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Posted: 18 September 2012 09:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]
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Pixel and shadow samples:


The first or left render is the same scene as previous (two diffuse distants + 1 spec, blue/orange spots, 1 spec point) with the pixel samples and shadow samples at 8.  This took just under 3 minutes.  The second render is with the samples turned up to 32.  On the aforementioned 6-core it took around 4 and a half minutes.  In both of these the raytrace depth was 8 and the shading rate was 0.1.


I admit, the difference is much subtler than I expected - all I can really see at this resolution is that the shadow is a little sharper on its edges.  Given this I would probably try 12 or 16 in future rather than 32 unless the render is really huge and detailed.

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Posted: 19 September 2012 12:35 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]
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I think that pixel samples at 32 is a bit too high. I usuallu get good results with 6 at shading rate 1
The only case I felt I needed pixel samples at more than 8 is with a scene with a reflective material. I may post examples later

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Posted: 19 September 2012 10:58 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]
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SickleYield - 18 September 2012 09:01 PM

The first or left render is the same scene as previous (two diffuse distants + 1 spec, blue/orange spots, 1 spec point) with the pixel samples and shadow samples at 8.  This took just under 3 minutes.  The second render is with the samples turned up to 32.  On the aforementioned 6-core it took around 4 and a half minutes.  In both of these the raytrace depth was 8 and the shading rate was 0.1.

I admit, the difference is much subtler than I expected - all I can really see at this resolution is that the shadow is a little sharper on its edges.

Thank you for the examples! It’s good to know I am not missing that much because of my hardware limitations.

SickleYield - 18 September 2012 09:01 PM

Given this I would probably try 12 or 16 in future rather than 32 unless the render is really huge and detailed.

Oh, you see, you’re right about detail needing more pixel samples - especially when it’s detail like procedural shaders, microdisplacement, or fine fiber hair - but, as I said earlier, the larger your relative render size is, the bigger your shading rate can be.

Here’s a page I just found that tells everything in concise words which is much better than whatever ramblings my flu-ridden mind can now produce LOL Please take a look:

http://www.k-3d.org/wiki/RenderMan_Controls


To sum it up, I think the 3Delight docs recommend a shading rate of 1 and pixel samples of 6 because the primary customer base renders GIANT sizes, like ads for printing. With my settings (6 to 8 pixel samples, 0.4 shading rate), I prefer rendering with the smallest dimension over 1000 px. Going smaller makes things look less pretty indeed =) And, I don’t know for sure, but I got a feeling that upping render size on my system means less rendering time than lowering shading rate.

SickleYield - 18 September 2012 09:01 PM

My view is that there is no such thing as an “insane” or “too high” setting when it comes to 3d rendering.  There is only what your system can or cannot handle in a reasonable amount of time.

Well I am an efficiency maniac (I’m a mechanical engineer by trade), so I define “insane” as simply “taking up too much resources when a reasonable approximation can produce results with virtually undetectable difference in a fraction of time”. =) This is why I don’t care for raytraced shadows - a performance hog that rarely if ever bests a well-setup DSM. The advantage of raytraced shadows, though, is that they are generally not that tricky to set up - but on the other hand, they need a lot of raytrace bounces if there are many overlaying transparencies in your scenes, like leaves. 

SickleYield - 18 September 2012 09:01 PM

I almost never do a promo render that takes more than three hours, and if I do it’s because I am absolutely sure it will reward that level of time investment - otherwise it interferes too much with my need to work on a production schedule.

Three hour render on a six core machine… (man, I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a six core machine, it’s such advanced tech to me LOL we run numerical simulations on quadcores in our uni department) I have a gut feeling there are ways to bring this render time down without losing quality (probably lowering pixel samples should be enough, and maybe max raytrace depth). I would only imagine a detailed landscape with grass, canopy shadows and reflecting&refracting; water absolutely requiring this sort of time. Or maybe a SSS+GI combo.

Takeo.Kensei - 18 September 2012 09:01 PM

The only case I felt I needed pixel samples at more than 8 is with a scene with a reflective material. I may post examples later

Hi Takeo! *waves* Reflective surfaces needing more pixel samples? This is interesting, please post examples when you have time!

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Posted: 19 September 2012 12:29 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]
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Mustakettu85 - 19 September 2012 10:58 AM
SickleYield - 18 September 2012 09:01 PM

I almost never do a promo render that takes more than three hours, and if I do it’s because I am absolutely sure it will reward that level of time investment - otherwise it interferes too much with my need to work on a production schedule.

