Make Your Most Realistic Renders – Ever!

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Comments

  • kakmankakman Posts: 225
    edited December 1969

    Rashad, regarding your questions about the pink-ness or other colorations in the photo I provided....I'd suggest you bring the photo into PShop or equivalent and do some color picking to see what the actual colors are. I think you'll find that, within a point or two either way, the R, G, and B values for the entire image are pretty much equal, indicating most of the "coloration" is in fact just levels of gray. Yes, your mind and your monitor and your calibration of your system can affect how you perceive those colors, but the color picker never lies.... :)

    Maybe you are not as nasty as your responses indicate. Possibly, part of the problem is your reading comprehension or lack thereof. Or maybe it’s just your haste to reply in a snarky manner. It is abundantly clear that Rashad was referring to the pink-ness in YOUR rendered image and NOT the photo supplied.

    Now, I suppose it is possible that you have a very special filter that somehow changes how your renders appear to you, but on my system there is NO pink-ness on the concrete in the PHOTO you supplied, but there is a definite pink caste on the concrete in the RENDER you posted.

    Regarding the gamma correction setting in Carrara - it has been stated throughout this thread that other adjustments to the shaders and lighting might very well be required when using the gamma correction.

    It appears in your render using the gamma correction, that all you did was use the gamma correction and did not make any other adjustments to your “scene”.

  • JoeMamma2000JoeMamma2000 Posts: 2,615
    edited December 1969

    kakman said:
    Possibly, part of the problem is your reading comprehension or lack thereof. Or maybe it’s just your haste to reply in a snarky manner. It is abundantly clear that Rashad was referring to the pink-ness in YOUR rendered image and NOT the photo supplied.

    Thank you for your understanding and lack of snarkiness.... :)

    No, it wasn't reading comprehension, it was confusion from one of his previous statements regarding possible color shifts or whatever due to camera effects. A thousand apologies for making a mistake. God forbid I should ever make one of those around here. But I gladly accept full responsibility and, again, I do apologize.

    I will look into it, but from my recollection the only color in my render was, as I said, a red/yellow cast from the SSS color I selected. Although i've made a lot of changes to the SSS settings, so it's hard to pin down exactly which one. But yeah, the only colors in the scene are the SSS color and the slightly blue lights.

    It appears in your render using the gamma correction, that all you did was use the gamma correction and did not make any other adjustments to your “scene”.

    Exactly. I took my "reasonably" realistic render, changed only the render Gamma setting, and that's the result you see. My point was that if you start with a reasonably realistic render, with reasonably realistic textures and lighting, and all you do is change the gamma, like I'm sure that many folks here might tend to do without understanding the entire process, you will get something that's probably not the best.

    On the other hand, if you DO have some texture images that require gamma correction, or other elements with non-linear gamma, the setting might help, as long as you know what all of those things are.

  • HeadwaxHeadwax Posts: 8,264
    edited December 1969

    Joe wrote

    Are you serious? Personal attacks questioning my health?

    Joe if you read what I wrote nowhere does it mention your name.

    I assume however, that because of your obvious brilliance in all matters that you are either a) a child genius or b) have somehow managed to attain a certain age where these things are possible.

    I won't bother responding to the rest of your post.

  • HeadwaxHeadwax Posts: 8,264
    edited August 2013

    Joe, on your quest for realism I guess I should point out that you really should consult a painter rather than a photograph.

    A painter will point out interesting things that you apparently have missed in your attempt to mimic 'reality'.

    For example: that shadows have a colour which is usually the colour of the sky - given an outdoor scene.

    So assuming that your photograph of the bollard you are attempting to imitate was taken outside, then the shadow of the bollard should have a blue cast (if the sky were blue). And looking back at the photograph I can see that is the case.

    But unfortunately not so in your render.

    Interestingly if the concrete were really that pink colour in your render then that would push, by complementary contrasts, that blue colour towards green.

    But unfortunately not so in your render.


    The painter would also point out to you that the edges of the shadow very close to the bollard would appear to be darker than the inside of the shadow because of the effects of Mach bands etc - which is of course the opposite of what we learn about penumbras and umbras in our physics lessons. Reflected light from the bollard into the shadow would also effect this.

