Intro to Cinema 4D: Getting Started with 3D Design | Aaron Bartlett | Skillshare

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Intro to Cinema 4D: Getting Started with 3D Design

teacher avatar Aaron Bartlett, Motion/Graphic Designer

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      How to Make Cool Stuff


    • 3.

      Learning the Interface


    • 4.

      Working with Objects


    • 5.

      Modeling Geometry


    • 6.

      Creating Texture with the Material Editor


    • 7.



    • 8.



    • 9.

      Lighting & Rendering a Scene


    • 10.

      Model the Ship


    • 11.

      Texture, Light & Animate


    • 12.

      Final Thoughts


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About This Class

Cinema 4D is a great piece of software for creating 3D art but getting started can be a little daunting. This class covers the basics of how to use the interface, create and texture 3d objects, as well as how to light, animate and render them out for final use. If you’re interested in learning the fundamentals of the software, whether you’ve used it before or not, then this is the class for you. Once we've covered the basic skills we test them out by building a 3D spaceship. In addition to the full Version of Cinema 4D, you’ll be able to do this class in C4D Lite (included with After Effects CC).

Meet Your Teacher

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Aaron Bartlett

Motion/Graphic Designer


I'm designer who works in LA and I've spent much of my career in entertainment marketing creating promos and ads for TV, movies and video games. I've got a fairly broad background in a variety of media. I love cartoons and comics books.

