woodstock - cool

Rebuilding Woodstock – Reflections and the Finished Product!

This is the final blog in a series documenting John Chambers’ and my modelling of Woodstock House, as part of our Modelling Humanities Data Module. Please go to John’s blog here to see more.

Finishing the Project

After what seems like a lot of trial and error, we are finally finished with rebuilding Woodstock. The project itself took a long time, both in terms of trying to create the model itself, but also the sheer amount of knowledge, experience, and practice required when building a model in 3DS Max. As I explained in my previous post, hindsight is a great thing once you learn how to model a few things in 3DS Max. Taking the time to watch relevant material to try to solve a problem is essential to the process, and if you have enough time to do so and effectively practice before creating anything, I would encourage anyone to do so.

If I were to do this project again, I would definitely divide my time into not just practicing and trying to achieve certain construction goals. Throughout the project, we had been using one desktop as our ‘building’ computer and another as our ‘practicing’ computer, which was a good idea as it gave us both equal chances to develop our skills and be creative at any one time. However, a more focused approach would have been optimal in terms of time division, as well as seeing what we knew how to build versus what we wanted to build.

Another big factor we had to take into consideration at the end of the project was the amount of power our graphics card could supply. The model appeared to be very intensive on the computer’s graphics card, to the point where towards the end of the project we were experiencing crashes every two to three minutes when rendering. We realised that this was due to the large amount of power required when processing the textures on the trees, grass, and Ivy in particular. When all of the layers in the model were unfrozen and not hidden by the end of the project, the entire software slowed down considerably.  Perhaps with a more sophisticated set-up this would have been fine, however it demonstrated the power that is required in making models that emphasise photo-realistic lighting and materials.

Overall I found the project to be surprisingly enjoyable in the end; what seemed like a colossal task several weeks ago ended up actually to be rather fun. 3DS Max has a vast appetite in terms of your time, but if you are willing to feed it the rewards are obvious. You can see images of the house below, I will upload a Sketchfab model in the coming week.

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MA Digital Humanities student in An Foras Feasa, Maynooth University. BA Music from Maynooth University.

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