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General => Image Sharing => NWDA Cliffs Contest => Topic started by: AndyWelder on January 10, 2018, 05:50:29 PM

Title: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on January 10, 2018, 05:50:29 PM
Hope I'm doing this right...
There are three different projects/entries I'm working on and all of them are more or less flawed.
The one that has the most flaws is "New Islands CTC".[attach=1]Biggest problem are the "ruptured PF's" causing holes to appear in the surface of the terrain features (most clearly visible in the upper part of the foreground feature). And I have no clue on how to fix that... The sea foam is another issue but that is not a biggie, a different mask will cure that. The haze settings are too dense too. The algae on the lower parts of the rocks reach to high, and they also need some "glistening wetness", will try a reflective shader for that. Vegetation is another issue: Distribution, color, all require more work.

Then there is "Chinese landscape CE". [attach=2] Biggest problem is with the distant low fog/cloud: I don't like it as it is now but haven't come up with an alternative. And then there's the question "does this fit the contest theme?"... Oh, and that solitary tree on the right mountain top sure is a no-no; will drop that and think of an alternative. Also I will enable "Receive shadows from surfaces" for the foreground low fog later on in the project just to save (render)time. A small test render did look great with that feature enabled but twice the render time...?

The last WIP I'd like to present is "Cliffs themed NWDA Try 03 Stormy" [attach=3] This is the one I'm most happy with. The "dunes" need some more work to make them really look like waves. I want more light hitting the terrain features and really emphasize the rock's structure but also keep, even enhance the rays of light at the same time. That's a balancing act, I know from other projects... And maybe I'll add a small trawler partially buried in that "ocean of sand". *humming "A Horse With No Name"*
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Danny on January 10, 2018, 06:45:45 PM
You 3 months to refine one of them, good luck picking one as all 3 have serious potential
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: archonforest on January 10, 2018, 07:02:25 PM
Those 3 renders are telling me that I should not even try... :-X
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: zaxxon on January 10, 2018, 07:18:13 PM
Whoa! Some great ideas already in place. I really like the various atmospheres, but I'm leaning towards number 3 at this point. Looks like we're all going to have to bring our "A" game to this contest!  :)
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Artice-3d on January 11, 2018, 04:03:53 AM
AndyWelder,  very very good... Your technique is very similar to mine, but one advice formation texture is a bit stretched, relax it and it will look much better, actually a photorealistically better!!  ;D ;)
---------------------------------------------------
Danny, at the end we can send just one of our final work?!
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Dune on January 11, 2018, 07:20:33 AM
You're back in full force, Andy. Good on you. I like your WIP's, and if I were to choose, I'd go for 1.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Artice-3d on January 11, 2018, 10:28:57 AM
Dune, i argee with you, 1 is the best!!  ;D 8) :o ;)
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on January 11, 2018, 01:33:13 PM
Thank you all for your encouraging words.
Just finished my power nap and woke up with a possible solution for the "ruptured PF's": A work around using my floating rocks from the past. I'm thinking of stacking copies of them and not to use that much displacement as was used here to create the rock formations/terrain features.
Off to try!  ;D
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: D.A. Bentley on January 11, 2018, 04:59:48 PM
Hey Andy,

I actually really like the #2 "Chinese Landscape" rendering.  What I would say though is I would love to see something more in the center/slightly right foreground, like one of your rock pillars, but not so quite as tall, so we can see some of the detail.  You could have a "Hero Tree" on top too.  Just a thought.  I keep wanting to zoom into the pillars to see more.  ;)

OR, another thought that just came to mind was maybe skip the center focal point, and frame in the rendering with something on both the right and left edge that's closer up.

Derek
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Artice-3d on January 11, 2018, 07:57:13 PM
Hope I'm doing this right...
There are three different projects/entries I'm working on and all of them are more or less flawed.

Andy i almost forgot to tell you- if you want to get rid of this little displacement holes, try to use  Render settings - Advanced - Subdivs settings - displacement filter to 2, 3 or 4... maybe it will help you a bit ;) 8)
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on January 11, 2018, 08:43:21 PM
@ Artice-3d
Quote
try to use  Render settings - Advanced - Subdivs settings - displacement filter to 2, 3 or 4...
I think that's a setting available in TG4? I can't find it but maybe that's because I'm using TG3...
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Artice-3d on January 11, 2018, 09:28:44 PM
@ Artice-3d
Quote
try to use  Render settings - Advanced - Subdivs settings - displacement filter to 2, 3 or 4...
I think that's a setting available in TG4? I can't find it but maybe that's because I'm using TG3...