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Level: Beginner

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1. Introduction: Cinema 4D is an amazingly powerful 3D tool that lets you make art that can be used in pretty much any visual medium. This class will get you started in the ground level of Cinema 4D. It'll show you the basics of how to use the interface, creating texture 3D objects, then how to light, animate and render them out for final use. This class is for anyone who's interested in learning the software, whether they've used it before and want some clear instruction on the basics, or even beginners who have never used it before. If you have an Adobe Creative Cloud subscription, you have access to Cinema 4D Lite, which is a limited version that let's use a lot of the basic functions. Most of the material in this course will be relevant to Cinema 4D Lite users, but I'll point out whenever it's not. We'll be spending our time exploring many of the different features the software has to offer. Once we've covered all these basic functions, we use everything we've learned to build a spaceship. One final note, this lesson has been updated to the R23 version of Cinema 4D. The original was recorded using an older version, but I've updated the videos to reflect the changes in the interface and I'll let you know where as we go along. When you finish, you'll be able to find your way around all the major areas of the software and have the skills to create a huge variety of 3D art. 2. How to Make Cool Stuff: So before we get started with me teaching you stuff, I just wanted to show you how easy it is to make things that look cool in Cinema 4D. I could start with the most basic object, a cube, not very exciting, but maybe I could round off the edges to make it look a little bit cooler. Maybe I could tighten that up. Okay, still not that exciting. What if I added a floor so they can exist inside a room? Still pretty flat. What if I added a light? Cool, not overly realistic. What if that light had shadows? Now, it looks a little bit cooler. What if I added another light so that this side wasn't so dark? That's starting to get a little more interesting. What if I add some color? Could make the box red, make the floor blue. That looks nice. What if I added some reflection to this? Pretty cool. What if I added a bunch of boxes? I could even add in some more shapes if I want to, or add a bright glowing object. This is already starting to look like something interesting and I'm just randomly throwing objects into a scene. As you can imagine, when you spend some time planning out what you're going to do, you can make some really awesome art. So let's get started learning how to use the software. 3. Learning the Interface: As I mentioned earlier, you can learn this software even if you don't have the full version of Cinema 4D. As long as you have Adobe Creative Cloud, you can use after effects to launch Cinema 4D Lite. I'm going to show you how to do that. Just startup after effects, go to File, New, Maxon Cinema 4D file. Save that file wherever you want with whatever name you want and that'll launch the software. I'm going to be working in the full version, but I'll point out to the Lite users whenever there's something they won't be able to do. The first thing I'm going to do is make a cube just so I have an object to reference, you can do that by clicking this. Now we're going to start off just by learning how to look at things properly. If you have a three-button mouse and you click the middle mouse button, it'll switch your view port from one to four. You can see these each have names perspective, top, right, and front. It's basically like each one of these is a camera. Perspective is one that can move around freely and then you're looking from the top, the right, and the front seeing your object. These are all the same object, just looking at different views. If you don't have a three-button mouse, you can just click the icon that's in the top right corner of each of these windows. You'll notice these other icons that are next to that button. Those are move, zoom, and rotate. You can also do those functions using your mouse. If you hold down Alt on a PC or Option on a Mac, if you left-click, it rotates, if you middle mouse button, it moves, and if you right mouse button, it zooms in and out. It typically goes a lot faster if you get comfortable using those shortcuts with the mouse instead of these buttons, but either way is fine. Now, undo is the same in this software as it is in most others Control+Z on a PC, Command+Z on a Mac. But one thing that the software separates is the viewport. If I want to undo all the moves I just made in a viewport, I hit Control+Shift+Z or Command+Shift+Z instead. If I do that once it moves back, if I just keep tapping it, it'll keep going until I'm back where I started. You have some choices about how it moves around objects. If you go up to Cameras, Navigation, you can choose which mode you want to set things to. I have it set to object. What that means is whenever I rotate, it'll rotate around the object. If you want to, you can switch it to cursor so it'll rotate around wherever your cursor is, center, that will be the center of the grid or around the camera. Object is a pretty good choice because you usually want to rotate around whatever you have selected. I'll just leave that. There is a couple of very useful shortcuts when you're navigating around Windows. S is used for zooming to objects, and H is used for zooming to everything. If I were to add another cube to this scene and move it over into a different position, when I hit S, it zooms to that cube. If I hit H, it zooms to everything that's visible. If I was looking at all of my Windows, when I hit S, it only affects the one my mouse is over. If I hit Alt or Option+S, it'll zoom in all of the windows, and if I hit Alt or Option+H, it'll zoom to everything in all of the windows. Using the combinations of those four functions is very helpful when you're trying to look at things more clearly. If you go to display, you can see that there's some different modes. By default is just this simple shading. If you switch to lines, you can see that it shows lines that are on the edges. If I were to add some extra segments to this cube, you can see the lines for each of those segments. You can also play with these other settings if you'd like to see something simple, but typically the top two are all that you'll need. I'm not going to pretend I know how to pronounce that word. I'm assuming it's French. We can start looking at some of the buttons up at the top. Right now we have the Move tool selected. That lets us move things around. You'll notice these different colored arrows that exist around the cube. If you highlight one of these click and then drag, you can move an object on that axis. If you grab one of these corners, you'll notice that it highlights two of the axes. If you grab that and move it around, it'll only move on those two, but not the third. The next button is scale. You can tell that it's switched because now we have little boxes on the N instead of arrows. To show how the scale tool works properly, I'm going to hit C, which will turn this cube into an editable mesh. That basically just means it's not a dynamic object and now it's just a bunch of polygons. I'll get into what that means a little bit more later. For now, this lets me show you that if I scale on this axis, it'll only scale that direction. If you just click and drag in the empty space, it'll scale the entire thing. If you click one of these, it'll only scale on those two. The next one is rotate. If you click on one of these colored circles, you can rotate on that axis. Once you click and drag, if you hold down Shift, it'll snap to 10 degrees. If you click outside of this white circle, it'll rotate relative to the way you're looking at it, and if you click inside the circle, you can rotate on all axis at once. Most of the time, you'll only want to do one single axis to keep things simple. If you click and hold on this button, it shows you what the most recent tools you've used are. Something that's really important if you're going to be learning this kind of software is to learn your shortcuts. It saves tons of time not having to hunt through menus for things. Move, rotate, and scale are very common functions you'll use all the time. On the keyboard they're represented by E, R, and T. E for move, R for rotate, T for scale. The easiest way to remember that is that R is rotate and E and T are on either side of it. I'm going to delete this cube and create a new one. Now, I want to explain the coordinate system and how it works. In space, these three axes are referred to as X, Y, and Z. If you look down here in the corner, you can see which is which X, side to side, Y, up, Z, front and back. As you're changing things here, numeric values down here will correlate. Right now that's perfectly centered, which on the axis is 000. But if I were to change this to say 50 and hit Enter, it moves over 50 centimeters. Likewise, if I drag this up, you can see it moved to 147. You'll also notice that while I'm dragging this, a numeric value shows up in the middle to let me know how much I am doing. This gives us two different ways we can change things. Numerically or physically. You'll also notice that there's a size setting here instead of scale. That's literally saying what size this object is. If I were to change it to scale, then by default the scale's one, if I make it bigger, the scale would get bigger. Rotation has its own naming convention. HPB, that stands for Heading Pitch Bank. If you're familiar with aviation at all, those are the same terms that a pilot would use to describe how he's moving the plane. Hit R for rotate, change the heading by moving side to side, change the pitch by moving up and down, and change the bank tilting side to side. You can see the values down here have changed to correlate with what's happening up here. I'm going to zero all these values out, so it goes back. Hit E for move, so you'll notice these three buttons up here, X, Y, and Z. Those are the axis locks. When they're on, we can move on any axis. But if I was to, for example, turn off the Y, if I click here and move around, I can only move on the X and the Z. Now, I can still click this arrow and move on the Y if I want to, but it's a good way for me to avoid doing that If for some reason I didn't want to. These locks correlate to whichever transform tool is currently selected, Y is locked for move, but if I switch to rotate, I can still do whatever I want. But then if I were to log Z, now I can't rotate on the bank, which you can see because down here it's set to zero. I'm going to turn these back, undo. This button is the coordinate system. Right now it's set to object mode. That means that these arrows will stay aligned to this object. If I rotate it and then I switch back to move, you can see they're still pointing the same direction that the cube is. But if I click this and switch to world, then it'll force it to stay aligned to the grid. Something else you'll notice throughout this software, when you mouse over a lot of the buttons and menus, you can see something that says shortcut W in this case. That means if I hit the W key, that's what activates that button. It's a great way to find out where all those shortcuts are. Just a few more things. When we created this cube object, it also made this cube here. This is the object window, anything that exists in your scene will be referenced here. If you want, you can click and change the name of an object. If you see a check mark like this, by turning it off, it basically makes the object cease to exist. I'll explain what some of these other icons are in a little bit. This is the attributes window. This is where the properties for basically everything will show up if you want to change them. In this case, the cube has its own settings, the number of segments on each axis, the size on each axis. Fill it, for example, rounds off the edges, and then I can decide how many subdivisions there are on each edge and how thick or thin it is. Each and every object that there is has its own unique set of settings that lives in attributes. Also, the coordinate tab has all the transform properties for that object, which you'll notice looks very similar to the ones that are down here. There's one minor difference between the two. If you click on these arrows to change something, you'll notice it actually moves. By the way, you can also click in these arrows and just drag up and down. As I'm changing the numbers, it's moving, which you can see reflected over here. Now, if I do the same thing over here, you'll notice nothing happens. If you want to commit something that's been done in these fields, you have to highlight it and then hit Enter. Now, you might wonder why there's two different sets. The main reason for that is if you had two objects when you selected both of them, which you can do by drawing a window here, clicking one, then Shift-clicking the other or by clicking this and then Shift-clicking this. You can de-select objects by clicking an empty space here or clicking an empty space here. Not to lose my original point which was, if we have these both selected, this shows us the value of everything in the selection. You'll notice that these arrows are in between these boxes and it has its own unique position. If you look in the coordinates tab, it's telling us the coordinates of both, and there's a highlight here suggesting that there's multiple values for the two different boxes. If I were to type a value in here, they would both line up in exactly the same spot. This way, if I wanted to move all of these relative to their current position, I can change this to say 75 and they still stay spaced out. You can also hit this Apply button instead of pressing Enter if you want. There's your overview on the interface, how to look at stuff and move things around. 