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General => Image Sharing => Topic started by: Stormlord on April 09, 2019, 10:56:31 PM

Title: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on April 09, 2019, 10:56:31 PM
This is my first rendering of a classic lake and mountain scene in Terragen 4.12 with lots of Trees and some plants.
The rendertime was 23 hours and 33 Minutes on my old AMD Athlon(tm) II X4 651 Quad-Core Processor 3.00 GHz.

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Rich2 on April 10, 2019, 03:04:27 PM
Though the waters of Lake Tahoe are blue, this reminds me of more of a Caribbean scene with the white coral sands.  Nice scenery, though!
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: bobbystahr on April 10, 2019, 07:19:40 PM
nice one Dirk...do more!
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on April 11, 2019, 08:47:26 AM
Thanky you Rich and thank you Bob!
The next version will be one with snow on the mountains and blue water as recommended.

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on April 13, 2019, 07:43:54 PM
This version comes with blue water and snow...working on snowy trees...

[attach=1]
Lake Tahoe v2.0

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: DocCharly65 on April 13, 2019, 07:57:18 PM
Almost like a postcard. Nice :)
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: otakar on April 15, 2019, 06:08:47 PM
Nice idea and pretty view. Maybe for the next iteration, work on the tree distribution (above shore, below mountain tops, closer together for forest) and rework the scale. If Lake Tahoe is a model, the trees here should be much smaller.
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on April 17, 2019, 09:17:10 PM
Nice idea and pretty view. Maybe for the next iteration, work on the tree distribution (above shore, below mountain tops, closer together for forest) and rework the scale. If Lake Tahoe is a model, the trees here should be much smaller.

Thank you for tips which helps me to receive a better and more realistic result.

I've created more dense populations, more trees and they are rescaled of course.
The main problem is my restricted memory in my old computer. 16GB or 32GB would be fine.
My machine is shortly before crashing...

Maybe the trees are to high up in the mountains???
I don't know...??? What do you mean?

Water color slightly more blue and a finer displacement of the waves.

[attach=1]
Lake Tahoe v3.0

Working now on snow on trees, wet sand on the beach, maybe some stones here and there...

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on April 21, 2019, 01:56:01 PM
YEAH
My first Image with snow on trees as recommended in various threads here in the forum.
A big THX to all who explain neebies liek me how to do it....!

This time I tried much more trees (looks more realistic) on my poor machine.

[attach=1]
Lake Thaoe with snow on trees

[attach=2]
Screenshot

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: DocCharly65 on April 22, 2019, 07:01:41 AM
I think the versions with the snow-free trees look a bit better, because it's more plausible for watching eyes to see all the coniferes with snow melt down in this sunny scene.
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on April 22, 2019, 01:36:33 PM
Good Statement DocCharly65!
My thought was that differences and contrast (Light and Shade, Sun and Ice, Summer and Winter) making an image interesting to look at?
So this is why I made it this way. Do you have some more sugestions for improvement?

But don't mind.
I never made an image with snowy trees, so this was for me really the first time.
Now I know how to do it and I am glad, that with the help of this forum I was able to do it this way.

My next try is based upon the last posted version but without snow and a dark and clear blue summer sky.
Maybe this time it comes out real good, we will see...
Ok, the Rendering is under way... Tomorrow evening it should be rendered?

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: otakar on April 22, 2019, 04:23:21 PM
I like the snow covered trees, actually. Maybe could pull back the snow cover (on the trees) a bit, so the lower areas would have more green showing.

It's getting more realistic I'd say.

How about the sky? The color to me is a bit strange. The sun is not that high up, I am not sure that shade of blue really fits. How about something more like this?

https://static-18.sinclairstoryline.com/resources/media/3d30c66c-4de9-4a7e-ac92-3867eed2b7e2-smallScale_LakeTahoeLookingSouth.jpg?1525977448958 (https://static-18.sinclairstoryline.com/resources/media/3d30c66c-4de9-4a7e-ac92-3867eed2b7e2-smallScale_LakeTahoeLookingSouth.jpg?1525977448958)
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on April 26, 2019, 12:36:54 PM
Thank you for your replies, I do my best to create a much more realistic image.
As far as it is possible for me, I have learned a lot and try as good as I can to improve this scene.
I learned how to render masks, create snowy trees, do some pretty skies with different cloud layers, handle populations ect....

