Oh yea. Octane for Carrara

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  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 18,114
    edited December 1969

    From OTOYs website.

    Coming in a future release of Octane..

    The best bits were render passes (AO, Depth etc), integration with after effects and

    "Out-of-core rendering – Scenes that don’t fit into graphics memory will be supported through out
    of core rendering, storing currently unused source data in host memory while swapping it into
    graphics memory when required."

    Very nice upgrades. Octane continues to catch up in features, whilst providing excellent images.

    Brilliant! That should speed things up even more. And you're right... for that quality of lighting, that is very fast - even at 11 - 15 minutes per frame, using GI. There's a lot of shadows (soft) to calculate in that scene. Looks great!

    Wouldn't it be cool if you could head to a local video card rental facility and rent a pair of Titans for a time? Try a high-end Quadro... see for ourselves what works best for what we do, so we can then buy our optimal circuitry?

    For someone like me, it's hard to go and drop a few hundred bucks on a graphics card. but a few thousand is like, out of the question. Yet, if I knew for sure that it would give me performance unobtainable anywhere else, bam... that would seem a goal to shoot for. But so many times have I doubled or more the power of my graphics to find minimal performance improvements. Again... I'm sure that would not be the case with a 4,000 dollar card... but what if it was? :shut:

    Anyways, I totally comment your efforts and am grateful that you share your adventures here. Thanks. Otoy is to be commended too. Every time I go back and watch that not-yet-beta version of the Carrara plugin, I just drool.

  • Sci Fi FunkSci Fi Funk Posts: 1,182
    edited April 2014

    Thanks Dartan.

    The next issue is how do you do strong headlights? Might be another render pass which adds to the time. Still lots to learn, but I think we are on the right path now.

    re: The graphics card. I saw a benchmark test where a Titan beat a Tesla card costing 4 x more! So buyer beware.

    Post edited by Sci Fi Funk on
  • Sci Fi FunkSci Fi Funk Posts: 1,182
    edited December 1969

    Added another render pass. Headlights and a first look at windows.

    The overall render time has jumped from 8 mins to 11, but I think I can combine in a better way. Just getting the ideas together now. The can headlights will be more round in the next attempt.

    Night_light!_11-18_mins_Direct_Light_1000-2000px_9.01_ms-sec_FINAL_Comp_.jpg
    1920 x 1080 - 1M
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 18,114
    edited December 1969

    So will you have to add separate volumetrics if you want light cones?

  • Sci Fi FunkSci Fi Funk Posts: 1,182
    edited April 2014

    So will you have to add separate volumetrics if you want light cones?

    From what I can make out atm it's wise to split your pic up into regions and render out lights that don't cross with other lights. Therefore I'd add in the volumetrics with this 3rd pass (van headlights and windows).

    I reserve the right to completely change my approach however - still taking early steps, but I reckon we've gone from new born to early teen now.

    Post edited by Sci Fi Funk on
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 18,114
    edited December 1969

    Oh, absolutely. What I meant was: there are no light cones in Octane lights, right?
    I was watching some videos on new features for Cycles in Blender last night. They set it up so that you can add a volumetric shader on the world, so that 'any' light bright enough, depending of course on the World Shader setup, will make cones, or whatever shape. Kind of adding dust or heavy atmosphere to the very air in 3d world. Pretty neat.

  • Sci Fi FunkSci Fi Funk Posts: 1,182
    edited December 1969

    Oh, absolutely. What I meant was: there are no light cones in Octane lights, right?
    I was watching some videos on new features for Cycles in Blender last night. They set it up so that you can add a volumetric shader on the world, so that 'any' light bright enough, depending of course on the World Shader setup, will make cones, or whatever shape. Kind of adding dust or heavy atmosphere to the very air in 3d world. Pretty neat.

    It is neat and beyond where I am at atm. I need volumetrics though, so I'd be interested to see how they go about it.

    Just produced a quick grainy animation of the above scene, with the van speeding along.

