MAXON NAB: Build a complex immune cell using X-Particles and Cinema 4D


I’ve returned from the wonderland that is Las Vegas and back into the grind.
It was great getting to meet and hang with so many great artists as well as the Maxon US gang.

I am now very happy to be able to share my presentation at NAB this past April.
A special thanks to Maxon USA and Cineversity for making this and all of the other fantastic artist presentations available to the public.
In this presentation, I walk you through how to use the fantastic plugin X-Particles 3 to build a complex immune cell, specifically a B-Lymphocyte or B-cell.

I prepared a short clip of the finished piece (below) that I break down in the tutorial:


Be sure to also check out Nucleus Medical Media artists Heidi Sinzel and Elizabeth MacDonald’s great presentation as well.

And many more inspiring demos from a number of artists can be found here from
Michael Rosen, Alan Demafiles (Demafleez), Steven Messing, Craig Whitaker, Mike Sentfen (The Monkey), Colin Sebastyen (MoveCraft)

7 thoughts on “MAXON NAB: Build a complex immune cell using X-Particles and Cinema 4D

  • Great tutorial – Thanks for sharing. I always admired those gorgeous looking textures on all your cellular animations and always wondered how to accomplish it. This is a great tut to get me started.

  • Thanks for your amazing tutorial! Just watched it on the NAB website. Are you able to finish it off and go through the final touches, looks like you ran out of time to finish it off to how it looks in your finished piece?

  • Thanks guys for the kind words. Glad you enjoyed it. @Richard–yes I did run out of time. The cell didn’t quite end up looking as I’d hoped. I’ll try to get something together very soon and post on the blog. Thanks again!

  • Hi Joel, thank you for this very useful tutorial ! I am a 3d generalist trying to switch to medical animation and I would have a question about the shader you use for the macrophage. Especially on the close up, you have an really good looking sss shader with a glossy coat. The sss shader stays smooth while the coat has this nice displace/bump. I’ve been trying to recreate this effect but the issue is when I add a bump it also goes on the sss and looks dirty. I was wondering about what technique you used. Did you use a single shader on one geometry or do you have a different geometry for the coat ? The closest I was able to get is in arnold with the Alsurface shader which as 2 layers of specular. (It worked with assigning a bump map to the top specular only). But you are using octane right ? Any tips on how to do that in octane ? Many thanks, Hadrien.

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