3D Production Pipeline – Part Two

UV Mapping

Before applying any form of texture to a model, it’s important that the created 3D object is first flattened into a two-dimensional representation of the meshing on the surface of the object. This process is known as UV mapping or unwrapping. For any animator, UV mapping is an important skill as it requires utmost accuracy in order to apply realistic textures on polygonal surfaces.

Texturing and Shaders

The models (or assets) are at the next step called texturing and shaders. In this step colours and textures take over the ‘grey-look’,  commonly known as the default shader. A texture artist’s job is to work with what is referred to as ‘shading material’. When applied to a 3D model the texture artist is then able to control elements such as colour, reflectivity, shininess and much more along those lines. This then gives the 3D model a more realistic look with the colours and materials applied.

In the link provided, is a video in 3ds max on creating realistic snow using textures and shaders.


Rigging is one of the very important steps in 3D animation. The technical director prepares the freshly made 3D character for bone structure and linking control points. With the bone structure, the technical director places the underlying skeleton ( bone structure) for the model that helps connect the linking points. Once the bone structure is put in place the control points are connected and the animators can then control the movement and form of the character’s legs, arms and any other movable part of it’s form.


Up into the final stages of 3D animation. The rigged assests are animated and controlled to bring out the desired shot. There are many steps that go into creating flawless animations, but during the final stages of the animation you start to see the final pieces fall into place. With using a timeline, the animator’s job is to set the character’s movements in frames that can be caused in a flowing animation.

Animation varies in it’s deliveries such as two gears meshing together to creating a complex character performance that can be viewed in today’s 3D animated films. 3D animation was inspired by the original 2D animation and uses the same approach as the flipbook animation. The only difference instead of fashioning a new pose on separate sheet of paper, the 3D animators produce different poses on a series of fixed images (which are referred to as frames). Animators can create the illusion of movement by designing alternate poses which are then played continuously in a certain amount of frames. The animators of a 3D animation have the most important job in the entire setup of a 3D production, as they make the audience believe that the characters, objects and world are a believable reality.

The link provided below is a complete short animated film called ‘Pigeons’ which will assist in demonstrating the final result of a functional animation.


Boudon, G. (2013). How Does a 3D Production Pipeline Work. Digital-Tutors Blog. Retrieved 12 March 2015, from http://blog.digitaltutors.com/understanding-a-3d-production-pipeline-learning-the-basics/

Slick, J. (2015)Surfacing 101 – Creating a UV Layout. Retrieved 12 March 2015, from http://3d.about.com/od/3d-101-The-Basics/a/Surfacing-101-Creating-A-UV-Layout.htm

Slick, J,. (2015) Rigging. Retrieved 12 March 2015, from http://3d.about.com/od/Glossary-R/g/Rigging.htm

Slick, J,. (2015) What is Rigging?. Retrieved 12 March, 2015, from http://3d.about.com/od/Creating-3D-The-CG-Pipeline/a/What-Is-Rigging.htm

tunahan avsalli, (2014)  making  realistic snow in 3ds max, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GAWw1wx2pwg

cartoon channel (2014), [pixar- 2014] Pigeons- from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7mwme29CHdk


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s