Course Title: Create 3D digital environments

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2011

Course Code: COSC5384C

Course Title: Create 3D digital environments

School: 345T Media and Communication

Campus: City Campus

Program: C5218 - Diploma of Interactive Digital Media

Course Contact : Josiane Mueller

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 4585

Course Contact

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Teacher: Mr Arthur Michalopoulos
Phone: 9925 4111

Nominal Hours: 30

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites


Course Description

This course describes the skills and knowledge required to use current 3D software in order to generate 3D environments. You will create 3D environments that meet technical requirements while integrating appropriate elements within an aesthetically unified design.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CUFANM502A Create 3D digital environments


1 Clarify work requirements.

Performance Criteria:

1.1 With reference to production documentation, determine requirements and
purpose for 3D digital environments.

1.2 In consultation with relevant personnel, determine work flow sequences to
ensure that production schedule deadlines are met.

1.3 Select software that best suits the type of production and delivery platform
for which 3D digital environments are being created.

1.4 Gather and analyse reference materials to help with visualisation of 3D


2 Create 3D digital environments

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Use software features to build a pre-visualisation of environments in relation to reference
materials and submit to relevant personnel for approval

2.2 Build environment models and progressively refine models until they meet
design requirements.

2.3 Check integrity of models and ensure spatial relationship meets design requirements.

2.4 Apply texture coordinates as required.

2.5 Create and incorporate matte paintings as required

2.6 Manipulate software features to apply lighting and shaders as required.

2.7 Experiment with different lighting rigs and select a rig that meets design requirements.

2.8 Continuously refine all aspects of 3D digital environments until the required creative effect
is achieved.

2.9 Submit environments to relevant personnel for comment on whether production
requirements have been met and make final adjustments as required.


3 Finalise projects.

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Render and output environments in required format and submit to relevant
personnel by agreed deadlines.

3.2 Finalise projects according to enterprise procedures, such as making back-
up copies of files and completing workplace documentation

3.3 Participate in project evaluations and contribute ideas and suggestions about
ways to improve future projects.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to develop a concept from an idea into a 3D environment.

Details of Learning Activities

Learning activities will consist of:
In-class activities:
• teacher guided instruction
• peer teaching and class presentations
• online research
• group discussion
• independent project based work
• workshopping of students’ own projects
• screenings
• guest lecturers
• teacher directed group activities/projects
Out-of-class activities:
• project work
• independent research
• independent study

Teaching Schedule

WeekClass ContentAssessment Due DateElements
1Intro/group discussion. What is 3D? A more inclusive approach utilising broader artistic traditions. Film screening: TBA
Student examples
 1.1,1.2,1.3, 1.4
2Group discussions Maya basics 1 Representing 3D space. The Universe, Cartesian grid, the origin, primitive objects, Interface & incremental values, selection modes, project & file management
3PresentationAssignment 1-
1.1,1.2,1.3, 1.4,
4Maya basics 2
Modeling Tutorial. Making simple objects, layers
5Modeling Tutorial. Making simple objects, Nodes & Attributes
The edit polygons menu
6Polygon menu, The edit polygons menu 1, object display
Polygon menu, The edit polygons menu 2
7Modeling Tutorial – Append to Polygon tool, Mirror poly. objects, Object Rendering a Scene 1.4,,2.3
8Additional Maya techniques 2.9,3.2, 3.3
9Additional Maya techniques 1.2,1.4, 2.6,2.7
10PresentationAssignment 2-
1.2,1.4, 2.4,2.5,2.6,2.7
11Mood and atmosphere in film. Examples through history/cinematography Lights in 3D - global, intensity, fall off, colour, shadows, 3 point lighting

Lighting, Shaders & rendering 1
 1.2,1.4, 2.4,2.5,2.6,2.7,
12Lighting, Shaders & rendering 2 1.2,1.4, 2.4,2.5,2.6,2.7

Lighting, Shaders & rendering 3
Assignment 3-
1.2,1.4, 2.4,2.5,2.6,2.7,
14Lighting, Shaders & rendering 4

Project work/review
15Project work/review 2.1,,2.4,
Week 16
16Project work/review 2.1,,2.4,
17Presentation & Submission
Assignment 4-
Final submission

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

List of prescribed texts will be on the course blackboard site.


You are advised to look at the course Blackboard site for ongoing updated information.

Other Resources


Overview of Assessment

Assessment for this course is ongoing throughout the semester. Your knowledge of course content is assessed through practical exercises, presentation, written report and and practical project work.

Assessment Tasks

Assessment tasks in this course are either formative or summative. Formative tasks provide the basis for ongoing feedback and can be considered as essential building blocks for the more substantial summative assessment tasks.
To demonstrate competency in this course, you will need to complete each of the following pieces of assessment to a satisfactory standard. You will receive feedback on all assessment and a grade for the summative assessments.

