After coming up with the idea for an interactive billboard which turns water to ice; I started playing around some more with Cinema 4D and modelled the billboard so I could get a more realistic interpretation of the concept because I’m not that good at illustration at the moment. This means that I could create simulated light cast onto the model and get a decent looking render.
So I created the model by making a rectangle and placing anchor points around it to get a more billboard looking shape. I then extruded this new shape I had created for it to exist in three dimensions.
I created a grey reflective material for it with some roughness added to it to diffuse the light in order to create a brushed metal look.
However, there was no hole in the middle in the board for a tank. So I created another rectangle and used the connect function under the array icon to turn the shape into more of a frame by hollowing it out.
I then created two thin cuboids to seal off the gap in the frame and assigned a material to them with transparency and the same refractive index of glass so that light would pass through it in a realistic way.
I then filled the void between the two panes of glass with another cuboid but gave it a little space between it and the top of the frame. I assigned a material to that which had the same refractive index as water and added a slight blue tint so it was more akin to the colour of water you see in photos of the poles.
Finally I cloned the cuboid which was assigned with the “water” material and hid the original. The new cuboid was given an ‘ice like’ material with transparency, reflectiveness and a bump map. This is so I have a representation of the full water version and full ice version which I can mask over each other in Photoshop, this is so that in a slideshow you can kind of see the transition form water to ice.
Oops I forgot that I made the coin box by creating a cube and then cutting a hole in the top using the slice tool. Two of the vertices on top of the cube were lift to create a slant.
Camera & Lighting
For the background I created a “background object” and assigned a material with an image I captured as a texture. The reason why I used a picture I took myself is because I know the settings I used to take that photo which meant that I could apply them to the virtual camera. The photo was taken on camera with a full frame sensor with a 35 mm lens so all I had to do was match that.
Lighting was created based on the background image, the picture has overcast weather so I set up a large softbox above the billboard to recreate the diffuse lighting in the scene. I also set up a square spotlight above and behind the billboard but it’s very subtle.