It took me about a year to get back to it but I am happy to report winter has finally come to Gotham. The changes needed for winter are a bit more complicated than for the warmer seasons but I think it turned out pretty well.
I hope you enjoy it. I will try to have the multiscreen up shortly!"
"Happy Holidays! This is, of course, an update to my "Blue Christmas" which I rendered first using World Builder in 1999, then again using Lightwave in 2002. This is my first version using Vue d'Esprit.
It would be an understatement to say that this was a difficult render to produce. Without getting too technical I will just say that you can really get yourself into trouble by cranking up the quality settings in Vue. Also, I've found the new version of Vue doesn't even begin to accurately estimate the render time remaining.
Fortunately I was able to finish the render (though I had to restart it a few times) and I think it turned out pretty well. I do see a few things I would like to tweak but I might wait until after the Holidays to do any re-renders. The sad thing is that even after all this time, this render is really only my first hi-res draft. Better to post what I have though and fix it later..
"On December 2nd I was sitting and waiting for a render to finish
which I decided it would be fun to do an "IAMA" (Ask me Anything)
on Reddit.com. Redditor
"poker_face" asked if I could "draw" a Reddit Alien (TM). My
answer was "We'll See", which was taken to mean no.
As my kids know, "We'll See" can sometimes mean yes. I
had a such a nice visit with the Reddit community that I thought
it was the least I could do to try my hand that the iconic Alien.
Most Redditors seemed to know me from my "Fluorescence" mushrooms
so I thought it would be fun to combine the two. Especially since
my Christmas render is still churning. I roughed this out
and rendered it on my third-string workstation using Lightwave
This one is dedicated specifically to Redditor "Rethread".
As requested: Something "warm and fuzzy" for the Redditors.
"My first experiment using Mandelbulber, an open-source 3D fractal renderer. This once rendered in 7 hours at 5280 x 3295 on Bucephalus. I called this one "Helios" because my son Jason (5) told me this one looked like a sunrise. My other son Ian (8) thought it looked like a Sarlaac. . ."
"I've always loved underwater scenes and was thrilled to learn that Vue 10 had a new water rendering engine. I worked on this scene for about a week and it's gone through quite a few different revisions. Light and color behave differently underwater and this has been a learning experience for me.
This was my latest render and I would say that I am around 80% happy with it. I started in to fixing the last 19% when tragedy struck. Vue crashed and for some strange reason refused to reopen my scene file. The backup appears to be corrupted too. I'm glad my kids were at school when that happened because I get in trouble when I swear in front of them.
Anyway, the first file was lost so I worked over the weekend rebuilding it. I've changed a thing or two since the original (which can be found in the Pickle Jar). I've moved some things around and added some more sea life to the scene (the title has changed accordingly).
Hope you enjoy it! I look forward to many more underwater scenes with the new Vue render engine!
"A night-time winter version of my "Elegy" wallpaper. I rendered this one shortly after posting the original Autumn version, but thought it would be better to post it later in the season (a little closer to Halloween)."
Just as I thought you had not shown snow falling except on GG winter, you introduce us to this. Oh, and thank you for adding three wolves. I understand that odd numbers are more asthetically pleasing, but I would rather see two of these magnificant creatures than one (probably means it has no pack-not good) as on Desert Snow and Desert Dawn.
"I've always thought galaxies were the most incredible structures in existence. The title here, of course, is in homage to Professor Stephen Hawking.
The second render has some added nebula, star clusters, and other "irregularities" as suggested by some of my Members."
I love that there are many features from our own galaxy in this piece. That provides in a more familiar feel. It gives me a little jolt of excitement when I see another nebula that I recognize, and this keeps me looking at it.
"My Halloween offering for 2011. My first version was a bit understated so I ramped up the evil for v.2. A number of folks suggested that I make the castle look a bit older and in disrepair, but I was really going for a "Dracula in his prime" look here.
"This one is a "mental photograph" of sorts. I was driving on an eastern Iowa freeway in mid-Sept 2011 when I looked to my right and saw a green, summer-like, wooded area with this one blazing red tree sticking out like a torch. I only glimpsed the scene for about 5 seconds, but I thought it would make an interesting wallpaper. I fired up Vue when I got home and constructed this scene from memory (with a bit of artistic license). I hope you like it!
The third and fourth versions I rendered deviate a bit from my initial inspiration. The second version looked very much like what I saw on the roadside, but I wanted to try something a little more subtle. Vue doesn't allow you to vary the leaf color on a "per-branch" level so I rendered a few different shades and composited them in Photoshop."