    But unfortunately this isn't the case in your render.

    If he was involved in the optical field he would also point out that the light source in your render is not properly collimated - like 'real;' sunlight is. Hence the weird effect at the end of the bollard shadow in your render which is what I take an attempt to mimic light diffraction?

    And perhaps he'd point out that in mimicking reality there is an advantage of simulating lost and found edges at the far end of a close object. In some ways this simulates what we see in our stereoscopic vision (depending on the distance between our eyes and the width of the object) and also depth of focus - which wouldn't be a concern in your photograph because of the distance of the bollard from the observer and the bright daylight would constrict the observer's pupil giving a large depth of focus as well. Unless the observer had been , for example, been taking 'drugs' that dilate pupils, or was perhaps sexually aroused by the bollard or concrete (causes pupil dilation), or had some kind of brain injury that caused some kind of long standing traumatic mydriasis etc.

    Lastly he'd probably also point out to you the value of being polite to others when conversing with them.

    So with that in mind, for you Joe I'd highly recommend James Gurney's: Imaginative Realism: How to Paint What Doesn't Exist . It's o nly $18.79 with free shipping and it will teach you much much more than trying to mimic a photograph.

    By the way Gurney's title is a misnomer. The things we 'see' exist in our brains, if no where else.

    We just have to look hard to see them for what they are.

    And that means not looking at photographs, but at the real thing.

    Post edited by Headwax on
  • WendyLuvsCatzWendyLuvsCatz Posts: 27,878
    edited December 1969

    my 2c's
    photographs do not and never have represented what we see.
    the brain takes in lots of information from light focused onto the retina simulating cells to pass a signal along the optic nerve via a chemical reaction to the brain and that information is "seen" differently by each person.
    just look at Monet's Japanese bridge paintings as his eyesight deterioates.
    people with sensory abilities to smell colours etc "see" things differently to a person who is nearsighted and one with nerve damage etc.
    A photo is just chemical changes on a film emulsion or pixels from a charge coupled sensor device reading.

  • JoeMamma2000JoeMamma2000 Posts: 2,615
    edited December 1969

    Wow, thank you Headwax for providing some useful input.

    And while we might disagree about the benefits for aspiring artists to learn about light, shadow, texture, and color in the real world, I'm sure you'd agree that there are things to be learned that can be used in the future as you expand your artistic horizons.

    I just hope that in the future the politeness you request will be also be reflected in YOUR interactions. I think you'd agree that all the personal attacks you seem to enjoy aren't the way you'd expect others to treat you, correct?

    Now maybe we can get some others, including you, to participate in this challenge so we all can learn. That is, assuming we all want to learn...... :)

  • HeadwaxHeadwax Posts: 8,264
    edited December 1969

    Happy Saturday Night Joe :)

  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,055
    edited December 1969

    I don't know - i'm away for a day or two and it seems that all hell breaks loose!

    Hey, Joe, I have passed on what I consider to be useful information for fellow Carrara users. Use it, don't use it, its your decision. Of course total "realism" in a render is a combination of many, many things and the gamma thing is just one - but I believe it is much more difficult to achieve if you don't use it. The only thing that I would say is that for someone who espouses doing lots of reading to understand how things work, you seem to have a fairly closed attitude to helpful advice.

    Oh and I don't believe that "glow" you are seeing is SSS, it is reflected light from the ground. I can't do any renders at the moment as I am bobbing about on the English Channel, but I will try to find time to take up your challenge in the next few days when I am reunited with my rendering platform.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 16,210
    edited December 1969

    head wax said:
    By the way Gurney's title is a misnomer. The things we 'see' exist in our brains, if no where else.
    Aw Man! You gave away the Plot!!!
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 16,210
    edited December 1969

