Cinema 4D Ascent

Topic: Fundamental 3D Concepts in Cinema 4D
Skill Level: Intermediate
Type: 12 Week Intensive


About This Course

This course is the next step in a students Cinema 4D learning journey. It's meant for people that have taken C4D Basecamp and are looking for more. Students looking to expand their existing general 3D knowledge should take this course before moving on to more specialized courses, like Advanced Lighting and Cinematography for 3D.



Students taking this course must have a solid understanding of 3D fundamentals like interface navigation, animation, materials, basic lighting, and C4D’s Mograph Module. Knowledge of rendering concepts is a plus and may be useful to students taking this course. It is strongly recommended that students take Cinema 4D Basecamp before this class and have a computer that can run Redshift or Octane. Students do not need to know anything about rigging, modeling, dynamics, or 3rd party rendering to take this course.


Examples of tools & techniques students should know:

  • Basic Modeling
  • Basic Rendering (Multipasses, Compositing Tags)
  • Basic Materials/Texturing
  • Basic Lighting (Area Lights, Shadows, 3 Point Lighting)
  • 3D Animation (Keyframing, F-Curves, Timeline)
  • MoGraph Module (Effectors, Fields, Cloners, Instances)

Prerequisite courses:

  • Cinema 4D Basecamp

Schedule and Course Length

12 Weeks of Cinema 4D Ascent 
Week 1: Orientation Week
Weeks 2 - 3: Lessons and Assignments
Week 4: Focus Week (no new assignments or lessons this week)
Week 5 - 6: Lessons and Assignments
Week 7: Focus Week (no new assignments or lessons this week)
Week 8: Lessons and Assignments
Week 9: Lessons and Assignments
Weeks 10 - 12: Extended Critique


Instructor - EJ Hassenfratz

EJ Hassenfratz is a multi-Emmy award winning Motion Design artist & tutorial artist based out of the Mile High city of Denver, CO. EJ comes from a family of designers. Both his father and uncle were Art Directors for broadcast news stations, where EJ cut his teeth in the industry. Inspired by his wife who teaches special-needs children, he started Eyedesyn, a motion design blog to give back to the community that helped him be successful in the field of Motion Design. He’s been fortunate to work with clients like Google, Microsoft, Apple, Coca-Cola, Nike, ESPN, and the NHL’s Washington Capitals. He currently works as 3D Creative Director for the BEST motion design school on the planet (wink wink).


Course Format

  • All of our courses are taught completely online through prerecorded lesson videos, podcasts, and handouts. Engage from anywhere in the world on your own schedule.
  • Students typically receive homework assignments twice per week. Lessons open at a specific time with a soft deadline of the following day. If you don’t finish, don’t sweat it! We have built in Focus Weeks and Extended Critique weeks at the end of the session where students have extra time to work on any assignments they choose.
  • All student work is critiqued by our highly trained Teaching Assistants. School of Motion TA's are professional motion designers with real life experience in the industry.
  • During the course you will be invited to a private Facebook group that contains all of the Teaching Assistants and students in your session. This is a great tool for connecting, asking or answering questions, sharing thoughts or insights, and winning cool contests!


  • About 20 hours per week
  • 14 Assignments (typically assigned on Mondays and Thursdays with soft deadlines the next day)

Required Hardware & Software

  • Cinema 4D R20 & above (Limited complimentary Maxon educational licenses are available for the duration of the session.)
  • Windows: Windows 10 64-bit on Intel or AMD 64-bit CPU with SSE3 support
  • MacOS: 10.13.6 or higher with 64-bit CPU running on Intel-based Apple Macintosh

To run future releases of Cinema 4D on Mac, you'll need at least macOS 10.13.6 and a supported Mac system with at least macOS GPU Family 1_v3. You can check the Metal compatibility in the MacOS System Information, Graphics tab.
We recommend updating to macOS 10.15. There are a number of enhancements to Metal in the latest macOS which will improve the performance, stability and

interaction with the viewport.

  • Linux:
    CentOS 7, 64bit
    Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, 64bit.

Suggested Hardware & Software

  • Redshift (limited complimentary licenses available)

Redshift isn’t required but highly recommended for the course as some project files utilize aspects of this render

  • Microsoft Windows: 64-bit Windows 7 / 8 / 10
  • Linux: 64-bit distribution with glibc 2.12 or higher
  • MacOS: Sierra (10.12) or High Sierra (10.13).

Mohave (10.14) or later is not currently supported because no CUDA drivers exist for that OS!
8GB of system memory

  • Processor with SSE2 support (Pentium4 or better)
  • NVidia GPU with CUDA compute capability 3.0 or higher and 4GB VRAM


IMPORTANT: REDSHIFT REQUIRES AN NVIDIA GPU TO OPERATE. This means if you are using a Mac you may not be able to run Redshift. Please check the system requirements here: To make sure you can run Redshift and enjoy the full benefits of this course, download the free trial and confirm it can run on your machine.

  • Octane

Octane can be used as an alternative to Redshift as it is taught as bonus lessons in the course. OctaneRender requires the latest CUDA® 10 drivers and a CUDA-enabled NVIDIA® video card with support for compute capability 3.0 or higher . An up-to-date list can be found here. This includes Turing (e.g. RTX™ 20 Series, Titan RTX, GeForce RTX, and GTX 16 Series), Quadro® GPUs, Volta™ GPUs, GTX Titan (high-end), Pascal™ (GTX 10xx), Maxwell (GTX 7xx, GTX8xx, GTX9xx), and Kepler™ (GTX 680, GTX 690).

Texture limits and differing power efficiency ratings also apply depending on the GPU microarchitecture. GPUs from the GeForce® line are usually clocked higher and render faster than the more expensive Quadro® and Tesla GPUs.

  • Arnold

Arnold is not covered in the course, but universal render concepts that do apply to Arnold are taught so students can use Arnold in this course if they desire.Requirements & Platforms

  • Compatible with Cinema 4D R16, R17, and R18 (all products except Lite)
  • Windows 7 and later
  • Mac OS X 10.8 and later
  • No GPU or graphics card requirements
  • CPU with at least SSE 4.1 instructions (2006 and later Intel CPUs, and 2011 and later AMD CPUs)


$997 or 3 payments of $349 ($1047 total) Click here to view the next open enrollment.