New Pyro Feature in Cinema 4D

There is a new design explosive and flaming feature called Pyro in the 3D animation and modelling package Cinema 4D for both Mac and Windows.

I have been using Cinema for years – version 3 as I recall was where I started and it is now at version 25! I was blown away when it was only 3 and was stunned at what it could do – now the sky is literally the limit. If you want to have a look at some of the work done that relates to video and moving making, see the showcase below.

Anyway, if you are interested i the Pyro feature, Maxon has creative webinars on Mondays in December, as the Maxon Training Team shows you how to design explosive and flaming scenes using the brand-new Pyro feature in Cinema 4D.

In the first week it looks at the subject of Combustible techniques:

“When fire meets the fuel, the inferno grows. Ignite your creative sparks with Master trainers Lionel Vicidomini and Dustin Valkema as they take you through Pyro to help you set your designs afire with combustible techniques in Cinema 4D which are then simulated on the GPU or CPU”

Click here to register or find out more. And if you can’t make the time, all sessions are available for streaming after the event.

Maxon / Red Giant Updates

Maxon / Red Giant has a surprise June update with enhancements and optimized workflows for Maxon One. This is not just your average anticipated service pack release.

Maxon One artists can put these great new capabilities to work immediately

Cinema 4D 26.1

  • Volume Builder now features an improved performance thanks to OpenVDB 9 and Booleans can be smoothed based on a radius.
  • Explore and edit existing Capsules directly from the Object Manager with the new “Edit Asset as Group” command.
  • Advanced MoGraph artists can now use any object’s Curvature in Fields, to define the strength of falloffs, colors of clones, or alignment of field forces.
  • Cloth and Rope Simulations can now be influenced by Cinema 4D’s powerful Fields and Field Forces, plus improved performance and collision options.
  • New Capsules including Surface Imperfections, HDRIs and Redshift Materials.
  • The Node UI includes a big upgrade in appearance and interaction, making it easier than ever to create and explore Redshift materials and Node Capsules.
    • Graphs can be organized with dots for better readability.
    • Nodes can be added to an existing network by simply dropping them onto a wire.
    • Many visual upgrades to maximize the node editing workflow.
    • Numerous stability improvements and bug fixes.


  • ‘Bokeh’ depth-of-field in Redshift RT.
  • Blackbody Temperature Controls for volume shading.
  • Improved CPU performance.
  • Round Corners included with CPU.

Red Giant

  • Trapcode Suite 18.1 introduces time-based mapping to complete the Layer Maps feature-set in Particular. Grow Bounds utility now runs natively on M1 machines, and this service pack includes several bug fixes for Particular, Form and 3D Stroke.
  • Magic Bullet 16.1 brings Halation and Diffusion to Cinema 4D – letting artists add film-like bloom and aberration to their renders in Cinema 4D.
  • PluralEyes 4.1.12 adds Vegas Pro 18 and 19 as well as RED Komodo compatibility and restores full compatibility with FCPX.
  • Universe 6.1 provides improved support for AMD graphics cards and a number of bug fixes across various Universe tools.
  • VFX Suite 3.1 improves the performance of Real Lens Flares and includes several bug fixes.

All updates are immediately available to subscribers via Maxon App and the Maxon website.

Demystifying Post-ProductionWonderful World Of Particles

Monday July 4th

Join the Maxon Training Team every Monday in July as we explore a wide variety of tools for creating particles in post-production, featuring Cinema 4D, Redshift, X-Particles, After Effects, Particular, Houdini, and Unreal Engine.

We’ll cover a brief history of particles, explore workflows for different situations, show unconventional creative treatments, and help you transfer your particle knowledge across multiple tools.

For the first week, Master Trainer and particle expert Lionel Vicidomini kicks off the series by looking at the variety of methods you can use natively in Cinema 4D to create and manipulate particles, including standard particles, forcefield, particles on a spline, and clever ways to use the MoGraph tools. You’ll see that Cinema 4D is a very capable tool for creating amazing scenes of dancing particles!