    PhilW said:
    I can't do any renders at the moment as I am bobbing about on the English Channel, but I will try to find time to take up your challenge in the next few days when I am reunited with my rendering platform.
    While the first eight words in that sentence sounds horrifying, the rest of it pans out quite nicely! I don't have the English Channel, but do live next to Lake Michigan and the Ahnapee River. Completely surrounded by fresh water - I have certainly grown to love it! But I still like the idea of bobbing around in the channel! lol
    But the finale of that one sentence, is really cool - as it gives us yet another Phil render!
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 16,210
    edited December 1969

    my 2c's
    photographs do not and never have represented what we see.
    the brain takes in lots of information from light focused onto the retina simulating cells to pass a signal along the optic nerve via a chemical reaction to the brain and that information is "seen" differently by each person.
    just look at Monet's Japanese bridge paintings as his eyesight deterioates.
    people with sensory abilities to smell colours etc "see" things differently to a person who is nearsighted and one with nerve damage etc.
    A photo is just chemical changes on a film emulsion or pixels from a charge coupled sensor device reading.
    Wow. You and I think amazingly alike. Do you have any idea how scary that is? ;)
  • GrimmvaldGrimmvald Posts: 12
    edited December 1969

    Rather than get offended over "health issues" or anything else, it might be a good idea to consider the background Head Wax has in Optometry (from his web site). I believe this gives him a unique perspective on how we "see" things - a much more detailed understanding that most of us will ever have.

    As an older individual, I can tell you that he is spot on about the eye as it ages - cornea/ lens harden and start to discolor - and then throw in some "floaters". As I recall, the image on the retina is "upside down" and the brain does the conversion without conscious effort from us.

  • JoeMamma2000JoeMamma2000 Posts: 2,615
    edited December 1969

    PhilW said:
    The only thing that I would say is that for someone who espouses doing lots of reading to understand how things work, you seem to have a fairly closed attitude to helpful advice.

    Oh and I don't believe that "glow" you are seeing is SSS, it is reflected light from the ground. .

    Speaking of having a closed attitude to helpful advice....

    Consider this....maybe, just maybe, if you open your mind a little bit to what I'm saying instead of engaging in the favorite pastime here, which is "discredit Joe", you'll realize that there is something to what I am saying.

    As I said, look thru the list of shader channels you have available in Carrara. And then, keeping in mind that a goal for many 3D artists is to achieve the best results in the least amount of render time, consider that maybe there are better ways to achieve the real-life lighting effects than using the render-intensive GI solutions.

    Now, many people here love to use ambient, even though it is, some would say, unrealistic. It gives an overall illumination that, in a very simple way, simulates global illumination, correct?

    Well, how about using a different solution that also gives you a way to simulate global illumination, AND the complicated surface/light interaction effects?

    Now, we can argue all week about whether, technically, the surface characteristics of Portland cement indeed fall under the category of SSS. However, IN PRACTICE, a reasonable person might come to the conclusion that the way that light interacts with the surface is indeed similar to SSS, as I described.

    Now, if the goal is to find some way, any way, to say I'm wrong, then be my guest. But if the goal is to learn, let's TRY to grasp the concept.

    Now, look at the SSS controls in Carrara. And then consider the surface characteristics of concrete. It is a very "soft" and diffuse surface. And as you can see in the photo, reflections off the surface and the ground light adjacent parts of the surface. And it "glows" (or whatever term you want to use) with a certain color, depending upon the surface and also the light that is hitting it.

    Now, do the SSS controls give you that control you need to simulate this effect? Well, yeah. You can determine what diffuse color is reflected by the surface. You can also control the amount of diffuse reflection, which gives you control over the softness of the effect. And you can adjust the intensity of the effect.

    Wow, that's a lot of control over how the surface handles light, and how the surface might appear to "glow", or illuminate itself.

    Are there other controls that can do that? Well, I'll leave it for the forum to decide if there is a better way to do this. But I think it's reasonable to conclude that the EFFECT of how light interacts with the surface of concrete is very similar, if not identical, to the EFFECT of SSS. And if you want to get down to the microscopic level and decide whether in fact the concrete surface, with all of its combination of opaque and translucent silica particles or whatever, in fact exhibits any translucency and SSS, then be my guest.