    I'm struggling with poor internet atm - but as soon as Its back properly I'll share the vid. Very pleased with this weeks progress.

  • DustRiderDustRider Posts: 2,536
    edited December 1969

    Oh, absolutely. What I meant was: there are no light cones in Octane lights, right?
    I was watching some videos on new features for Cycles in Blender last night. They set it up so that you can add a volumetric shader on the world, so that 'any' light bright enough, depending of course on the World Shader setup, will make cones, or whatever shape. Kind of adding dust or heavy atmosphere to the very air in 3d world. Pretty neat.

    It is neat and beyond where I am at atm. I need volumetrics though, so I'd be interested to see how they go about it.

    Just produced a quick grainy animation of the above scene, with the van speeding along.

    I'm struggling with poor internet atm - but as soon as Its back properly I'll share the vid. Very pleased with this weeks progress.


    Octane has a volumetric shader too, probably very similar to what Cycles has implemented. I've only played around with it once, quite a while ago, It can slow renders a bit. More can be found about it in the Otoy forums - just search for volumetric.

    Some outstanding work Si Fi Funk!! Your render times are fantastic for low light renders, and the quality is amazing!. Keep up the great work!

  • Sci Fi FunkSci Fi Funk Posts: 1,182
    edited December 1969

    Thanks dustrider.

    Useful info on the volumetric shader.

    I'm making a quick animation demo of this scene, I will upload when my internet connection is more stable (I get little pockets of time only atm very frustrating).

    I will upload more pics when I learn something new .

  • Sci Fi FunkSci Fi Funk Posts: 1,182
    edited December 1969

    My first Octane scene (with layer breakdown)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGj0IWndtAw

  • DustRiderDustRider Posts: 2,536
    edited December 1969

    My first Octane scene (with layer breakdown)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGj0IWndtAw


    That's fantastic! How much time did it take to render?
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 18,114
    edited December 1969

    Yes... very nice indeed! Love it!

  • Sci Fi FunkSci Fi Funk Posts: 1,182
    edited December 1969

    Thanks Guys.

    7.2 hours rendering time at 4.5 mins a frame (the combined render time for all 4 passes - I chose how to split up my time within the passes giving 2.5 mins to the most crucial part - the streetlight pass, 1.5 mins to the background and just 15 secs each to the car headlights and windows).

  • Sci Fi FunkSci Fi Funk Posts: 1,182
    edited April 2014

    Playing with Layers in OCTANE. This is 3 x quick renders combined in after effects. Always using the quickest render kernel - direct lighting which is biased but GI.

    It's a test of an idea on how to light a room without windows. (So no natural daylight).

    Total combined rendering time is about 4 mins again.

    The walls and internal scene are rendered first (I count this as the background) with natural day lighting taken down in power and given internal lighting colours, plus the wall lights which slow the render down.

    Then just the ceiling is rendered with a single emitter.

    Then only the internal furniture is rendered with a 3 point lighting set up.

    All of this is flexible and quite quick. Had I spent more time on it I would have improved shaders, light balance etc.

    Just sharing ideas for animators - how to fight back with only a small rendering rig.

    trib_hall_00000.jpg
    1920 x 1080 - 2M
    Post edited by Sci Fi Funk on
  • Kevin SandersonKevin Sanderson Posts: 1,641
    edited December 1969

    Looks like you are using a similar technique to what Dreamlight teaches in a couple tutes for DS - render a scene a light at a time and then screen blend the separate renders as layers in Photoshop or a compositing program. Big time saver!

  • Sci Fi FunkSci Fi Funk Posts: 1,182
    edited December 1969

    Looks like you are using a similar technique to what Dreamlight teaches in a couple tutes for DS - render a scene a light at a time and then screen blend the separate renders as layers in Photoshop or a compositing program. Big time saver!

    Wish I'd got into this earlier (*doh*).

    I believe at this stage (about 3 weeks into testing various lighting ideas), that this is the only way you will get lighting control over your scene in Octane, this is because all the lights interact far more with each other than in DAZ and Carrara, and therefore it's almost impossible to (for example) shine a spotlight (equivalent) into an area and not have the ambient light affected as well.