Register Here

Missed a session? Don’t worry, watch all the recordings here.

Using the Loupedeck CT controller. My experience and how I use it.

I first saw information on Loupedeck in 2019 via an advert in a magazine on the shelf in my local newsagent. The particular model in the ad was the original full size Loupedeck+, a console controller apparently much loved by Adobe Lightroom users.

I don’t use Lightroom, and never have, but I was intrigued so asked the company for a review unit.

For years I had been using a Contour ShuttlePro, primarily for video editing as I love the concept of the jog wheel – a throwback to my analogue editing days. I wondered how the Loupedeck+ would fare in the same environment. You can see my initial review here and a revisit here.

Six months later, the company announced the Loupedeck CT, a – to me at least – much more versatile unit than the Loupedeck + due to an open architecture allowing easier 3rd party development of ‘profiles’ for different applications. The Loupedeck CT will switch from profile to profile as you changed between apps in Windows or MacOS.

Using the Loupedeck CT

So how do I use the Loupedeck CT?

It’s necessary to understand the topography of the unit to fully get the picture of what it is, what it can do and then most importantly, how you can effectively use it to speed up whatever workflow you press it into service for, whether it be (as I do) for DaVinci Resolve, Vegas Pro, Premiere Pro, After Effects, Cinema 4D or more than 60 other products, or using profiles you create yourself.

I don’t intend this piece to be a tutorial as such, so here is an excellent video I used to get the hang of creating my own profiles.

The Loupedeck CT is made up of a series of rotary dials, a panel of square touch buttons (showing icons), a panel of square buttons with pre-set labels (A through E and a Function button) , horizontally laid out circular labelled buttons (numbered 1 through 8 via an engraving on the button, and keyboard commands below it such as TAB, CTRL, SHIFT, ALT etc, a second panel of square buttons with labels such as Undo, RETURN and Keyboard layout and finally, a largish jog / shuttle wheel with an LED programmable centre.

Now it’s important to understand that each of these keys / buttons / dials can be programmed with whatever you like. Additionally, there are separate ‘pages’ of commands per button in some case that can be created.

I’ll be using DaVinci Resolve as the example here.

When you first start DaVinci Resolve (assuming of course you have the DaVinci Resolve profile loaded – more on that soon), the touch panels show the 7 options of Resolve that display along the bottom of the program; that is, Media, Cut, Edit, Fusion, Colour, Fairlight and Deliver. Pressing these will take you to the corresponding mode in Resolve just as if you had clicked the option in the program proper.

And now the fun starts and you get to see the functionality and associated advantages of the Loupedeck CT in a working environment. Let’s assume you pressed Edit to take you into full on editing mode, as against using the Cut page. The touch buttons immediately change to reflect a set of commands relevant to this mode. Further, by pressing one of the horizontal number buttons (1-8), you can ‘page’ through all the commands available in the profile that are there for the Edit mode.

The rotary buttons can also be pressed like an on / off switch and then do something totally different.

The DaVinci profile one is so extensive, I think the developers must have mapped every single available command to the Loupedeck CT, including editing, colour correction, all the audio sweetening options and more.

This means that once I understand the logic of the ‘pages’ under each main mode of Resolve, it is much easier to use the labelled icons on the Loupedeck CT to perform an action than use the mouse and the menu systems, or indeed, in many cases, even keyboard shortcuts.

Further of course, if I am switching between programs as often happens, say to get a screen grab for a tutorial or something similar, as long as there is a suitable profile available, the Loupedeck CT will automatically switch to reflect the menu / command structure of that new program.

This speeds up workflow immensely.


Now, of course as I say, all this depends very much on the fact there is a profile for your program. In my case, as I use DaVinci Resolve, Cinema 4D and Adobe Photoshop regularly, I have all these loaded. But I also use Microsoft Outlook and Excel, Google Chrome, After Effects, Illustrator and Vegas Pro and there are also profiles for these and even for Windows itself.