    Now, if you disagree, I'd love to see some more people putting their money where there mouths are, because all I've seen so far is a lot of people trying to attack and discredit me, rather than people willing to do the work and show alternate solutions. And you can't learn if you don't try out things, right? Because, after all, the purpose of this challenge is for everyone to LEARN something, not spend your time trying to discredit those you despise....

  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,055
    edited December 1969

    I'm open to everything you say - I may not agree with all of it (although I certainly agree with some of it, as I have already pointed out), but I do read what you have said and take it on board. I am certainly not trying to discredit you, but we can have differing points of view, and that's fine. No need to take it personally.

  • Design AcrobatDesign Acrobat Posts: 459
    edited December 1969

    I love Escher drawings, particular the stairway art. Hope to do that someday when I get the time. Optical illusions and perspective art is hard to do photography, but there are some who make a living from that genre.

  • HeadwaxHeadwax Posts: 8,264
    edited December 1969

    head wax said:
    By the way Gurney's title is a misnomer. The things we 'see' exist in our brains, if no where else.
    Aw Man! You gave away the Plot!!!

    hehe no I 'lost' the plot a longtime ago

  • HeadwaxHeadwax Posts: 8,264
    edited December 1969

    Grimmvald said:
    Rather than get offended over "health issues" or anything else, it might be a good idea to consider the background Head Wax has in Optometry (from his web site). I believe this gives him a unique perspective on how we "see" things - a much more detailed understanding that most of us will ever have.

    As an older individual, I can tell you that he is spot on about the eye as it ages - cornea/ lens harden and start to discolor - and then throw in some "floaters". As I recall, the image on the retina is "upside down" and the brain does the conversion without conscious effort from us.

    thank you Grimmvald :)

  • HeadwaxHeadwax Posts: 8,264
    edited December 1969

    I love Escher drawings, particular the stairway art. Hope to do that someday when I get the time. Optical illusions and perspective art is hard to do photography, but there are some who make a living from that genre.

    great idea for a challenge in the future?

  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,055
    edited December 1969

    chiisuchianu - I'm back at home now and can see your images. I like your character, especially the close-up with make-up treatments, good work. I'm still fairly sure that you have Ambient Light on (it is set to 20% by default) - it is under the Scene parameters. Turn it to 0%as you don't need it if you are using Indirect Lighting, and I think you will be impressed by the improvement in realism.

  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,055
    edited December 1969

    Phil,

    I think I understand a little better now. There is a two step process and gamma correction plays a significant role in each of these stages. It makes me question the image export options and how well dynamic ranges are retained. a 24 bit image should still store a great deal of information. An image exported as an hdri should remain quite rich. One could easily play around with the hdri to achieve results similar to Gamma Correction, or at least I'm assuming this to be true but have never tested it. I hope to play around with this all a bit more myself soon. Thanks for talking with me, Phil!

    You are right, but unfortunately Carrara does not provide an option to save the raw HDRI image. Then you could interactievly play with gamma and exposure settings to see the difference and to optimise an image. You can do this as part of Luxrender (even while it is rendering), so you will never get an under- or over-exposed image from it (unless you actually choose to for creative reasons).

  • JoeMamma2000JoeMamma2000 Posts: 2,615
    edited August 2013

    PhilW said:
    So, enough of the hype, I simply decided that the only thing to do was just to tell people, and let everyone make great Realistic renders with Carrara, natively.

    All you have to do is – turn on Gamma Correction in render properties and set it to 2.2.

    WHAT???!!!! That’s it?

    Phil, with all due respect, it's stuff like this that might mislead some folks here, don't you think? Yes, later on in your post you mention that realistic renders require all that other stuff like textures and lighting, etc. But in some cases a Gamma correction setting of 2.2 is just flat wrong. And to say "all you have to do is - turn on gamma correction in render properties and set it to 2.2" is, well......

    Yes, I have read the manual, probably more times than most as I needed to in order to produce the training videos. It is on Page 812 (of 853) and it says:

    “Carrara allows you to "gamma correct" your image so that it matches the luminance of your monitor. This allows you to view much more realistic images. With Global Illumination the gamma correction performs more than to correct the image. It also assures that the textures are correctly taken into account in the lighting calculations. Note that an image that is gamma corrected will tend to be much brighter than one that is not.”