Three hour render on a six core machine… (man, I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a six core machine, it’s such advanced tech to me LOL we run numerical simulations on quadcores in our uni department) I have a gut feeling there are ways to bring this render time down without losing quality (probably lowering pixel samples should be enough, and maybe max raytrace depth). I would only imagine a detailed landscape with grass, canopy shadows and reflecting&refracting; water absolutely requiring this sort of time. Or maybe a SSS+GI combo.

Two to three characters with multilayered hair with quality transmaps, disp-shadered clothing, and skin with HSS shaders (which do use subsurface scattering usually, yes) in a good lighting setup with Uberenvironment will take that long and more even without leaves or water.  I use a fast-rendering hair like the Spartacos short or 3Dream/Mairy’s free Boy Hair, or an African male who can be bald, as much as I can when I know I’ll have to do a scene with three people.  I never render a scene with three long-haired women in the foreground as a promo. :D And I use just one character per shot as much as I can.

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Posted: 20 September 2012 11:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]
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Mustakettu85 - 19 September 2012 10:58 AM

Hi Takeo! *waves* Reflective surfaces needing more pixel samples? This is interesting, please post examples when you have time!

Hi Muskat smile Thanks for the watch in DA

I showed you the thing back then. I had problems with surfaces inter reflecting and had a big grey spot

Upping pixel samples and max raytrace helped

 

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Posted: 20 September 2012 11:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]
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For lightning a three light setup is good. UE is not the only way to get better renders. Working on the materials and maps can help

Here is one of my first renders with DS. Had a 5 light setup, no UE and reworked all the textures and settings of TerryCMG’s WW costume

Used deep shadow map. I also think that Muskat is right about render size. You will get more details at shading rate 1 if you render bigger

 

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Posted: 20 September 2012 11:44 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]
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Last example. 5 light setup with UE and ditch river HDR and custom SSS shader and default Genesis texture Lana. Shading rate was at 1 and in fact all settings were at DS default, but for render size which was at 1920x1080

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Posted: 21 September 2012 09:50 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 23 ]
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SickleYield - 19 September 2012 12:29 PM

Two to three characters with multilayered hair with quality transmaps, disp-shadered clothing, and skin with HSS shaders (which do use subsurface scattering usually, yes) in a good lighting setup with Uberenvironment will take that long and more even without leaves or water.  I use a fast-rendering hair like the Spartacos short or 3Dream/Mairy’s free Boy Hair, or an African male who can be bald, as much as I can when I know I’ll have to do a scene with three people.  I never render a scene with three long-haired women in the foreground as a promo. :D And I use just one character per shot as much as I can.

Ah true, transmapped hair. You’re right, this is a yet another render hog. Even in my case of obsessive optimisation, transmapped surfaces take up the bulk of the render time, even though I do not use raytraced shadows and exclude hair surfaces from occlusion religiously.
For example, this one little test render took maybe ten minutes on my duocore each time while I was fiddling with the displacement on clothing and UE settings (I made them absurdly HQ because I was obsessed with the detail of the displacement and the skin). But when I added the hair, render times jumped up to an hour - I shudder to think what could result from leaving the AO on hair and using raytraced shadows. http://mustakettu85.deviantart.com/art/Rogue-a-la-Mode-257293590


\\ There are interesting ideas now using Geometry shell for fantom AO on hair; I have yet to look into this extensively to determine if it’s worth it in the end, for, to my eye, AO on flat planes that hair models consist of these days is somewhat redundant given that all the inter-fiber AO is already accounted for by the texture artist \\


I hope anyway that if you try using lower pixel samples and raytrace bounce, you will see smaller render times without any noticeable quality decrease and hence more creative freedom! =)

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Posted: 21 September 2012 09:54 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 24 ]
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Takeo.Kensei - 20 September 2012 11:30 PM
Mustakettu85 - 19 September 2012 10:58 AM

Hi Takeo! *waves* Reflective surfaces needing more pixel samples? This is interesting, please post examples when you have time!

Hi Muskat smile Thanks for the watch in DA

I showed you the thing back then. I had problems with surfaces inter reflecting and had a big grey spot

Upping pixel samples and max raytrace helped

 

You’re welcome Takeo!
Oh, this one, right! Pity the pictures are dead on the old forum now, otherwise I would have remembered better…

And I often think of that custom SSS of yours since it’s so cool, I think these are new Lana renders in your latest post here, aren’ they? I don’t remember them from the old thread.

