Thea for Cinema 4D

Quick Start

1. INSTALLATION

WINDOWS

Use the provided Bundle installers that contain Thea Studio and Cinema 4D plugin.

Install with administration rights by right-clicking the installer and selecting ‘Run as administrator’.

The installer will automatically find the Cinema 4D installation automatically.

MAC - OSX

Thea for Cinema 4D comes with a .dmg file. Inside this file, you will find a folder named “Thea Render”. Drag and drop it to Cinema 4D plugins folder (or user preferences folder).

Depending on the Cinema 4D version, select the appropriate zip file and expand it. You can now safely delete the rest of the files.

It is recommended to also install the same version of Thea Studio.

2. THE INTERFACE

After the installation, you will find a new menu entry on the top menu called Thea Render.

For your convenience, you can dock it to the interface.

Thea Render can be set as the current renderer by going to the Render Settings (CTRL+B) and then select Thea Render from the drop-down.

 

3. START INTERACTIVE RENDERING

To start Interactive Rendering, first open Darkroom. Select Interactive Mode from the drop-down, select an engine (Presto AO/MC, Adaptive AMC) and click on the Start button.

You can either navigate the scene in Cinema 4D viewport or straight into Darkroom.

4. START PRODUCTION RENDERING

Before starting Production Rendering, you need to set the render options. Go to Render Settings and select Thea Render from the drop-down. Click on Thea Render and switch from Interactive to Production Mode and then modify the settings (Render Engine, Sample limit, etc).

Rendering in Picture Viewer.

Production Rendering can be started by clicking on the Render to Picture Viewer button but this requires that Thea Render is selected as a renderer from Render Settings. (see paragraph 1)

Rendering in Darkroom

Production Rendering can also be started inside Darkroom. Just open Darkroom, switch to Production Mode, if not already, select an Engine, Resolution and Sample Limit and press the Start button.

5. CREATING & MODIFYING MATERIALS

Materials can be created in the Materials Tab. There is a new menu entry that allows you to create material presets or new materials from scratch.

To edit a material, you can either click once on it to edit it in the attribute manager.

If you click twice, the material will open in the Material editor for editing.

If you have enabled “Invoke Material Lab on Material Edit” in Thea Settings, then by double-clicking on a material preview, the material will open in the External Material Lab.

 

6. ENVIRONMENT & LIGHTS

PHYSICAL SKY

To use the Thea Physical Sky in Cinema 4D, you need to do the following:

  • Create a Sky object.
  • Assign a Thea Sky tag.
  • Create an Infinite Light. (Rotating it, controls Sun’s position)
  • (Optional) Assign a Thea Light tag.

By assigning a Thea Light tag to the Infinite light, you will have access to specific settings like Soft Shadows, etc.

IMAGE BASED LIGHTING

You can use HDR and EXR images to light your scene by creating a Sky object and assign a Thea Sky tag to it. From the Illumination drop-down, change from Sun & Sky to IBL and load an HDR/EXR image.

LIGHTS

To create a light in the scene, click on the Light object and assign a Thea Light tag. At any time, the type of the light can be changed by using the Type drop-down in the Thea Light tag.

Thea Light tag only shows the supported features of Cinema 4D lights.

 

7. VIDEO TUTORIALS

Be sure to check the following Getting Started tutorials that will guide you through an Overview of the Interface, Material Creation and Environment/Lights.