    This is ALL it says –

    Well, no, that's not all it says. On the previous page it also says:

    "Adjust the gamma slider to set the value of the gamma. A value between 2.2 and 2.6 is usually correct for a standard computer monitor. Check your monitor's documentation for the actual gamma value. Note that some video cards actually perform gamma correction so you might not need to do anything. The Macintosh has a gamma correction of 1.4 so you might want to use a gamma of 1.8 to get the correct result for your monitor."

    Like I said, it's a calibration adjustment. Sometimes you need it, sometimes you don't. Now, I don't know exactly what Carrara does when you select a gamma value, in terms of the renderer and how it deals with the scene components. Other 3D software has specific and detailed information and settings to configure your gamma, so you know exactly how it treats texture images, etc., and what is linear and what isn't. Carrara, as far as I know, doesn't tell you any of that.

    So, while you're free to espouse the wonders of a gamma 2.2, again I would caution folks to first try to understand their system and what is needed and what isn't before you blindly set a gamma of 2.2 or whatever.

    Post edited by JoeMamma2000 on
  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,055
    edited August 2013

    When is a gamma of 2.2 "just flat wrong"? I'd be interested to hear.

    I would fully support people understanding in detail what they are doing, but not everyone who does 3D rendering is as dedicated and knowledgeable as others and some useful shortcut tips may help them get better renders. I could after all have just sat on this "discovery" and people could just wonder why my renders just got so much more realistic - and they have noticed, I can tell you.

    Regardng the extra passage you quoted from the manual, I did notice this but decided it best not to reference it as I believe that it could confuse people further - from the sound of it, it has possibly even confused you. It implies that gamma is used as a final correction for the display, and this is what I had assumed all these years, BUT THIS IS NOT ALL IT DOES! You can tell that from the results.

    Anyway, here is my attempt to match your image in a render. Render time 16 secs on my laptop. There are some differences in details such as the seam on the bollard, the slight damage to the top part of the bollard, etc. The thing that I found odd is that the shadow in your photo seems to taper much more than my rendered shadow. If anyone has any ideas on this, I'd like to hear them.

    I wanted to try to match this with just one distant light, sky light and indirect lighting, but couldn't get close enough for my liking, so I had to add a low power yellow light to the left to add the extra reflected light that I can see - maybe there was a warm coloured building to the left of the bollard, but out of shot?

    And of course this has ambient set to 0%, gamma at 2.2 and full indirect lighting on and set to "best" - and still rendered in 16 secs. All textures are procedural, but no SSS used.

    Bollard2.jpg
    520 x 520 - 26K
    Post edited by PhilW on
  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,055
    edited December 1969

    Just thought it would be useful to re-post Joe's original so you can compare more directly.

    JoesBollard.png
    487 x 500 - 281K
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 16,210
    edited August 2013

    The tapering of the shadow is something that I've noticed from the start to be absent from all attempts to mimic this photo. I told the person that I was going to take a shot at it - even though I've found the exercise a bit boring for what I've got going on right now, but then he felt that my conformity was some sort of personal attack, which I still don't quite understand. I think you've done a very nice job, Phil. The shadow, aside from the taper being backwards from that of the photo, looks really nice and blue - like Head Wax says it should. I love learning from Head Wax - and from you! Well - and from most others as well.
    I'm not much one whom likes to feel as if I have to fight and explain my every thought, however. But coming back to SSS, it has always been my interpretation that subsurface scattering is the process of the material(s) absorbing some of the light that hits it before it releases its reflection. Even though Carrara offers the choice to NOT use absorption, this is still what the shader channel is there to simulate. Edit - as I forgot to finish my thought: ...and then 'scatter' the absorbed value by a degree determined by the density and/or translucency of the material. This is often seen as a sort of 'glowing' change of color. In Carrara, we really have a powerful tool through this channel.
    Portland Cement is a material used in most concrete mixes that I am aware of. I am mostly a dry-stone mason, which means that I do not use wet cement to adhere my masonry - but rather - other methods to enable the masonry to 'flex' with the constant movements of the earth that can take place in extreme environments. Here, it is the temperature changes that brings concrete low. Reaching above 90 degrees F in the summer, and far below 0 degrees, often even below -10F, in the winter is hard for anything to hold up against Mother Nature's amazing hydraulic pressures. I can correct this using compaction of granular, natural, but crushed, stone of various sizes and properties to create a seemingly solid area - which is actually just very hard - but not at all solid - but seemingly so. All of my structures have stood the test of 'my' time, so far. Where concrete has not. Ooops... tangent much? One of the last things I recall from "The Ignored One" was a question to my understanding of what I do - or something like that. I am actually very good at it - where many others simply lack a simple patience and persistence!
    So, anyways. Portand Cement. Right. I could almost agree to use SSS on that, since it is a super-fine, flour-like powder - but I personally still would likely not. But I really commend him for trying the extra channel to gain the results he was looking for. And the reasoning, though I strongly disagree with - as this bollard is of concrete - hard concrete - is what led him there and made for a decent attempt. To go off and preach that this is why he is a supreme being amongst men... well that I do not agree with.

