View Full Version : Panoramic projection mapping

12 December 2009, 05:40 AM
Hi all,

Recently i’ve been busy with developing various shots of terrains for a short film sequence. I’ve been using many techniques, like camera mapping, to achieve the desired results depending on the movement of the camera. The scene is your regular aircraft flying over the terrain. Im trying to create a 360 degree flyby shot of the environment but am having some issues.

I modeled a terrain in Zbrush, brought it into max and then setup a camera at world zero which is going to be my nodal camera. I applied a basic tiled texture to the terrain and rendered out a spherical panoramic image using the nodal camera. Taking the image into photoshop and paint the environment and bring it back. Then I create a sphere around the terrain that the panorama is projected on. Lastly I line up the terrain with the panorama through the nodal camera view.

This is known as image based 3d terrains and explored in great detail in one of Gnomons dvds. The final step is to project the pano image using the sphere onto the terrain geometry. Ive been doing tests but have not been able to achieve this. The instructor uses the camera image plane and the ‘use background shader’ to project it in Maya. But Im having trouble obtaining the result in 3ds max. When I map the image using camera mapping I get offset results. Theres a paper online that looks into this rarely documented technique at (

Anyone have any thoughts on the matter would be greatly appreciated.

12 December 2009, 07:11 AM
I dont use 3dsmax

but in MAYA in the image plane node attached to the nodal cam u use a env_sphere texture node connected to its texture slot, u plug this as a texture not as a file

the use_background shader node is applied to the 3d terrain geometry to catch shadows

12 December 2009, 05:49 AM
Thanks man,

Actually that is what im looking to do in 3ds Max. The cameras in 3ds max are not that customizable. Im sure theres a way of attaining the same result through some other means that im overlooking. Im actually debating whether I should dive into learning maya aswell. But am also leaning towards XSI. What do you say?

12 December 2009, 12:47 AM

I understand that sometimes is hard to change another application to get the final result
I do not know 3dsmax as deep as maya but I am pretty sure 3ds can do it

in maya if u decide go for it I can help u with the setup

hope I can see ur final result

I am working in something similar but not from a nodal cam and a spherical environment map
is only perspective projection camera map


10 October 2010, 02:51 PM
Was this ever resolved? I'm trying to do this. And am also debating on whether I should begin learning another package however I'd rather stay within Max for the moment.

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10 October 2010, 02:51 PM
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