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Daz Studio HSS, US and US2 Tutorial planned but want feedback first
Posted: 09 March 2013 02:11 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 31 ]
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Szark - 09 March 2013 02:06 PM

That is what I had in mind doing a series of renders showing what one channel does. I will be removing all mats and using a plain white or mid grey and then use a real strong staturated colour to see the effect.

Ooh good idea.  I’ve got a promo at 54% right now but as soon as it’s done I’ll give that a whack.

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Posted: 09 March 2013 02:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 32 ]
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Yeah cool why not hash some stuff out now before I get it typed up. Great idea.

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Posted: 09 March 2013 02:27 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 33 ]
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Szark - 09 March 2013 01:49 PM

I will give it a try tomorrow that peach brown. Though I couldn’t see the difference in your images. I use IrFanview which has a forward and back function to filp between images and I can’t see any differences at all. I even put my glasses on to make sure.

I flipped between the two images as well and they are identical. I looked at the pics on two different comps just to make sure it wasn’t an effect of the 64bit vs 32 bit and Both Win7 and XP looked the same.

When I really started to take the time and explore the Ubersurface and Ubersurface2 I used an off white primitive sphere and played with Fresnel, Velvet, SSS, Translucency, etc. one by one to see how they reacted on a non textured surface. I soon discovered that a non textured surface acted quite differently than a textured one and that many effects can only be seen in specific lighting instances [at least a believable effect]. It hit me finally that the shader was working correctly just my expectations were way off. You are not going to get good Velvet without proper rim and glancing specular lights but that effect can be greatly overdone. You wont get good SSS with strong front lighting, since they will cancel out any rim lighting. The same can be said for Translucency.

Velvet, Translucency and SSS are subtle effects. SSS in the real world is only noticeable under specific conditional lighting, even though the effect is taking place in all lighting.

Now I am speaking of a photo-realistic effect not stylized effect. You can get a stylized affect in every light situation. The lighting will dictate the surface settings so they will always change.

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Posted: 09 March 2013 02:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 34 ]
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Exactly lighting is key. That last image has rim, bounce and side fill lights and the Key is Area lighting. Uber Envirroment set to Ambient light only (no raytarcing) at 5% set to a blue colour. I have been playing with taking some of the red out of the lights to get a more realistic light set up. But to be honest I am not bothered about the image so much as the info I need to get across.

Plus a lot of these Ray Tracing functions like SSS, Refraction etc needs the render settings adjusting most importantly the Max Ray Trace Depth..too low and you won’t see the effects. That image was rendered with a value of 2 for the Max Raytrace Depth, any lower and it will not work. I tried at 3 but my computer ran out of memory but what I saw before it crashed made me think 2 was high enough to get half pie decent results.

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Posted: 09 March 2013 02:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 35 ]
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Ok.  I won’t worry about it, then.

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Posted: 09 March 2013 02:51 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 36 ]
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SickleYield - 09 March 2013 02:46 PM

Ok.  I won’t worry about it, then.

What why where. Worry about what..help I am confused…........arrrrrrrrrrrrrrr take me away.

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Posted: 09 March 2013 02:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 37 ]
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Szark - 09 March 2013 02:51 PM
SickleYield - 09 March 2013 02:46 PM

Ok.  I won’t worry about it, then.

What why where. Worry about what..help I am confused…........arrrrrrrrrrrrrrr take me away.

About rendering with varicolored velvet textures.  That wouldn’t take that long with my default global light setup (uber plus a distant spec plus one distant rim and one distant shadowcaster).  Setting up more complicated lighting doesn’t seem worth it if it really varies that much by base texture.

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Posted: 09 March 2013 02:58 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 38 ]
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No please do. My computer is struggung to cope with that image above.

I am getting a light rig set up, simple 5 or 7 spots light rig to do all my tests and example images for the tut. Hopfully I can provide a DUF Light preset for it. I jusy used that light set up as an example of what can be done, even though the image isn’t spectacular which is was never meant to be.

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Posted: 09 March 2013 03:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 39 ]
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Ok, image dump below!


The first one is with the HSS shader on but the Velvet setting turned off.  All of the others have it at 100% and various RGB values.  On this gray Genesis texture they certainly do show up.  My next post will use the Genesis Aidan character in the same lighting.


This is the global setup referenced before (Uber + spec distant + shadow distant + no-shadow distant from the other direction)) with the addition of another spotlight for rim effect.

Image Attachments
01HSSDefaultNoVelvet.jpg02HSSVelvetRGB6253109.jpg03HSSVelvetRGB188138109.jpg04HSSVelvetRGB15745188.jpg05HSSVelvetRGB5718848.jpg
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Posted: 09 March 2013 03:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 40 ]
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Yeah great work and great to see the Genesis grey works nicely thank you for helping out with this. I find this is the best way to set up the settings anyway. You can really see what each channel does.


Can I be checky and ask if you wouldn’t mind sending me the DUF light preset as that looks a good set up and just what I need. No problem if you don’t. My old ma always said “you don’t get if you don’t ask but in the same taken don’t get a hissy fit when people say no”. LOL


Yeah I am going to tyr a different velvet colour and fall off and see how that comes up. A special thanks SickleYield you have made my day showing this will work as I intended. My spirits have been lifted as I though this was going to be a lot to handle but I was/am up for it.

