View Full Version : LC45 Xmas Awesome Mecabricks challenge

12 December 2016, 06:00 PM
Please enjoy reading through this thread as an archive, but it is closed to new posts. You can still download the old models and also post your entry in order to ask for feedback here (

Xmas Challenge

First of all before forgetting I would like to thanks ( for creating such a wonderful software to create legos and also the creator of the replica of the xmas models.
I've taken the modelled, exported, set up in maya, created some additional remeshed models (created the lego logo+ some box that you can extrude in order to substitute the small bricks if you need a closeup).
Also the work of beta-testers (Glen, Hgagne, Yannick)

A huge thanks to Glenn that exported and cleaned the maya scene.
ALSO I NEED HELP (environmental modellers for the new challenge that will ge ready in a month or so depending on the help and time I can do for modelling it ) so modellers and testers please contact me.
The rules of the challenge are always the same
Also as always

If posting your own rendered images or video of this scene anywhere out of this thread, please credit mecabricks (and put an I like on my behance portfolio :) . Use any 3d software and techniques you would like.
Changes to the scene are allowed but not required.
Post your work in progress by replying to this thread so you can receive feedback
Feel free to share any extra information or breakdowns to show your techniques or lighting set-up.
Ask questions and give feedback
Enjoy yourself!

there's the scene

Abc Alembic (


MAPS and Textures (

12 December 2016, 08:33 PM
Here's are some links to the Lego Colour Palette:


Official LEGO Color Chart - Peeron


Colour Charts for Decals / Customization

New Elementary

12 December 2016, 08:02 AM
thanks a lot for the link...really waiting to see the new entries :)

12 December 2016, 12:19 PM
So nice !

Lets play lego :)

Didn't you forgot to link the texture with the files ?

And here is my first fast set-up, I changed every thing to MR MILA_material with the plastic preset.
Xmass 01

12 December 2016, 03:50 PM
Added maps :) snow is soo cool. Waiting to see also a night version :)

12 December 2016, 12:37 PM
Great challenge! I'm feeling like twenty years ago ;).

12 December 2016, 09:44 PM
Added maps :) snow is soo cool. Waiting to see also a night version :)
Thx for the maps JoJo. And here is the night version :)
Xmass nuit

12 December 2016, 08:42 AM
And here is my Lego-Xmas:
Lego Xmas

12 December 2016, 03:33 PM
Thx for the maps JoJo. And here is the night version :)
Xmass nuit

The snow in the light version looks good!


12 December 2016, 09:47 PM
This is only a test of that marvelous model scene. With blender Cycles and Freestyle for the "foreground" part.

12 December 2016, 04:08 PM
Vray 3.10 renderout, no postwork

12 December 2016, 04:29 PM
vray 3.10, no postwork. (

12 December 2016, 01:05 AM
My entry :) all creative criticism welcome. Really enjoyed this challenge

Full Size:

12 December 2016, 05:45 PM
Thanks Jojo... Love the set...
But for me shaders are not not connected... Some help plzzz

12 December 2016, 08:22 AM
this is awesomee!!

12 December 2016, 03:22 PM
Xmas Challenge :)

Thanks for the lovely set
Not able to open the scene properly, also shaders are not assigned. Some help plzzz

12 December 2016, 09:44 PM
Giorgio What an Awesome Challenge!

Here is my first quick WIP. Depth of field, subsurface scatter, Camera FOV, and heavy light bouncing are aspects of this that are going to be key to make this feel right. This scene is also incredibly busy so getting Comp is going to be tricky to get a feel for the story you are trying to tell

Exciting stuff! (

12 December 2016, 12:07 AM
Alright WIP 1 Starting to really light the scene an get a feel for what im going with here. I like the thought of a christmas scene in a display with dim lighting. Really giving the chance to create some kind of realistic lighting with a subtle story.