4. Working with Objects: Now we're going to try out some of the different kinds of objects. As with a lot of this class, I'm going to show you a few of the things you can play with, but there'll be a whole lot more that you should explore as well. In this case, if we click and hold on this cube, you can see all the primitive objects that are in this menu. The first one I'm going to create is a null. A null is basically a non-existent place holder. It doesn't render, it doesn't really physically exist. It's just something that you can use to anchor other stuff too. It's also very helpful for organizing things. Another very basic object is a sphere. If I go into the object settings, I see I can change the radius of the sphere or the number of segments that it's created from. The more there are, the smoother it will look. I'm going to turn on lines so you can see the segments. There's lots of different ways for subdividing it which create different shapes. Something you're going to notice when working with a lot of these primitives is you'll see these little orange dots. You'll notice the highlights when I mouse over it. If you click and drag those, they'll typically scale or resize some particular portion of that object. In the case of the sphere, it's the radius. I'm going to move this out of the way, and then I'll create a tube object. It's basically a cylinder with a hole in the middle. You'll see this has more of these little orange controllers. This is my inner radius, my outer radius, and my height. I can also change those by altering these values, or even just typing in numbers. If I turn fillet on for this one, it rounds off those edges. I can alter that radius as well, or if I only wanted a partial section, I can go to Slice and turn that on. Now it's only half of it. You can change these values to create other shapes too. I'll move this out of the way, and now I'm going to create a little bit more interesting object called landscape, which is very much what it sounds like. It lets you create topographical shapes that behave like mountains, hills, terrain, etc. Now this has controllers as well, which will affect the overall size and height. their width and depth segments that will alter how many polygons are in it, and you can also play with these other settings just to see what kinds of different shapes you can create. Just to keep things easier to look at, I'm going to delete this landscape. Now as you may recall, we made this null object, and I'm going to teach you how to parent. Parenting is a very important function that you'll use all the time. It's the simple way that you attach one object to another so that they'll move as one unit. We call it parenting because there's a parent-child relationship. That means the object that's in the top of the hierarchy is the parent, and the one that is in the bottom is the child. The child does whatever the parent does. I'm going to select my tube and my sphere, and I'm going to click and drag them onto this null. Now you'll notice that there's a little arrow icon that's showing up next to my cursor. If it's up here, it's pointing to the left, same as down here. What that would do is just move them in the list, which is just organizational and doesn't change the scene in any way. If I grab them and drag them on top of the null so that we can see that arrow pointing down, now they're parented to the null. We can see this because they got indented, and you can see these lines attaching them to the null. Now if I click the "Null", when I move it around, they move with the null. If I rotate, the same is true, and if I scale, they all scale. Now, suppose I didn't want the sphere to be parented anymore. If I click it, drag it down so that I can see that sideways arrow, let go. Now, you can see it's dropped back to the base level of the hierarchy. If I move the null, only the tube moves. Parent-child relationships can go as many layers deep as you want. I could also grab the sphere and then parent it to the tube. Now the sphere does whatever the tube does, and the tube does whatever the null does. If I were to rotate the tube, it rotates the sphere, but the null stays where it is. Now if I rotate the null, it'll affect both of the things under it. If I wanted to change my mind about how it was organized from here, I could grab the sphere, drag it up, look for that sideways arrow, and now it's back underneath the null and on the same level as the tube. Sometimes using nulls like this is just for organizational purposes. If you have a scene that has lots of objects in it, it can be confusing to look at everything, but if you see this little icon with the minus sign, when you click that, it hides everything. You can see this plus, that means that this thing has been told up and then it's hiding stuff. If I click the icon again, it just opens some back up. In that way, a null is almost like a file folder. One more trick regarding nulls I want to show you, I'm going to grab these, drag them out of the hierarchy, delete the null. If I select these two objects and then hit Alt or Option G, it will group them, which is to say, parent them, under a null. Now just to explain a couple more of the things that are going on in this window. You'll see that each object has these two little circles. Those are two controls that decide whether an object is visible in the viewer or visible when you render. By default, they're gray, which means they're neutral. If I click this circle once, it's green, that means it forces it to be visible. If I click it again, it's red, that turn it off. We can't see it in the view anymore. But if I hit Control or Command R to render my scene, you'll notice it's still there. I'll click this again to make it neutral. Now if I click the bottom one, green forces it on, and read turns it off. We can still see it in the viewer, but if I render now it's invisible. Click once more to go back. If you hold down alter option when clicking these, it'll change both at the same time. Now the green forcing it on seems a little confusing because obviously it's there. This is another example of where the hierarchy matters. If I were to turn the null off, it turns off everything underneath it. But what if I wanted to still see the tube, even though the sphere and any other objects under the null we're off. If I change that to green, now it comes back. Whatever the parent's visibility options are, the children will be forced to follow them unless you toggle that on. These toggles are really helpful when you have objects that are getting in the way of something that you're trying to see clearly. I'm going to delete these. Now I'm going to show you some of the vector objects. This is one part of the software that has changed a little bit. Just a point of note, as you're going through the lesson and looking for things, some of these objects might be under a different menu. But, for example, if you're looking for something that's a green object, you'll find it under one of these green menus. We'll click here to look at the pen tools and the vector primitives. We've got all these different blue shapes we can choose from, and we also have these pens. I'll pick the Spline Pen, I'm going to use my middle mouse button to click and then click again to switch to my front view, although I could have clicked this icon here. The Spline Pen is very much like the pen tool in Illustrator. I can click, click, click, or I can click and drag, click and drag, click and drag. Clicking once will give me those linear points, clicking and dragging will give me Bezier handles. I'll hit my Spacebar to switch out of this tool, and you can see if I grab one of these points, I'll hit E to switch to the move tool. I have these Bezier handles I can change. I can also hold down Shift if I only want to edit one side, then I'll click my spline object up here. I can see that there's different types for the spline. Bezier is what we started with. I could change the thing to linear and then it flattens everything out. You also have other options in between cubic, akima, and B-spline that are all different ways for it to round things out which you can experiment with. I also have this closed spline checkbox which will do exactly that. If I go back to my other views, you can see that this is a flat object because I drew it in the front view. Another thing you're going to want to notice is that as soon as we clicked with the pen tool, we switched from being in model mode down to being in point mode. We'll talk about that more later, but you can only edit points when you're in this mode. I'll go ahead and delete this. If I go back in and grab my sketch pen, I can just freehand draw a shape. If I click on the spline, same situation where I could change the type or close it if I wanted. I also have a spline smooth tool, which does just what it sounds like. You can see, if I click on this, it's smoothing everything out. You can tweak the settings to change how effective it is. Delete this. Finally, we've got a spline Arc tool. This is a bit more complex, but if I click and drag and then click and drag, it allows me to make curved shapes, and then click "Finish". Now if we look at the other objects, there's a rectangle, very similar to the cube, we can change the width and the height. Switch back to my object mode since this is a dynamic one. Similar to the fillets setting, there's a rounding setting that will alter the corners. If I go back to my perspective view, you'll see that I can pick which two axes it's aligned with. These vector objects don't render on their own, but you can use them in combining other functions so that you can create visible objects. We'll see some of those later. A significant object that's in here is the text object. Anything you type in this window will be written there. You have some settings like how the type is aligned, and how big it is, spacing, you can pick a different font, decide the alignment, etc. Obviously, this one's very useful for motion graphics. Another one of the crazier objects is flower. You can change things like how many petals there are in the inner and outer radius. There's also a cogwheel object that's similar, that lets you make ears. You'll notice this one has some controllers that you can grab. Inner radius, outer. You can also change the number of teeth and play with all of these other settings. Now I'm going to show you the objects in this menu. We'll start with making a subdivision surface. This is an incredibly useful tool that you'll probably be playing with frequently. If I add a box which is just flat and then parent it to the subdivision surface, you can see that it rounds everything off. I have some settings I can change in here. I'm going to set it up to three for the editor, so it'll be the same as what we would see in the renderer. I'm going to zoom in a little bit so it's easier to see. You'll notice that this now looks like it's a sphere, even though that was a box. The way that it works is by taking simple geometry that doesn't have a lot of points and polygons, and then mathematically rounding everything off. The more segments the object underlying has, the more likely it is to keep its shape. If I were to add one segment on each axis, you'll notice that it's a lot closer to looking like a box. If I turn this off, you can see the original shape and the new one. If I add yet another, it gets even closer. Pretty much any modeling you do that's more organic in nature, you'll end up using subdivision surfaces to get the smooth look that you want without having to model all of these thousands of little polygons. Here's another updated feature. I'm going to show you the extrude object. We'll create a text object from our vector menu. I'm going to change that from left alignment to middle, then I'll click here to add an extrude object. Now, if I hit "Control" or "Command R" right now to render, I don't see anything because the vector objects and these generators don't render on their own. But if I drag this text object under the extrude, now I've got a solid shape that renders. If I click on the extrude object, I can change how far the extrude offsets. If I go into the cap section, I can add a bevel to the edge. I can change how many segments there are in the bevel, and I can change it to another shape if I like. But there's also a bunch of really cool presets in here that you can pick from to change the shape altogether. Next, we'll do lathe. If you're familiar with the tool lathe, it's something that spins around in a circle. If I were to switch to say my front view and then pick the freehand pen tool, I could draw a shape like this, zoom out, parent that to lathe, and now I've got a little vase. The lathe just takes a vector object and then spins it around a single axis. You can use it to create really detailed objects like a fancy wine glass or fancy woodwork. The sweep object uses two vector objects with it. I'm going to create a circle and a rectangle, and then parent both of them to the sweep. I'm going to change the radius on the circle. Now what's happening here is the sweep is taking that rectangle and then sweeping it along the circle shape. If I take these out, you can see how big the circle is and how small the rectangle is. I put those back in a three-dimensional space, it's just tracing the square along the circle. If