shot[ Base Quad Model] of the banners above and Ferris Wheel out back

 Here is a elevated shot of the base 3D Model showing the Middle Ground elements with the tent in the background.

Project Review
 Virtual Video Wall Set Design 2016

Client: Fee/Hedrick Entertainment Group.
Creative Direction: Marshall Whaley.

Project Date: January 2016.

I started out my career in Set Design fresh out of ACCD in 92',and have been doing Themed Entertainment projects ever since, so I was contacted by Marshall at Fee/Hedrick to develop a few projects for them,and this was the first, a 3D Virtual Set that would be used on a Video Wall behind a Stage Play Diner Theater in Pigeon Forge.

I was provided a concept sketch by the client that they wanted translated into a 3D Virtual Set, so I got direction as to the final look, and proceeded to block out the main elements.

Once we had a final look, I rendered out the image for the video wall at HD in layers with 3D Foreground, 3D Middle-Ground, and 3D Background. The 3D assets I created were then handed over to Dean Fowler to animate them for the projection on stage as well.

Virtual Sets like these are a fraction of the cost to create a real set piece, and the design can be dimentionalized if needed via 3D Printing or good old fashioned Set Construction.

This is first in a series for work done for Fee Hedrick.

If you need assistance with Diner Theater Set Designs on a freelance to Full-Time basis contact me for an estimate.

Cheers, THOM

Monday, August 14, 2017

Project Review: Buzz Lightyear Planet Rescue Shanghai China 3D Designer-Modeler 2011 PART I

 Early on  for Buzz Lightyear Planet Rescue, I created test sets to ensure that the 2D printed artwork would cover the monitors placed behind the flats. The red-lines were from the Architect to give scale for the 3D renders.

I did two full rounds of designs, starting with the look developed a decade back in Toy Story I with the Zorg-Bot, and a second pass that went to finish with a more contemporary 'stealth' flat edge look update developed by Scot Drake.

When I delivered the 3D assets I did Base Quad Subdivision renders along with smoothed ones, because I was responsible for the Advanced Surfacing and the rendering was done by the in-house 3D team. 

 Here is a screen grab for a final set piece that shows the monitor fitment as this is an interactive attraction, and the hardware needed to be fully hidden by the flats.

 One of Christopher Lee's Transport design Bots, fleshed out in 3D. I also did a few texture tests early on like this one, as we were testing the Black Light throughout the project as I was there.

 One of my favorite designs to build was the driller bot,and this was testing some weathering on the 3D Model of the Character I built in 3DS Max.

A Phase One Extractor Bot with Sub-D ON: This was based on the Round Zorg-Bot found in the original Film, expertly designed by Christopher Lee.

The base mesh with Sub-Division removed and mirrored to show front and back sculpting for in-house critique and adjustments.

A Final 3D Character Design of the Grinder-Bot used in the first set mock up seen at the top of the post.

Hammer Robot Phase One final 3D Model 

Here is the base Quad build out showing all six sides of the 3D Robot Character Model.

Shanghai China
3D Designer-Modeler 2011

Client: Walt Disney Imagineering.
Creative Director: Scot Drake.
Art Director: Christopher Lee.
Project Date: October 2011-May 2011

Today I am posting my 3D Visual Development work I did at Walt Disney Imagineering back in 2011 for the Shanghai China theme part attraction, "Buzz Lightyear Planet Rescue", based upon the Pixar Toy Story property.

I was brought onto the team for about 8 months, to assist the Design Team in 3D development of the 3D Robots and 3D Characters for the attraction that they were developing a look. Scot Drake was the Creative Director for the project, and I worked directly with the Chief Show Designer Christopher Lee, both are very talented fellow ACCD Alumni.

The initial job consisted of developing 3D versions of the concepts that Christopher had come up with to populate the attraction. Final application would be high resolution prints in color that would be reactive to black light.

Today is PART I in a series on this work showing a sampling of the over 500 robots I built out for the attraction in 3D, that were used in the final product currently live in Shanghai.

To see the attraction as well as Christoper's Lees great work go check out his development at his site here.

