Generic cars for animations - Any repositories free or paid?

I wasn’t sure where to post this, but I consider this pretty much CG Discussion.

Often enough my clients need cars in their animations and they are usually bigger companies and don’t want to be associated with other companies in their imagemovies or product presentations.
And to be perfectly legal you would have to pay license fees and get the permission of the car manufacturer to use one of “their” cars in a commercial production of yours.

I had the same problem with construction plants, where a manufacturer has a digger but no truck in their production line and want a truck in their animation but not from another manufacturer :smiley:

And once again I need a nice upper class sedan and I was wondering if there are any secret sources. Either a repository of generic communitymade blueprints so I can model a car, or free models, or paid models. One of the few and best looking so far I found was this one.
It’s also a nice indicator for the quality level, the interior isn’t really required, you can tint the windows :slight_smile:
Pricerange should be around 50USD, but under 100USD, the above example is quite on the limit, but offers a very nice quality for the money.

Then again, clients usually want to preview the assets and express their liking or mostly unliking and I don’t really have alternatives to show.

It seems that cardesigner is a highly underestimated job, as most of the generic cars around are simply fugly contraptions, and some cars for instance on turbosquid even would fail to win in an aesthetic or modelquality contest against blenders default cube.

So any sources? Or do you guys always model all assets for projects yourself?

Last resort would be to mix a few blueprints and whip up my own car… so, to those looking to sell models it might be worth a try to go into the generic car modelling. Van, SUV, Offroad, middleclass, upperclass, sedan, convertible…
Either I am too stupid to find good models, or there are none.

if you are forced into your last resort just go with boring manufactuers like lexus and hyundai, honda who make indistinctive cars you can tweak them into your own design and make them appear realistic enough to fit in with anything.

Might be something for you to use on http://www.blendswap.com

Blendswap is great; I use it often, but I have to warn you that most cars on Blendswap are expensive luxury cars. BMWs, Audis, sure; but I haven’t seen as many beat-up trucks or freight vans as Turbosquid. Still, Blendswap’s easily tops in my book.

Yeh I was thinking along those lines, that if I have to do my own car to take a Audi basis, which in Europe pretty much is the reference for a upper class sedan and mix some asian models into it.
But you still never know the design patents they hold unless you start digging into it with their legal counsil or your lawyer. OMG I am loosing hair just thinking about it…
Then you only use the shape of the headlights and next you know the troubles start because the shape in the context of headlights and sedans is patented. But that can also coincidentially happen with someones generic model, usually new designs are mostly inspired by something you’ve seen or experienced.

And it’s rather easy to come up with a generic sportscar, but an aesthetically pleasing normal car… hmm.

Well, there are several reasons why I don’t use Blendswap, although I browse it frequently just to… well follow what’s going on.
I don’t really want to use free community models to make money, and if I have to I feel bad and have to donate to the BF :wink: IMO that’s almost as good as paying the artist.
CC-BY, BB-SA and CC-NC don’t exactly work in a commercial animation without any credits.
Well, and quite a few models, no matter what license are bluntly put unusable. Thanks for sharing but the quality is nothing for a commercial production.
To be fair though, there are quite a few high quality models online, also cars, but sadly, it’s either fantastic sportscars or AUDI an BMW :wink:

All in all it’s a rather intresting topic. It seems the only quality generic car models I can find is a series of each type of car from the dude who made the car I posted. Unless you want a pink car that looks like it’s made for a 1990 racing simulation :smiley:

Honda has some meshes. Only problem is you download it by pieces and then import the pieces on blender to have at last the car. Honda site (click on one image to go to the pieces downloading for that mesh)

You could then distort/change/mix the meshes/pieces to make it generic?

This is the city cabriolet for example:

http://desmond.imageshack.us/Himg853/scaled.php?server=853&filename=cityhe.jpg&res=medium

but what is the license for honda ?

i think the best way is to design your own model
and understand that it takes time !

but at least it’s your own and you can do anything your want with it!

salutations

A thought occurs. A quick thought, but here goes.

I’ve wondered the same thing recently about the good generic car models, for the reasons already stated. I was considering doing one/a few myself, but I have so many side interests in 3d at the moment that it hasn’t bumped it’s way up the priority list to actually getting done.

The quick thought is basically a contest. Original, I know.

Something along the simple lines of designing a family car of tomorrow, or whatever, with the models being released as CC0 / Public Domain. Of course the contest would have to be very open about the fact it is raising the available pool of such models so people didn’t feel cheated into doing free work. If a contestant didn’t agree with how the end work was used, that is completely understandable, so it should be obvious.