Well, you know, some people feel the need to trash the work of others to make themselves feel better about what's lacking in their own lives. First Blush in all its superb iterations is one of my fall favorites; it always goes up in September. Thanks, DMT. And thank you, Ryan!
"In August 2011 a Member (thanks Manu!) sent me a link to a photo on National Geographic's website which reminded him of my "Autumnwood" wallpaper. I thought it would be a fun project to make my own version of the scene and this is the result. Now, it isn't a complete copy. I didn't have the photo open in another window while I was working on it, but it was definitely inspired by the NatGeo photo however. "
I am looking at the autumn wallpapers and deciding which to use. I think they are your best overall collections. I use this one every year and have since it came out. Several others are my favorites as well.
"I was watching TV a few nights ago and had the good fortune to catch "NOVA: Hunting the Hidden Dimension". I was floored! Now I already knew a great deal about fractals but this documentary really brought home how essential they are to my work. Of course I immediately fired up my copy of Apophysis. This is the result. My first fractal render since 2008..."
"Here's a second, more "conventional" version of "The Last Throes", without the "dust experimentation" that quite a few thought muddied the scene.
I was experimenting with some new ways of generating outer space "dust". The scene started in Lightwave (the stellar "phenomena") and then I used the resulting render as a backdrop in Vue d'Esprit to add the dust. I used the resulting combination as yet another backdrop in Lightwave to add the planets. Then back into Vue for one more layer of dust. I may do some more playing around with this technique in the future..."
"I didn't really set out to update Cosmic Shoals when I started this project. Rather I set out to model a globular cluster (and some of that is still in the image) but the story "grew in the telling".
Technical note: In the past I have used Zbrush for "landforms" such as these (see "Circumpolar) but this time I chose to use Vue's built in "symmetrical terrains". By adjusting the clipping range you can make all sorts of interesting shapes without the memory overhead of importing .OBJs.
Jessie told me this one reminded her of some of my earlier work, and I tend to think this is because of the lack of any vegetation or the other objects I tend to scatter around using Vue's ecosystems. I tried adding some "alien flora" here and there but nothing seemed to look right (given the scale of the scene). I may yet play around with that but I thought it looked nice enough to share as is. Hope you enjoy it!"
"A little something I worked up on my MBP while waiting for
"Heliocentric (Night)" to render on my main box over the weekend.
Once it finished I applied the finishing touches on Bucephalus.
I didn't notice while I was making it but my son Ian (upon
seeing this render for the first time) mentioned that it looked
like it was from the movie "Tron" we had just watched for our Friday Family
movie night. I had to agree that he was right.
This is my first "mandala" since 2008. I know at the time it was suggested that I do something different with the theme next time, so I hope this qualifies!"
"This is my third version of "Heliocentric (Night)". I also
gave in to temptation with the second version and added a huge
planet in the sky. Some folks liked, it but I can see where
maybe less might work better in this case. For the third
version I've gone with a quarter moon to light the scene.
The first version took nearly 80 hours to render on Bucephalus
at 3277 x 2048. The second took only 15. The third took 17 ;)
I was informed by my son Ian yesterday the two characters by
the fire are indeed myself and him. I guess it is official then..."
"Getting more comfortable with Vue 9.5's new cloud controls. They really do allow you to place clouds wherever you like. Very powerful! The previous versions had one character standing on the rocks overlooking the valley, but a number of folks seemed to see two. In the end I thought it would be a good idea to actually have two people together. In this case they are the sorcerer and "assassin" that I used for my "Arcana" scene. So does this scene happen before or after the events in "Arcana"? You tell me..."
"When I was working on "Phraxis" back in 2009 I came to the point (which I do with all of my space projects) where I had to decide if I was going to keep it a "space render" (as seen outside the window of a space ship) or a "planetary render" (as seen from the ground). I had already finished the space scene so I whipped up a quick and dirty scene to see what a view from the ground would look like. I decided to post the space render and moved on with my life.
After switching my workstation over to Bucephalus in June 2011 I was looking through my old hard disk for projects to revisit (mostly old multiscreens that I neglected to render). I found my old "planetary" version of Phraxis and decided to post it in the Pickle Jar.
The reaction was so positive that I decided to spend a few more hours and flesh out the rough scene so it could have its own place in my gallery. Thanks for the feedback everyone!
""The comet's tail spread across the dawn, a red slash that bled above the crags of Dragonstone like a wound..." -- A Clash of Kings (Prologue)
After seeing the season finale of HBO's "Game of Thrones" I was inspired to revisit my Harbinger wallpaper and create a new version for fans of the series (and myself) who are waiting impatiently for season 2. This one depicts the blood red comet that hangs ominously over all of the happenings in Westeros during the second book.