No Subsurface scattering or really any work on the materials. Very Early. 7 Lights in the scene at this moment

Renderman for the Renderer/Maya Absolutely no Post work at this point (

12 December 2016, 07:58 AM
WIP 2. Worked on the composition. Still feels a little flat any suggestions by you guys would be awesome. It also desperately needs more of a story. Im starting to get a little subsurface scatter but I want to crank it up. Still overall sloppy

Going to start doing some substance work for weathering the scene soon. At the moment 10 lights in the scene

Anyone know of any really good Maya Renderman Subsurface scatter tutorials? The effect Ardman and The lego movie is the aspect i'm trying to achieve here. Ive found a ton of documentation on it but never can get the right effect

Comments appreciated

@FeD As usual I love what you do. Maybe try pushing the contrast? Also more specific light source for the night scene and really work with that bounce light from the snow

@chribang Keep going this is really starting to look awesome! Think about the story your lighting is telling and the realism of where the light source is coming from. Right now i'm getting a vibe like this is a half real half cartoon world. Contrast is great but if that light source felt more real it would really pop

@wax78 Great Start. Depth of field really helps here I like it. I would suggest getting rid of the toon outline although if you keep it consistent on all aspects it could be pretty cool. Keep going

@Meglatura Love the wide angle and your scene really tells a story thats awesome. Light is very washed out at the moment. Maybe think about introducing a more consistent point of sunlight to give a bit more contrast (

12 December 2016, 09:40 PM
WIP 3.

Lighting is starting to get refined for creating more depth. Still no good work done on making the materials more realistic.

Going to start adding some characters and refine the color palette

Added some IES light profiles which made a huge difference (

12 December 2016, 10:40 PM
Nice WIP prestonplatt ! it's nice to see the progress of your image. Maybe get more reflections on the plastic.

Meglatura : nice render, I will say +1 with prestonplatt, maybe it is just the colors of your lego and not the lighting. do you use gamma 2.2 x2 ?

Thank for the feedback, here is my uppgraded version, and final I think. (right clic to see better rez)

12 December 2016, 08:31 AM
Thanks for the challenge!
This is my version. I got lazy and used only the sled :) but i wanted a LegoMovie style with some dirty legos.
I used Maya SubstancePainter and AE for compo.


12 December 2016, 09:21 PM
Hi everyone (


Maya Renderman 21

12 December 2016, 07:40 PM
WIP 4. Slammed with work but this challenge is too fun. able to texture the blocks a bit with spec maps. I created a little Animation because I think this is too good of an opportunity to pass up and it let me create some fun controlled chaos in the scene. Here are the first and 10th frame. Its about 30 frames but the render time is pretty intense

Comp is a little all over the place I will try to work on the color scheme soon but it almost feels right being so random since most children creating lego scenes don't have a semblance of composition color scheme haha

Down to about 5 lights in the scene. I was able to start getting some subsurface in the blocks. It was a bit odd with scaling ( ( (

12 December 2016, 04:35 PM

Took on board the feedback and made some changes. Any more creative criticism always appreciated. :)

@prestonplatt Looking forward to seeing your final result looking nice so far

12 December 2016, 03:02 AM

12 December 2016, 10:56 AM

Full Size (

Fixed the snow :)

12 December 2016, 02:59 AM
Hi there! I decided to go with 20s to 50s cartoon look, specially in getting those greys.
Later on I'm going to add some practical lighting as well as materials and textures.

12 December 2016, 05:28 AM
Thanks for the lovely set
Not able to open the scene properly, also shaders are not assigned. Some help plzzz

The FBX file will work.

12 December 2016, 03:44 PM
Well late as usual, but here is my first image. Still got lots to do.

Direct link to full size image:

12 December 2016, 06:43 PM
Final WIP

Wish I had more time to refine but CES Craziness has gotten out of control.

Fun little animation bellow Awesome challenge


12 December 2016, 06:43 PM
This is my lego winter night scene. Rightclick for full resolution.
3dsmax and Corona 1.5

01 January 2017, 03:59 PM
I have to say that this challenge is really great. During the weekend I will give a detailed feedback on the entries :)

01 January 2017, 09:37 PM
Wow, this is a great challenge! I've just enjoyed looking at all the entries so far.


01 January 2017, 09:59 PM

Hi guys,

This is my first entry for the lighting challenge. Its a rough start but I like where it is going.
I tried to do a spiral composition and I like how it's working on the reindeer sled. I think i will move the tree a bit more to the center. I think it gets too busy on the left side.
As for the lighting part, I like the orange color in the scene. I wanna put more blue into it to compliment the orange. I tried to get the sled of the background by putting a rim light on it. But as you can see it is too much. I will adjust it in the second version.

Also I was thinking to put the camera a little bit more backwards to see more of the scene. but im not sure yet.

