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Cinema 4D Facial Hair Grooming

Learn the exciting technique called “cSoftening” in this brand new Head and Facial Hair Training Video For Cinema 4D. Featuring both C4D Render and Arnold Rendering setups!

Length: 5 Hours 52 Minutes 20 Seconds

Price: $129.95


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Check out one of the coolest videos for Cinema 4D to date! cmiVFX comes through again with an awesome solution to creating and grooming CG Character head and facial hair systems. One of the most frequent mistakes for many CG Artists to make, are the assumption that they only need to add one hair piece on a 3d model, and spend all the budgeted time tweaking the parameters of one object. While there are many ways to perform tasks in the Computer Graphics Industry, once in a while someone will stumble upon something new and it will catch the attention of the rest of the world. This video shows how to change the look of rendering characters using the technique, “Forced Detail Shadowing”, commonly referred to as, “Render Softening” or “cSoftening”. The goal when creating a render with organic material, is to make the objects blend with its digital environment. For the last decade, the world has been focused on rendering scenes with High Dynamic Range lighting in conjunction with Global Illumination to inherit the colors from the atmosphere to the focus object. To improve our older techniques, is a staple in the human condition. We can use his technique for increasing surface distortion by introducing things like hair and dust. While it does take some time to get close up renders to be perfect, it allows distances shots to be finished looking much quicker than ever before. Hair and dust helps absorb more outside object color and light to give everything a more natural appearance. At cmiVFX, we pride ourselves on both learning from the past, and improving it immediately after. We want to invite you to watch this 6 hour tutorial beast, so we are releasing it today with a special introductory price. Buy it now and save!

Chapter Descriptions


There are so many different skill types in Computer Graphics and Visual Effects, that we often lose its connection to its traditional analog counterpart. Hair Styling, a term relatively young in the history of man kind, basically replaced the commonly known Barber (which was closer in relation to a butcher then) which brought about some amazing trends in Hair design. Today’s CG software does an amazing job at simulating the tactile feel of performing hair cutting and manipulation. No matter if your looking to cut or grow digital hair, or use the technology for non-traditional scenarios, (like fresh cut grass) Cinema 4D can help get you there. Once you have created your hair based asset, you can use it in any other app that supports Alembic IO. We show you how to set up your hair system in both C4D shading model and the Arnold Render shading model so you can not only use your C4D made hair in Houdini, Maya or Katana, but you can also make it render the same in all of them as well! That alone makes the value of this set of lessons PRICELESS!

System Breakdown

Most new CG artists think of head or beard hair when creating their character 3D assets for the first dozen times or so. This more in-depth technique shown in the video, opens the viewers eyes to new possibilities, allowing much more realistic rendering possibility as well as fresh new looks never seen before at this detail. Learn to set up Head, Beard, Neck, Eyebrow, Eyelash, Nose, Nostril, Face, Cheek, Forehead, Ears and more!

Set Selections

After a bit of renewed research, and communicating with software developers, we confirmed the best possible workflow for building up hair sets by starting with polygonal set tags. This method requires, various blending and trimming techniques to be performed, however, it increases the accuracy over using the placement mapping technique.

Cinema Hair Shaders

Every 3D app has its own renderer. Cinema’s render engine is one of the best there is. It comes with all the needed shaders for the Hair system, so that it is optimized for performance and has been tested for maximum compatibility by Maxon’s quality control process. We show how to set up the default Hair Shading and Rendering for the Cinema 4D render engine in this chapter so the viewer can decide which they will use to follow the rest.

Multiple Hair Systems

Now we start to apply the master concept behind this video. By creating our multiple hair systems on our CG Character Head, it gives us the most amount of control in later styling and animation. Instead of relying on textures for hair coloring and precision, our method allows you to have pinpoint control over ever hair rendered.

Blending Hairs

When relying on Polygon Set Selection Tags on your CG Models to create Hair Objects, you will be forced to follow the contour of the polygons during render. The method simply lets you “style” your way into a nicely sculpted hair style.

Hair Combinations For Aging

One of the most common examples of requiring multi-colored or peppered hair, would be the facial beard area of men. Often times, they are a bit more course and show the edge angles of a shaved hair. When a man hits puberty, men will get variations in hair color, starting with a lighter version of their head hair, and ending with white hairs often compared to the beard on a famous wizard character found in recent films. We show you how to add age to your character in just seconds.

Optical Area

The entire eye area creates a circular “Burglar” mask of tiny white, semi-transparent hairs. These hairs can often even disturb the gentle area under the bottom eyelids creating little bump-like features. Some characters will require displacement mapping to help enhance the realism there. We use the hair direction in our case by showing how to create a circular pattern without paint brushing the direction of the hairs manually.

Secondary Hairs

The last of the hairs are used to help the cSoft Render Effect blend the facial features together from semi-closeups. To help soften the render, but not damage it, we also show how to use hair transparency to help reduce the effect.

Adding Deformations

All characters require movement to come to life. It would be pretty lame to watch a character move across the screen, “throwing its voice”, while being stiff as a board, but what happens to the hair roots when you set up a characters pose morph tag? Find out how to set up a facial animation with our sample project and potentially fix any errors that might show up if you get assets from a 3rd party. Thanks to Maxon’s support team, we learned how to salvage existing work that some might throw away and start over. Check out how in this chapter!

Arnold Render

Arnold is an advanced Monte Carlo ray tracing renderer built for the demands of feature-length animation and visual effects. Originally co-developed with Sony Pictures Imageworks and now their main renderer, Arnold is used at over 300 studios worldwide including ILM, Framestore, MPC, The Mill and Digic Pictures. Arnold was the primary renderer on dozens of films from Monster House and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs to Pacific Rim and Gravity. It is available as a standalone renderer on Linux, Windows and Mac OS X, with plug-ins for Maya, Softimage, Houdini, Cinema 4D and Katana. For more information, visit


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