    Edit to finish a thought: Most concrete, like that which is used to make things like the bollard in the photo, has a very strong lack of translucency. Therefore, as light enters the pores it will reflect to a degree and shadow for the rest - but it should not scatter.

    Carrara is really great that way, thought. You can really think outside the box to get all manner of different results. Even if you don't entirely understand the materials in question - if you can make something up in your imagination, and use those thoughts to guide you to an end result that pleases you - Bravo! I say. I am in no way trying to discredit anyone. But to nearly insinuate that others are morons for not thinking of adding glow and sss is simply not a belief that I like to sponsor either. I always like to propagate the trying of different things. What, after all, do we have to help ourselves to improve, if not time?

    Also, I have been going for a fast and dirty render experience since I've entered the notion of making my own motion pictures. During this time of trial, which I still consider myself to be in - perhaps even forever, I have decided upon a bit of a 'less than real' look to my fantasy scenes and characters. I like the deeper, harder shadows in many, if not most, occasions. So I have found some situations where I tend to choose to shy away from the Gamma Correct 2.2 method - even though (heck, why not?) I try it out anyways. I'm glad that I have, too... because it really is a help in many situations that I would otherwise have likely ignored for sake of time constraints - which this method doesn't seem to add much to. It wouldn't add any time if I didn't have to change the render settings - and sometimes I don't.

    You are a true Professor of Carrara, Phil Wilkes. I know that you're not trying to force anyone into anything. All you asked is that we try it. And I am very grateful for this. How anyone could possibly take offense to your sharing nature is beyond me. This forum is all about sharing. Even disagreeing. But there's not even a fine line between disagreeing and what I've seen happen here. I'm glad that you're made of sturdier material for the rest of us, whom really enjoy what you have to teach and share.
    Thank you, Phil Wilkes.
    You are a Hero!

    Post edited by Dartanbeck on
  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,055
    edited December 1969

    I don't know what to say - so I'll just say "Thanks"!

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 16,210
    edited December 1969

    PhilW said:
    I don't know what to say - so I'll just say "Thanks"!
    No, Phil... I do insist:
    Thank You!
    Oh... and...
    You Freakin' R O C K ! ! !
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 16,210
    edited December 1969

    You know... I find myself playing around with the glow channel, sss, translucency, transparency, refraction, you name it. I don't always have a rational explanation for it. Nor to I try to belittle people into feeling idiotic for not doing it themselves. Just sayin'.

    This is what bewildered me entirely. I truly was going to take up his challenge - but opted not to after upsetting him by saying that I would. I truly was trying to reach out and accept his philosophy, even though I've done so much of that in the past - and to this very moment - and will never cease to do so.

    Phil,
    You've simply asked that I try this Gamma thing. I've thanked you for that - as I should. It's a very cool discovery and I love the ability to now add that to my rendering toolkit. I also thanked that other person - the "ignored one" - and he chose to take it that I was making fun of him?