I were to switch the order, now it's doing the opposite. I'll change this circle to be a lot smaller, and the square to be bigger. This sweep will work with any object. If I wanted to, I could sweep the rectangle along some crazier shape. For example, I could just freehand draw a line and grab that and the rectangle and parent them to the sweep. Now my crazy shape is going along the square. Or if I move them in the other order, my square is going along the crazy shape. The cool thing about a lot of these modifiers is that they're non-destructive, we can tweak all these settings as much as we want and nothing is permanent. The last one I'm going to show you is the loft object, this blends two shapes together. So if I move this one over, select them both and parent them to the loft, you can see that it blends them together, and if I were to say rotate this rectangle, it changes the shape. Since this is dynamic, if I wanted to, I could animate these shapes to make a cool organic movement. Couple of more objects to show you, one is called Boole. I'm going to add a cube. I want two, I could just click the "Q button" twice, but I wanted to show you a different way you could duplicate an object. If you select something, and then hold down Control or Command and drag it, it will create a duplicate. You'll see that it added 0.1 on the end. Something to note though, if I had these two objects selected, and I wanted to duplicate the cube, so I Control dragged it, it also duplicated the Boole. It'll duplicate everything you have selected. So whenever you do those duplications, make sure you're careful about what you're selecting. I'm going to delete those because I don't need them. I'm going to move my second cube a little bit up and a little bit over, might as well do it on all three axes. So now you can see that they're intersecting. If I grab both of these cubes and then parent them to the Boole, you'll notice it just cut the one out of the other. By default, Boole is set to A subtract B. A subtract B. I'll switch back to model mode so it's easier to see this. The base cube and the top cube. The nice thing is that with it selected, we can see where it is, even though it's not showing up. If I were to tweak the settings, it alters what the Boole does. You do have other options like switching to a union B, which is basically what it was before we did anything. A intersect B, which is just showing the in-betweens, or A without B, which is a similar function to subtract. This is a very useful tool for cutting holes and objects by using another object does the thing that's creating the hole. Now suppose I wanted another copy of this object, but I wanted to be able to do different things with it. I could just duplicate it, but instead with Boole selected, I'm going to go into this menu and choose Instance. An instance is just basically a clone or a duplicate of an existing object. Now, I can move that one over here and we can see that we have two of them. I can do whatever I want to this one, and it won't in any way alter the other. But suppose there was a change that I wanted to make to all of them. If I came over here, and alter this shape, you can see that it's changing that one too. This one will always be a copy of whatever this one is. It's a very powerful tool that you can use to save you a lot of time. Can I add another cube so I can show you some of the objects in this menu? These are all deformers that will alter the way an object looks. The simplest one is Bend, and these things are unique in that you parent them to the object you want them to affect. You'll notice there's a Fit to Parent button down here. If I click that, it changes the size of the object, so it's exactly the same as the cube. Or I can just manually change the sizes here if I have a reason for it to be a different one. I'll click that again so it fits. Now, if I change the strength angle on Bend, it bends the cube. You'll notice that it's not really doing a whole lot because the cube only has six polygons. If I go in here and add some segments, I'll put 10 on each side. Now it's got something to work with. You can also change the angle to alter exactly how it's working. I'll show you a couple of the others. Taper, Fit to Parent, Strength, and you'll notice you can taper in and out. You can also alter the curvature setting if you want to be more stiff. Twist, Fit to Parent, change the angle. All of these deformers properties can be animated, so we can use them to create all kinds of neat movement. The remaining functions I'm going to show you in this video are not in cinema 4D light, they're only in the full version. If you go up to the MoGraph menu and choose Cloner, I'll make a cube parent it to the cloner, and now you can see it's made extra copies. Another update I wanted to show you while you still can go up to MoGraph to find all these MoGraph objects and effectors, they have now been added to the toolbar so that you can get to them here. Another setting that's changed. I'm going to click to add this cube, scale it down, I'll add a cloner, make this a child and you'll notice that the cloner is defaulting to grid array, which is actually a better place to start 90 percent of the time. For Cinema 4D Lite users, if you go into the menu where the Boole and Instance are, you could choose the array object. It's similar to the cloner, but not quite as powerful. We'll go into the cloner settings. By default it's made three and offset them 50 centimeters on the Y. I'll change that to 250. Zoom out so we can see. Now as I change that, it alters how they move. You can change all of these settings if you want to and it affects things. You also notice how it's doing it in a stepped way. Each one is rotating an additional 56 degrees in this example. There are different modes for making clones. Linear is the default, you can also do radial, which goes in a circle, change the count for more, change the plane to go a different direction. You can also tighten it up on the angle or grid array. I can change the number I have. I can also go into the Transform tab to alter things, moving everything over, scaling up, rotating. If I didn't want all these to be the same thing, I could add a sphere, for example, and parent that to the cloner as well, and now you can see every other object is alternating. If I go back into the settings, I could choose random so they weren't perfect or just leave it on iterate so that it's every other. I showed you the vector text object, but in MoGraph there's a Mo text object. This skips a step so that you don't have to use extrude to create 3D text. This one's 3D already, but it has a lot of the same settings. Let's just change the text the same way that we could in the other one, but has the Caps settings like the extrude does. There's also objects called effectors. If I went into MoGraph, picked a cloner, added a cube, switched to grid array, space everything out, with the cloner selected, I can go up to MoGraph Effector, Random and now it'll automatically affect this. I can check by clicking on Cloner going to Effectors and seeing that random is in my list. If I wanted to delete it, I could do that, just highlight and delete, and then if I wanted to add it back in, I can just drag it back into this window. If you click on the Random Effector, by default, it randomizes the position 50 centimeters each. If I change the Y to a higher value, now it alters the Y further, you can tweak each of these settings and you'll notice that it is in fact totally random there is no consistency to it. I could change the scale on different axes or I could use uniform scale, so they were all the same, add rotation. This is a great way for you to create a bunch of messy objects if you need things to fill out your scene. So that's a quick exploration of all the stuff that's in these buttons. You probably want to look through and see what the ones I didn't go over were because there's a lot of functionality there. Now it's time to learn about modeling. 5. Modeling Geometry: Okay, so now we're going to learn about modeling. Modeling is basically like sculpting clay. We're just changing the shape of things. When you work with three objects, everything is broken down into polygons. A polygon is just a shape. To show you what I mean, first, we're going to make a cube, then I'm going to add three segments to each side. I'm going to change my display so that I can see the lines. Each one of these little squares is called a polygon. Each polygon has edges, and where each edge meets another, there's a point. To be able to alter this stuff, we have to change it from a dynamic cube object into a static mesh. We do that by hitting C. You'll notice up here that it changed from a cube icon into this polygon object icon. It also added this UVW tag, that's for texturing. We'll learn about it a little bit later. Now by default, we start in Model mode. But to be able to edit this, we're going to have to switch to one of our other modes, in this case, point, edge or polygon. If I switched polygon, you'll notice that those edges now look blue. As I mouse over, it highlights polygons. I can click on one to select it. Click in the empty space to deselect. If I switch to edges, you'll see it highlights those endpoints. You'll see the little point showed up. Same thing. If you want to cycle through these different modes, you can hit the enter key on your keyboard. Right now I have the move tool selected, it's only letting me click on one thing at a time. If I wanted to click more, I would have to use the selection tools. That's what's in this menu. There's four different ways of selecting. Live selection, you can click on one thing at a time, or if you click, and hold, you can paint over the parts you want to select and then click the de-select. Rectangle selection lets you draw a box. Lasso selection is a free hand selection tool. Polygon selection is similar, but with straight lines. Once you create a selection like this, if you switch to a different mode, you'll notice the selection isn't there anymore, but that's because it's a different shape. If I cycle through, it keeps that one, even if I change the others, I could go to edges, and then select a few. Then go to poly, select these, and as I cycle through, it'll keep whatever selection I had unless I change it there. Once you've made a selection, you can now edit these things using the transform tools. E for move. I can slide this out. R for rotate. I can change the angle. T for scale. I can scale it in and out. There are other tools for helping you make more creative selections. If you go up to the select menu, you can find a lot of these. You can pick something like loop selection, and that does just what it sounds like. If I were to hold down the shift key, I could add to selections. If I hold down control or command, it'll subtract. These selection tools work in all the different modes. If I go to edges, I can select a loop there. Points. Same thing. There are other commands like select all. De-select all. Or if I had made a specific selection, but I wanted the opposite, I can say select invert. I can also choose select connected, and that will grab all connected points. If I select grow selection, it'll move out one poly edge or point from the current selection. If I select shrink, it'll do the opposite. Sometimes this can be really useful for doing things like selecting one poly in the middle of something, and then saying select, grow to grab what's around it. You can use shortcuts to get to most of these selections. If you hit U, you'll notice this little menu pops up. Just so you know, if you move your mouse, it goes away. You have to hold your mouse still. But if you hit U, you'll see all of these different options. You'll notice that a lot of the things I just showed you are on this list, and it tells you exactly what to hit. If I wanted to pick loop selection, I can just hit L. If you get used to using these, then you start to remember you just hit UL, and that's your loop selection. One of the things you need to know about selection tools. If I go back here, and pick live selection, you'll notice that there's a toggle, only select visible elements. If I were to de-select, and then just paint over this entire thing. It looks like I selected everything. But if I rotate around, you can see the things that we're facing away from the camera didn't get selected. Sometimes that's what I would want. But if I would like to select everything, I would, for example, grab the rectangle selection. Uncheck, only select the visible elements. I'll deselect just to show you, then draw a box around the entire thing. Now if I rotate around, you can see all of it selected. That can be a very important thing to remember to make sure that you always select what you want, and not what you don't. Now everything I showed you there is as much as you can do in cinema 4D light. If you want to do more dynamic modeling, you have to do it in the full version of cinema 4D. That's what we'll do for the rest of this video. Now we'll take a look at our cutting tools which have changed quite a bit in newer versions, will go up to mesh and choose line cut. If I click, and then drag, and I can continue to do so as long as I like, this will make lines that make cuts, will hit space to switch out. If I move around, you can see that we just made a cut. These are non-destructive. They're just chopping polygons into smaller polygons. Just to notice it didn't go all the way through. If I hit space to go back to my cut tool, I've got a visible only checkbox if I turn that off, and then click all the way through space again. Now you can see a cut through to the