Arrakeen (Day)

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8.75/10 rating
(224 votes)

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By request, here's a day version of my Arrakeen render. Of course, my original vision was far darker and more ominous but I do like to provide options I tried to make this one as bright as the other was dark so to provide a true contrast.

If you swap between the two images quickly you would probably notice that some building and rocks have moved. The reason for this is that certain elements looks fine in the shadows but needed to be retooled for the day version. Hopefully it isn't too jarring for folks.

And yes, the center figure hasn't moved...

Member Comments

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"Just Saying"
I really do like this because it reminds me of what I imagined from Dune the book. (which is one of my favorites)

Tue December 15, 2015 at 1:13 pm

I love this scene, and the darker variant as well. I also appreciate that you have started to provide 21:9 renderings of much of your newer artwork.

If I have one complaint about this image, it's that for me, the lone Fremen staring up at the city absolutely *makes* the scene. But unfortunately he is absent in the 21:9 version (cropped out, I suppose). Such a pity.

Sat November 15, 2014 at 1:36 pm

Michael N
I like desert scenes. I really wanted to try this one for the Minecraft Contest but there's no way I could load that many chunks at once.

Tue November 4, 2014 at 11:48 pm

I use a dual monitor setup, 3840x1200, and on that width, I think the focal plane needs to be shifted up a little bit because the buildings look too slanted inward at the extreme edges. Too much FishEye effect, and believably falls off.

Sand texture suggests rocks the size of the character's head, as Nathan suggested. It should be much finer.

Currently on my phone and my Dual Monitor setup. Love it.

I've been a life member since the Pleistocene.

Sun July 7, 2013 at 8:51 pm

Looks wonderful, but I have to wonder how fast the wind would have to blow to give the ripple effect on baseball sized gravel. I'm thinking that city must be made of tungsten carbide to survive. Or diamond.

Tue June 18, 2013 at 8:40 am

Love it! Want to see more of these!

Fri May 17, 2013 at 8:36 pm

I really like this as a wallpaper, and was tempted to get a print of it. However, it looks to me like the sand texture doesn't work right when the image is blown up. The individual grains of sand seem to be huge. I think you may have done this to accentuate the texture, and it does work well at lower resolutions. But for large prints it looks like it would annoy me after a while.

Fri April 26, 2013 at 10:35 pm

I actually started on 3.1 and used Windows 95 between 96-99. I switched to Windows NT after that so I could use multiple processors.

Fri April 26, 2013 at 12:02 am

"Windows 95"
If you started your artwork in 1995 then you would have to have used Windows 95.

By the way the picture is Awesome!

Fri April 26, 2013 at 11:23 am

I really like this one--and it's not even blue! ;o) I like this one better than the night version too, but I do agree that the buildings backdrop is not quite right. It's not that they are flat, but that you have nothing going on behind them to show that the world (or rather sky) is continuing out to... space. It does rather remind me of the perspective that we are on a model (think Beetlejuice!) and can't see the "real" world beyond it.

Wed April 24, 2013 at 5:52 pm

It's really Mind Blowing. It remind me of the movie Priest!

Mon April 22, 2013 at 8:20 pm

Love it. Reminds me of the old Dune books and the Dune 2000 PC game :D Great memories!!

Thu April 18, 2013 at 5:43 pm

I see your point. I usually add the figure (or something similar) to provide scale. In this case, however, I intended the figure to represent Muad'dib pondering his final assault on Arrakeen and had hoped the book readers would make the connection.

Thu April 18, 2013 at 8:56 am

The lone figure seems to be a common feature in a number of of your pictures. I think it gives or is intended to provide perspective on the buildings in the background, but given the "Dune" thought here it seems a bit of a stretch....just a thought??!!

Thu April 18, 2013 at 8:39 am

The lone figure seems to be a common feature in a number of of your pictures. I think it gives or is intended to provide perspective on the buildings in the background, but given the "Dune" thought here it seems a bit of a stretch....just a thought??!!

Thu April 18, 2013 at 8:39 am

I like this render too, but I like the night version better. The buildings in the background look a little flat, as if they are unpainted models. The sand dunes and the coloring are fantastic. I would like a version without the buildings if possible.

Sun April 14, 2013 at 7:09 am

I've been a big fan over the years of your pieces where you have a lone person completely immersed in an overwhelmingly imposing environment. This is definitely one of the better ones. Thank you for this one.

Sat April 13, 2013 at 9:49 am

Tyler K
When I look at this piece, along with the original I immediately draw thoughts of the video game Journey. I think this is your best of 2013 so far! It captures the sense of scale just as well as any of your past works and causes the mind to explore other worlds.

Sat April 13, 2013 at 4:54 am

This is epic in scale, rich in content. love it. A lot goes unspoken about what the individual is going to do, or what they are thinking looking at the city atop the cliffs. Very cool stuff.

