Interactive Course with weekly Zoom Sessions and Individual Critiques on your Assignments

Recordings of both Zoom and Critique sessions uploaded to Google drive for students



Begin Learning Now

Work at your own pace


Mirror a real work setting

  • Texturing with Substance Painter

    Learn a Physically Based Rendering workflow in a color managed environment.

  • Basic Character Lighting

    We will create and learn the subtle nature Character Lighting in Maya using Arnold renderer.

  • Basic Environment Lighting

    Light environments to convey spatial clarity and mood

  • Integrating CG into Photography

    Finally we will combine all of our new stills and integrate CG into a Photographic plate.

Course curriculum

    1. Overview of the Portal

    1. Introduction

    2. Inspiration

    3. Reference

    4. Assignment#1 - Reference Image Analysis

    5. Real World Light

    6. Real World Light and Material Interaction 1

    7. Intro to Maya Hypershade Editor

    8. Maya Hypershade Materials

    9. Physically Based Rendering

    10. Roll Your Own Fresnel

    11. Assignment #2 - Roll Your Own Fresnel

    12. Real World Light and Material Interaction 2

    1. Maya Layout Adjustments and Arnold Render View

    2. aiStandardSurface Walkthrough Part 1

    3. aiStandardSurface Walkthrough Part 2

    4. aiStandardSurface Walkthrough Part 3

    5. aiStandardSurface Walkthrough Part 4

    6. aiStandardSurface Walkthrough Part 5

    7. Chess Set Project Introduction

    8. Copper Chess Piece Walkthrough Part 1

    9. Copper Chess Piece Walkthrough Part 2

    10. Copper Chess Piece Walkthrough Part 3

    11. Copper Chess Piece Walkthrough Part 4

    12. Copper Chess Piece Walkthrough Part 5

    13. Silver Chess Piece Walkthrough

    14. Assignment #3 - Copper and Silver Chess Pieces

    1. Texturing the Chess Board

    2. Substance Painter Interface Overview

    3. Chess Board 01: Export Models from Maya

    4. Chess Board 02: Start Substance Painter Project

    5. Chess Board 03: Bake Mesh Maps in Substance Painter

    6. Chess Board 04: Gathering Materials

    7. Chess Board 05: Import Materials into Substance Painter

    8. Chess Board 06: Shiny Wooden Box

    9. Chess Board 07: Black Marble Border

    10. Chess Board 08: Black Marble Checkers

    11. Chess Board: Substance Painter Anchor Points

    12. Chess Board 09: White Marble Checkers

    13. Chess Board: Substance Painter Paths

    14. Chess Board 10: Gold Lines Using Paths

    15. Chess Board 11: Gold Lines Material

    16. Chess Board 12: Dust

    17. Chess Board: Substance Painter/Quixel Megascans Bridge

    18. Chess Board 13: Table

    19. Chess Board 14: Exporting Textures from Substance Painter

    20. Chess Board 15: Importing Textures into Arnold

    21. Chess Board 16: Final Render

    22. Assignment #4 - Chess Set Render

    1. Intro to Lighting

    2. Light Mechanics Part 1

    3. Light Mechanics Part 2

    4. Maya Workspace Setup

    5. Light Types in Arnold for Maya Part 1

    6. Light Types in Arnold for Maya Part 2

    7. Character Lighting Setups Part 1

    8. Character Lighting Setups Part 2

    9. Assignment #5 - Character Lighting Setups

    10. Character Model Setup

    11. "Joker" Lighting Exercise Part 1

    12. "Joker" Lighting Exercise Part 2

    13. "Joker" Lighting Exercise Part 3

    14. "Joker" Lighting Exercise Part 4

    15. Assignment #6 - "Joker" Lighting Exercise

    1. Environment Lighting

    2. Color Management

    3. AOVs

    4. Attic Lighting Breakdown Part 1

    5. Attic Lighting Breakdown Part 2

    6. Attic Nuke Compositing Part 1

    7. Attic Nuke Compositing Part 2

    8. Attic Nuke Compositing Part 3

    9. Attic Nuke Compositing Part 4

    10. Attic Nuke Compositing Part 5

    11. Assignment #7 - Attic Lighting Exercise

About this course

Meet Brian


Brian LaFrance has been creating CG imagery for over 30 years in games, animation and live action visual effects. Currently working for Industrial Light and Magic, he has also worked for Atari, Blizzard, Disney, DreamWorks and others on projects including  Star Wars, Wakanda Forever, Big Hero 6, Zootopia, Trolls2, Puss In Boots 2, Destiny2 and many others. Starting his career focused on look development and lighting, he is now a generalist focusing on environment creation. Check out Brian's work:

Brian LaFrance

3d Generalist

Use Industry Standard Software:

Maya, Nuke, Substance Painter and Substance Designer

  • Learn, Build, and Create

    Following the lessons in the courses, you will learn the fundamentals of being 3d Generalist/Environment artist

  • Interactive

    If you choose Zoom classes, you will interact directly with your Instructor and receive feedback on your work and recorded critiques. ZOOM Sessions Monday at 8pm PST

  • Community

    All courses give you access to our Community Dashboard. Here you can post, ask questions, and interact with all the members of Matte Mentors and Instructors

In this Course

We will go over the technical and creative skills to light and texture with a critical eye

  • Students will learn the fundamentals of Texturing/Lighting

  • Build the necessary foundation in training your eye to evaluate your work

  • These lessons will add to your skillset in any CG workflow