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An apartment with a city view© Nikos Nikolopoulos
An apartment with a city view© Nikos Nikolopoulos

What to expect from the Total Chaos 2020 Masterclasses

The Total Chaos Masterclasses are a unique opportunity to boost your knowledge with expert advice from seasoned industry pros. Here’s everything you need to know.

What are the Total Chaos Masterclasses?

  • A full day of in-depth tutorials from the CG industry’s leading figures.
  • The Masterclasses run on May 29, 2020, from 10 AM – 5:30 PM, ahead of the 2-day Total Chaos Main Conference that kicks off on May 30.
  • Masterclasses are divided into 3 tracks: Cinematic Worlds, Creative Lighting and Advanced Photorealism.
  • Each track consists of three 2-hour classes with experts from VFX, arch-viz, art, design and more.
  • Access to the Masterclasses is included with Total Chaos Masterclass + Main Conference tickets.
  • The Masterclass + Main Conference ticket allows access to the specified track only.
  • But with a Masterclass Superpass, attendees can switch between tracks throughout the day.
  • All Masterclasses take place at the John Atanasoff building at the Sofia Tech Park in Sofia, Bulgaria.
© Virginlemon

Knowledge is power

It’s a saying as old as the hills — but in today’s CG industry, it’s never been more relevant. Understanding how the latest tools work and how to deploy them is only half of the battle — you also need to know the artistic techniques and clever shortcuts that can help you produce your best work against the tightest of deadlines.

Enter Total Chaos’s Masterclasses. Taking place on May 29, 2020, in Sofia, Bulgaria, this is a lifetime’s worth of learning packed into a single day. The Masterclasses precede the main Total Chaos conference and feature tips and tricks from the event’s top speakers and industry pros. It’s a rare chance to pick up priceless advice in an intimate setting.

Masterclasses have become a huge highlight of the Total Chaos experience. This year, we've assembled a versatile, diverse lineup of instructors who are offering extraordinary insight into their workflows and techniques. No matter if you're a student or a pro, the Masterclasses are bound to give you fresh ideas and new approaches to projects.

Lon Grohs, Head of Creative at Chaos Group

© Sonja Cristoph

Choose your track

The Total Chaos Masterclasses are divided into three tracks that dive deep into popular CG subjects. And when you buy your ticket, you can choose which Masterclass tracks you want to attend. Or, with the special Superpass, you’ll be free to jump between the various tracks throughout the day.

The tracks for the Total Chaos 2020 Masterclasses are:

Masterclass 1: Cinematic Worlds

Want to up your environment game? Join world builders from ILM, DBOX, Ubisoft and more to discover the secrets of everything from high-tech metropolises to unspoiled landscapes. Perfect for environment artists, matte painters and arch-viz artists alike to discover pro tips and tricks for lighting, rendering and efficient scene setups.

Speakers: Falk Boje, Sonja Christoph, Mike Golden

Masterclass 2: Creative Lighting

Realistic or stylized lighting is a fundamental part of creating a good-looking render. For this illuminating Masterclass, we’ve rounded up experts in the field of light to reveal the secrets behind how to create impressive cinematic, portrait and studio lighting setups for projects using V-Ray and Corona.

Speakers: Andre Matos, Nikos Nikolopoulos, Ian Spriggs

Masterclass 3: Advanced Photorealism

Last but not least, the line up of experts in the Advanced Photorealism track will share how to tackle the toughest cookie in arch-viz: True photorealism. Masters of the medium will demonstrate how to optimize your scene for unprecedented levels of realism in Corona and V-Ray, as well as the nuances you can add to make renders look naturalistic.

Speakers: Jakub Cech, Carlotta Cominetti & Tamas Fischer, Ciro Sannino

Meet your instructors

Our awe-inspiring array of nine Masterclass leaders have real-world experience from companies such as Porsche, Industrial Light & Magic, Ubisoft and more. But we haven’t just chosen them because of their knowledge — they’re also friendly, approachable and open to your questions.

We’ll keep updating this page in the run-up to Total Chaos, so watch this space for more speaker news!


Sonja Christoph, 3D Generalist & Matte Painter

Sonja will explore the techniques you can use to create a natural photorealistic environment with 3ds Max and V-Ray Next for 3ds Max. She will cover everything from scattering objects with Forest Pack, creating atmospheric elements with Phoenix FD, and post-production adjustments.

Watch Sonja's video to find out more about her presentation >

Falk Boje, Lead Generalist Artist, ILM

Falk's class will cover production workflows to create natural and urban environments using concept art techniques, photorealistic lighting and shading, and compositing methods. He'll show you how created his personal artworks, from small studies to big projects such as “Unseen Westeros.”

Mike Golden, Founder, Three Marks

Mike's presentation will start with a sketch and work through to a completed image, exploring how composition, lighting, mood, and color can all draw an audience into your world. Working with 3ds Max, KitBash3d assets, Lavina and Photoshop, you’ll discover the secrets of efficient and compelling image-making.

Watch Mike's video to find out more about his presentation >


Nikos Nikolopoulos, Founder, Creative Lighting

This masterclass will use real-world examples to focus on empowering you with the skills and confidence to master your lighting and scene setup in V-Ray and Corona. Nikos will breakdown the science of light and show you why it's important to make illumination and color a driving force behind your image-making process.

Ian Spriggs, Digital Portrait Artist

In Ian's masterclass, he will explain how the Old Masters influence his choices of light, style, composition, pose and color to tell stories and stir emotions. As we enter a new age of portraiture via digital tools, the question of why we are creating character studies has never been more important.

André Matos, 3D Artist, Porsche

A passion for fast cars — and fast graphics cards — propelled André from his native Azores to Frankfurt, where he creates stunning visualizations and motion graphics for luxury sports car company Porsche. Details on his masterclass coming soon!


Carlotta Cominetti & Tamas Fischer, Virginlemon

Join Carlotta and Tamas to see the journey of an arch-viz animation from draft storyboard to final edit via 3ds Max, Corona, tyFlow, After Effects and Premiere. You’ll discover how to save time with automated tasks, the secrets of photorealistic materials and how to make the most of Corona’s interactive LightMix.


Through scanning materials, Jakub has discovered interesting properties that have not been captured before, which he show how to simulate in his presentation. Having refined materials, he will present his thoughts on lighting and how it can affect an image. He will conclude by explaining how inspired lighting fits into his theory of contrasts.


Ciro is the author of the must-have Photography & Rendering with V-Ray book and more recently the published title Chiaroscuro with V-Ray. He believes strongly that digital art should be taught with the same methodology and rigor as other arts, such as music. Details on his masterclass coming soon!

Open your mind

Book your Total Chaos Main Conference + Masterclass tickets now
© Škoda Design

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