  • Kevin SandersonKevin Sanderson Posts: 1,641
    edited April 2014

    Yep, movie lighting is different than natural lighting. All the light photons zipping around can take extra time and affects a lot of stuff as you've found.

    Post edited by Kevin Sanderson on
  • Sci Fi FunkSci Fi Funk Posts: 1,182
    edited December 1969

    I'm re-working two of my original epsiodes as the lighting was so bad in them. I don't have infinite time to get it all right, so I present this imperfect picture (I've a lot to learn about Octane materials).

    However here, is a day light example. I just love the way it scatters light across objects. I was brought up in a street looking similar to this, typical East London Suburbia.

    SF1_s1_Pan_00001.jpg
    1920 x 1080 - 1M
  • Kevin SandersonKevin Sanderson Posts: 1,641
    edited December 1969

    I do like the way daylight looks in Octane.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 18,114
    edited December 1969

    Looks like you are using a similar technique to what Dreamlight teaches in a couple tutes for DS - render a scene a light at a time and then screen blend the separate renders as layers in Photoshop or a compositing program. Big time saver!

    Wish I'd got into this earlier (*doh*).

    I believe at this stage (about 3 weeks into testing various lighting ideas), that this is the only way you will get lighting control over your scene in Octane, this is because all the lights interact far more with each other than in DAZ and Carrara, and therefore it's almost impossible to (for example) shine a spotlight (equivalent) into an area and not have the ambient light affected as well.You'll get that in Carrara (likely DS) as well, to much greater degree if you use GI with IL. In most apps, you can avoid some of that by linking the light to specific objects in the scene, to help avoid light reflecting from the ground or other objects.

    ...and, yeah... I'm liking the Octane daylight as well :)

  • PhilWPhilW Posts: 5,116
    edited December 1969

    Main thing is to forget everything you thought you knew about lighting a scene :p

    Ha Ha. Figured that one out already. Wow, talk about back to school.

    re: the lux link - thanks I'll have a look around.

    There seems to be a void to be filled here, practical advice on unbiased rendering for those of us without killer cost-a-car-or-small-house rigs.

    Phil any plans?

    I have just finished recording my next title for Infinite Skills "Realism In Carrara", which kind of takes learning from my using Luxrender (and to a lesser extent Octane) and applying that back into Carrara native lighting, materials and rendering in order to improve the quality of my renders. And then last week I had a holiday! But I will certainly consider it for the future.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 18,114
    edited December 1969

    PhilW said:
    And then last week I had a holiday!
    Cool! Did you have fun?
    One of these years, you should come to Wisconsin. ;)
  • Sci Fi FunkSci Fi Funk Posts: 1,182
    edited December 1969

    PhilW said:
    But I will certainly consider it for the future.

    Thanks Phil.

    In the meantime I've been corrected elsewhere that my daylight is too dark. Here is a fix in post (vegas brightness). I also don't like my "out of direct sunlight" colour. Needs more orange. Not sure how to do this atm.

    Here is the brightness fix.

    ScreenShot713.jpg
    639 x 358 - 223K
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 18,114
    edited December 1969

    Yep, movie lighting is different than natural lighting. All the light photons zipping around can take extra time and affects a lot of stuff as you've found.
    As a matter of fact, I just heard that most cinematographers wet down the streets before shooting for the extra reflection it gives the lighting - even if wet roads wouldn't make sense to what's been going on. So perhaps adding a bit of reflection to roads would be something to try? This one uses reflectivity on the road as a daylight test on the matter, but is Carrara's stock PR renderer:
    ExenomVsUnicycleTest1a.jpg
    1280 x 720 - 980K
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 18,114
    edited December 1969

    I also don't like my "out of direct sunlight" colour. Needs more orange. Not sure how to do this atm.