-Blue orange color
-Rimlight sled
-Camera position

01 January 2017, 03:56 PM
@ Luck6 Great Start ! but keep an eye on the lighter zone on the reindeers. They look a bit distracting (as also the lit lamp on the right). I love the grading of the image, keep going !
@ Jeremy Thank you Jeremy for starting this challenges ! Seeing you on the forum is really a pleasure.
@Bibi5000 I like the overall composition. I will add just a bit of fill light in front in order to get more details of the scene. The shaders look very legoish
@ Preston. You really made my day. Too fun the poor man that run trying to catch the deer !!
@ragupast. Pls post an update I'm very curious to see houdini renderings for this challenge
@Gabriel. I would be glad to see an update. The idea of a BW rendition looks interesting !
@Meglatura :) I like the colors and the mood (also the occlusion on the roof looks great). I will contrast a bit more the image and add a bit of reflectance to the shaders !
@Gachealexandre. Very cool interpretation ! Which setup and render did you use ?
@ iranimation. If you import the dae file you should have no problem with the materials. Also on renderman forum there is a small plugin that can convert basic maya shaders to Renderman21. Pls post updates :)
@ ChugChug ! The idea is wonderful ! Also the color are very catching you could go crazy and model some lego clouds ;) Great work indeed
@FeD. I love the blur in the image. I would just add a very very subtle glare to the sources of illumination. Lovely shaders and colors (even if your lego look very very clean
@Noroto The idea of the fog is quite original. If you put a bit more lighting with volumetric effect I think your renderer will get a bit crazy. but I'm curious to see the results
@wax78 how is going with the cartoonish rendering ?
@chirbang. The overall shading looks very good Can you post some closeup of the scenes ? (Santa's with the cookes and also the two singer ?) which render and setup did you use ?
The new challenge is on the way.. So keep posting your images :)

01 January 2017, 12:01 AM
Hey you guys,

Here is my update. Hope you like it so far.
update 02

I think i will put the reindeers on the ground. It ruins the composition a bit. I will let it point to the christmas tree. So everything points to the tree.

Also I will remove the red color in the forground. I want it to be mostly blue against yellow orange

01 January 2017, 11:31 PM

This is my latest piece. I'm pretty happy with it. Hope you guys like it

01 January 2017, 07:30 PM
luck6 that's looking great!

The background hills seem very close to the sky color, maybe you could make them darker towards the top, or otherwise create some separation there?

I've love to see some more reflectivity on the bricks, so they reflect the environment more.

Having the reindeer on the ground is fine, but find some way to make them stand-out compared to what's around and behind them -- maybe that guy who's in front of the front one's antlers could be moved away, or at least given a different color? Maybe the reindeer could have some more contrast with light from the tree on the front of them?


01 January 2017, 10:29 PM

Thanks for the feedback,

I darkened the fog on the bg a bit to make it blend in with the whole image. The blue color isn't that distracted anymore and there is more depth in the scene now.

I darkened the building on the right so that there is more contrast on the sled. Also I put a rim light on it.

The extra reflection made some artifacts on some parts. I cheated a bit in post to brush them away. I didnt wanted to wait for another render.

Overal I think its a better image now. thank you.

01 January 2017, 12:39 AM
luck6 -

Nice improvement! It still looks a bit bleak to me. The background trees are so dim you almost can't see them; maybe if they each had some lights on them, at least their top brick were glowing and lighting them up, then the more distant groves could have pools of warm light around them that would add depth to the scene and help break-up that background. You might have to add some of the glowing bricks to the foreground too, on the nearby trees or the decorations on the roof of the house on the right, and maybe make a few composition tweaks in response to this, but it could be worth it to have a warmer and more festive image.


01 January 2017, 01:24 AM

Another update. Update number 5.
It keeps looking better and better. Thanks for all the feedback so far. They really help.

So far I have been adding lights at trees in the foreground and background. I added some extra lights for the background ground plane and also added some extra detail lights at the foreground.
I changed the camera lens to give it more of a overview. I thought the foreground was too much present in the last version. Now the composition works better.
Also I created some foot prints in the snow just for fun.

Overall I'm pretty happy with it. Maybe I will do something with the Sky. Now its just a simple image from the internet. If I have some time left I will make a matte painting for it.

