Diageo gets into the spirit with CINEMA 4D

April 16, 2014

How RPM created a range of 3D spirit bottles indistinguishable from photos



While it’s easy enough to create 3D bottles of liquid, it’s a whole different ball game when you are tasked with creating 3D renders of actual spirit bottles that have to be indistinguishable from actual photographs. That was the brief that brand-specialist RPM was faced with in a commission from Diageo, the world's leading drinks company. For Scott Ramsay, Senior 3D Visualiser, and the 10 artists working on the project at RPM in the Old Treacle Factory in Shepherds Bush, the challenge was considerable. Traditionally, creating images to make each bottle look as beautiful as possible requires an expensive photo-shoot with sophisticated lighting. However, the sheer number of bottles involved meant the cost would have been prohibitive for them all. Step forward RPM and CINEMA 4D with a CG-based alternative that offered both a more economic cost and considerably more useful and flexible assets. Once created, the bottles could then be re-used in any other marketing scenario. The big question was whether Scott and the team could actually do it, because in order for the project to be successful, those CG bottles had to go up against an equivalent photo and be just as good.


Scott explained how the process started, "Working in CINEMA 4D, I started modelling using technical drawings and blueprints from Diageo’s asset library as reference. Labels and graphics were applied using the print-ready artwork files supplied by Diageo. This is where good print process knowledge comes in, because the gold inks, foils, varnishes and embosses that make the labels look so premium and rich are applied in a similar fashion, even using the choking, trapping and overprints a print designer will be familiar with. Knowing these would be rendered at a very high resolution, attention to detail was paramount and all of the tiny imperfections and dimples, seams and registration marks in each bottle were faithfully recreated using displacement and bump maps."


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