Yes it is and it removes this kind of holes and pixels  ;) ;D
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on January 12, 2018, 12:47:28 PM
A retry of the "New Islands CTC" project; this time with stacked "floating rocks".[attach=1]
I wanted to preserve the arched features because that's one of the features I liked a lot in the original but because of the new approach they turned out a lot bigger now... Not so sure if I like it. The cliffs are IMO missing the cover of vegetation, that's for the next step. And so is a new mask for the "sea foam", a clip originally from Ade Levi a.k.a. Terrade. And now that I'm crediting: There is dandelO's "Planetary Grass Shader" used too, a bit tweaked by me.
Oh, and the features at the horizon are still there but because I changed the set-up I forgot to change the color so now they're white and hardly noticeable in that still hazy atmo. :-[
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Dune on January 12, 2018, 03:04:58 PM
It's getting interesting, some sort of agglomarate rock, but I would get rid of the 'rings'. They don't fit in that type of rock.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on January 12, 2018, 03:24:34 PM
Quote
some sort of agglomarate rock
The type I know as "Breccia" rock. Dang, someone with an eye for rock and who knows his rock.  :'( I was hoping this would become masked by the vegetation.  :-\
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Hannes on January 13, 2018, 09:38:38 AM
Very promising, René. Agree with Ulco about the rings.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Dune on January 13, 2018, 02:30:52 PM
Andy, you mean. It's the age, I'm sure  ;)
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: luvsmuzik on January 14, 2018, 01:27:01 PM
What a decision to pick and choose from this group! Promising results for sure!
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: inkydigit on January 15, 2018, 09:51:28 AM
These are killer starts Andy...
Quaking here!
Better get my thinking cap on!
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on January 15, 2018, 01:30:49 PM
The "New Islands" project is on the IC right now, looks like it received a possibly fatal load of buckshot right in its center...  :o[attach=1]
I don't know what happened, officer! We were chillin', kinda celebrating the first full sized render of the new setup... And then suddenly, bang, we saw how that dude in the middle exploded!! All the PF's... Just exploded! Weird, man... No, officer, the first partial render at the same size and detail level looked OK, everything smooth. No, like I said, I have no clue...*distant sirens getting more distant*
Off to the IC, looks like there's some work to be done... "Scalpel, please!"
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Dune on January 15, 2018, 02:57:52 PM
"Foutje, bedankt"  :P
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Kadri on January 15, 2018, 03:13:48 PM

Nice WIP. I like the general composition too.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on January 16, 2018, 06:24:29 PM
Not feeling up to par these days but managed to cure the exploded PF problem.
[attach=1]
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Dune on January 17, 2018, 06:17:49 AM
You have some lines in your water in the center. Maybe move the lake a bit, as I vaguely remember that's helping to get rid of them.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on January 17, 2018, 07:47:46 PM
Thank you for this advice, Ulco! I was thinking it was a render flaw showing a faulty merge of the render buckets. Will heed your advice.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: ajcgi on January 18, 2018, 11:40:24 AM
Explosions can get stuffed.  ;D Interesting piece.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on January 30, 2018, 07:54:22 AM
The experiment with the stacked spheres didn't turn out what I was hoping for... Curing one flaw just created an other and I ended up with a rock I didn't like at all. But the bright side is it did teach me a couple of things about PF's. Renders made during that phase are all small and in general low in detail, except this one, the one I called "The Sphincter"  ;D [attach=1] The full details didn't show up on an earlier low quality render so I did dress up the terrain a bit for testing purposes.
I went back to the "drawing board" and overhauled the original set-up: Removed most of the colors, tweaked the lateral displacements and fiddled with the settings of the PF's. Also decided to change the POV so there would be less water (to reduce render times) and sky. The focus still was on that arch and that's why it got more close up. This resulted in the two other cliffs being moved and, after some time generating new seeds for them I was quite happy with the two now visible. It also made  it inevitable IMO to change the image's aspect ratio.[attach=2]
In the process I dressed up the coastline but neglected the foam/surf distribution; that's still based on the former position of the cliffs.
 