other side. Space to go back. You'll also notice that there is a single line option. If I do that, any cut will just be one line. You also notice these little dots are showing you everywhere that something is getting intersected. I'll undo those cuts, and hit space to go back. I can show you some more options. You'll notice that this thing snaps to edges, and points. I can click from this point to start, and then go to this specific spot on this edge. Or I could click from this point, and go to this corner. This can help you make very precise cuts. I could also choose split if I did that, and then cut through here, hit space. I'll grab this edge, and I'm going to hit U, W, for select connected. Now normally that would have selected everything because it's all part of the same geometry. But since I chose split, it actually turned it into a separate piece. I could also choose remove part A or remove part B, which as you can see, it will just delete the object on one side of the other. I'll undo back to our unrestricted object. If we go back to our mesh menu, and go to cut, those also plane cut. I can click anywhere, and drag and it's going to cut a straight plane through whatever I'm looking at, which obviously at this angle is going to create that crazy cut. But if I did it in one of my other views, it would be more straight. I can also go to mesh cut, and choose loop path cut. One thing to make sure of is you can always take note of the shortcuts for these commands in the menus. Some of them have more than one. Anytime you see the ones that are setup like this, that means that you hit two keys. In this case, KL or ML would get us the loop path cut. Instead of clicking on that, if I hit M, now I've got this nice little sub-menu that tells me all the things I can do. I'll see that L is for loop path cut. I'm actually going to switch out of the tool so I can undo that axis cut I made. I'll hit space to switch back. Now you'll see that I can make a cut on any loop going through this object. Once I've added the cut in, I can move this slider to change what part of the loop that cut exists on. I wanted it to be perfectly in the middle. I can double-click that, change it to 50 percent. Or if I wanted to, I could even add cuts which will automatically spaced out evenly, and tweak those as well. These loop cuts can be extremely useful when you're doing subdivision surfaces. I'm going to delete this cube. By the way, it's important to note that whenever you are deleting things where your cursor is changes what will happen? If I had a cube, it C to turn to an editable mesh, and I selected this polygon, and I wanted to delete the polygon, but my cursor was over here. When I hit delete, it deleted the entire cube. But if my cursor is over here, when I hit delete, it deletes that. When we get into talking about key frames, they'll be down here as well, and there's something you can select. In the same fashion, you have to have your cursor over where the keys are to be able to delete them. Just something to keep in mind if you ever confused when something won't delete the way that you want it to. Undo that delete, click to deselect. I'm going to use a subdivision surface on this cube. I could just click it, and then drag the cube in. Alternatively, if I have this cube selected, and I hold down alter option, and click the subdivision surface. It automatically makes the cube a child of the subdivision. Interestingly, there's other options here. Just to show you, I'll delete that again if I have the cube, but I hold down, shift, and click it. Now it becomes the child of the cube. Or if I grab this cube, I'll switch back to model mode. Just for the heck of it, I'm going to rotate it around and move it over somewhere else. If I hold down control or command on a Mac, then click. It's now put the subdivision surface, and exactly the same spot as the cube, matching the position rotation settings, but didn't do any parenting. Backup, hold down, alter option, click here, subdivision surface. We're rounding everything off nicely. Which you'll notice we've turned our cube basically into a sphere if we wanted to honor the shape a little bit more then basically just have a rounded off cube will need more subdivisions for it to work with. I'll click on the cube. I'll go into my polygon mode. I'm going to turn off the subdivision surface. I'll click to my recently selected tools, and go down to loop path cut. Now if I wanted, I could click here, I could add one, and then I can space them out. I'll hit space to commit. If I turn my subdivision surface back on, you can see that those two sides just got a lot flatter. I hit space to go back to the loop cut, I can see my original mesh shape here. I'll add in some more on each axis. Now you can see I've got an object that's a lot closer to the original. You're going to pull this cube out. Just to show you a couple other commands. With my cube selected, I'll go into mesh. If I choose bevel can pick a polygon, then click, and drag a little bevel. Then I can choose extrude, which will extrude outward. While I'm in the modeling mode, I could also right-click to find those commands, and other ones like extrude inner, and then recreate my other 3,3,3C. Now if I go back to mesh, create tools, bevel, going to turn only select a visible back on, grab the top. Choose bevel out of my recently used. Now if I click and drag, you can see that it's indeed beveling it in or out if that's what I wanted. By the way, at any point when you have a tool selected, if you hit spacebar, it switches back to selection. Now hold shift, and grab that cube that I missed. Now we'll go to mesh create tools extrude. As you can see, this drags out, and creates an extra set of polygons. If I go to the next one, mesh, create tools, extrude inner. It does the same thing, but inward instead of outward. Then I can switch back to extrude, drag up again, extrude inner, go in. This is a great way of adding detail to things. Just to show you, if I put this under a subdivision object, it creates some nice detail. Now that we've learned about modeling, it's time to move on to textures. 6. Creating Texture with the Material Editor: Now we're going to learn about texturing. We'll do this by creating a new material. We'll do that by double-clicking here, and then I'll double-click this icon to open the Material Editor. You'll notice that the properties are down here as well, but this a little bit easier to see. By default, a new material's called Mat. We can give it any name we want to keep track of it, and these are all the properties that that material has. The default ones that are turned on are Color and Reflectance, which has to do with reflection. I'll explain that in a little bit. I'm going to turn that off and we'll go through these one at a time. Color's pretty straightforward. You can tweak these numbers, these sliders, or just go into this window and pick a color. Or if you want to add a texture, you can do it in here. You can either click this button to select an image. If the images aren't in the same folder as the object you're working on, it will always ask you if you want to create a copy at your project location, which technically we don't have one because we haven't saved it. Typically, you can just say no to this, unless you want to make a copy. Now, this picture is applied and I can see the path right here. There are also other options you can choose in the Textures menu, things like Noise. This is a procedural pattern that's generated by the software. If you click the swatch you can go in and change the Noise's properties, things like changing the color, or the scale, or lots of other minor details that you can play around with. If you click this arrow, it goes back up to where we were or this is also a back button like in a browser that'll go to the last thing we were at. If you want to clear this out, just select "Clear". Now we'll look at Diffusion. This has to do with how light is distributed across something. If the diffusion is higher, it's pretty bright. If it's lower, it gets darker. Something like a shiny vinyl fabric might have really high diffusion, and something like a really rough, dirty rock might have really low diffusion. Luminance is basically like generating artificial light from a property. You can actually use that to create light with the right render settings, but it also just makes it look bright. If I were to set it to luminance and then pick a bright red color, it'll glow bright red. This can also be a good way to make things that completely solid color if you don't want any shading. Transparency is just what it sounds like. If we want to make something that looks like glass, it has to be transparent. There's a refraction setting that has to do with how the light bends when it goes through it. Refraction of one means that there isn't any, so it's perfectly transparent. If I were to set it to 1.4, which is a default for glass, now you can see how it bends the light and that makes it look like it has substance. You can reset any of these properties by right-clicking and then saying "Reset to Default" I can also pick a texture here like the Noise that we saw earlier and you'll see that it's affecting the transparency. The white parts are solid and the black parts are see-through. As I change this property, perhaps by adding more contrast, it affects the transparency channel. I'll go back up, turn this off, and then show you reflectance. This is the property that has to do with how the material reflects light. The Default Specular is an outdated property that mimics the way that light reflects. This highlight you're seeing right here is created by that. If I turn it off, you see that goes away. Reflectance actually works with layers. So if I wanted to, I could remove this one and add a different one. You have a lot of choices. Typically, you're going to want to pick one of these top four. If I choose that, now you can see that it looks like a perfect mirror ball. If I wanted it to look a little bit more dynamic, something that you can do is go down to the Texture and then add Fresnel. This affects how reflection works. You'll notice that the parts of it that are facing you directly aren't reflecting very much and the parts of it that are at a very strong angle are reflecting a lot. This is how reflection tends to behave in real life for something like car paint. You'll notice how cool it looks over here having a red color with that on top of it, a lot neater than just a straight mirror ball that is totally chrome. Quick note, instead of adding a Fresnel to our layer color, there's actually a layer Fresnel setting, so I can choose "Dielectric" or "Conductor." Typically, you'll want to pick Dielectric for something transparent like glass and Conductor for something like metal. If I pick "Conductor" from there, I have tons of presets that are based on real metals. Like I could choose ''Copper" for example and then I get more of a copper look. You'll definitely want to look through these menus and see the options that you have. Again, choosing Fresnel settings from here are something you can do instead of putting the Fresnel into the layer color. You can also alter things like the roughness, which will make it look a little bit more realistic. That does slow down your render time but it actually improves the textures a lot. You can alter the strength so it doesn't reflect as much, and if you want, you can add other layers. If I added a specular layer back in, since it's set to Add it blends on top of the other one. As I turn it on and off, you can see how these different layers actually create interesting looks. I'll turn this off. Environment is a property that lets you fake reflection. If you choose a texture for this, like my robot, it basically behaves as a fake reflection map. That's an easy way to put reflections into something if you want to save a lot of render time and you're not too worried about realism. Fog is basically what it sounds like. It fills the object with a transparent cloud. You can play with the Brightness and Distance settings to affect exactly how solid it looks. Bump is a property that fakes distortion to your mesh. If I were to add a noise texture to this, you can see that it looks like there's little bumps all over this thing. But you'll also notice that the outer silhouette hasn't changed at all. It's not actually altering the geometry, it's just creating the illusion that it's doing so. If I go into the Noise and then alter it by doing something like changing the contrast, it makes the bump more intense. I could also choose an image for this as well, which is very faint, but you can see it's having an effect. Usually, when you're using maps to affect things you want it to be in black and white, that way it's easier to tell what you're doing. Normals are a lot like bump maps, but they're a bit more complex. I'm not going to go over them because that's a little bit beyond the scope of this class. Alpha is like transparency, but not as dynamic. You can use it the same way you'd use an Alpha in Photoshop to cut a hole in the layer. This will create a flat Alpha for the texture. Glow does just what it says and adds a glow around the outside. You can change things like the inner and outer strength, the radius. But one thing that's unique about it is, if you hit "Control" or "Command B" to open Render settings, we haven't really gotten to this yet, but just to show you, it added an object glow effect. If that's not on there, the glow won't show up in your renders. Just something to keep in mind. The last one is displacement. This is similar to a bump map, but what it does is it physically