View Full Version : Help in creating Highways in Landscapes

01-11-2004, 06:00 AM
Greetings! I am brand new to Lightwave 7.5 and I am requesting any advice on building highways in landscapes for animations of motor vehicle collisions. The highways would consist of straight-aways, intersections and curved lengths of asphalt highways. The roadways would be created in both rural and urban settings.

Thanks for any advice!!!

01-11-2004, 06:29 AM
fastest way is texture maps and bump maps
Next is minimum amount of geometry and texture maps
Next is full geometry

Or a combination of all the above

Depends on how close you need to be fo each to work.

Texture/bump maps lose everything on closeup shots. (ie too pixely in textures and bumps are fake so none will show if close up.

min amount will either give better texturing or better bumps

Full geometry will give better of both worlds, but comes at rendering time costs.

Can you be more specific in the needs of shots?

01-11-2004, 06:37 AM

Thanks alot for the info! I am a traffic accident reconstructionist and I am working on learning to create animations of motor vehicle collisions. I want them to look as professional as possible and am willing to learn anything. I plan on showing everything from broad overall views of the scene with the collision sequence and also close-ups with driver's perspective and witness views. I want to work at creating the best views possible for both types of animation views.

Can you also please advise on where I can find some good looking vehicle objects. I need to build a library of them for my line of work.

Thanks for the help! I appreciate your willingness to help out a newbie!

01-11-2004, 09:16 AM
If you're new you could check in your scene directory, there's a crash simulation there. It's somewhat simplistic but could give you some pointers.

01-11-2004, 09:36 AM
Then this will be easy as you would have access to land use maps, vegitation maps, ploted subdivision maps and such:)

I would set up a presentation as such

Original .... flyover

Use just textures and bumps

So grab a street type map (one in black and white best) that shows the road layout of area you need.

In photoshop scan map in best res possable for your scanner and as big as you can.
What you want on this map is the roads.
You will probably need to erase the names and whatever else there is besides roads. The reason for hi quality scans is to make it easier here. You should (if scan is good enough) be able to grab 'magic wand' and click on a road and it will select all pixels that connect and same color. then click on inverse in pull down menu and you should now be able to just grab the biggest eraser and erase everything but the roads.

save as road color
then invert map so colors are just the opposite (should be black and white), now road is white and rest is black.
Save as road trans.

I'm doing this on my other monitor as I type here so I may forget something when typing, so any questions ya need answered I will try to 'splain better.

There are so many ways to do this, and 1 is easier but as you are new to LW, I figured I would show you thr Transparency way, as it will come in handy for many many things you do. So bare with me.

Now in photoshopmake a 'new' pic the same size as the road one you just did. flood fill as green, use the biggest spray brush and just add some spray here and there in darker and lighter greens (for some color variety). then in texture(dropdown menu) add some crackleture or whatever texture you like.
Blur a little.

Save as road greenery.
Done in photoshop

now in modeler make a plane as big as you need (I am doing one that is 500 meters by 1000 meters).
color it black...copy and paste into the second layer
put the first layer in background and raise (move) the foreground layer 1 meter off the backgroung
save object as Road ground

done in modeler

Open layout, load Road ground

you should have 1 object with layer1 and layer 2 and two colors in the surface editor panel

Don't know what direction you modeled in modeler (dosen't really matter as this will be same no matter what direction)

What you want is to move and rotate camera so you can see the flat plane from the top.

create a keyframe there at 0
so your camera won't bounce back to original position.

Now in surface editor:

leave black alone.
on green
click on the 'T' button next to Color
should say Layer type Imagemap
projection planer

click on 'None' and load image
go to where you saved the 'Road greenery, and load it
load the road greenery map and you should see it shown in the camera view on your plane. (if it looks like stripes then where it says texture axis, click on either X Y or Z and you will see the plane in the camera view change. Stay at the one where it's the same as the pic.

You now have your greenery
Now for the roads.

Click on the Transparency 'T' button and do the same as color but load the road trans pic.

put it on the same axis as the grenery map. What this will do is make the parts where the roads are black be transparent and it will see thru the green layer to the black layer,
you should now have all the roads showing and the greenery showing also.
If it's not then on the transparency layer click on edit image then editing then invert.click oput,click use texture
render, at D1 res, Antialiasing medium (under camera item properties). With render options set to Render display to QV

Now all you have to do is move your camera (and create keys) to set your fly over, lenth of frames, and render scene to your format.

That's the far shot.

I'll let you digest all that first so you won't get brain freeze
;) before the rest.
Let me know how you do so far.

01-11-2004, 12:26 PM
Thanks for all the great advice. Prospector, I'll work on this and let you know how it comes out.

01-11-2004, 01:00 PM
Oh yea..almost forgot
on another thread I did a tut for making cars follow the geography of roads and how to make parts transfer from 1 car to the other.

Don't remember the name off hand but a search using Prospector in last 2 weeks will bring it up.