Dark Forest

by Blendtuts in Training

What is Dark Forest?

Dark Forest is a series of tutorials from Oliver Villar (blendtuts) that covers the whole process of creation of a promotional video in which a camera flies through a forest and shows some glowing titles with the beat of a soundtrack. The tutorials go from the inception of the project, its preproduction and organization, through the whole modelling, sculpting, texturing and animation stages up to the render (with Cycles), lighting and compositing! The series is made of 11 Chapters containing 49 videos: Almost 13 hours of tutorials!!

WITH THIS COURSE YOU'LL LEARN HOW TO MANAGE AND ORGANIZE BIG PROJECTS. THAT'S THE ULTIMATE GOAL.

What skills do you need?

This series assumes you have at least a basic knowledge of Blender Interface and tools. Advanced knowledge is not required at all and everything is explained step by step. Knowing the basics of the User Interface, navigation and options is enough. As a rule of thumb, if you can follow basic to medium tutorials, you shouldn't have problems following Dark Forest tutorials.

You'll be able to save it into a DVD

Dark Forest is crafted so it fits into a DVD, so you can burn the full course, print the cover designs and put it in your shelf! ATTENTION: Dark Forest is a downloadable product only, so a physical copy won't be shipped after the purchase. You'll have to print the covers and burn the DVD to have a physical version.

What will you get?

Oliver has put all of his knowledge together to create a high quality product from which you can learn a lot. While the tutorials show how to create a forest, everything is thought in a way so that you can extract the workflow and the essence of the whole series to overcome any other type of big project and know what steps you should follow. Also, it includes the Production Files so you can mess around with the .blend files and start at any point of the process just by loading the desired file.

Chapter 1 - Preproduction (3 videos)

Learn how to think and plan your project in advance. Most of the projects fail because of a bad (or non-existent) preproduction stage, so you'll learn how to avoid that from the beginning.

Chapter 2 - Creating the Terrain (8 videos)

You'll go through a series of tips, tricks, and step by step videos on how to create the main terrain, tileable textures, shading...

Chapter 3 - Creating the Trees (10 videos)

Trees are tough. You'll be guided through the process of modeling, sculpting, unwrapping and texturing these elements. Then you'll learn how to add variations so it's not so visible that you're reusing the same models over and over again.

Chapter 4 - Creating Assets (4 videos)

In the Chapter 4 you're going to learn a lot of little tricks while creating the different assets that will be distributed across the scene: stones, mushrooms, roots, and plants.

Chapter 5 - Forest Population (1st Pass) (2 videos)

You'll get all the assets ready and organized so it's easier to populate your forest. In this 1st pass you'll add the main trees to the forest so you can have a scene blocking for animating the camera.

Chapter 6 - Camera Animation (3 videos)

This one's intense. Not because it's difficult or long, but because camera animation adds a lot of intensity to your result! You'll learn how to animate the camera making it fit the soundtrack, rig it, and add a hand held effect to its movement using animation modifiers.

Chapter 7 - Forest Population (2nd Pss) (5 videos)

Ok, the base is there, main trees are there, and camera animation is there. So it's time to add all the props to the scene to finish its population: more trees, stones, mushrooms, roots and plants will be added based on the camera movement.

Chapter 8 - Adding Details (4 videos)

Now it's only a matter of adding details and optimizing some things, like animating the level of detail of the trees, so they're only high res whenever the camera is in front of them. You'll also sculpt the terrain a little more to adapt it to the main trees so it looks more natural. The glowing texts will also be added during this stage.

Chapter 9 - Lighting (1 video)

Last thing to do before going into the render stage is to add some lights to the scene to give it the look you want!

Chapter 10 - Render Setup (3 videos)

It's already closing time, so you'll have to set up the render, do the last small tweaks and adjustments... and press F12!

Chapter 11 - Compositing (6 videos)

Hold on, because this is the last chapter but a very interesting one. Compositing is an exciting thing and it allows you to improve and tweak the raw result you get from the 3D scene. Adding mist, color corrections and composing the glowing texts are some of the things that will be done in this chapter.

Also: Production files, textures, .blends...

What people thinks of Dark Forest so far

Here are a few testimonials from some of the people who already took the course :) "I’ve got Dark Forest with Luke’s Escape Highschool’s Preorder, and I don’t regret my purchase! It’s better than promissed, and I loved to see the organization and clean procedure that a professional like Oliver follows while he works. Furthermore, he doesn’t only show you what to do, but he also explains why he does it that way, which is really helpful to understand the process." - Abidán Brito (Spain) “Dark Forest is a really in-depth course, covering from the most basic to the most complex with lots of advice in the middle!” - Thomas White (Canada) “Simply amazing! I’ve learned tons of stuff with Dark Forest. I feel I can handle bigger projects now! - Alena Lange (Germany) “I have been following Oliver’s tutorials on blendtuts.com since 2010, and this is his best work to the date without a doubt! He’s really pushed the limits with Dark Forest and came up with a very professional, deep, huge, and easy to follow course. I’ve always loved Oliver’s teaching style, but Dark Forest is definitely my favorite one!” - Jason Allen (USA)

Do you have any doubts?

Oliver will be happy to attend to all your questions or concerns at [email protected]// .