The blue Harbinger was the first wallpaper I worked on after a long, very arduous, hospital stay in 2009. Reading "Clash of Kings" during that time was truly one of my few joys at the time.
I had originally posted this in my Pickle Jar, but the reaction was so positive that I decided it had earned a place in my gallery.
I still love this wallpaper, originally before reading the inspiration was Song of Ice and Fire, it came across as the comet in the North from the Black Company, especially as it was called Harbinger in the book. Might be something others would be interested in as well.
"My first project designed and rendered entirely on my new workstation (Bucephalus). Thanks to all the Members and people who pitched in (over $3000) so I could work on such an insane tower of technology!
I've had this as my home screen wallpaper on two phones now and it is just so damned gorgeous. It actually showed me the wallpaper motion effect on my Galaxy S6 Edge. This background uses that to amazing effect to look more 3D.
"Another project that started out on my MacBook Pro while waiting for a render to complete on my main box. This one is a study of interconnected opposition (or yin yang), a theme I have been pondering quite a bit lately.
The "final" version (above) is actually a Photoshop composite of a couple of different renders. Each had elements that I wanted to keep so I combined them (sort of in keeping with the theme of the piece I thought). Not sure how I will accomplish the multiscreen though..."
This theme seems to be so prevalent with these color choices that there must be something to it. Look at the Star Wars: The Force Awakens poster; this happens to be the same color scheme. I also have seen it in the Cirque du Soleil: KÀ poster that came out in 2014 (or so). Great choice and seems to have been a trend setter.
"I've posted the latest update to this on on 5/28. It's mostly where I want it, but only because it was so hard to work with this scene on my old workstation. I may yet have a tweak or two to make. I've tweaked the waterline for the first versions and changed a few colors here and there.
"After I posted "Tropic of
Thetis" it was suggested that a night version might include
some bio-luminescence in the water. This is my third version
the night scene. In the earlier versions(available in the Pickle Jar) I played around with the brightness of the clouds and the amount of haze. This version is more like the first, with the brighter clouds, a bit more haze, and the bio-luminescence shifted to the orange (away from pink).
I've also added some 'glowing foam' in the surf. I would be interested to hear your feedback on that.
I LOVE THIS ONE. one tiny comment - the bio-lumo in tv nature films is sometimes a yellowy green?...anyway, what do i knowthis is as usual very UPLIFTING...My 'stick men' for some strange reason have been turned down by the Tate Modern Gallery in London !...perhaps they do have taste after all?!?
but compared to your ,CREATIVE , COLOURFUL & YES, UPLIFTING
PICTURES..well they say it all ! All the best .HONEY
"A Memberasked recently
why I hadn't made an Easter picture since 2003 and I didn't have
an answer. I guess I thought I had made as good an Easter Egg
picture with the
original Ostereier as I could possibly do.
Anyway, I recently tried to open up my 2003 scene file (to do
a higher res render) and was horrified to see that some of my egg
objects were missing. As I looked at the incomplete scene I
started playing with a few of the eggs that were left and after a
while I guess I had redone them all.
The resulting render is a little on the trippy side, but it is
4/20 after all...
"This one started out as a doodle on my MBP while I waited for
another render to finish. I put a bit more work into this
second version but I wanted to retain the uncomplicated feel of
As the title suggests, this is a day version of my "Tropical Moon" series (set in a different
part of the moon). Some have suggested a night/sunset version of
this scene would look nice and I am inclined to agree..."
"I've always been a sucker for magic and fantasy. Someofmyearliestrendersattempttocapturethis. For whatever reason it had been a quite a long time since I've tried anything "magical". After reading "The Chronicles of Narnia" to my 7-year old son Ian, doing a little CRPG gaming, and purchasing a new version of Lightwave the time seemed right to dust off my spellbook in Winter 2011.
For the record: The figure in the center of the "magic" was Ian's idea."
"This is my first render using Lightwave 10. The image is 100%
Hypervoxels (no polygons).
I've always been fascinated by the processes that go on at the
very large/very small ends of the scale. It has been mentioned
that this scene strongly resembles histone proteins (see the
diagram on this page). What do you think? "
"This project went through many different twists and turns over the course of Nov/Dec 2010. Perhaps I will post those renders in the Pickle Jar in the weeks ahead. I'd hoped that it would be my last project of 2010, but the render went long and it is my first offering of 2011. "
I like this one; I've been a member for awhile but hadn't seen this before. There seems to be a problem with the source file for the single screen 1920x1080 image: I've tried from different browsers, and it always downloads as 1920x960...