Fri April 12, 2013 at 10:56 pm

Oh my Mylotar.. You're entitled to your opinion, but geez !!

Fri April 12, 2013 at 10:49 pm

Honestly, compared to the rest of your work years ago even, this is shoddy and you know it-I feel. The graphics quality pails in comparison to works done even 8 years ago, this honestly looks like a piece you made from the 90s and you know what I'm talkin bout. I love your stuff so much but this year and last year has been kinda lacking compared to the previous 10 years of amazing work.

Fri April 12, 2013 at 10:44 pm

"Multi 16:9"
I've updated the multiscreen 16:9 images so they now include the figure. I will update the night version shortly. It was a bit complicated adapting this one since so much is going on in the top/bottom frame.

Fri April 12, 2013 at 4:45 pm

"Just made the top 10!"
Currently number 10 of the all-time favorites. Wow, what a winner, Ryan!

Fri April 12, 2013 at 12:33 am

I have a problem when i try to download the dualscreen wall (3840x1080 or the 5k something res... the human wont show up it stops right after the dunes is there a way to get the wall that is displayed as dualscreen...thanks inadvance

Fri April 12, 2013 at 12:21 am

sorry about the 11, but i gave the original version a 10, and like this version even more. the buildings are ethereal.

Fri April 12, 2013 at 11:36 am

New favorite wallpaper! And that is saying a lot, I've been with you since 2001. Dune was my favorite SF book of all time; it literally changed my world when I was a teenager. The night version was nice, but this is glorious!

Fri April 12, 2013 at 10:15 am

First Valinor and now this? Simply amazing. I love these science-fiction inspired images!

If you consider doing Tolkien again, how about Fall of Gondolin, or Thangorodrim, as possible subjects? =)

Fri April 12, 2013 at 8:52 am

I like this one better than the night version. I still love the original but this one for some reason just 'pops' more with the daylight and being able to see the city up above.

Fri April 12, 2013 at 7:22 am

Have been subscribed to DB for years but this is my first comment. I absolutely love this wallpaper and prefer it to the night version. I feel it works as a tribute to Dune, the harsh yellow of the sand conveying the harsh life on Arrakis and the dark blue of the sky the colour of a Fremen's eyes. Without looking at the sci-fi link, it's simply a beautiful wallpaper. My favourite since Serenade.

Fri April 12, 2013 at 6:48 am

A stunning image. Really great work.

Do you think you may create any further literary inspired images?

Fri April 12, 2013 at 6:44 am

Great as usual :) But where is Shai-Hulud? :)

Fri April 12, 2013 at 3:31 am

"10 !"
When I look at this version, I feel like I'm on Arrakis more than with the darker version.

I'm almost expecting to see a sandworm between two dunes.

Fri April 12, 2013 at 1:57 am

I think it's a statue there are is nothing in the sand indicating that it has moved.... Thanks Ryan I love space stuff but you always bring out other things that make me say "Um this is really cool". :)

Thu April 11, 2013 at 7:53 pm

Now the figure has been walking all night and hasn't got anywhere in all that time? Maybe he is walking in circles. :)

Thu April 11, 2013 at 5:22 pm

Ooowee! I love this type of science fiction inspired art. I like the day version enough that I just HAD to comment!

Thu April 11, 2013 at 3:37 pm

Love, love, love the colours. The sand is so vibrant while the wall and city have such an ethereal quality. Definitely prefer this to the night version.

Thu April 11, 2013 at 3:10 pm

Ooowee! I love this type of science fiction inspired art. I like the day version enough that I just HAD to comment!

Thu April 11, 2013 at 3:04 pm

Great art as usual, day and night both remind me of reading the novels. One complaint - some the multiscreen versions (3840 x 1080 at least) crop out the human on the sand, I think that detracts a bit from the contrast, no reference to scale. Still beautiful though.

Thu April 11, 2013 at 10:54 am


Thu April 11, 2013 at 9:53 am


Thu April 11, 2013 at 9:43 am

This is much better than the dark image. While the dark was nice, I just couldn't see many details. I like the details on the rocks and city.

Thu April 11, 2013 at 9:28 am

Much better than the night version. I'm a very big fan of the Dune trilogy. Keep up the great work!!!

Thu April 11, 2013 at 9:05 am

"Infinitely better"
Ryan, the light adds so much more to this piece. Besides teh ovbious that you can actually see the setting, it truly reveals the beauty and contrast of the dunes vs the high cliff civilization. Much Much better.

Thu April 11, 2013 at 8:22 am

While the Night version certainly evokes the feel of Dune better, I love the bright colors of this version so much. Great work on both, but this is the one going on my desktop!

Thu April 11, 2013 at 6:45 am

I like the day version :) it's much better than the night version

Thu April 11, 2013 at 1:59 am

Oh sensational as always. Just unreal ! Thanks again Ryan. You've made my day :-)

Thu April 11, 2013 at 0:41 am

This one looks great! Love the detail, prefer this one much more than the night version.