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Posted: 09 March 2013 04:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 41 ]
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Sure, here it is for whoever wants it: https://dl.dropbox.com/u/92155353/SYUberGlobalRim.zip


I also often start with this and add spotlights, but not in the present instance.  http://www.daz3d.com/daz-dimension-lights-1


I turned the Uber down to 35% for the following Aidan renders because the highlights were too blown out at 85.  The first one is with no HSS (default skin settings as loaded from library).  The second is with HSS but no Velvet, Ambient or SSS.  The others are with very peach and very blue velvet on, SSS and Ambient still off. 


If you hover over the pics you can see the exact RGB values I used.  I chose Aidan M5 because he is available here in the DAZ store, is often on sale, and lots of people have him.  Of course you don’t want him this peachy or alien-glow blue, but it does show that the setting has an effect with skin on.

Image Attachments
06AidanNoHSS.jpg07AidanHSSNoVelvetSSSOrAmbientUber35.jpg08AidanHSSVelvet1649696.jpg09AidanHSSVelvet9094164.jpg
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Posted: 09 March 2013 06:25 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 42 ]
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WOW sweet thanks, downloaded. Yeah I have that other light set, both 1 and 2 but haven’t had a chance to play with them yet.

I tried the peach/brown velvet and yes it works much better….thanks for that I really appreciate it. I have also been tinkering with the lights I am using in the example scene just to see what happens to the effects. And I think I have most things in place a working well better IMHO.

I have Aiden too. One day I will get to play more.

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Posted: 09 March 2013 06:32 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 43 ]
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Szark - 09 March 2013 06:25 PM

WOW sweet thanks, downloaded. Yeah I have that other light set, both 1 and 2 but haven’t had a chance to play with them yet.

I tried the peach/brown velvet and yes it works much better….thanks for that I really appreciate it. I have also been tinkering with the lights I am using in the example scene just to see what happens to the effects. And I think I have most things in place a working well better IMHO.

I have Aiden too. One day I will get to play more.

No problem, I hope your tutorial goes very well!

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Posted: 09 March 2013 06:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 44 ]
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Cheers I hope so it is going to be a long haul. wink

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Posted: 10 March 2013 05:13 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 45 ]
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Sincerely, guys… smile

I hope the tutorial would go easier on us, common people, than your current discussion. Heh…

While you’re working on it, I will tell you an anecdote about people who might be reading it once the tutorial’s ready.

I’ve downloaded my first DS almost two years ago and started playing. I found it tougher than coding in C, but eventually I managed to assemble my scenes to my liking and even do some poses that could be judged as “natural” if you were my best friend and owed me a hundred bucks (and you did the judging). What I didn’t get at all was lighting and surfaces. I bought UberSurface 2, dozens of lights, but achieved nothing (mostly because their authors probably think it’s a bad omen to document their products). 

I got so frustrated that I actually bought Poser only to try IDL Studio. Well, that was a success in a way. I’ve got my first render that was truly nice - it was well lit and had that fashionable thing, called AO (it’s when you enter a room wearing red sweater and the room walls become red).  But even though my characters looked nice, I soon got tired to render them inside that bubble, they call Infinity Cove. I was longing to see something decent being rendered in an urban setting or a forest.

And then I read somewhere, that, you know, you can try to switch shadows to raytracing. Boy, that was something! smile I’ve tried raytracing before - back when I was trying out DS feature-by-feature. But it didn’t nudge from 0% for quite some time, so I thought I’m doing something wrong and dropped the subject until next time.

Imagine that! I was rendering for a year or so with DSM only and cursing all the time at pixellated ink I was getting at the shadows. I fell in love with raytracing, but not the time it takes to do it. BTW, I found that the best results for bounces are between 2 and 4 (my new default is 4), depending on how close surfaces are to each other. Just don’t do this with jewellery - it’d take a supercomputer to calculate all effects.

Since now it took *only* a few hours to do my renders and my appetite for nice pics was way up, I tried all the things I failed with before. Including UberEnvironment. My previous failure with UE was so deep, I actually avoided any product that mentioned it (even in small print). Now I tried UE with raytraced shadows and found that the same ugliness is achievable during a 4-hour render with RT. A valuable lesson.

And then I read somewhere, that, you know, you can try to crank up UE quality settings. smile So I did. Left my computer rendering overnight and woke up to something I didn’t know was actually achievable. Never looked back after this, but now I sorta long for the times when I could get my render on the same day I finished the scene. smile

I also discovered that all the light sets I blasphemed about are actually very good ones once you clicked on their UE and then went 4XHi immediately. So now maybe I’m still far from realism, but my images do jump at me off the screen, so to say. (Makes one wonder why even new light sets, like the Dimension ones you were discussing still come with lame UE quality settings).

And here we come to the UberSurface 2. It was one of the first products I bought at the DAZ store, but I still have no idea how to get nice things consistently. I experimented a lot with SSS, Fresnel, velvets and whatnot. I got some spectacular results, but never on my own volition - they were (still are) sorta random.

Had no trouble to follow Omnifreaker’s promotional video (now I know how to make V4 into a zombie under a single spotlight) and some other scenarios, but I still lament the inconsistency under the differing lighting conditions. The tool is useless if one could not predict the product of its use.

So I hope, you know, for another piece of “and then I read somewhere”. smile

Do not use an off-gray sphere as an illustration, please. For people like me it doesn’t work as I can’t imagine how the effect will translate to a portrait of a girl, smelling the first flowers of the spring. If you could tell how one thing or another works in most common scene set ups and light conditions (portrait/full height - indoor/outdoor/studio - daylight/dawn/night), that would be awesome.

Even if you don’t, include, please, some rule-of-thumb observations of yours. As you can see, some things might be invaluable to newbies and hobbyists, even though the pros think them being too simple to mention.

Thanks for the undertaking! smile

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