01 January 2017, 03:03 PM
luck6 loving the direction of where your taking it.

@jojo. I had to stop using Houdini as the rendering times were becoming horrendously large, even with almost no sampling. It was taking between 1.5 - 3 hours per render with a very noisy outcome and unfortunately I don't usually have that sort of time to sit around wondering if the look is there or not. Even using the interactive renderer was not giving me results to see in any sort of usable time frame.

Houdini 16 is just around the corner and with it comes a lot of Mantra optimizations. An exciting time for doing things like this.

However I have started again in 3ds max, I will have something to post up very soon. (1.5 mins rendertime in max btw) :D

01 January 2017, 01:56 PM
Here is my first image in 3ds max. Sill plenty to do.

Link to full res:

Light Set-up (although a bit hard to make out):

High Res:

01 January 2017, 11:21 PM
Hi everyone,

It's nice to be back. It's been a long time since I participate in Lighting Challenge. Thanks to @jojo1975 for the model for this challenge and has seen cool renders so far.
LC45 V001``

My first round. No detail lighting yet, just focus on camera and object placement for story telling.


01 January 2017, 09:44 PM
Added key lighting to sculpt the mood and story. Got a bit of noise problems in the background, will handle those later on once all elements are finalized.
LC45 V002

Still plenty of things need to be added later. Feedback are very welcome :)

01 January 2017, 09:00 AM
Added more lights. Played around with colors in Nuke by grading each light from multilight passes output from 3Delight.
LC45 V003

Starting to get what I want, but probably still need to tweak the blue environment color further. Painted away some noise in the background due to bounces from smaller area lights, so maybe I'm going to close the some room in order to contain the light bounces to avoid too much noises.

01 January 2017, 08:26 AM
Tweaked more lights. Added rim for the xmas tree and put more exposure for the center around santa to put more emphasis.
LC45 V004

Will move on to shading the scene.

01 January 2017, 07:37 PM
Hi there,

Hope its not too late, here is my first attempt:
Comments welcome, thanks!

- David
DW attempt 1

02 February 2017, 09:26 PM
Hi, Here is an update, moved things around to improve the overall composition. Tweaks various material settings.

BTW, this was rendered with Electric Image Animation System. Used 3 several years old i7 Macs and 1 really old Xeon Mac Pro 8 core. About 40 minutes of render time. The scene used mainly 1 area light with 15432 light polygons. And 2 very low intensity fill lights.
LC45 v2

02 February 2017, 11:50 PM
Here is my third version. Fine tuned the lighting to be little darker overall since it is a night scene. And have more of the light source from the area lights and less overall fill light.
LC45 version 3

1920x1080 version here:


02 February 2017, 11:56 AM
The challenge is going to close soon. So hurry up to post your entries. (next week I will comment all of them) Also we are currently look for modellers :) send me a pm to know more

02 February 2017, 06:25 PM
Here is my final version
LC 45 Final

Hi res 1920x1080 here:

02 February 2017, 09:29 PM
Iv made a few small changes

02 February 2017, 02:18 PM
An alternate version with more trees:
LC 45 Alternate

Hi-Res here:

02 February 2017, 10:19 PM
@dwu67 : The alternate version looks great! The trees gave better focus the center of the image, compare than your previous image that looks darker for the background. Awesome work.

@jojo 1975 : Hi Giorgio, hope this challenge still opens by the end of this week? I'm getting close for the final submission.

Here's my latest iteration, finally had the chance to add more materials after I gather Lego Color Palette and mixed them for my scene. Next will focus on snow and some little details that goes with my final submission.
LC45 V005

Render time went up to 5hrs 16mins but it's quite fast since 50% of the image are subsurface.


02 February 2017, 04:09 AM
One more version with sky and moon:
LC45 Moon


02 February 2017, 11:15 PM

Giorgio, I hope I made it for the deadline :)

This is my final submission. Added snow, some glitters, volumes and some post work in Nuke. Rendered using 3Delight in 6 hours using my crappy desktop machine which is i5 2.5GHz 2 Cores 8GB RAM.
LC45 V006

Comments and critics are very welcome.

02 February 2017, 07:30 AM
Yes you did ;) i will comment during this week. The thread will remain open so if everyone would like to post other versions you are welcome to do it :)

03 March 2017, 02:54 PM
Lovely Land

here you go my latest challenge.