Forest Sunrise

Started by sjefen, August 15, 2019, 07:08:33 am

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Overall a very lovely scene. I especially like the forested middle ground. I do find the large rock asset a bit too well lit as well, but that would be a minor correction were you to work further on the scene. The tree stump looks out of place and too large to my eyes, but once again that's the artist's decision. The overall lighting is romantic rather than 'realistic' and I appreciate the direction you're heading in. As to the 3D preview: I share your pain. Showing large poly counts in the viewport is problematic; TG does a decent job, but my experience with Vue and Houdini really isn't much better. I'd like to see some more 'management tools' to manipulate numerous large poly populations and hero objects, but development time is limited and the 'Roadmap' has other priorities. Hopefully you'll continue to pursue complex scenes like this, I really enjoy your work and your artistry.


Very beautiful picture!
I like the mood in the scenery, very calm.

The colours are also well aquainted to the whole scene.
Warm sunlight, rich colours, balanced which takes you away.



Great potential in this scene! I think I definitely feel what you are trying to achieve here, scenes like these are on my TG bucketlist too, so to say :)

Given your experience and TG expertise I think you can definitely pull off to make this more photorealistic.
At the moment I find the indirect lighting very bright and too green. Overall contrast is too low, especially if you consider how a photograph would look when made under similar lighting conditions in the real world.
As Hannes said it looks flat because of these two issues. The path tracer is vastly superior to the legacy renderer when it comes to shadow depth and indirect lighting accuracy, so this scene should definitely be a very suitable one for it.

Agura Nata

"Live and Learn!"



Thanks for the suggestions guys. I decided to start from scratch with
this scene, so now it's completely different, but I hope it's better.
Suggestions are always welcome  :)

One of my biggest problems have always been my models. I mainly
use Xfrog models and most of them are low poly models. This makes
it difficult to come close to them cause of the quality and I often feel
it's holding me back a little bit. I decided to try an fix this and made
my own displacement map for them which I used in this scene.

- Terje

AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X
32,0 GB RAM
GeForce GTX 1060 6GB


Actually, that looks darn near real!


Beautiful!!! No crits from me.


Looks excellent! I have the same issue with Xfrog models and I would say you've done a good job of improving things here. I would only say the shadows seem quite blue, which I know you're aware of. If this is a fairly default lighting setup with PT, then I wonder if the defaults are best for realistic PT...

- Oshyan


That looks really good! The only thing I could suggest is maybe a little bit of depth of field effect? In the distance, the foliage is still too sharp, in my opinion, and breaks the realness of it just a little bit, but that is literally me looking for something to improve. I don't do a lot of stuff with objects in Terragen yet, so I don't know how the texturing system works for that, but if possible, maybe have the leaves affect the lighting more than just casting shadows? It should make the light a bit more green, just going off of what I've seen in forests in my own area, though the sunrise aspect could muddle that a bit, so take it with a grain of salt, I guess?


Very good job on this scene. It indeed looks very realistic with the more pronounced displacement of the bark. I agree with blattacker, though, that there's some kind of 'grainy' sharpness in the foliage, that may look even better when it's a tad softer. Somehow. I don't know what kind of light softness you used, but a little more could do it.


Very beautiful render! No critics at all! :)

I know that Xfrog problem too. Good work how you solved it!


I liked the esthetic idea of the first version, but this one is a definite improvement.
Nice job on the bark! The XFrog models are indeed mediocre, so you managed to make them look quite a bit better, I like it.
I also like the suggestion of adding a little bit of depth of field. I don't know the focal length and distance to, say, the center rock and leaning tree, but that's the distance I would set focus on and then only add a subtle depth of field.
The image indeed has a weird sharpness effect to it. Did you sharpen it in post, or did you render it with catmull rom and less than or equal to AA8?

I'm mixed on whether you used path tracing or not. Oshyan isn't sure either, neither am I.
I tend to say you did not use PT, but like Oshyan I wonder what would cause it to look like a non-PT render if you understand what I mean.
I like the exposure of the render, quite photographic, but not spot on yet.

How does it look when you darken all surfaces by 50% or 75% and increase camera exposure accordingly?
This should result in a brighter sky, which I would expect given the amount of visible detail in the shadows in this render.
It's a tricky balance and probably a personal thing as well, so I can imagine you have very different ideas about this!

Looking forward to see your next iteration!


Thanks for the input guys.

This is rendered with PT. After taking a second look, I know that I messed up in Lightroom. I'll fix that and try some of your suggestions for the next update. Now I have to go to work. 

- Terje

AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X
32,0 GB RAM
GeForce GTX 1060 6GB


An update with depth of field and higher resolution.
Also, the first image is straight from TG, while the second has been adjusted in Lightroom.

I also think some of my problems with this scene is that the mud is to dark and I'm trying
to fix it by brightening the shadows and that makes the trees look strange.

To something different. I'm not sure if Terragen does this already, but I have a feeling it
doesn't, so can @Matt please take a look at this video and see if there are any possibilities here?

- Terje

AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X
32,0 GB RAM
GeForce GTX 1060 6GB