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Hannes on January 30, 2018, 09:02:50 AM
Good decision. Looks great!!
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: cyphyr on January 30, 2018, 09:11:57 AM
Looking great. Remonds me or Dr No or the islands of Ha Long Bay.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: j meyer on January 30, 2018, 05:19:31 PM
Nice rocks.
The foam as is looks a bit like the photographer/viewer is on a boat coming from that arch.
Adds something, at least in my eyes.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Dune on January 31, 2018, 06:04:03 AM
This is much better indeed. You can keep this foam, but add some new around the rocks.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on January 31, 2018, 01:49:16 PM
Thank you all!
Quote
You can keep this foam, but add some new around the rocks.
That's what I planned and what I did.

Here's an iteration. Not sure if I'll go on with this one, maybe too populated with cliffs... Still thinking... But anyway the surfacing, or parts of it, will be ported to another project; I like it too much.
[attach=1]
At the moment I'm working on removing the strata from the "ceiling" of the tidal zone.
[attach=2]
After that do some tests with a foreground patch of rocks so the camera has some solid ground to stand on.

Oh, almost forgot: I'm doing some tests with negative displacements.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Dune on January 31, 2018, 03:42:43 PM
You have to work on some nice clouds too!
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on January 31, 2018, 04:10:25 PM
Quote
You have to work on some nice clouds too!
What are you saying?! These not nice clouds?!  ;)
I'm thinking of something dramatic like in one of the early sketches, the "Stormy" one. Some nice rays hitting spots that are worth it, shadows covering the not so great spots...  ;D
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Dune on February 01, 2018, 06:22:56 AM
Good idea.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on February 13, 2018, 07:09:56 PM
The long silence here didn't mean I was doing nothing. I focused on the atmosphere and lighting at first but got strange results I couldn't explain. Not very happy with the light in this one either but need some more time to experiment. What I do like in this one is the vegetation and to a lesser degree the tidal zone. Now, with higher detail and at a larger size I see a couple of things that can be improved there.
[attach=1]
What I don't understand is the appearance of those black spots in the water... Does anyone know a possible explanation?
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Jo Kariboo on February 13, 2018, 11:47:19 PM
I very like the last one! Nice, big and impressive!
Sorry I don't know for the black spot in water.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: mhaze on February 14, 2018, 11:39:59 AM
Last one is great!
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: luvsmuzik on February 17, 2018, 01:01:40 PM
Magnificent! Overall setup is so well done!
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on February 18, 2018, 09:59:40 AM
Thank you!

Next step: The foreground. A couple of Dune's grasses and a grass from lightning are a good base for possibly more vegetation like herbs or a small shrub to hide the slightly awkward displacement on the left.
[attach=1]
And those black spots keep appearing...
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Hannes on February 18, 2018, 11:07:51 AM
Wow, looks great!!
One minor crit: to me the foam pattern looks a bit too large. I think the cliffs are quite far away.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Jo Kariboo on February 18, 2018, 11:45:51 AM
Very nice! The foreground is a good addition!
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: masonspappy on February 18, 2018, 12:42:00 PM
Very cool!
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: bobbystahr on February 18, 2018, 06:49:12 PM
Wow, looks great!!
One minor crit: to me the foam pattern looks a bit to large. I think the cliffs are quite far away.

Agree with this, and I see no awkward displacement anywhere in this image....and I'm seeing the black artifacts in the water are still there. I have no solution but I'm sure someone does.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: SILENCER on February 24, 2018, 01:50:22 AM
Brilliant ideas here.
Those formations are great.
The curiosity I have about how you achieved that is a brain wobbler.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Dune on February 24, 2018, 06:18:04 AM
Did you try to raise the displacement tolerance (planet) or the force all edges of higher subdivision (inside render node)? Do the black spots change if you have a different water seed? Are they there without reflection, or transparency?
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: mhaze on February 24, 2018, 11:52:00 AM
Last one is terrific.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on March 05, 2018, 05:10:02 PM
Did miss the recent replies for some reason. :-\
@ Dune:
Quote
Do the black spots change if you have a different water seed? Are they there without reflection, or transparency?
Yup, the black spots change position when changing the water seed and they still did occur after setting transparency to zero. I also changed the wave height thinking there could be some interference with the water hitting the terrain surface. To no avail...
Quote
or the force all edges of higher subdivision (inside render node)
Now you got me flabbergasted Wait, it's dawning; will look into that later on.
Thank you, @ mhaze!
@ SILENCER: The files this project is based on can be found at the "Terragen Galleries" FB group. They're called "Floating Island Clean" and "The Ramp Clean". And here  at Planetside forums, in the files section there is this one: http://www.planetside.co.uk/forums/index.php/topic,23833.msg240697.html#msg240697 Happy play time! :)
@ Hannes:
Quote
One minor crit: to me the foam pattern looks a bit too large. I think the cliffs are quite far away.

