Creating Depth of Field Blur Effect in Photoshop Using V-Ray 1.50.SP2 Render Element
Applications used: 3ds Max2009, V-Ray 1.50.SP2, and Photoshop CS3
This tutorial will demonstrate one method on creating a Depth of Field (DOF) effect, which will not lead to long render times.
Follow the link below to download our example max scene:
Download [for 3ds max 2009 only]
In 3ds Max:
1. In the Create Tab of the command panel, Select the Tape tool under Helpers.
2. Click-Drag the Tape tool in the Top View from your Camera's position to slightly pass the farthest object from the camera. Circled in red in the screen shot below is a rough estimate of this scenes depth.
3. In V-Ray's Render Dialogue under the Render Elements Tab, select Add then VRay_ZDepth (very bottom).
4. In Select Element Parameters assign what you want the files to be saved as and where. Normally I render my ZDepth pass as a 16 bit TIF.
5. In the VRay_ZDepth Parameters, the "zdepth min" defaults at 0'0.0" which means at the camera. Adjust the "zdepth max" to the scene depth measurement we took earlier, 110'. This will be the farthest distance your zdepth will record.
6. Now just render as usual. Once the rendering is complete, two Render Frame Windows will show up. One is your rendering, and the other is a black and white Zdepth pass. Make sure both have been saved and open them in Photoshop.
1. The first thing you need to do once you have your Rendered Image and your Zdepth pass opened, is to add a mask to your Rendered Image. To do this, Right Click on the Background Layer, and select “Duplicate Layer.” Name this layer “Depth of Field.”
2. Select the Add Layer Mask button (below outlined in red).
3. In your ZDepth Image, Select All (ctrl+A), and then Copy (ctrl+C).
4. Back in your Rendered Image select the Channels tab next to the Layers tab. Then select the Depth of Field Mask and make it visible. Once selected Paste the ZDepth Image (ctrl+V). This will make your image look like it has a red screen over it.
5. Go back to the Layers tab and select your Depth of Field Layer Thumbnail (below outlined in red). This will change your image back to its original coloration.
6. Now in the Menu bar select Filter, Blur, and then Lens Blur.
7. In the Lens Blur dialogue, the two main setting that need adjusted are Blur Focal Distance and Radius. A Blur Focal Distance setting of 0 will make the farthest distance(110') be in focus and a setting of 255 will make closest distance in focus (0'0.0"). The Radius determines the amount of blur (0 = not blurry). Play with the settings to get the result you want. Then select OK.
8. Now that you have your Lens Blur Effect applied to your image, you will notice that it doesn't look like the pretty Lens Blur preview. That is because the Depth of Field layer still has its mask applied and is treating part of the Depth of Field layer as semi-transparent. To fix this just delete your layer mask.
Now you have an image with Depth of Field that didn't take hours to render.