Cycles engine still not ready.

Yesterday I got sidetracked while blocking some environments by Cycles volumetric light scatter material. It was just last month that a new workstation came in allowing for 12 render threads so I wanted to test the material for practicality in rendering a video. Short answer… nope. Reading through the render engines documentation and spending nearly a whole day changing settings and preview rendering resulted disappointing. It seems even in the latest version noise is still far too big of a problem. Setting volumetric to 8192 samples with various speed enhancements with light paths, branched tracing and algorithm types still gave mediocre results that took all night to render. And we are talking a Linux machine built for rendering.

Thinking about this problem we should wonder why this information cant be baked into a voxel grid. It makes me wish I was more knowledgeable on light physics, there must be some way that could work.

Apart from that I also came on this recently. Have never been a fan of Cycles rough glossy shader but never knew it was this bad. Discovering that Blenders “Linear” shading isn’t really linear at all will definitely change the way I handle shading network from now on. According to the article putting your gloss info through a math node set to “Power” with a value of 2.2 helps this problem somewhat.

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More travel Photos

Last night all the images from the camera were pulled to the computer. There were just over twelve hundred over the last two months. Its going to be a lot of work to organize all those images!

In this weeks gallery some images that stood out to me are DownTownVancouver_002 and GilfordMall_018. I thought they both had nice composition, the latter one looks like it’s a still from some modern art movie đŸ˜›

Something  often noticed when reviewing pictures is that photographers get stared at a lot. Almost always I see people looking strait into the lens in the photos. Not sure if they are concerned that someone is taking their picture or if its boring to walk around you look at people doing something different for entertainment.

For the last few weeks there has been a focus on taking themed photos so we can begin the process of making easy to search reference on TheEnvironmentGuy. You can look forward to gallery’s of things like doors, machinery, pipes, architecture, plants, signs and so on. Random art photos for entertainment and drawing/painting studies like these will continue to be posted as well.

 

On the subway : Part 2

Photographic reference helps thinking up new environment ideas, so in this week some interesting things found was a train station in plastic wrap… I thought it was interesting. Along with that there are some interesting architectural items in this weeks selection.

Something that’s going to change in future photos on TheEnvironmentGuy.com is a reduction in branding scale. I feel the previous overlay elements are too distracting and take away from the true purpose as reference/inspiration. There is also a plan to make themed photo selections so that its easy to search the site for a specific reference, such as if you wanted to make a light fixture you could do a site search and get images of lite fixtures.

On the Subway (Photos)

For the last two years I have been riding the public transit system in Vancouver Canada and the surrounding city’s. So many times we sleep, pretend to have something important to do on the cell phone or otherwise zone out of the environment around us. A tragic sin which even I must admit to being guilty of. So this week I made a conscious decision to stop at some stations I usually don’t stop at and pay special attention to all the things in the area. There is so many cool things that have gone unnoticed and unfortunately the pictures here cant possibly do justice to the cause. Every object is unique and every surface tells a life story. A story that can only be read if you take the time to silently observe and reflect.

I think my favorite image from this gallery is Chinatown Train 003. The way the potlights create such defined ring patterns on the floor is unusual for a light fixture. Not only that but the location was unusual as well. Its a secluded underground tunnel to give wheelchair access to the trains. Despite its busy location it holds a very quite and secluded atmosphere, it even has a glass wall where you look into the unlit train tunnels. Unfortunate it was simply too dark for the camera to take a decent photo.

As an ending note In the next couple weeks there will be more photos from the transit system coming up, as well as some digital sculpture and painting.