Blue Marble 2024

Started by Stormlord, June 15, 2024, 06:52:20 AM

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Blue Marble Next Generation 4.0 - Western Europa (Zoom).jpg 
Blue Marble Next Generation 4.0 - Western Europa (Zoom)

Hi-Resolution zoom into the western hemisphere during sunset. All maps 43200 x 21600, cloud map retouched to get a clear view over Europe.
But somehow I am not able to punch out the clouds more into 3D, I tried many different approaches, but nothing works for me... hmm...



Gorgeous render ! Love the ocean reflections and the clouds ! 


Very nice indeed! Maybe on this planet scale, clouds shouldn't even be that voluminous. They're not thunderclouds or hurricanes. It looks okay to me.


Well in this render I tried to emulate a cool looking 3D Cloud Layer late in the evening.
Normally the clouds are often looking dull and more 2D than 3D, but with the time, I realized that the main effect of a 3D looking cloud layer depends on the sunlight (sun position and angle above the horizon).

Blue Marble Next Generation 2024 - Europe Sun Position.jpg
Blue Marble Next Generation 2024
Sun position and sun glint test (no city lights)

But not only that, the trick in this case is to create three cloud layers, that overlap and penetrate each other.
If the layers are skillfully mixed together in height, the result is a 3D cloud field.
The 3D effect is enhanced by graduated scalar values for brightness.
The brightness of the low-mid-high cloud layers is 0.085 - 0.115 - 0.100.

The 3D principle consists of a dense cloud base that is arranged relatively low in the atmosphere.
Embedded in this is a second, narrower layer that extends slightly below and above the base and is lighter in color.
The top layer is used to create finer details within the broad cloud base. For example, the cloud towers rise high and more structures are created.

Finally, I added the golden sun glint reflection over the oceans. It was hard to find correct colors for that golden sun.
NASA photos differ a lot, depending on the viewpoint, sun angle over the horizon and its position.
However... that's how far I am...

Blue Marble Next Generation 2024 - Sun glint.jpg
Blue Marble Next Generation 2024
(Golden sun glint reflection)

By the way, the night lights map is a corrected version of the original NASA map which can be found here...

I masked and corrected the night light colours after real color photos taken from the ISS at night and ended up with this true color map.

Blue Marble Next Generation 2024 - Night lights.jpg
Blue Marble Next Generation 2024
Night lights