Recently, the Loupedeck company setup a Marketplace area on their website so 3rd party developers have somewhere to display the profiles they have developed. The Marketplace is easily accessible directly from the Loupedeck app that is also used to create profiles manually and setup the Loupedeck CT to your tastes.

It’s early days but already there are profiles for YouTube Music, Spotify, Logic Pro, Blender and many more.  You can access it directly in your browser via

The system I use is from a company called SideshowFX. They specialise in making profile packs for controllers including the Loupedeck CT and I have to say, these are a work of art to say the least! Currently Sideshowfx has profile packs for Adobe products, DaVinci Resolve (this is the one I use), Final Cut Pro, Ableton and more.

You can check them out at


It might not be for everyone, but I have found that since getting the Loupedeck CT, my production has increased quite dramatically. You do have to ‘train’ yourself initially to actually use it, and in the early days, you can spend a little time hunting for commands and functions for an application.

But once you become familiar with the ways to access the common ones, your mental library grows in leaps and bounds.

The Loupedeck CT does cost around $850 in Australia through retailers such as JB HiFi, Leederville Cameras and Camera Warehouse and some may say that is expensive.  I’d agree here.

If you make a living via editing video, creating 3D models in Cinema or Blender, or even crunch numbers in Excel though, then the money is well spent in the return of increased productivity over quite a short period of time.

Compared to European pricing at €499 it is about $100 too high in my opinion. That of course is out of the Loupedeck company’s hands though, but it does mean you might get a better deal buying direct from Loupedeck dependent on exchange rates.

And I can say, for me at least, the company’s support when needed has been exemplary.

If you regularly travel and use a laptop away from your desk, then there is also a carry case available for your Loupedeck CT allowing you to take it with you and continue using it with your laptop. Just make sure the Loupedeck app and relevant profiles are installed.

If you have any questions I can answer on using a Loupedeck CT (but not technical please in terms of setting it up etc), feel free to contact me.




Free Maxon Training

Join The Maxon team every Monday in May, as the Maxon Training Team expand your Redshift knowledge by introducing you to new features and workflows, helping you create beautiful images, and render them faster!

But we need your help for this. In a fun and interactive series, our trainers are going to be sabotaged by you, the community! Each week, you will have the power to challenge the instructor by removing their ability to use a common tool in a normal workflow, forcing them to find creative workarounds to finalize their piece of work.

The idea behind this training series is to see how different artists work under pressure, and help you expand the tools you use in Redshift.

Join in the poll at the start of each week, and see Redshift experts Elly Wade, Dustin Valkema and Lionel Vicidomini share their creative process in real time. Watch them explore workarounds and find alternate innovative solutions, navigating the creative challenges set by you!


Missed a session? Don’t worry, watch all the recordings here.

Flight testing; DJI Air2S drone. Mastershots and Quickshots.

I’ve had the DJI Air2S for a few months now and been very careful about learning its nuances and foibles. I do NOT want a repetition of my Hervey Bay incident with a GoPro Karma, that due to a misleading battery warning system is now at the bottom of Hervey Bay in QLD along with its GoPro 6 and footage of a whale shoot while out with the famed fly fisher and guide, John Haenke.

Consequently, even though I am here in Australind in WA, just north of Bunbury 200km south of Perth where we are almost surrounded by water, forays over the briny have been minimal, and the local dog park has been the go-to place to learn how to fly this wonder of electronics.

So far and so good. No crashes, clipping of trees or other nasties to date. In the process, I have now gained the “feel” of the flying and my only gripe (still) is that with your average smartphone or tablet acting as the viewfinder, the Australian sun just blasts everything into oblivion and you simply have to rely on physically watching the Air2S itself to see where you are and what direction you are heading.

It also makes it difficult to change settings in the DJI Fly app, especially camera settings, but in reality, you can hardly blame DJI for this. I hope to have this fixed sooner rather than later with my design for a sun shade-cum-controller-holder well on the way in Cinema 4D. My major dilemma here is that the Adventurer 3 3D printer I have won’t do the physical size prints I need to do it in one piece, so I am working out how best to fix that via modularising the model before printing.