Yup, you're right about that. In the latest version they're much smaller now. I also did add a trawler to give a sense of scale.

Now, here's the most recent render.
[attach=1]
Absolutely happy with the vegetation.
To-do's for the next and probably last version: I'll tilt/move the camera a bit upwards so there is less foreground terrain visible; it's the only way I can think of to get rid of that exploded PF. This will also change the position of the last render bucket and might solve the absolute extreme render time it took to finish this bucket: On a total of 60 hours of render time for this render, over 30 hours went into this small part.  :o But what else do you expect if you have someone like me playing with TGD's from someone else. Most of the time a really don't have clue, to be honest. I call this "Empiric Terragineering"  :-[
I did a few tests with different POV's this weekend and this gave me an idea for the lighting of the scene. Will test that after this post.

And I want to say "thank you for your patience and praises"
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on March 05, 2018, 05:58:06 PM
@ Dune:
Quote
the force all edges of higher subdivision (inside render node)
Could it be you're referring to a setting in TG4, not yet integrated into TG3? I went through all the tabs of the render node...
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: bobbystahr on March 05, 2018, 06:24:21 PM
@ Dune:
Quote
the force all edges of higher subdivision (inside render node)
Could it be you're referring to a setting in TG4, not yet integrated into TG3? I went through all the tabs of the render node...

Is it not in the advanced tab of the renderer, right next to raytrace everything? Subdiv Settings.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: j meyer on March 05, 2018, 06:33:15 PM
@ Dune:
Quote
the force all edges of higher subdivision (inside render node)
Could it be you're referring to a setting in TG4, not yet integrated into TG3? I went through all the tabs of the render node...

If it's there it is inside the render node, in the internal network. Accessed through the right click menu or the little + icon on the node.(If there is one already, which is not always the case, like in the default scene for example).
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on March 05, 2018, 06:46:04 PM
j meyer, your reply pointed me to the right place: [attach=1]

This is only accessible by right clicking the render node as it seems.
Thank you!
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Dune on March 06, 2018, 06:07:01 AM
It's very impressive Andy. The spots may also be artifacts in the rendering of reflections of inverted areas in the rocks above. If you know exactly where they'll appear you could add some object there  ;) (dolphin, other boat, rock sticking out of water (mask by simple shape))
The exploded PF can be masked by an extra local bush perhaps, or try a small simple shape and do some smoothing, or try to find the fractal that does it, and add a local simple shape to mask that particular displacement out. Lots of possibilities. I like this foreground.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Hannes on March 06, 2018, 01:35:55 PM
The last one looks fantastic! Too bad, there is this issue... :(
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: cyphyr on March 07, 2018, 12:43:32 PM
Dark and moody "The island of Dr Doom!" or something.
I'd maybe loose the pillar mid right so there is an open view through to the horizon.
The image is very even with all the elements a similar weight at the moment.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on March 13, 2018, 06:35:36 PM
An extra boat and some rock features added to mask the black spots. It was a bit of a rush job so I didn't check first, now I misplaced a rock... The shape of the rock features also is disappointing.
Got this all sorted out in a new render that is running now. I'm hoping it is the last test render.
[attach=1]
As you can see the foreground has slightly altered: I fiddled with the camera's position to avoid the part of the foreground that took so abnormal long to render. Also I did use a different PF in the foreground part. That worked out fine: Total render time of this one, with the same quality and size was little over 18 hours.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: bobbystahr on March 17, 2018, 02:32:50 AM
Anticipating a mindblowing final render...really like all the improvements.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on March 17, 2018, 08:12:13 AM
Quote
Anticipating a mindblowing final render...
Well, don't hold your breath... The render that was on its way when I wrote my last reply was almost finished when Windows decided to restart, so it seems, and I was looking at the log-on screen when I woke up yesterday morning... Reason for this behavior? Unknown... It wasn't an update because I "disabled" that by postponing updates for 30 days. Also there wasn't the usual message telling Windows did get an update.
So I did start another render, 3000x1200, detail 0.8 and AA 8 and if this one finishes it'll become my entry. If it doesn't finish I'll quit, that simple... 
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: mhaze on March 17, 2018, 10:45:05 AM
Great image! I've had the black spot problem before but I really cannot remember how I solved it! I've been looking at the file but really can't remember. Renders crashing happens to me sometimes! usually after I've been using TG non stop for several days. It often pays to restart before an important render and always save before a render.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Jo Kariboo on March 17, 2018, 12:12:32 PM
It is an excellent and impressive rendering. Personally I would simply correct black spots in post prod. The purpose of the contest is not to give the impression that the app is perfect and without small bug sometimes.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on March 17, 2018, 09:34:12 PM
Thank you, both.
Quote
Personally I would simply correct black spots in post prod.
That's what I would do too, if it wasn't for a contest that emphasizes on avoiding post processing. At least, that's my take on it...
Quote
It often pays to restart before an important render and always save before a render.