changes the shape of the polygons. If I add noise to this one, you can see it physically changes the shape of the object. You can alter things like the height or the strength to change exactly how much it's affecting it. This can be great for making objects that are meant to be really rough or distorted. I'm going to make a few objects to apply textures to show you how this works. We'll make a cube, a sphere, and a cylinder. I'm going to click my 'Material" and go into Color so that I can add an image. I can apply this material by dragging it directly onto an object, or by dragging it onto the object in the object's window. Now you'll notice that this image is getting stretched around each of these objects in a different way. The cube is very straightforward, it put one on each side. The sphere got wrapped around, and so did the cylinder. That's because by default, each of these things got applied using UVW mapping. What that means is that the software basically tries to figure out the most logical way to apply it based on the shape and then does it that way. But you do have choices about how exactly these things get done. If I were to select the tag on my cube, I can change it to one of the other choices, like spherical. That makes more sense. But now you can see that the two look the same. I can switch it to cylindrical, now it's matching what happens on the cylinder, wrapping around the outside but pinching at the top. If I choose flat, it just goes on one axis. Or I could choose frontal and that basically means whichever way the camera it's aiming straight at it. You'll notice that means it changes when I rotate things around. There are some applications that might make sense for that, but you probably won't use it very often. You can also do things like Control or Command drag to put a copy of it onto something else. Now you'll notice that one has the same frontal projection as I rotate around. You can also delete these or move them around. I'm going to just deal with just my cube object and get rid of the other two. I'll reset that back to zero. Zoom in. I'm going to change frontal back to cubic. Now I can show you some other settings in the Tag you can change. The reason that the default tag is called UVW is because those are coordinates that correlate to the same measurements as x, y, and z, but they apply specifically for textures. Because of this, these Us and Vs you're saying have to do with the width and the height of the way the texture is mapped. If you were to change the length on the U, it changes the width and the length on the V is the height. You also notice that that changes the number of tiles. If I were to set these to two and two, now we have four on each side, two-by-two. You can also alter Offset so that it's not lined up perfectly. If you've been playing with some textures that were meant to be lined up correctly and they don't anymore after we've changed these values, for example, you can right-click on this and choose "Fit to Object." Now it snaps it back to where it was. Something else you can do that's interesting is right-click and choose "Fit to Region." If I then draw a box, it makes it line up exactly where I picked. You'll notice that it changed it to the flat because of the direction we were looking at. If I go to all my windows and then choose that again and then draw it on just one side, now it lines it up over there. I can even switch this to cubic and it keeps that value. I'll go back to Fit to Object to line it up again. That's our basics for texturing. 7. Animating: Now it's time to go over some basics about animating. Most of the controls we work with are in this section down here, you can see that this is a timeline, each of those numbers represents a frame. This is the play head, I can drag it around, and you'll notice over here it tells me what frame I'm on, and it also tells me here, can drag that back to the beginning. Here's a play control, when that play head is moving, it's playing. Now there's nothing to show, so nothing else happens. You also notice that if you hit "F8", that's the play and stop button. These other buttons let you move forward one frame at a time and back one frame at a time. These jump to key frames, which I'll explain in a second, and this jumps to the front and to the back. Over here we have the frame range we're working in, by default, it starts with frame zero and goes to frame 90. The project is set at 30 frames a second, that means that each second is divided into 30 pieces. One frame is one image, so this is three seconds long. We can alter how much of it we see by clicking and dragging on this, or we can change it to a larger range for the different number and then zoom out. I'm going to change it to 30, so it's just one second. I'm going to create a cube, so you have something to look at. Now there's a few more buttons down here that we need to look at. This first one sets a keyframe on whichever of these properties are highlighted. You'll notice that these look the same as the tools up here, move, scale, rotate. This one is for parameters, that's anything that's inside these attribute windows, and then this button is point level animation. I'll explain this one in a minute, but as you might guess, it has to do with animating points. You'll notice by default it's not highlighted. If I click this button, you see that it created this little rectangle here, if I click on it, you can see that it's a key. It has a variety of values because it's set keys for position, scale, and rotation. What's a keyframe? It's basically just a recorded position of a specific property. If I hit play, nothing happens because there's only one, but if I were to go all the way to the end and then move the cube over here and then hit the button again, you can see now that it drew a line back to where it was. If I hit play, the cube moves between those two points. If I wanted to, I could also go to that last point, hit "Rotate", rotate the cube a bit, and hit this button again. Now it moves and it rotates. I can also animate parameters. If I click on the cube, I can change the number of segments, I'll go to display and switch to lines so I can see what I'm doing. At the beginning. I'd like to key frame these properties, I do that by clicking these little circles next to the attribute. I'm going to change X, starting with one. Then at the end, I'll have it go to 10, click this again to set a key. You'll notice that it's pink in the center, and that's how you know that the key got set, and you'll also see the stripes here because I have the segments. If I hit "Play", you'll watch how it grows from the first to the second. I can also change other properties like setting the size of the Y here to 200, going to the middle, setting it down to 100, applying a keyframe, then going to the end, changing it back to 200. Basically, if you can see it, you can probably animate it. Once you've got the keyframes in place, you can actually move them around. I can grab this one and move it back here, and now you'll notice that it shrinks very quickly and takes longer to grow back out. I could also move this over and make the entire thing happen in half as much time, and then it just holds at the end, or if I wanted to, I could move them to the other end, one way of doing that is by clicking in this empty space and dragging over, that makes the selection area, and now you can see they're all highlighted. If I then click and drag it, I can move it over here. I can click in the empty space to deselect, and now it doesn't start until frame 15. Another thing you can do is highlight these things and then grab these tabs on the end to scale the selections up and down. I'm going to delete these keyframes by right-clicking and choosing delete and deselect. This button is called autokeying. With this toggled on, it will record key frames anytime you change something. So for example, if I go to the end, switch to move, slide it over, it sets a keyframe there. If I go to the back, change it back to zero, now it adds one there, and if I hit "Play", it moves, but it only recorded it on the position property, it didn't change anything else, so nothing else got recorded. There's one thing that's unique about keyframes, they have different interpolation properties. That just has to do with how one goes to another. If I click on this by default, it's set to spline, that smooth things out. That's why when this cube animates, it starts off a little bit slowly gains up speed and then slows down again at the end. If I change it to linear, it's 100 percent evenly spaced the whole way. You'll notice that now it just moves in a straight line without any change in acceleration. If I change that to step, it just holds in place until another frame changes it. I'm going to turn this toggle off so I don't change anything else, and I'll just slide this frame over here. Another thing you can do is copy and paste keyframes to another object. If I select these and right-click and choose copy, and then create a new object, move it over here, and then right-click in this space and say paste, now it added the keyframes that were the same as the ones on the cube. If I hit "Play", it snaps forward, unfortunately, I left those keyframes on step, so I'll have to change them. One thing to remember is that if you've selected multiple objects with keyframes, they'll all show up on this timeline, so if you change anything, it'll be altering all of them at once, we're just going to grab the first one and change it from step back to spline. Now if I play and I'll turn the cube off so you can see the sphere, they're moving the same way. I'm going to delete my cube object just to keep things simple, and I'm going to show you a slightly more complex way to play with keyframes, it's your timeline editor. You can go up to window, timeline. This is very similar to the other part where you can see the timeline, what the frames, and you can see the play head, which you can move. These squares represent the keyframes, and there's a summary layer that shows you the overall of everything that's going on, and down here is your object that's been animated. If I click this to toggle it down, you can see that the position keyframes have been animated, if I toggle that down, I can see that there's X, Y, and Z values. Now I know I only changed it on the X, but it added values to the Z and the Y as well. If you toggle down these arrows, you can see that there's a line that represents what's happening, you'll notice that these are straight because nothing has changed and this one is curved because it's changing over time. I'm going to select the Y and the Z properties and delete them because I don't need them, and that doesn't mean that those properties don't exist, it just means that they're not being animated in any way. If you hit "Spacebar", you'll switch views, and this displays your curves. If I click on X, I can see the curve representing these keyframes a lot better. You use the same controls here that you would in the editor to move around and to zoom. You can use these two icons or you can hold down alter, option, and middle mouse and right mouse button. You can also zoom the keyframes by hitting "S or H" the same way that you use those in the editor to zoom to objects. You can draw window to highlight stuff, and you'll notice that these curves have little bezier handles. You can move those around to change exactly how it behaves. If I select both of these, I can switch things here just the same as I did in the other menu to linear, which you'll notice is exactly that, a straight line or step where it'll stay the same and then jump at that frame. I'll switch it back here to smooth it out. If I alter this curve so that there's a lot more steep, I'll close this, now I'll play it. You'll notice that it changed the way that it's moving, it takes a lot longer to get up to speed, moves very quickly, and then slows down a lot, at the end, you can hit "Shift F3" to open your timeline backup, and I can change this, I'll hit "F8" to stop it from playing. If I were to grab just this first one and change it so that it ramped up very fast. Now when I play it, it shoots off right away and then slows down at the end, if I did the opposite, now it takes a while to ramp up and then snaps to the end. Playing with those curves can have a very drastic impact on how you animate. Then the last thing I want to show you is point level animation. If I click this sphere and hit "C" to make it editable, and then go to my point mode, I'll zoom in, turn on points, turn on autokeying. I'm going to delete my other frames so that the sphere doesn't move around. I'll click my selection tool and then grab these four, I can hit this button to set a keyframe there, and then I'll go to 15 and move them out a bit and rotate them slightly. Now if I play it, it morphs from one to the other. This is useful for making organic little distortions, and those are the basics of how to use the animation properties. 