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Posted: 21 September 2012 10:57 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 25 ]
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Mustakettu85 - 21 September 2012 09:50 AM
SickleYield - 19 September 2012 12:29 PM

Two to three characters with multilayered hair with quality transmaps, disp-shadered clothing, and skin with HSS shaders (which do use subsurface scattering usually, yes) in a good lighting setup with Uberenvironment will take that long and more even without leaves or water.  I use a fast-rendering hair like the Spartacos short or 3Dream/Mairy’s free Boy Hair, or an African male who can be bald, as much as I can when I know I’ll have to do a scene with three people.  I never render a scene with three long-haired women in the foreground as a promo. :D And I use just one character per shot as much as I can.

Ah true, transmapped hair. You’re right, this is a yet another render hog. Even in my case of obsessive optimisation, transmapped surfaces take up the bulk of the render time, even though I do not use raytraced shadows and exclude hair surfaces from occlusion religiously.
For example, this one little test render took maybe ten minutes on my duocore each time while I was fiddling with the displacement on clothing and UE settings (I made them absurdly HQ because I was obsessed with the detail of the displacement and the skin). But when I added the hair, render times jumped up to an hour - I shudder to think what could result from leaving the AO on hair and using raytraced shadows. http://mustakettu85.deviantart.com/art/Rogue-a-la-Mode-257293590


\\ There are interesting ideas now using Geometry shell for fantom AO on hair; I have yet to look into this extensively to determine if it’s worth it in the end, for, to my eye, AO on flat planes that hair models consist of these days is somewhat redundant given that all the inter-fiber AO is already accounted for by the texture artist \\


I hope anyway that if you try using lower pixel samples and raytrace bounce, you will see smaller render times without any noticeable quality decrease and hence more creative freedom! =)


I don’t think hair AO is worth bothering with for that exact reason, usually.  That’s a neat render.  I like the attention to the pockmarks and details on his skin.


There’s another thing I forgot that adds massive render time - Depth of Field!  This promo render for an upcoming product took three hours AT the lower pixel sampling at a resolution of 800x1600: http://sickleyield.deviantart.com/#/d5fcn02


You can fake or add DOF in postwork, but I don’t like to do that.  Artistic renders are one thing - I adore Mavrosh and K-raven on Deviantart, and they both do tons of post - but the purpose of promotional rendering for a product is to show what the customer can do with just DAZ Studio.  I only do postwork for gradient backdrops or small correction of an area that isn’t the outfit I’m selling (I might clone out a clip of a plant with another plant off to one side instead of rerender the whole thing, for instance, but clipping of clothes vs. body means a redo).


More often if I just can’t afford the render time I’ll render to .png and postwork in a gradient or simple pattern backdrop, since that negates the need for DOF.  This way it’s obvious that’s what has been done to both me and the customer and is not a “trick” to make a product look better than it is.

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Posted: 21 September 2012 11:50 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 26 ]
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Takeo.Kensei - 20 September 2012 11:44 PM

Last example. 5 light setup with UE and ditch river HDR and custom SSS shader and default Genesis texture Lana. Shading rate was at 1 and in fact all settings were at DS default, but for render size which was at 1920x1080

This is impressive, when you say ‘custom SSS shader is this a shader you built your self or settings for one availble.

Thank you

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Posted: 21 September 2012 12:26 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 27 ]
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Mustakettu85 - 21 September 2012 09:54 AM

You’re welcome Takeo!
Oh, this one, right! Pity the pictures are dead on the old forum now, otherwise I would have remembered better…

There is a workaround here to get pictures in the forum archives. Use Foxreplace it works great

Mustakettu85 - 21 September 2012 09:54 AM

And I often think of that custom SSS of yours since it’s so cool, I think these are new Lana renders in your latest post here, aren’ they? I don’t remember them from the old thread.

Thanks smile. The Lana renders are rather old. I did them at least 6 month ago but I never posted them. I didn’t work a lot on the skin shader since then.

SickleYield - 21 September 2012 10:57 AM

I don’t think hair AO is worth bothering with for that exact reason, usually.  That’s a neat render.  I like the attention to the pockmarks and details on his skin.

Nice one Muskat. I didn’t see this one when I browsed your gallery. I tried the Fantom trick and it seems to speed up rendering in some case. I’m still unsure about AO on hairs. There are some case where I think that it mixes well with the render

SickleYield - 21 September 2012 10:57 AM

There’s another thing I forgot that adds massive render time - Depth of Field!

