Inspiration to Ignition

DDGT 241 2016's Final Project

Production Notes

Inspiration to Ignition is the final project that is completed during the fourth semester of the Digtial Design Graphics Technology program at Napa Valley College. Using a combination of Autodesk and Adobe apps, we created a CGI-rendered video that centers around the maiden flight of the World's first F4U Corsair jet airplane.

In the video, the pilot falls asleep shortly before the plane is scheduled to take off. In his dream, a model version of the plane is being printed in the 3D printer. As soon as it finishes, the model flies around the office, eventually crashing into the trash can. As it crashes, the alarm on the pilot's phone rings, revealing a number of text messages warning that he is late for the launch. The pilot then runs out into the hangar, where he boards the plane and taxis out. The credits then roll, where a personal object created by the credited student is presented. This page is dedicated to explaining the process of creating this video.

Hangar and Office

The Interior of the office and hanager were created using Autodesk Revit. Revit uses Building Information Modeling (BIM) for Architects and Structural Engineers. In the DDGT 230 class students learn Autodesk Revit Architecture. After the scene was completed, it was imported into 3ds Max where lights, cameras, and other objects were placed within the scene.

Office and hangar objects

The various objects you see, such as the things on the shelf, and "personal objects" that are placed around the hangar are first modeled from 2D sketches into 3D using Autodesk Inventor. Inventor is an industry standard program for 3D mechanical CAD designs. Students learn in-depth about Inventor in DDGT 121, the second semester of the program.

Afterwards, they are imported into Autodesk 3ds Max and placed within the scene that was imported from Revit. Similar to Inventor, 3ds Max is a 3D design program from Autodesk--a program students learn in DDGT 240, the third semester of DDGT. But what makes it different is how it specializes in CGI animation, special photometric lighting effects, reflections and realistic looking materials--some created in Adobe Photoshop, the industry standard in photo editing and 2D visual design. Some objects such as what is displayed on the computer and phone screens were placed using Adobe After Effects, a video compositing program, specializing in special effects.


Once the parts are all placed in their proper locations we use the animation features of 3ds Max to create a path for the model plane to follow once it leaves the printer. We also use keyframing techniques to determine where the camera goes in all scenes.

Video editing

Once the modeling and animation are completed, students go through the lenghty and tedious process of rendering. In 3ds Max, we take the completed work and create a realistic enviroment--frame by frame--as a sequence of targa image files. Once rendering has completed, those frames are stored in folders and imported into Adobe Premiere. Premiere is a non-linear video editing program. We align the sequences of frames and imported audio files in place, apply the After Effects and publish it as a 1080p video to be sent to our video host, where it will be embedded on our website.


This site is based on Leon Bacud's student portfolio website. In DDGT 121, students create a portfolio website using Adobe Dreamweaver.