Once bitten... That's standard MO.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Dune on March 18, 2018, 06:03:24 AM
I don't think blotting out a few pixels will be a problem, as judges can compare the raw output anyway and judge the amount of post. Too much post and you're work is dumped  8)
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on March 25, 2018, 06:52:06 PM
Finally, after 206:34:21, the render has finished... ::)
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Kexikus on March 25, 2018, 07:31:59 PM
Beautiful!
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on March 25, 2018, 07:44:34 PM
Thank you, Kexikus!
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: bobbystahr on March 25, 2018, 07:45:39 PM
Holy Crap, 8 1/2 days rendering...IMHO that render is well worth the wait/time spent...
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Danny on March 25, 2018, 08:03:26 PM
I don't think blotting out a few pixels will be a problem, as judges can compare the raw output anyway and judge the amount of post. Too much post and you're work is dumped  8)

I don't see this as a problem Andy. If its just a s quick clone stamp you will be ok
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: luvsmuzik on March 25, 2018, 08:32:47 PM
Great job! Congrats on no interruptions on the render! Did you have to disconnect from the internet and hide you work station to avoid that? ;D
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on March 25, 2018, 09:19:58 PM
Thank you, Bobby and luvsmuzik!
@ Danny: I'm happy with the way the workaround turned out so no need for any corrections.

Quote
Congrats on no interruptions on the render! Did you have to disconnect from the internet and hide you work station to avoid that? ;D
No, just close the door to my bomb shelter and cross my fingers. Feels weird being able to use them again now the render has finished  :P
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: bobbystahr on March 25, 2018, 10:31:02 PM
Feels weird being able to use them again now the render has finished  :P


Ha ha ha ha ha
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Dune on March 26, 2018, 06:18:44 AM
Impressive job you've done, Andy. Good luck!
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Hannes on March 26, 2018, 08:04:35 AM
Wow, quite some time! Great work. Good luck!!
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: mhaze on March 26, 2018, 09:00:31 AM
Superb work! Good luck!
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: archonforest on March 26, 2018, 09:45:24 AM
Wow! Superb! :)
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: AndyWelder on March 26, 2018, 12:46:50 PM
Thank you all!  :-[
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Jo Kariboo on March 27, 2018, 02:31:02 AM
Beautifull work!  :)
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Hetzen on March 30, 2018, 02:41:01 PM
Really good render Andy. Looks as if it could be a logo if you looked down on those structure.
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: bobbystahr on March 30, 2018, 05:00:59 PM
Really good render Andy. Looks as if it could be a logo if you looked down on those structure.

heh heh, odd...I thought that as well. Great minds and all that....
Title: Re: AndyWelder WIP's
Post by: Kadri on April 11, 2018, 12:13:24 PM

Looks great. The first image i had was kinda like yours actually.