8. Dynamics: Now, this section is going to be a very base level look at some of the dynamics in Cinema 4D, this entire video is unavailable for Cinema 4D Lite. It's just for the full version. One of the most standard dynamic objects is a particle system. If we go up to Simulate, Particles, Emitter, and then press Play, we can see that that little square is emitting particles. Zoom in a little bit so it's easier to see them. You'll notice that it's just generating randomly from here and moving in a specific direction. We have some settings down here, birth for the editor and the Renderer, which would mean displaying here versus rendering out for a final. If I were to change that higher, and it creates a lot more. One thing that's worth noting, if you change these values while it's playing, it doesn't really update and refresh until it loops back around to the beginning. Sometimes you might see some weird jitters in the middle like that. Now set this back to 10. You tell it where to start and where to stop. If I were to change this to 20 and 50, then it wouldn't start emitting particles until 20, and it would stop at 50. Select both of those and reset them to their defaults. Seed is a number that creates random generation. If for some reason you weren't happy with the way they were coming out, you could change that to a different number, and then it would create a different set. You can also decide how long the particles leave. In this case, it's 600 frames, which is far beyond what we'll see. You can change the speed to make them come out faster or slower. You have variation settings over here to alter each of these things. If you wanted the speed to not be consistent from one particle to the next, you could knock this setting up then you'll see some are faster than others. You can also add rotation to your particles, and you can change the scale over time. Now, since these particles are just representations, you wouldn't be able to notice that. I'm going to create a Cube object and parent it to the emitter. If I go back to the emitter settings and say show objects. Now you can see that each particle is a cube. I can even add another object in there like a sphere, parent that. Now, you can see some objects are one and some are the other. I'm going to delete the sphere and stick to just the cube for now, and I'm going to make it a lot smaller. Now that we can see our particles clearly, if I choose the emitter and add some rotation, now they're all rotating a little bit. That defaults to 100 percent variation. If I set it to zero, they'd all be rotating exactly the same way. I can also change the scale over time. If I change the end scale to 0.1 say, they get smaller. But it's really hard for you to tell that that's happening because they leave so long. If I were to change their life down to 30, now they disappear before they even get out of the frame. I also have access to physics to alter how this is behaving. If I go up to Simulate, Particles, Gravity. Now it adds gravity to my seen. In more recent versions, the physics generator is like gravity, and wind have moved under simulate forces. You'll notice that they've automatically started falling off. If I change that to a higher value, they'll fall even faster. Or if I change it to a negative value, that will float upwards. I'm going to change that back to 250, I'm going to go into my emitter and add more by raising this number. Now I'm going to go into Simulate, Particles, and choose Wind. You can see this is already blowing them harder in the same direction they were already going. If I were to rotate it a bit to one side, and then change the value so it was a stronger wind, you can see that it's blowing the blocks a different direction. I can also add turbulence to this wind, and that way it'll be more erratic. I'm going to delete the winds of the boxes that are falling more clearly. Rotate back around, and I'm going to add a floor object. I'm going to move this floor down lower. I'm going to switch my view so I can actually see where the cubes are going, and then try to move the floor so that it's halfway between where they are and where they go. I'll come back into this view. You can see that the boxes are going straight through the floor. But what if I wanted them to collide? I can right-click on my floor, go to Simulation Tags and choose Collider Body. That means just something that other objects will run into. On the Cube, if I right-click and go to Simulation Tag, Rigid Body, that'll turn it into a hard object. Now, you can see that the cubes are actually hitting the floor and staying on it. I'm going to go back into the Emitter and change the End Scale scale back to one so that they don't change in size. I'm also going to change the lifetime to 90 so that none of them disappear. Now since I made a floor object, it's an infinite plane. That means that nothing will slip off of it no matter how far it goes. I'm actually going to delete my floor, and instead, I'm going to just make a plane object because that does have finite boundaries. I'll add my collider tag back on, and then I'll move it down a little bit. I'll make it a little bit bigger so everything doesn't fall off. Now I can actually change other properties. If I click on this tag, if I go into Collision, I can see that there's a friction setting that defaults to 30. If I were to knock that up to 100, now there are a lot more likely to stick. If I added a sphere into this mix, I could make that smaller. Put it into the emitter, Control or Command drag to make a copy of this tag, and now it hits the plane as well. Should notice that even with the friction, since the sphere is round shape, it doesn't do a very good job of staying still. I can also alter the emitter itself by rotating it around, moving it up, and it behaves differently. If I wanted to, I could even animate it. Going to the start setting a keyframe, turn on auto, come over here and move it. I'm going to delete all this and show you another option. Turn this off so I don't set any keyframes and go back to the beginning. I'm going to make a plane object which by default has 20 height and width segments, and then I'm going to create a sphere. I'll hit H to zoom to everything, grab the plane, and move it up above the ball. I'll right-click the Sphere and choose Collider Body, then right-click the Plane and choose Soft Body. Then when I hit Play, it behaves like a piece of fabric. I can go into the Soft Body settings and there's a lot of things I can mess with to alter exactly how it behaves once it hits. If I knocked up the stiffness, it doesn't bend very much at all. These objects are also affected by the dynamics that we used on the particles. If I go into Simulate, Particles, Wind and then make this a stronger wind, you can see that it blows the fabric right off of the ball. I can also move the wind around to try to change things, and you'll get a different effect every time. These are just some of the fun tools you can mess with. You should look around at some of the other things in the Simulate tab and see what you can create. Those things can get pretty complicated, but when you start learning how to master them, you can create some of the most amazing animations. 9. Lighting & Rendering a Scene: Now we're going to cover lighting and rendering. There's a few objects we want to learn about. One is the floor object, that's just an infinite plane if we want the floor to have some volume and we could also add a sky object. This allows for us to put something up in this area. If I created a new material, and added an image to it, and then added that material to the sky, when we rotate around, we can see that image which was put in the sky. If you hit Control R or Command R to render, that shows you what your final would actually look like. If I click here to add a camera object and I switch my view, I can see that there's a camera that physically exist in the space. By default, that object doesn't do anything. But if I click this little icon next to the camera while I have something highlighted like the perspective view, now that camera is attached to that view. If I move the camera, it changes what I'm seeing over here. If I rotate it, the same is true. Likewise, if I use the controls to move around in this window, it changes where the camera is. If you're just trying to create a still image, you technically don't have to have a camera, but anytime you want to animate it, you're definitely going to need one. The other object is the light. You can click this to add a new light and then move it around. You can see that it's already having an effect on that surface, but lights have different types. If we click on this, we can see that it's set to an Omni by default. What that means is it shoots light out in every single direction. If you switched it to a spot, now you can see a cone because it goes into a specific direction. If I point it at the ground, we can see the shape of the cone. If you grab one of these controls, you can change what size the cone is. You can also do that numerically by going into details and changing the outer angle. Two other options are an Infinite Light, which basically behaves like the sun. It's just a wall of light that goes whichever direction the light is pointing. This line indicates that direction. It doesn't really matter where you move it, it only matters which direction it's pointing. You can also choose Area Light. This is a little bit more dynamic and behaves more like a real physical light would. It only shines the light out of the specific area, and you can change the size of it if you wanted it to be bigger or smaller. I'm going to change this back to an Omni just to keep things simple. You also have shadow options. If you use Soft Shadows, I'm going to add a cube so we have something to cast them, then I hit "Render", you can see that you get just that, a soft shadow. If you changed it to Raytraced, you'll get a hard shadow. Looks like something from an old video game. Then if you choose Area, this is the most realistic one, but it's also the one that renders the slowest. You can see that there's more nuance to that shape, which makes it look a bit more realistic. Something else you can do is go into Details and scroll down to fall off. If you change that to Inverse Square Physically Accurate, it creates this sphere around the light. It's called physically accurate because light diminishes as it gets away from the source, inversely proportional to the distance. Now, you have a radius that you can change to make it bigger or smaller but once you get outside of that radius, there won't be a lot of light. If I render this again, you'll notice we still have the shadows, but it's a lot darker over here. If I make this a lot bigger, it extends further, but we also get a really heavy highlight right in the middle. Something else you can do if you wanted to light things a little bit differently is add another light then change the light property in General to Ambient Illumination. That way it'll affect everything in the scene and sort it more carefully. Since the intensity is at 100 percent, that makes it a little bit too evenly lit and everything looks flat. I'm going to knock this down to 35. If I render again, now the scene doesn't seem quite so dark. I can also change the color of this light to something different, just to make it look a little more interesting. If I change the color of the first to be a bit warmer, I have an interesting contrast. There's a few more tags that I want to show you that will alter the way things display. If I right-click on this cube and go to Cinema 4D tags and choose Display, I have a few options. Real quick note here for the updated version, the display and compositing tags are now under render tags when you right-click. The one that's most convenient to use is visibility. If I turn that on and then set visibility to zero, the cube is just gone. I can't see it here and it won't render. It's very similar to toggling these circles. But sometimes you want to be able to animate something on and off so that you can see it on one frame and not another. You could click this button to animate that property, can be very useful. I'm going to delete this tag, right-click, go to Cinema 4D tags and choose Compositing. This one's very convenient if you're trying to render out passes to play with in Photoshop or After Effects. By default, it lets everything behave normally. But suppose I didn't want the cube to cast shadows, I could uncheck this. If I didn't want it to receive shadows either, I turn that off. Now if I render it, you can see that there's no shading around it. If I were to add another object into the scene in between the light and the box, I'll set this tag back to where it was just so we can see what it will look like, it casts a shadow onto the box, and the box casts a shadow onto the ground. If I turn off Cast Shadows and hit "Render", now the box is no longer casting a shadow, but the sphere is still casting a shadow on the box. If I turn this off, now there's no shadow interaction here at all. I can also turn off seen by Camera and then if I render it again, now it's invisible. But I could turn the shadows back on, and you'll see that it's casting a shadow even though it's not physically there. If I turned all of these in this column off, it's basically like that cube doesn't exist. But the nice thing is, it's non-destructive, so you can always change it back to the way it was before, or even just delete the tag. I'm going to go ahead and do that right now. Now these buttons in the middle here have to do with rendering. As I said, if you hit Control or Command R, it'll render. You can also just click this button. In these options, you can do a few different things. If you choose Render Region, that will let you draw a picture. I'll click over here to clear my render, go back, pick Render Region, and then I'll draw a box around a specific area. Now it just draws whatever is in that area. You can even add to this by doing it again, if you like. Also, you can choose Render to Picture Viewer. Another way of doing that is by hitting Shift R. What this does is renders the image into a window where you can save it. Over here if you right-click on the swatch and then say Save As, it gives you some choices for saving it in different image formats. It's