Cambridge Market Square environment

Hi all, this is my first post at Blender Artists.
Im a pretty noob blenderist but have been learning through Blenderguru’s stuff and after a while the brain cells usually start clicking.
So for my Final Major Project at Cambridge Regional College this year I decided to model the Cambridge Market Square in 3D.
Now every time I walk through the market square it feels really weird!

This animation was for the exhibition of my Final Major project just this last week.

Hi there Peter! a fellow Cambridge student I see! I go to Hills Road Sixth Form College and live near Cambridge so hopefully I can give some constructive critiques.
I had no idea that CRC did anything to do with 3D animation that may have made CRC higher on my choice of college.

When I watched the video I knew in an instant where the camera view was positioned! like you say it’s surreal seeing a place in CG that you know personally!

I think the most obvious thing that sticks out is the materials and rendering, even a simple primitive shape can look good well lit and rendered. Presentation is key.there is a couple of things I would adjust. material wise and and about the backdrop that would make it excellent

to light the scene you could use a generic HDRI map. it’s what many arch-viz renders use, and it will give nice reflections, and realistic lighting and some interest to the background, even if it does not fit into the skyline of Cambridge

the second fix is also pretty easy! the materials of the objects good, but just need the slightest tweak. with the glass lower the gloss samples very slightly to .9 or so in the materials tab and add a very slight bump map to make the glass have a slight ripple. because NOTHING is perfectly reflective or flat.

alternatively you could set up your scene to render in blender cycles. provides very nice results and fast if you use your GPU.

the modelling is generally very good with the buildings around the edge of the market, although the actual market stalls are very primitive and seeing as they are the center of focus by being positioned central to the scene they are craving for a few more polys, I advise you ask the fountain in the middle to share some!

I know this is a completed project and that what I have said here will probably not change it as you have already submitted the piece, but I hope these pointer may help you in future projects.

best of luck with the results of this project.


haha, Hi fellow cambridge student!!
actually I have just completed the Graphic Design course in CRC, so this project was not related to any thing taught by crc. In my final major project (FMP) they said we are allowed to do anything we wanted to and exhibit it at the end of the year. So I took them at their word and installed Blender on a Mac at college. So for the last seven or so weeks I have been working on the model at college, then bringing it home to my PC here. I have not had any previous experience with Blender, I am still learning, so yes there were things that I could improve. the model itself has around 520,000 vertices! and my Dell Studio XPS 7100 started to get a little sticky. Yea, the main thing is I was really fighting against time as much as anything, If I keep working on it I could make it better. But now I want to move on to something else!

PS- I LOVE the portfolio! is that Blender your using for most stuff there? with an external render I asume?
mine is
I have been into photography as well as moving image and 3D stuff.
Im going to Anglia Ruskin Uni this september for Tv and Movie Production

I see, I do the same things with my Art my media and I have even managed to incorporate blender into my Physics!
It’s really handy that blender is portable, I stick it on my flash drive and use it in the school computers when I am bored, A few pieces in my portfolio started life as a diversion from revision! :wink:

Back on topic :wink:
really? seems very high poly seeing as most of the wire frames seemed reasonably low poly, with exception to the fountain. that was far over subsurfed - it probably had over half of the scenes polys!

I know that feeling, some times it’s best to persevere at a project but equally it is better to work on something you are inspired by.

Thank you! Blender is used for everything you see, and it is mostly rendered in Blender Internal render except both deadmau5 heads, Greek column, the chairs and the spartan helmets which were rendered in Blender Cycles.

I had a look at yours:
were my Favorites.

Awesome, I take it you are the year above me, I personally am planning on Bournemouth university as their 3D art courses look very good.

the Blender cycles? hmmm, havnt heard much about them, I must look into that. Interesting.
Actually the trees were the objects that took up the most pollys =) the fountain came in second. and everything else is basically a boxy shape so it wasnt to much. But to render the animation (with all the reflections to) took an average of 3mins per frame.

I’m also a newbie with blender, but I have an idea about the high-poly fountain: can’t you use the subsurface scattering for the material? It makes things look really smoothed out.

yea I used a couple layers of subsurf, also applying the smooth function to it afterwards makes the best finnish If find.

Although rock does scatter some light I don’t think SSS would help. being more efficient with polygons, learning to use the modelling tools and how to use creases in conjunction with the subsurf modifier would be much mode beneficial.