I had suggested this as a potential prize for the F1 comp, but a 3d print of the winning model would make for a nice first prize in my opinion. I’d be willing to sponsor such a prize, given that the F1 comp still seems on hold for a while. (Let me know if I’m wrong…) Other suggestions for prizes would be great if people have them.

However, making a good car model as we all know is a lot of work that many might not feel like giving away as CC0 / Public Domain. Again, I get that. Perhaps there is a way to have the competition still, with modellers being allowed to sell their entries on Turboquid etc. My main thought with that though is that a competition with a bunch of awesome car models would be a bit fruitless - in this specific case - if none of the models were actually made available paid or freely. Asking that the models are released after the contest seems the most straightforward way, logistically.

Happy to hear suggestions on that aspect though. I obviously have no issues with the idea of paying for models.

Edit - One more thing probably worth mentioning: I don’t expect this contest to produce models that hold up to the camera in HD from every possible camera angle. That would clearly be asking way too much. But even well-built-but-simpler models for use in car park shots for example would be a great starting point. A good base can always have a bit more detail added when needed.

Thoughts?

@Bao: the T360 is fabulous :smiley: the problem however is that altering the existing model might violate a policy I can’t read with my poor japanese, and often consumes more time than doing the model yourself.

That’s the ideal romantic idea of CG. Unfortunately it doesn’t work like that most of the time.
You usually have a tight timeframe, a deadline hanging like doomsday itself over you, a budget that allows for less manhours than the project needs and a client with no understanding what it is you do and why it takes so long. And meshfactories from india and china with low personal cost distort the market even further. There are plenty of gamestudios producing their graphical assets somewhere in asia already and it’s a growing trend. I even lost jobs because the graphics department was entirely outsourced to “the east”.

So often enough, especially in an animation project the only way to be able to compte freelancing is to buy assets and find try to find a nice balance between cheap globalization labor and local craftmansship that works with your ethics.
And refusing a gig because it’s close to exploitation usually ends with someone else doing the job for even less.

CG is war! :smiley:
Freelancing you’re already on par with webdesigners:
“That’s not bad can you do me 10 different versions to choose from… no, I only pay once…”
“I can do that with Magic-Whatever-maker myself, why is it so expensive?”
:smiley:

And in the industry you’re a mesh-loom, a piece of machinery and used as such :stuck_out_tongue:

I think the last romantic place for CG artists are some Indie Studios where you work for the profit share. But that’s often a game of chance, and you can’t pay bills with a sweet smile.

Well, enough sarcastic satyric ranting… fact to remain, there seem to be no decent sources for generic everyday car models.

Might be worth a community project. Working out generic car blueprints for the basic car types with people from various countries to get as many cultural influence in the designs as possible and model them out, bundle them and sell them splitting the revenue by a predefined rate, or offer them CC-0 just because we can. :wink:
I’ll keep it in the back of my head, currently I am swamped anyways.

Edit: Ben beat me to it. :smiley:
Still, I see nothing wrong if people sell them, someone just have to make some. I myself wanted to do a car for some time now, but I always drift off to other parts of CG or programm something. Might be time to focus on it.
Intresting would be a site where Blenderheads offer quality models CC-0, but you have to donate 10 USD+ to the BF to get a downloadlink… the models would spread public domain soon enough, but I think there’d be plenty of folks willing to donate as well.

And I think we have many talented car modellers in this forum already, all it needs is someone to come up with designs and someone to make proper blueprints to model after.
I am sure sooner or later Claas will stumble over this thread, if I am not mistaken he teaches design, maybe he want’s to chip in, or abuse his students to come up with car designs and in return they get the 3d models.

bizla has done a few nice high res cars and he might be interested to sell some of his cars !

but for a price he might do a few more generic or custom made car !

i might even get involved too

i don’t have a lot of generic cars also and would like to have a few !

happy cycles

The Dosch collections are pretty good. They offer both low- and high-poly versions of cars and you can pick between quite a few sets (American cars, European cars, industrial vehicles, emergency, etc.).

There are plenty of good cars, that isn’t specifically the issue.

Since Dosch Design does not (cannot) know how the buyer will use/change the 3D models/objects of trademarked products, we advise the buyer/user of the models/objects to contact the car manufacturer (Daimler, Chrysler, VW etc.) prior (!) to the publication of the new 3D-designs, and verify that the -intended- final design product is in compliance with the legal use of the protected image/trademark.
That sort of thing is what we are discussing. It makes sense, but that sort of checkup, awaiting approval, etc can just add one too many levels of complexity to a project and it’s time frame.

What Ben said, but I have to admit the Dosh Models are quite sweet, good packages for a more than fair price. Worth a bookmark.