worth noting that these functions don't work in Cinema 4D Lite because you render everything out through After Effects. I'll close this window and show you one more render option. If you go in here, you can choose Interactive Render Region. This lets you draw a box that consistently renders whatever's inside it every time you change something. You can alter the size with these controls, and this slider changes the quality. It's all the way at the bottom, the quality is insanely low, in the top pretty much means it's a full render. You can also find these things by going up to the Render menu and choosing them from here. When you want to get things set up so they look nice, you'll need to change your render settings. You can do this by choosing Render, Edit Render Settings, or you can just take Control or Command B. We have a few choices here to look at. First is output. This has to do with the size, the resolution, aspect ratio, frame rate, and what frames we want to render. If I wanted to change this to be HD, I could change it to 1920 by 1080. Maybe I wanted to render out a frame range, so instead of 0-0, I render 0-30. One thing you'll notice is that as I change this aspect ratio, you'll see a different display over here on the view. If I were to make this 2,000 pixels tall, you can see that it changed everything we're looking at. This square that highlighted is what's going to render out. I'm going to change that back so it fits more nicely. If I go into Save, this lets me decide how to save something as I'm rendering it. That way, I won't have to save it out of the render window when it's done, it'll just happen automatically. You can click here to choose where a file goes. Click this drop-down to choose what file format you'd like. Choose other things like an Alpha Channel. If you're planning on exporting an animation to use in a piece of software like After Effects, you can actually export a compositing project file. In this case, what that means is it will export an After Effects project that'll import your renders and save certain 3D data, like lights or cameras. You just have to check Save, turn on Include 3D Data, pick the piece of software that you're working with, and then click "Save Project File". It should be noted none of these functions are used in Cinema 4D Lite either because again, you export these things through After Effects. I'll show you how to do that in a little bit. If you're in the default render, which is standard, anti-aliasing is an option that lets you decide how smooth things look. Geometry is the default. Best will give you a much smoother render, but it'll go a lot slower. That's a good choice for if you're working in Cinema 4D Lite. If you have the full version, however, you can change the standard renderer to the physical render, which is a better engine that they developed. You won't need to use the anti-aliasing settings, but if you click on Physical, you can choose different qualities here to determine how good things look overall. You might want to try switching to medium to make everything look a bit nicer. If I close that and then hit "Render", I get a similar image to the one that I had before, but everything just looks a little bit smoother and cleaner. This can have a big impact on how realistic things are. In my render settings, once I've gotten everything to look the way that I want, and I have my save settings pointing to the right directory, and I have my output range set to the right frames, if I hit Shift R, it'll start rendering it in the other window and saving it as it goes. Just as a note, in the save options, if you really want to have a movie file, you can choose MP4 under format. However, rendering on a still sequence is still your best option just in case an error occurs in the middle of your render, and you want a higher quality file. Don't forget to hit Alpha Channel if you want transparencies. If you want to render things out in Cinema 4D Lite, all you have to do is get everything set up the way you like it, save your object, and then go back to After Effects. If it's not already part of your project, import it then create a new composition with that Cinema 4D object. You can see we've got a setup here. This is little robot animation where he's walking. The default render is software. If you set that to standard final, you can see what it would actually look like. Then once you've got it in there, you can go to Composition, add to Render Queue, then choose your render settings, choose your file location, and hit "Render". Now it's time to work on our project. We're going to use everything we've learned to make a 3D spaceship. 10. Model the Ship: Let's get creative and build a 3D space ship. One thing to note when we get into this, I am going to be using some of the modeling functions that Cinema 4D Lite doesn't have, so you can just skip over those parts if you need to and just focus on modeling the simpler objects. Here's a look at my model when it's done just so you know where we're going. The first thing I'm going to do is make a cylinder. I'm going to change the rotation segments down to six. I'm going to hit C to convert it and turn on my line so I can see the edges. Hit S to zoom in. I'm going to switch to polygon mode. Grab the pulleys on the top. Should uncheck this to make sure I get what I want. Hold Shift and I'll grab the bottom. Got them both, so I'll hit delete, go to Mesh, add, close polygon hole. Close that one and this one. Now I can see they're both there. Hit Alt or option H to zoom to everything. Quick reminder on the updated cutting tools, you can hit the shortcut M, L to go to loop cut. I'm going to add a few cuts, top and bottom. I'm going to add in a few more for detail. Hold down alt or option to add a subdivision surface to round it off. UL for loop selection. Click back on the cylinder. I'll grab these two loops. Then I'll right-click and go to Extrude Inner. Pull those in just a little bit, then extrude in. I'll now add some detail to the top, hold that in a bunch, extrude up, cap times, add one more, and then scale it out. Extrude that up, then again, scale in. Switch the edges. Grab this loop, tighten that up. Now I'm going to add a tube object. Make that a lot smaller. I'll turn on fill it. Then I'm going to add a sphere. Pair that under an array. Quick note that in the latest version, you'll find array under this subdivision menu, and you will find the spline mask under the extrude menu. We'll make the sphere a lot smaller. Pulling the radius, we'll move this down, pull it in so it's intersecting. Now increase the copies up to 15, so there's 16 all together. I'm actually going to double that, I'll go to 31 for 32 total. Then I'll change the sphere to be a little bit smaller. Now I'm going to make an instance object. Move this down. Now I'm going to show you a function we didn't go over earlier. First I'm going to create a vector rectangle. I'm going to make it smaller and move it over here, but I'll duplicate it. Move that over, change the height to 10 and the width to 20. Now if I go in this menu and choose spline mask, this is very similar to a boole, but it works with 2D vector objects. I'll parent these two, and now to merge them into one shape. I'll select this and hit C to convert it into a single spline. I'll duplicate this, rotate it 45 degrees, and then move it so it's intersecting. I'll add another spline mask, parent them again. But this time I'll change it to A, subtract B, hit C , and now I've got the shape I want. I'll go into point mode just to make this part a little bit longer. Now I'm going to add this to an extrude. The extrude's a bit thick, so I'm going to change it to 10. I'll hit C to convert it. Now this splits it into pieces. Each cap is separate from the main part. I'm going to select both of my caps, go to polygon mode, draw selection to grab both of them. Then I'll choose Extrude Inner, pull them in a little bit, extrude. Pull that in as well. Extrude enter again and extrude back out one more time. I'm going to make a copy of my original cylinder. I'll hit UW to select all, and then switch to scale. I'm going to scale it on the x and the z to tighten it up. I'll move this over to where the fin is. I can see from here that the fins are off center. I'm going to grab this and move it negative five on the z, since that was half of the width. Then I'll grab this cylinder and move it down. Now I'll group these objects together. Call it fin. Place that under a new array, set the copies to three. These objects need to be rotated. I'm going to select all of these, hit R and rotate it 90 degrees, then move them over. Tighten down the array, and now we have a ship. The possibilities are endless for the ways you can use these tools to create different shapes in detail. Try to make yours look as unique as you can. Now we'll do the text string. 11. Texture, Light & Animate: First I want to create a metal texture. I'll rename it, make the color dark gray, and the reflectance, I'm going to remove the default specular and add a Beckman. Then I'll go down to the texture and add Fresnel. Just a reminder, you don't have to put the Fresnel into the layer color texture, you can go down to the layer Fresnel section, choose conductor, and then pick one of the presets. I'll apply that to my main object into a few other things. Now I'll make a copy, rename it. I'll change the color to a lighter gray and then apply that. Cool. I want some stars in the background, so I'm going to add a sky object, make a new material, call it stars. I'm going to turn off the color and the reflectance and turn on environment. We'll go into environment and add noise. I'm actually going to open up this window, so it's easier to see. I'm going to choose from the presets, pick this one that has dots. If I go down and change the contrast all the way up, I can see there's sharper edges and I'll turn the brightness up, so now I just see little dots, and then I'll switch these colors, black to white and white to black. Now I'll apply this to my sky, render again. That looks good, but the dots are too big. I'll go back in here click my noise swatch, change the global scale to 10. If I render again, that's more what I wanted to see. Now I'm going to add some lights. The first one I'm going to turn into an infinite light, so it'll be like a sun. Going to move it over, so it'll be easier for us to see, and then rotate around. I'll make it a bit warmer and turn on shadows. Cool. Now I'm going to add another light for some ambiance. I'm going to make it cooler, so it'll contrast. That's pretty intense, so I'll turn it down to 50. That looks nice. Now I want to improve the overall look, so I'm going to change my render settings. I'm going to change this to 960 by 540, which is half of HD. If you're using Cinema 4D Lite, you should go into anti-aliasing and change it from geometry to best. If you're using the full version, change standard to physical, and then in physical change low to medium. Another thing I'm going to do is add the ambient occlusion effect. What this does is darkens areas where it's harder for light to get into like tight corners. It makes all the shading look a bit more realistic. Render again, and we're seeing some cooler detail with the shading. Once you've gotten this far, go ahead and export a still and upload it, so that we can all see your work. One last thing, let's create a simple animation. I'm going to change this range to 40 frames, then I'll zoom out a bit. I'm going to grab everything that's part of the ship, group it together, alter option G, call this ship. Now I'm going to rotate it 90 degrees. I'm going to change my camera just a little bit more. I'll move the ship back and space to here, go into coordinates, set a keyframe on the X and the pitch. I'm going to go forward to frame 35, I'm going to rotate the ship 90 degrees and move it out of the frame. Set keys on both of these properties, then if I hit, "Play", the ship flies through. The only other thing I want to do is add a camera object, click this icon so that it matches the viewport. I'm going to go to the last frame and set a key because this is where I want the camera to end up. I'm going to go back to the beginning, turn on auto-keying, and then change my perspective a little bit. Now if I hit, "Play", it looks a little bit more dynamic. Once the animation is set up, go into your render settings. If you're using Cinema 4D Lite, just save your object, import it into After Effects, drop it into a comp and render it out. If you're using Cinema 4D, make sure that you choose a location to save your file. Change the format to mp4 if you'd like to render out a movie, or you can render a still sequence with another format and then import that into After Effects where you can export it to a video. Go to output, and change frame range to all frames, then hit Shift R and it will render out your movie. Here's what my final animation looks like. Congratulations, you've finished this lesson. 12. Final Thoughts: We've just scratched the surface on the capabilities of the software, but hopefully I've opened a lot of doors for you. As you noticed, a lot of the menus that we looked through had a variety of extra options. Please explore them, play around, do some research and figure out what makes everything tick. Feel free to enhance your project by adding in anything new you've learned or by adding any personal creative touches. Upload your projects so we can all see your hard work. I'm here to help. Let me know if you have any thoughts or questions. I hope you enjoyed this class and you've gotten on the path to creating awesome 3D art with Cinema 4D. I'll see you next time.