Marc Loftus
June 16, 2009


Modo is geared toward TV, film, games and advertising work. And while it’s not considered a tool for creating character animation, don’t tell that to its user base, who often push its capabilities beyond what Luxology had intended.

Modo 401 has a refined workflow for stereoscopic work. The tool can automatically generate left and right image pairs. The left eye image is rendered first and Modo then uses that information to accelerate the rendering of right image, saving overall rendering times by 30 or 40 percent.

Fur rendering has been improved to include soft fur, coarse fur, whiskers, stubble, eyebrows, brushes and bristles. The same elements used to create hair can be used to create grass, tree and snow effects.

A new clear-coat shader helps in creating the lacquer or top coat surface common to automobiles. And an extensive volumetric lighting engine has also been added for those working on architectural renderings. New replicator technology facilitates creating massively dense CAD data.

On the animation side, a robust framework now exists for creating mechanical animations, such as engines. And workflow has been improved by allowing animators to easily re-use assets and pre-sets. In fact, Luxology has set up a section on its Website ( featuring 1,500 different presets, created by top Modo artists. All of the presets – which include items, profiles, images, meshes, materials and assemblies - are editable for flexibility. An online sharing system has also been set up for artists that want to share presets they’ve created with the rest of the Modo community.