View Full Version : NPR rendering with lightwave [lines]

12-14-2006, 05:05 AM
i'm working on a commercial project where we're trying to get close to a pencil drawn look with lightwave..i started the project out with 3dsmax as i wasn't sure if i was also going to do the character animation as well as the 3d scenes...we've now set on 3d scenes and camera moves but flash based character animation on top...so that freed me up to have a look back over in lightwave as that was the place i was building the meshes anyway...


i've now got a similar 'look' via rendered edges and lw super cel shader but i'm still looking for a moree drawn look to the actual ''pencil lines'' currently they're very straight...

my options i've come up with is...leave it as we have..the client seems okay with this...

divide and jitter each model to move the silluette about a bit...

texture map the lines onto each model where appropriate and don't use the edges feature on those models...

what i'd ideally like would be some kind of linewheight feature to vary the thickness of a line and add some randomnes to the render..

any ideas?...keep in mind this will be animated so photoshop filters for sketch will look 'filtered' and not pleasent to look at when moving...

also rendertimes need to be fast as there's quite a few frames to render...

i'll add some pre renders for you to have a look at...

12-14-2006, 05:08 AM
see piks

12-14-2006, 05:10 AM
i do know of the pencil render method with subframe mo blur and jitter etc...but that will take too long to render each frame i belive..

mainly looking for a more natural line render mainly...

12-14-2006, 05:16 AM
trying to go for this style if poss....but in 3d not hand drawn..

12-14-2006, 05:21 AM
This might be a bad idea, I don't know how long the animation is, but unfortunately I haven't come across any filter/software solution that could replace a rotoscope. A lot of people look to to achieve a hand drawn look without having to hand draw something and I've never seen it "successful."

Something else you could try looking at is Sketchup recently purchased by Google. It has a feature for applying sketch line types to the edges of 3D models.

12-14-2006, 05:27 AM
yeah i have tv paint..so that's an option..though it would be labour intensive...


12-14-2006, 05:47 AM
might also look at duplicated model and flipped polys turned pencil colour...could work out to be a way to get a varied line as well as the edge poly feature.

12-14-2006, 06:02 AM
add some gaussian jitter to the flipped version and then stretch it a bit bigger than the normal version that's underneath

12-14-2006, 06:07 AM
copied model and flip poly jitter method test from a viewport screen grab not a render

12-14-2006, 06:54 AM
also having a look into this method



12-14-2006, 07:08 AM
Have you looked at the unreal shader? It has a filter for doing funky things to edges...

12-14-2006, 08:17 AM
i wuld if i could find a tutorial on how to setup the darn thing and understand all the features!

12-14-2006, 08:21 AM

but would like to see a english tutorial!

12-14-2006, 08:34 AM
okay i've found some english info on it...unreal shader


12-19-2006, 02:57 AM
If you want to do this in Max, finalRender stage 1 comes bundled with finalToon, and it does an outstanding job...currently using it on a dental animation.
It comes with a series of video tutorials to get you up and running quick. Quick tip, though...avoid sub-pixel line widths when animating...otherwise you'll get flickering.


12-19-2006, 03:23 AM
The attached test render has some subtle concave and slash pen effects in the directions that I dictate...

12-19-2006, 04:15 AM
Maybe you should look up jot or lovefish, I have not used them myself but they look good.

12-19-2006, 04:25 AM
yeah i started the project in max but moved to to lightwave just to see if i could replicate the look..and it's okay...i did have look at final toon but with no demo version being available i wouldn't drop $495 on somthing that may look/behave bad when animating rather than stills...all the videos are just stills so i've no idea how a pencil sketch animation would look when the camera is moving...it may flicker or look wobbly...i have emailed them for a demo/trial version but no response as yet.

wish there were a way to vary line thickness with lw...

12-19-2006, 04:30 AM

something like this [photo shop sketch...]

12-19-2006, 04:37 AM
to vary thickness in final toon they can use a noise map or any procedual map..is there anything like this for lightwave?...i want to add a little randomness to the line weight if possible but not send render times through the roof either..

12-19-2006, 06:53 AM
Here's a quick test made with unReal Xtreme. It's just a turbulent texture applied to brush size.

12-19-2006, 07:43 AM
okay, who do i make the cheque payable to then ztreem!
that's EXACTLY to look i'm going for!....
if you could email the scene or wot not i'd crawl over broken glass with a ear to ear smile!

[email protected]

12-19-2006, 09:15 AM
Here's the scene and object, free of charge. :D

12-19-2006, 09:19 AM
and i was just getting some glass shardes collected up!...;D
thank you!:thumbsup:

12-19-2006, 01:29 PM
trying out a demo of a 3dsmax renderer from japan today too


12-20-2006, 05:26 AM
I initially had some very minor flickering problems with finalToon using a line weight of .6 pixels...but after boosting the line weight to 1 pixel it animated rock solid. I adjusted the opacity of the line to make it appear thinner....yet no flickering whatsoever.
BTW, when you buy a copy of finalRender Stage 1 ( stage 2for Max 9 is due out any time now), finalToon comes with it. It's arguably the fastest and most feature-rich renderer out there. In my experience, it leaves Mental Ray in the dust.

The videos I was talking about are separate from the overview videos on the website. They are pretty detailed, and you'll be ready to roll with it within an hour or so.

If you don't want to go the finalRender/finalToon route. Mental Ray has something like it with "Contour Shading."
It's not as powerful as finalToon, but it allows you to adjust line weights based on things such as width from light, Curvature, etc. I've attached a couple examples.

12-20-2006, 05:52 AM
One more MR example...width from light direction:

12-20-2006, 06:01 AM
thanks for the insight into final toon and mental ray...
i've got a reply from cebas and now have a demo of finalrender/final toon and will be doing some tests with it this week.

currently i'm using bog standard lightwave celshader w edges and the client is okay with that but as 'his' client may change their minds and i'm always looking to perfect a render style it's prudent to keep researching into other ways to render NPR which also includes the unreal shader i had a look at yesterday...i need to play with the setting in that to get a consistant look within the model though.

12-20-2006, 06:02 AM
here's what lightwave is kicking out currently


12-20-2006, 06:15 AM
The demo may not include the video tutorials I told you about. If you have a site that I can upload a few of them to, I can do that.
They were very helpful in getting started with a decent level of competence.

12-20-2006, 06:19 AM
the demo just has the app i think - 13mb
not got a upload access point for ftp for clients as yet...

no doubt i'll figure it out with a little help from these clips

12-20-2006, 06:20 AM
If you could use some cross-hatching sketch lines to color the various objects, I bet your client would be really tickled with it.
Check out this free site. A client I am working for uses this for me to upload preview animations.

12-20-2006, 07:20 AM
i use enipes to upload large files for people usually,

and it's free too.