✱ Q&A: Using Maxwell Grass 'Level of Detail' for Faster Renderings

Here's something thing that comes up every once in a while regarding using the Maxwell Grass extension - running out of memory. Those grass blades can take up a lot of RAM when rendering and if your surfaces that you apply the grass to are too large, the rendering can be extremely slow and sometimes even fail. 

And no one likes a failed rendering!

So here's a quick screen shot of some settings to look into when using the grass extension called Level of Detail (LOD):
 


Use the L.O.D. settings in the Maxwell Grass extension to control falloff of grass blades.
Click to enlarge.


Basically if you set it up correctly, the further away your scene gets from the camera POV, less grass blades are generated. You can control how this works. This is a HUGE deal when your surfaces are expansive. The image above is an extreme example because of how closely I placed the distance values together, but it illustrates how they work. Once the distance passes the Minimum value, the blades falloff to the Maximum Density and then hold beyond the Maximum distance value. This way there is no step in the amount of blades, rather you get a nice even gradient from full to partial density.

There's a bit more info about this in the Maxwell Render help documents near the bottom of the page which you can reference here.

Use this tip to speed your renderings up drastically!

This tip also comes in really handy when using my Maxwell Grass Preset Pro Pack. Check it out and take your images to the next level if you're using SketchUp, FormZ or Bonzai3d.


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Create a Realtime Walkthrough of your Revit Project with Autodesk Showcase

Even though my thoughts in my recent article on realtime rendering came to the conclusion that I wasn't willing to spend a ton of time on the bleeding edge of that technology, I haven't ignored it either. The truth is that the idea for that article came from me spending a decent amount of time figuring out realtime rendering using Autodesk Showcase, which comes with either a perpetual license or subscription to some of their suites. The funny thing that you probably can relate to is that I didn't even know Showcase existed or what it did when I found it. Luckily the office I work in has this type of subscription and I had a presentation to create, so the stars aligned.

I ended up making a tutorial that takes you through the process of getting your model out of Revit and into Showcase with a lot of steps along the way to make a successful and very nice looking realtime model. It is now live over on the Novedge blog where lots of additional people other than Method visitors can see it. This works well because this is certainly not an Autodesk-centric site. So if you're interested in my process for creating realtime walkthrough's, please go check it out and let me know what you think.

Click here to head over to the Novedge blog and read my tutorial.

✱ Methodcast 21: Put Yourself & Your Clients Into Your Projects with Spherical Panoramas and iPano

✱ Methodcast 21: Put Yourself & Your Clients Into Your Projects with Spherical Panoramas and iPano

Have you ever wanted to let your boss, friends, clients or anyone for that matter get inside one of your designs before it's built? Of course you have! This tutorial will take you through the steps to produce a rendering that will let you do just that. 

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✱ Methodcast Quickie #14 - Maxwell Materials in SketchUp

✱ Methodcast Quickie #14 - Maxwell Materials in SketchUp

Here's a little excerpt of a much longer tutorial (that is a bonus for my Maxwell Grass Preset Pro Pack) that will teach you how to get Maxwell Materials into SketchUp. If you're new to using Maxwell Render, you'll find this step-by-step guide a huge time saver for getting ultra-realistic Maxwell materials into SketchUp.

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✱ Methodcast: Behind the Scenes of Fields of Gold

✱ Methodcast: Behind the Scenes of Fields of Gold

This video tutorial shows you how easy it is to put the Maxwell Grass Preset Pack into action by taking you behind the scenes of my recently published Fields of Gold image. I was able to trick some into thinking this was a photograph when in reality it's a rendering using my presets and a very simple 3d scene in FormZ. It's pretty amazing what we can do with these tools isn't it? I'm obviously loving it.

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✱ Methodcast Quickie #12 - How to Add Decals and Basic Materials in formZ and bonzai3d

✱ Methodcast Quickie #12 - How to Add Decals and Basic Materials in formZ and bonzai3d

Have you struggled with what all the settings are for when applying materials in formZ and Bonzai3d? Have you figured out how to apply decals? Well I sat down and recorded this video to show you so you can get up and running very quickly. 

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✱ Methodcast Quickie #11 - Using Material IDs in bonzai3d, formZ and Maxwell Render

✱ Methodcast Quickie #11 - Using Material IDs in bonzai3d, formZ and Maxwell Render

Have you been assigning materials to your scenes, rendering, tweaking color, re-rendering, tweaking, rendering ad nauseam? I used to do this too. Well with this tutorial, it's time to stop! Learn the trick the pros use to tweak color after the rendering is already done in an image editor using a Material ID layer. I'll show you exactly how to do it in my favorite 3d tools - formZ and Maxwell Render. It works in other programs as well. 

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