Wed April 10, 2013 at 11:01 pm

PLEASE PLEASE do a pickle jar version without the mountains and buildings in the back and I think its about time for a tropical or island background !

Wed April 10, 2013 at 10:26 pm

"Mirage? "
It almost looks like a mirage......

Wed April 10, 2013 at 7:48 pm

Excellent work! I prefer this daylight version with the beautiful gold, silver and blue tones over the night version which was more rust tones on my screen. I like seeing the details in the rocks and buildings. The sky isn't that bad but I think it would look more real if it was a gradient. I don't know if I can post a link, but here is a photo for compare:

Wed April 10, 2013 at 7:41 pm

Greg in CA
"So are people complaining about the grain in this one...?"
You know, because it's a pictures a many grains of sand? I got a million of 'em!

Wed April 10, 2013 at 7:02 pm


I feel like I'm actually there. It makes me want to go re-read my copy of Dune...

Wed April 10, 2013 at 6:29 pm

Awesome. I loved the night version and this one is just as great.

Wed April 10, 2013 at 4:46 pm

Eel River
"10/10 "
I like the sharpness and all the fine detail. Very nice work, Ryan! (Only, there is no 1024 x 600.)

Wed April 10, 2013 at 2:56 pm

"Re: Sky Color"
Changing the color of the sky will change all of the other colors too since I am using global illumination. Everything will be harsh and blown out. Believe me, I tried a number of different sky color's and lighting settings before settling on what I posted and this was the best compromise I could come up with. I wanted the image to get darker as the eyes traveled up the screen and the viewer to have darker "haven" to rest their eyes from the bright sands.

I suppose I could keep trying if the majority feel it is an inferior image, but the amount of positive feedback I've already received leads me to believe that just as many Members would be put off by any changes I might make. Perhaps it is just a matter of taste. IDK...

Wed April 10, 2013 at 2:34 pm

Could you do a version with the sky at least twice as bright? It feels really unrealistic - since the buildings are really bright and the sky very dark. Physically speaking, all the shadowed areas of the buildings that the sun doesn't hit are lit by the sky, so either they should be a heck of a lot darker or the sky brighter - it really ruins it for me, which is sad because I really like the colours in this version :)

Also maybe the noise in the sand is a little too obvious, perhaps halve it and see how it feels to you then - at this distance it would be barely noticable.

Wed April 10, 2013 at 2:25 pm

Ryan, you've managed to outdo even yourself here. Spectacular! Of course, the fact that I'm a huge Frank Herbert fan might have something to do with it. But nonetheless... I hope that desert wanderer hasn't forgotten his/her 'thumper' :-)

Yep, way better than the night version.

Wed April 10, 2013 at 2:24 pm

I liked the original night version, but this one is so striking, I had to comment. Wow! It's a lot easier to see all the detail in the buildings in this version.

Wed April 10, 2013 at 2:17 pm

"7? 8?"
Overall, I like it. But I agree the color of the sky looks strange; I'm not sure why, or if it needs to be lighter or darker. Perhaps darker, since the cliff and buildings are so light. Too, the windows, openings, and arches are the same color as the sky, and perhaps that's why the buildings seem washed out. OTOH, I like the texture of the sand in front.

Wed April 10, 2013 at 2:03 pm

Absolutely love it. It is an excellent contrast to the dark version. I can feel the heat burning through my screen. Excellent work!!

Wed April 10, 2013 at 2:02 pm

hmmm... I'm liking the day version. However, the transition from the bleached out/dusty rock face to a darker blue sky, not a bright sunny blue just looks odd to me. I would think that the sky would be lots brighter than that. Just looks odd. Just odd in comparison to your twilight view. And the sand is too coarse in the foreground.

Sorry to be so picky on this one. Twilight version wins it for me, unless some changes are made to this one.

Wed April 10, 2013 at 1:17 pm

I loved Frank Herbert's, Dune, and I think this really captures the imagery that was conveyed in the book.

Wed April 10, 2013 at 12:32 am

"re: Ratings"
Thanks for the comments guys. I would only ask that if you rate the piece in your comments that you also submit a rating via the drop down underneath the image. That helps me build a Top Ten rated page. Thanks!!

Wed April 10, 2013 at 11:39 am

I loved the cliff wall and city in the night version, but this one's even better - the yellow to blue transition and the sunlight picking out all the crags in the rockface is just awesome!

Wed April 10, 2013 at 11:35 am

Much better than the night version (which I rated 4/10)

The clarity does the scene much more justice.

Wed April 10, 2013 at 11:30 am

I like it better than the night version.

Really good would be if the Dual and tripple version come... ;-)

Wed April 10, 2013 at 11:25 am

LOL Thanks for the heads up!

Wed April 10, 2013 at 11:15 am

Beautiful... but isn't it Arrakeen?

Wed April 10, 2013 at 11:10 am

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