This will be added to the Lifthor Baldur controller mount I purchased (and I HIGHLY recommend this for the Air2S.

I do have a sunshade for my Samsung A71 phone, but that is out on loan at the moment with my younger brother who is evaluating my DJI Mini 2 with a view to purchase.

But back to the Air2S proper.

In my learning process so far, I now have the hang of the basic controls and the Mastershots Quickshots functions. If you are not aware, Quickshots are pre-programmed actions in the Air2S such as Dronie (the Air2S flies backwards whilst ascending and keeping the camera fixed on the pre-selected subject), Circle (the drone continues to circle a pre-selected object and Rocket (the drone lifts off vertically with the camera pointing straight down). There are another 3 Quickshots – Asteroid, Helix and Boomerang.

Another Mastershot variation is that of Hyperlapse. An example here is Circle whereby the drone flies around a circle with a selected object at the centre and takes photos to create a timelapse video. The interval, duration and speed can all be set by the pilot as well as the direction.

Other Hyperlapse options include Waypoints, Free and Course Lock.

The easiest option and the one I played with yesterday is called Focus Track and its accuracy blew me away.

In simple terms, you take off and let the Air2S hover at around 2 metres. There are 3 possibilities available, Spotlight, Active Track and POI.

In my case I simply drew a square around my image on the screen of my Samsung A71 in the DJI Fly app and instantly the Air2S recognised I was “the subject”.

From that moment onwards, no matter where I went, as long as it could follow it did. Up the street, around the cul-de-sac, back down the street, left into my driveway, walk around in a circle, dodge a tree and then back up the street again and the Air2S faithfully re-oriented itself via direction and height to make sure I was always at the centre of the video being recorded.

It eerily reminded me of the robot in Arthur C Clarke’s “City and The Stars” that followed at the Master’s shoulder no matter what!

Even at different heights, that 4K camera kept its eye on me, and the capability from a technical point of view is very impressive as you can see from the video. Notice in particular the drone’s avoidance of the tree branches as it keeps a safe distance and instantly re-orients itself.

So, this has been a major learning step – and a fun one to boot. My next attempt all being equal, as part of my Fitting Out A Boat For Video Shooting, is to get the Air2S to follow boat at slow speed, and then use the different Mastershot modes to get various types of footage. And of course trust that all goes according to plan, no batteries fail and after the flight, I can safely get the Air2S back on board without incident.

Along with the footage!

My trust is boosted by the fact that in over 2 years of playing with DJI drones (and other products from them such as the OSMO phone gimbal, RONIN dSLR gimbals, not to mention the RoboMaster EP Core robot, I have never had a failure).

And this is not a blatant advertising plug I promise. Simple fact.

Cinema 4D ver 20 Released

Just heard about this and I am reprinting what they sent me. Existing users will be excited! Those looking at a serious 3D package – you cannot do better! I have been using Cinema since its inception and it is brilliant.

Message reads …

Welcome to the deep end: We are very excited to announce the immediate availability of Cinema 4D R20. The new release marks a huge leap in technology, introducing massive new frameworks that add tremendous power to your creative hands:  

  • Fields – Fields offer completely new design possibilities when working with the MoGraph toolset.  
  • Volume-based Modeling – The OpenVDB-based Volume Builder and Volume Mesher in Cinema 4D R20 offer an intuitive, completely procedural workflow.   
  • Node-based Material System – Quickly and comfortably create complex shading effects with more than 150 nodes.  
  • CAD-Import – Thanks to the seamless drag-and-drop import for CAD file formats such as Solidworks, STEP, Catia, JT and IGES, conversion issues are a thing of the past.   
  • ProRender Improvements – The GPU-based ProRender now also offers indispensable features such as Subsurface Scattering, motion blur and multi-passes for production environments.  

Cinema 4D R20 is available at your authorized MAXON reseller  (in Australia that is Sydney based Adimex by the way) or in their online shops. 

What’s new in R20 Product Page
What’s new in R20 Webinar Recording
R20 Round-up at Cineversity
New to Cinema 4D? Download a Free Demo Version