    Okay. Ignored is ignored - so I'll now try and stop being so upset over the whole thing. Just had to add my negative three cents, once again.

    But to others out there, whom may be stuck in how to achieve the 'look' that you may be after, I strongly suggest taking the advice of as many people as you can - whether they seems to offend you or not. I dislike "Flame Wars" so I have opted to not participate in the challenge offered by "The Ignored One". Don't do that, if you think that the exercise might be helpful to you. Personally, I wish that I new where I could find the lighting tutorials that Sub7th made - which a fellow named Dale Hartman turned me on to. Dale was a brand new Carrara user who had taken it upon himself to learn lighting realistically before anything else. The exercises also taught how to model and apply shaders to a bowl of fruit, if I remember correctly. The PM conversations, which led to personal e-mails, that Dale and I shared were an amazingly educational and entertaining experience, to which I am forever grateful. He and I bought Phil Wilkes training materials together, though I could only get one atm, so I opted for the Advanced Training. I like it so much I really, Really want to get the Basic Skills one too. Even if I already know most of was is said (it is likely that I don't, however), I still find Phil Wilkes education style to be rewarding, educational, and incredibly fun. As many of you know, I watch the Advanced series over and over like TV re-runs, awaiting the next 'season' to be sponsored - so I can buy that, too. The very last episode in the Advanced Training is likely similar, if not the same, as what may be found in the Basic Training - which is a "Hello, my name is Phil Wilkes" short introduction, where he explains who he is and why he feels qualified to instruct such a course. I often include that one in front of, or anywhere else in my playlist for the night - as it's really fun to hear all of his experience in 3d modeling and graphics over the years. He truly is a master - and has a very patient and precise teaching method.

    Often there are times when he could skip over certain portions of the lesson because you already should have acquired the knowledge to get to where you need to be to proceed - and sometimes he does. But other times, he instead shows you another method of performing the procedure. I am constantly (just ask him) harassing him to make more training videos. Now it's time to harass DAZ 3D into having Infinite Skills to hire him again to create more material - as it is excellent, to say the very least!

    I just wanted you to know how I feel about the teachings of such a wonderfully gifted person - and that his giving us these lessons of better rendering is no small matter to be swept under the carpet just because a few nay sayers might not believe it to be forthcoming. It is.

  • EleleElele Posts: 1,095
    edited December 1969

    Does the speed up also happen if the gamma is set to lower values, even if you set it to 1?

    The image looks great Phil!
    Maybe the tapering is due to the camera focal length and the position of the distant light?

  • HeadwaxHeadwax Posts: 8,264
    edited August 2013

    tapering of the shadow....

    could also be that the bollard is wider at the bottom than it appears
    (as per greek columns that were made wider at the top to counteract the effect of perspective)
    and this difference in width is reflected in the shadow taper

    also the camera lens is distorting the bollard because the viewpoint is most probably eye level looking down (ladder?)

    so if you look at the bottom of the bollard it's perspective plane/vanishing point is different to the top of the bollard
    similar to how if you take a pic of someone there feet might be tilted down compared to their face if you use a certain focal length to fit their entire body in

    so the taper of the shadow could be related to this as well as Elele suggests

    to mimic the distortion you could try a shorter focal length in carrara, maybe less than 50mm as opposed to say 80mil?

    nice render philw

    Post edited by Headwax on
  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,055
    edited December 1969

    Elele said:
    Does the speed up also happen if the gamma is set to lower values, even if you set it to 1?

    The image looks great Phil!
    Maybe the tapering is due to the camera focal length and the position of the distant light?

    Thanks for your comment. I make no claims that it speeds up rendering - but many people have been put off by talk of excessively long renders when using full Indirect Lighting etc, and sometimes - especially in simple cases - this just isn't true. Actually I just did a simple test and the gamma version WAS slightly faster, but only by around 10%. I use it for the boost in realism, not for render speed. Unless doing animations when frame rendering speed can be crucial, I don't mind too much about a render taking hours, I can just let it run overnight. Heck I used to do that back in the 1980s just to get an image of a shiny sphere! How times have moved on. Of course, your own render speeds will be dependent on your hardware.

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