Agree with that but it’s worth using as renders are better.

scorpio64dragon - 21 September 2012 11:50 AM

This is impressive, when you say ‘custom SSS shader is this a shader you built your self or settings for one availble.

Thank you

Thanks. It’s a custom built shader by myself. I only posted the good ones. You haven’t seen the buggy ones wink

 

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Posted: 21 September 2012 01:55 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 28 ]
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Thanks for the reply. Iespecially like what the shaders does to the area around the ears.

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Posted: 23 September 2012 04:47 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 29 ]
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RKane_1 - 16 September 2012 10:14 PM

Have I mentioned how much you rock, lately?

smile

You is teh awesomesauce!

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Thanks, SY!

Agreed! cheese This looks very useful. Thanks for all the freebies and tutorials you’ve done, SickleYield!

Heads up, everyone: SickleYield’s stuff is currently on sale at Renderosity, 30% off! I’m going to grab the SickleRobe and there are several others I’m considering. smile

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Posted: 23 September 2012 02:00 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 30 ]
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SickleYield - 21 September 2012 10:57 AM

I don’t think hair AO is worth bothering with for that exact reason, usually.  That’s a neat render.  I like the attention to the pockmarks and details on his skin.

Thank you! =) These M3 high-res maps are among my all-time favourite textures, I loved making my DS mats for them to bring out their lovely details!

SickleYield - 21 September 2012 10:57 AM

There’s another thing I forgot that adds massive render time - Depth of Field!  This promo render for an upcoming product took three hours AT the lower pixel sampling at a resolution of 800x1600: http://sickleyield.deviantart.com/#/d5fcn02
You can fake or add DOF in postwork, but I don’t like to do that.

I don’t know why, but the scripted dA links don’t work for me - I guess it’s this render you were referring to? http://sickleyield.deviantart.com/art/SickleFuse-Unearthly-Realms-Necromancer-328114802

As for me, I too use DOF almost all the time (I am too lazy to fake it in postwork - that would require rendering z-depth maps an’ stuff), but at my settings, the increase in render time isn’t that high. I even neglect the common recommendation to up pixel samples to 12 for DOF because my DOF is generally very subtle, and even when it’s not, I like some grain in it. http://mustakettu85.deviantart.com/art/For-a-moment-251475608

It would seem that the more HQ the settings are, the quicker the time jumps up with DOF added (especially with raytraced shadows).

SickleYield - 21 September 2012 10:57 AM

I might clone out a clip of a plant with another plant off to one side instead of rerender the whole thing, for instance, but clipping of clothes vs. body means a redo
...
More often if I just can’t afford the render time I’ll render to .png and postwork in a gradient or simple pattern backdrop, since that negates the need for DOF.  This way it’s obvious that’s what has been done to both me and the customer and is not a “trick” to make a product look better than it is.


This is a very honest approach to promos, I think it’s great! As a customer, I’m a bit wary of “over(t)ly artistic” promos. My favourite type of promo for clothing, I think, is the one that shows the model with no textures. Seeing material zones used to be important, too, but now that it’s easy as peanuts to add new matzones in DS4, I’m not that obsessive.

SickleYield - 21 September 2012 10:57 AM

I adore Mavrosh and K-raven on Deviantart, and they both do tons of post

True! I even tend to think of Mavrosh as more of a digital painter. They are both awesome, and in a sense it’s weird that I enjoy their work so much - because, to tell the truth, most art with such a strong sensual/erotic component bores me to tears. I guess this is one of those rare occurrences where actual talent overwhelms the subject matter.

I’d also like to say “thank you” to you for making your Rendo sale last well into October =) Hope you’re having a nice vacation!

Takeo.Kensei - 21 September 2012 12:26 PM

There is a workaround here to get pictures in the forum archives. Use Foxreplace it works great

Oh, that’s cool, thanks! Pity, though, that all those solutions are for Firefox not Opera.

Takeo.Kensei - 21 September 2012 12:26 PM

Nice one Muskat. I didn’t see this one when I browsed your gallery. I tried the Fantom trick and it seems to speed up rendering in some case. I’m still unsure about AO on hairs. There are some case where I think that it mixes well with the render

Thank you! It’s because I’ve categorized it out of the featured folder into one of the themed ones (it is under “Humans”)

So, are you thinking of hairstyles like the Amarseda one, where the surfaces aren’t flat but curved, emulating flowing wavy hair?

 

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