The project for semester 1 consists of three interrelated assignments that will culminate with a 3D environment created using Maya software. Using the following poem by Rainer Maria Rilke as a starting point, you will come up with an idea for stage set design. You will continue to develop your ideas through the semester as you refine your technical skills in Maya. You will also be required to find image references that will assist with the ‘visualization’ of this project.

No one lives his life

Disguised since childhood,
Haphazardly assembled
From voices and fears and little pleasures,
We come of age in masks

Our true face never speaks

Somewhere there must be storehouses
Where all these lives are laid away
Like suits of armour or old carriages
Or clothes hanging limply on the walls

Maybe all paths lead there,
To the repository of unlived things

Formative Assessment (Ungraded) tasks

Assignment 1: Concept
Prepare a presentation that relates to the design of a stage set for a production based on a poem by Rainer Maria Rilke

The presentation needs to include:

• A short verbal outline of your idea
• A perspective drawing clearly showing the arrangement of the stage
• A list of potential objects that need to made (including props and stage structures)
• An image reference that will help you with the ‘look and feel’ of your design

• The assignment MUST be presented as part of a formative assessment on the due
date during class and must be of a satisfactory standard.
Verbal feedback will be provided by the teacher and other students

Presentation date: 21.02.11
Assignment 2: Models

Using Maya software Create 3D models within an environment of the stage set proposed in Assignment 1. This will include the stage, props and associated structures. etc


• Model the stage, theatre, seats, stage set with props, curtains and other
appropriate structures consistent with your original submission in assignment 1.

• Render Three (1260 x 960 pixels), Medium anti aliasing images of your
arrangement so far (three different camera angles) in Targa format.

• The assignment MUST be presented as part of a formative assessment on the due date during class and must be of a satisfactory standard. Verbal feedback will be provided by the teacher and other students

Presentation date: 18.05.11

Assignment 3: Lighting

Assignment 3 is the Third and final of three interrelated assignments and involves incorporating colour material and texture.
Using Maya software enhance your 3D models within an environment by using lights & lighting techniques. With lighting the models will appear more solid, shapely and have shadows. The overall environment will also have mood & atmosphere


• The use of at least six Maya lights and evidence of three point lighting techniques

• Three (1260 x 960 pixels), Medium anti aliasing Final renders. Targa format.

• No colour or textures will be necessary in this assignment

• The assignment MUST be presented as part of a formative assessment on the due
date during class and must be of a satisfactory standard. Verbal feedback will be provided by the teacher and other students

Presentation date: 02.05.11

Summative Assessment (graded)

Assignment 4: Finish


• You need to submit a compressed archive in ZIP format and named:

• The zip archive contains two folders called ‘Maya Stage’ and the other folder
called ‘final renders’

• Show Material attributes of objects (colour, specular, reflectivity, transparency
etc), as required

• Use appropriate textures and mapping for objects. Use & adjust your own textures
where possible
• Textures used directly in Maya should be stored in the ‘source images’ sub-folder
The above could be on the assignment brief Arthur
Final renders folder will contain:

• Three (1260 x 960 pixels), High Quality anti aliasing Final renders. Targa format.
Carefully consider the compositions of your renders. Two wide angles and a detail
angle may be appropriate.
• A report from each student reflecting on the collaborative process through the

Submission date: TBA

NB The presentation all 3 previous assignments - and resulting competency for all 3 - is a pre-condition for assignment 4 to be assessed

Grades used in this assessment are as follows:

CHD Competent with High Distinction
CDI Competent with Distinction
CC Competent with Credit
CAG Competency Achieved- Graded
DNS Did Not Submit for Assessment

For further information on the grading system and criteria used, please refer to the course blackboard site.

Assessment Matrix

The assessment matrix demonstrated alignment of assessment tasks with the relevant Unit of Competency. These are available through the course contact in Program administration

Other Information

In industry, such as a games company, 3D is largely a collaborative process. In simulating this process for this course, you will be required to work in teams of two. In this team you will assist each other in the development of your individual designs as well as providing technical assistance.
To document this process, assignment 4 submission will need to include a short report from each student listing in point form aspects of this collaborative approach through the course of the semester. This could include any ideas given by the other student, what technical assistance you may have provided (e.g. explaining a software process) and where you worked collaboratively to solve a common problem. PUT ALL THIS INFORMATION ON YOUR ASSIGNMENT BRIEF ARTHUR

Possible issues
• Classes are running for 16 weeks only next year – Week 17 is assessment only
• Description of assessment overly detailed for the course guide and a assignment 4 a little confusing

Special consideration Policy (Late Submission)
All assessment tasks are required to be completed to a satisfactory level. If you are unable to complete any piece of assessment by the due date, you will need to apply for an extension.
Please refer to the following URL for extensions and special consideration:;ID=qkssnx1c5r0y;STATUS=A;PAGE_AUTHOR=Andrea%20Syers;SECTION=1;

Course Overview: Access Course Overview