Deconstructing the Elements with 3ds Max: Create natural fire, earth, air and water without plug-ins

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Press:Butterworth-Heinemann Focal Press; 2 edition (April 25, 2006)
Author Name:Draper, Pete
Edition:2nd Edition


Get the most realistic effects from 3ds Max without having to spend more on plug-ins!Boost your effects skill-set with this 3ds Max workshop. 
Tutorial lessons give you hands-on experience in creating realistic fire, earth, air and water effects.
Updated to demonstrate production techniques suitable for any version of 3ds Max, this new edition is co-published by Autodesk Media and Entertainment, and includes new tutorials on entering the Earth's atmosphere, glaciers, lava eruptions and a Badlands landscape.Inspirational color images cover every page of the book as the author shares his professional techniques and workflow processes.
The companion DVD contains all of the required tutorial media as well as over 6 hours of video tutorials.User level: Intermediate and advanced

Book Description

Get the most realistic effects from 3ds Max without having to spend more on plug-ins!

About the Author

a UK-based visual effects animator and artist with 10+ years experience on large and small screen projects. 
Starting out as a fine artist and designer, his shift to CG animation led to key roles such as Lead and Senior Artist, Head of Media and, more recently, Visual Effects Supervisor / Director.
Pete's work covers a broad range of disciplines and genres from visual effects to reconstructions, commercials to in-house training.
He currently writes for 3D World magazine, providing tips, tricks, reviews and tutorials for 3ds max and other animation and graphics tools.


Computers & Technology,Graphics & Design,3D Graphics,Arts & Photography,Other Media,Digital,Software,Design & Graphics

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Comment List (Total:15)

  •     Great book for 3d Max users of 3d max 2014 or older. Some setting it uses for 3ds Max 2015 are not in that version.
  •     I love this book. I teach 3d disciplines in Maya and still recommend this book. It's how to create all kinds of natural phenomenon without plugins of any kind. that's what makes this book so valuable to people looking for a good resource. Most 3d effects are being done by one "plugin" or another and that makes it hard to give your project a unique feel. I call it lensflareitis. Because you first see a lens flare in Photoshop and are amazed by it, but after seeing it several thousand times, it takes about .5 seconds to know that is how it was done. 3d has that same issue. once you have seen the output of a plugin a few dozen times you will know that the people were using it right out of the box and it removes the luster from the final product. With that being said what is important for effects is to have a good eye. That is what this book focuses on. It doesn't start with the software or a plugin. It begins a topic in this way. Research your subject. (if it is fire, look at pics of real fire, look at videos of fire, surround yourself with reference and break the effect down into the easiest to digest components). Then apply what you have learned to the core 3d concepts and develop your own look, layer by layer. In this way it makes your effects much more easily "tweaked" into a unique effect that will set you aside from the crowd. So you can get this book and just do the tutorials, but the real magic to me is the method. Once you get used to it, you will find your own answers and that is more valuable than any other thing you could learn. I hope you enjoy this book as much as I did. It's a gem. thank you for your time.
  •     love it !!!!!
  •     I spected to find water (as we know it) but I did not. It is not what it is offering
  •     Physics and particle effects are some of the most advanced nonscript areas of 3ds Max. This book gives a few dozens of step-by-step projects for readers to follow.
  •     very advanced, had to compare my files with his files to make sure my materials were set up right. 1 little mistake and the effect will not work correctly.
  •     I just bought this book and I have to say it is very good book from great VFX artist. Book is very well written and there are many useful advices.
  •     Sorry to say this, but the Kindle Edition of the book is totally useless.The main problem is that this book has the same item description for printed and kindle...
  •     I am a student currently studying Digital Animation and Game Design. I first heard of Pete Draper's book from a fellow classmate who currently owns a first edition copy. Just thumbing through the tutorials my jaw dropped.Deconstructing the Elements has fast become the keystone to many students personal 3ds Max libraries. (We have even been recommending it to our teachers) The tutorials are laid out fantastically and teach you as much about the concepts as well as `how to.'Deconstructing the Elements is the best resource for anyone who wants to learn elemental effects and particle systems within 3ds Max. I can't wait for this book...
  •     O livro é ótimo, pena não existir versão em português, aliás as editoras deveriam lançar versões em outros idiomas para que o conhecimento fosse compartilhado.
  •     It is not mentioned (yet) in the item's description, but no tutorials are included in the Kindle Edition of the book.
  •     The book is very easy to read, and even those who are relatively new to 3D packages will be able to quickly grasp the underlying concepts behind what the book offers. It covers everything from fire to ice, and does a phenomenal job of explaining each step in the process.I would definitely recommend this book to both people trying to learn visual effects trickery or to those that have been in the field for a while. The only letdown to me is that the image that's on the cover is unfortunately NOT covered in the book. Otherwise, an excellent reference guide.
  •     Went looking for this particular Max tutorials book based on some reviews I'd seen. This is the author's "third edition" of the book, but in truth it's less an Edition than a Volume. Volumes 1 and 2 had almost completely different ranges of tutorials; in truth, this edition (purchased as one would normally expect a "third edition" to have corrected the errors and omissions of the first two "editions") didn't _have_ the tutorial I purchased the book to acquire.Normally these high-priced computer How To books include a disk with the external files needed for the projects. Not this one. Not only was there _not_ a disk, but the web addresses listed in the book to _download_ said files no longer function; sloppy beyond forgiveness. (You can find them by googling, but it's a lengthy process, and disappointing as heck.) While it's possible to walk through the tutorials following the book's instructions, many of the tutes rely on images or meshes that you don't have if you don't download them.And then, for the Third Edition, the author made sure that there's at least one typo or grammar gaffe--sometimes more--_per page_. Whoever edited the thing really doesn't need to be editing books for a living (or even as a hobby). I'm not talking the usual spelling differences between Britlish and Yanklish; I'm talking out-and-out spelling mistakes. The author's good with Max, but not really that good with the English language (and it's his mother tongue to boot!).All problems aside: once you've located and downloaded the tutorial files (I found the one I wanted--making coronae for a sun-like object), these tutorials _do_ cover the ground, and mostly nicely. The author gets into some seriously-deep Max work with them--this is not a book that would work that well for a raw beginner in Max or CG--but the end results can't be beat.Would I buy another book by this author? Probably not. Bait-and-switch with the necessary files and garbling the words (on EVERY PAGE; it's almost a record) simply mean that this particular author I might check into, but probably not drop money on.
  •     Deconstructing the Elements, 2nd edition is basically what you wish every reference book could be. The binding is strong even though it's a soft-cover and the pages are all color matte finish. Almost every step of every walk-through in this text contains an image of what you should be seeing in 3dsMax.I was personally surprised to see that every technique is grounded in real-world observation. The cigarette smoke tutorial takes a full page to investigate how a real smoke trail acts before attempting to replicate it in 3d. Draper moves quickly but guides you along the way making for a very intuitive yet fast approach.I believe Pete still has his web-site up and running at you're looking to create realistic effects and scenes in 3dsMax, you will not be sorry when you purchase this book.
  •     Very, very good collection of tutorials. If you want master Particle Flow this is your book.

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