    I disagree. I think orange/yellow creeping into shadow would look odd and fake, whereas the bluish tint is spot on.
  • Sci Fi FunkSci Fi Funk Posts: 1,182
    edited December 1969

    Yep, movie lighting is different than natural lighting. All the light photons zipping around can take extra time and affects a lot of stuff as you've found.
    As a matter of fact, I just heard that most cinematographers wet down the streets before shooting for the extra reflection it gives the lighting - even if wet roads wouldn't make sense to what's been going on. So perhaps adding a bit of reflection to roads would be something to try? This one uses reflectivity on the road as a daylight test on the matter, but is Carrara's stock PR renderer:

    It's good daylight alright. I read the same thing in that book on lighting you recommended.

    Given that even with unbiased rendering you are going to have to "fake it" on basic set ups (due to render speed limitations), plus I think you have to anyway (via layers to get your lights to behave), then that book is invaluable as a source of tips.

  • Sci Fi FunkSci Fi Funk Posts: 1,182
    edited December 1969

    I also don't like my "out of direct sunlight" colour. Needs more orange. Not sure how to do this atm.

    I disagree. I think orange/yellow creeping into shadow would look odd and fake, whereas the bluish tint is spot on.

    That's good then, if some of you are not picking up on that then my scene has more credibility .

    There are so many lighting situations, I was out walking last night at 6pm and observed the indirect light on the road and it's colour, but so many factors affect the result - lots to learn!

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 18,114
    edited December 1969

    Well, one thing that gets me in the 'lighting' industry is the use of the word "bounce".
    For one, it's inaccurate. Light reflects, it doesn't bounce.
    But for another, it misleads. If we think of any surface that has a chance to bounce the light, we might get the impression that we need to figure out where the light goes next, which might be somewhat accurate. But if, instead, we consider that light (and therefore, color) is reflected from the surface, we can relate to the idea that the reflecting surface will show the color that's above it, in the reflection. So a highly reflective surface, like a mirror, laying flat on the ground, will reflect what is according to the angle of the viewer - not just color, but details as well. Something like concrete, which is more textured and a lot less reflective, might pick up some color, but nearly no detail.

    Thinking along those terms, and using the book: Digital Lighting & Rendering, for advice, we need to have a reason for every light in the scene. The sunlight appears yellow/orange for a very good reason. Our sun. But the ambient brightness of the sky, in areas blocked from the direct sunlight, would get a majority of its color from the sky, unless it, too, was blocked. But in that case, it wouldn't be as bright, either, unless it had some other source.

  • Sci Fi FunkSci Fi Funk Posts: 1,182
    edited December 1969

    Well, one thing that gets me in the 'lighting' industry is the use of the word "bounce".
    For one, it's inaccurate. Light reflects, it doesn't bounce.
    But for another, it misleads. If we think of any surface that has a chance to bounce the light, we might get the impression that we need to figure out where the light goes next, which might be somewhat accurate. But if, instead, we consider that light (and therefore, color) is reflected from the surface, we can relate to the idea that the reflecting surface will show the color that's above it, in the reflection. So a highly reflective surface, like a mirror, laying flat on the ground, will reflect what is according to the angle of the viewer - not just color, but details as well. Something like concrete, which is more textured and a lot less reflective, might pick up some color, but nearly no detail.

    Thinking along those terms, and using the book: Digital Lighting & Rendering, for advice, we need to have a reason for every light in the scene. The sunlight appears yellow/orange for a very good reason. Our sun. But the ambient brightness of the sky, in areas blocked from the direct sunlight, would get a majority of its color from the sky, unless it, too, was blocked. But in that case, it wouldn't be as bright, either, unless it had some other source.

    I see. Good info, thanks. So In the case of the street scene above the road is getting it's light from the sky more than the sun, and due to the low sun in the sky it is getting blocked by the houses, hence why it could be blue.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 18,114
    edited December 1969

    Yeah. That's what I see. Some cities, mind you, that blue will get filtered through the foggy thickness of a yuck-filled atmosphere. I, on the other hand, live in a magical paradise land, where birds and bees sing to one another. I see a lot of color here.

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