I will post additional PART's to this series in the future. Truly a dream job for me, and my last Imagineering job before relocating out of the area.

If you need 3D Character Visual Development / Conceptual designs, or a 3D Models built of your design, do not hesitate to contact me for a bid. Available for Freelance to Full-Time.

Cheers, THOM

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Project Review: Architectural Visualization 3D Furniture Modeling 2017 The Olaf Chair

 The end product for this 3D Service is the 3D Model itself, I do a surface render check for every one, thus ensuring that the subdivided Quad Sub-D Model is good to go when delivered. This is a typical test shot as delivered to the client.

Here is the base mesh with Subdivision removed to show the low poly base build I do. Subdivision Modeling allows for as much resolution as needed in the asset, yet provides a lighter base mesh for dial in of pre-lighting textures and animations.

This underside view shows the 3D Model build out of the legs with supports.


 A close up details on the supports attachments with rattan.

 A few quick test renders on a virtual Photo stage

 Another angle on the 3D Model.

 Birds Eye overhead view on the Olaf Chair.

Side View of the 3D Chair.

 Here is a high front angle on the chair.

Project Review
Architectural Visualization
3D Furniture Modeling 2017
The Olaf Chair

Client: Three Marks.
Art Direction: Michael Golden.

Project Date: February 2017

Of the various 3D services I offer, one is to model out hard surface 3D assets for various clients to have them take my 3D Model into their program for a variety of uses from animation, Design, Visualization both for still print, as well as animations, and in today's blog post I am covering Furniture 3D Modeling.

I have worked with Michael Golden for a few years on a project by project basis, assisting with sets of custom furniture for his incredible visualizations he does out in NYC. For me, to build out custom furniture for Architectural Visualizations in still format or a  walk through is one of my favorite things to build in 3D, and Mid Century Modern is one of the styles I enjoy the most.

Today I have a really fun chair I got the pleasure of building out, that of a weaved wicker high-back Olaf Chair. As a prior furniture builder and a woodworker myself, I love virtual furniture building.

Having to build great iconic furnishings done in the past by great designers always builds up your own design abilities, since whenever you are forced to build another designers concepts you are challenged as a designer yourself. It takes you out of your own comfort zone, and allows you to see thru another designers eye, and sensibilities.

This will be followed by other pieces I have built out, as I have well over 100 custom furniture pieces for the Architectural Visualization work that Michael does at Three Marks.

Cheers, THOM

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Project Review: 3D Illustration Key Art-All Def Comedy Jam 2016

The first Pendant render of the 3D Logo I did for the HBO All Def Comedy Jam.

I did a second pass of an ambient occlusion render that is overlaid in the final PSD file I deliver to the in-house Art Department.

The angle view on the 3D Pendant Logo.
3D logos allow for multiple angles and views using the same asset, a distinct advantage over a 2D Logo.

The Ambient overlay showing the reflection sphere I have hidden in the render to fine tune the metal brightness on black.

This was the final pass at the stacked Comp. I put all three light effects into one comp, the 3D Neon tube, the round bulb type, and the inner volumetric glow inside the microphone head.

Here is the Second Pass render of the Ambient/Dirt shader overlay.

 I also provide a distance based mask, or a Z-Depth Pass, for these renders so focal length effects and saturation based on distance is already masked out for the Art Team that takes this and integrates the 3D Logo into the final product.

The first alt was no light effects just metals and a dark look.

I then added a volumetric light casting rays out from indie the Microphone next.

Here is the alt with the vintage round bulb marque feel to it.

Project Review
3D Illustration Key Art
All Def Comedy Jam 2016  

Client: HBO via Leroy and Rose Agency.
Art Direction: Melchior Lamy.
Project Date:October 2016.

Last Fall I worked on some 3D concepts for Key Art for the new All Def Comedy Jam 2016 for HB via the Leroy and Rose Agency out in California.

I was given two basic directions, one of a big gold pendant utilizing the circle logo provided to me by L&R, and another of a stacked black on black logo dark with some gold and light accents.

