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Old 30-04-2012, 12:52 AM   #1
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Planet on fire

Hi all,

I'm working on a short CG intro movie for a pet project of mine, a sci-fi game modification. As part of the process, I have to create a number of scenes and assets to be used in the final animation, and would love to get some constructive criticism about the various elements I'll post in this thread.

I've been working on the project for a few days now, so I'll post what I got since the beginning, instead of just skipping to the latest stuff, so you can say how everything evolved.

Right now, I'm working on the backdrop scene for the movie - an earth-like planet. The planet should both be eye-catching and clearly in distress. I do all render passes in Softimage, with compositing and post-processing in Nuke.

First render draft of the planet:

Backdrop update 1:
Did some color correction, and also added a more colorful nebula effect to the background. The starfield was also updated to include a greater variety of stars, plus some post-process volumetric rays for the nebula.
Since the camera won't be panning for the majority of scenes, I decided to keep the nebula background as a simple composited image - it will also help distinguish all the debris and objects in the foreground, as opposed to having it against a mostly black starfield.

Backdrop update 2:
Created a simple particle system with ICE using strands, to see how some flaming debris would add to the whole thing.

Backdrop update 3:
Added smoke trails for the flaming "meteors", also reduced their number. Not really happy with how the alpha channel got rendered out for the particles, you can see the screen blend mode doesn't work well for smoke and the meteors are too faint as well. Need to tweak how the particles render out and fix the meteor tails.
Also added a sun in the composition.

Opinions welcome!
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Last edited by ManSh00ter; 30-04-2012 at 10:49 AM..
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Old 30-04-2012, 01:45 AM   #2
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Nice to see someone else using Softimage
Its looking good, although the meteors look like they're too saturated, maybe drop it down a tad so they blend in a bit better and dont draw as much focus.
Maybe make them more yellow instead of orange.


Also may I ask how you got the strands to glow like that, can you just apply a glow property to them? Because I tried that and it didn't work.

Softimage User.


Last edited by Krallis; 30-04-2012 at 01:55 AM..
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Old 30-04-2012, 07:52 AM   #3
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Thanks for the reference picture, that will come in handy for the planet smoke.

The glow comes from the Glow volume shader applied to the render pass. The older versions of Softimage called it Lume Glow, this one is just Glow and I have to say it works really well when you need to make something look hot and bright.

It is applied post-render though and it will appear on all bright areas, so there's that (you can isolate objects which receive the effect, but the process is a bit convoluted). I think they should call the Bloom shader because that's what it basically is.
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Old 30-04-2012, 03:15 PM   #4
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reminds me of mass effect
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