I started with the pendant concept first, as directed, and built out the 3D Logo and set up the textures and lighting. I have done many 3D Pendant logos in the past[ Goldmember, Marci-X etc.] so I utilized what was learned from those in this one as well. I did two views which is why 3D is so beneficial when the client wants alternates[ or Alt's] , since I just create another camera view, adjust lights as needed, and render a second concept based off the cost of the first.

The second direction is what took the most of my time, a stacked dark metal on dark metal logo with gold accents. Once I had the majority of the scene built, I rendered it out in various ways as seen above. The final was a comp with light bulb text, neon tubes, and a lit up microphone mesh all in one.

Though these did not finish[ make to the finals], it was a great exploration and application of technique for proof of concept.

If you need a 3D assist on a 3D Logo for your project, contact me for a quote today!

      Cheers, THOM

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Project Review: 3D Neon Logo for Key Art for 'The House' 2017

The Neon tubes and clips were ultimately used for the final Key Art for The House 2017

The full render with the back tin plate[ removed for final]

Here is the base Quad Mesh for the 3D Logo. Note the reflection sphere behind the logo, to add details to both the glass objects , as well as the metal clips. 

 Early on I did an alternate with broken glass tubes and dented and gritty back tin.

If requested by the client I can provide an ambient/dirt pass to overlay the color pass to accentuate edges and intersections to add some light grit to the render.

A Close Up shot of the full 5K finish.

 A Color render at a low angle of the 3D Neon Sign I made for The House.

 The Quad Sub-D build with subdivision removed to see the base objects.

Close up details on the 3D Neon Sign design and build.

This Quad Mesh shot shows the inner glow object inside the outer glass tube, as well as the build for the retaining clips.

 This is a Distance Based 3D Mask, or Z-Depth pass I include so the team can do distance based editing on a pixel by pixel basis.

This first Color-Picker Mask I rendered out isolates the inner glow inside of the Neon Tubes, this is SMART 3D

This second Color-Picker Mask I rendered out isolates the outer glass of the Neon Tubes.

Here is a Wide format Key Art piece using the Neon Sign I made in 3D to assist the team at Leroy and Rose.

Project Review
3D Neon Logo for Key Art for

Client:New Line Cinema via Leroy and Rose Agency
Art Direction: Melchior Lamy
Project Date: March 2017

Back in the Spring I was asked to create a 3D Virtual Neon sign for the New Will Farrell film, The House. This is what I call a '3D-Assist', as the Posters and logo were already locked in by the client, and I was called in at Finish to help with a 3D version of the logo, as that is my expertise.

Most clients I have are limited in-house with 3D Designers and Artists, so they call me for these smaller jobs, which make up the bulk of my work.

For this one, I had to create all elements including all base vector splines, and as I have done dozens of 3D Neon signs, I have a procedure down to create them on time and on budget.

I was originally tasked with a clean version of the 3D Neon Sign, and a distressed alternate, with these delivered at a smaller size for approvals to save cost. A typical 3D Logo like this is first delivered at 1500 pixels wide to get approval for the larger final, which in this case were 5000 pixel wide final. I have rendered up to 18,000 pixels wide in the past.

When I build 3D Neon Signs now, I have some 'off the shelf' parts I have already made to reuse, like the glass clips and fasteners. I build the neon tubes themselves with two objects, an outer glass shell, that is not solid inside, but skinned with a shell command to get a thickness on the glass edges for proper reflection and refraction characteristics in the final render, as well as a second object, a glow object inside the glass at a smaller diameter representing the 'gas' inside the tube.

The final deliver is usually a multi-pass render with extra channels and masks to use, including a Z-Depth pass, and my Color-Picker layer to grab elements, include the glow inside the tube to add outer glows in post as needed by the Art Directors I deliver this too.

Neon is getting popular to use in Key Art, as I worked on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2, Despicable Me 3, and the Defenders all using 3D virtual Neon Signage, just in the last few months.

If you ever need a 3D-Assist, contact me for an estimate to make your logo into 3D Neon signage.

Cheers, THOM