1. In this latest attempt I have rendered a lot of different skies to find one more suitable to the scene. This one seems good to me :-)
2. The water has been changed in colour, now it is more greenish. The light colours in the shallow water zones are a result of a nearly white colored sand here.
     Maybe I will change the underwater sand in the future? Some stones mixed with some sand or so...
      Also the displace of the water here is deactivated. The mirror like look on the surface of the lake looks pretty cool!
      But to be honest, the water surface is from another render, it's mixed into the current scene (this is why I needed the mask) and that's why the reflection does not fit to the sky here.
3. Now there are 2 different populations of coastal sea wattle bushes directly on the beach. The small is 3.5 Meters, the other one 5 meters.
4. Snow has been liftet a litte and the coverage has been changed to get more details on top of the mountains. More rocky, not so fully snow covered.

Here is my latest result so far, Lake Tahoe v5.0 in original size 2540x1440, more than 26 hours rendering time. Old AMD Quadcore with 3GHz, aehm... I know, I need a new one...

[attach=1]
Lake Tahoe

[attach=2]
Lake Tahoe Mask

Please let me know what you think about this sky? Is it realistic, does the sky fit to the scene?
What about the water? I haven't found a good lake water colour.
As always, critic, replies and your comments are highly welcome!

Further planned are phytoplankton streams in the water.
Some big stones in the beach area and underwater stones.
Maybe a different sky ?

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on April 26, 2019, 02:14:57 PM
... ups...
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: bobbystahr on April 26, 2019, 02:44:42 PM
majorly better with each iteration Dirk...keep on tweaking...that sand could have a bit more light brown in it to cut the 'glare' but over all getting much better. Keep. On. Tweaking.
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Oshyan on April 26, 2019, 06:39:58 PM
I love the sky in the latest version!

- Oshyan
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: DocCharly65 on April 26, 2019, 07:47:03 PM
I love the sky in the latest version!

- Oshyan

Yes - the sky is epic! :)
The compromise with the less white trees and only in a distance looks better in my eyes, too! Thumbs up!
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: otakar on April 29, 2019, 03:29:52 PM
Wow, yeah, the sky is something! Did not expect that  8)

Ok, got another reference image for you: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DFxkthHUwAAZpIB.jpg

Stones would definitely add something to the scene, with careful distribution. One other thing to work on is the too sharp edges of the shoreline. Should definitely look more jagged, some fractal noise would help.

Then check out the texture of the ground in the wooded area in the reference image. There is undergrowth, but also some exposed soil and rocks. I suggest you break up that cover for better realism.

But I agree here, it is really nice progress. Cool that you are sticking with it. Keep going!
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on May 02, 2019, 09:10:11 PM
PHYTOPLANKTON CLOUDS IN THE WATER
-------------------------------------------------------------

My idea is to create phytoplankton clouds into the water... so where do I start?

First of all, I did an intensive research regarding the average water colours of such clouds and particles in satellite images.
The result of my research is now presented...

[attach=1]
Average water colours and phytoplankton cloud colours in open water
(Clean RGB Colours to save them in your Library)

[attach=2]
Average water colours and phytoplankton cloud colours in open water
(With Satellite Reference Pictures)

Next I created a simple water shader based upon these average water colours.
A tuned noise pattern with some stretching and some experimenting are a good start for my shader.

[attach=3]
In this screenshot you can see my first phytoplankton water shader based upon my research

To see the final outcome of the phytoplankton clouds in the water at it's best, I recommend to set up a top view of the scene.
I found out that it is better to fade out all vegetables and add a simple black shader to your terrain. So you will focus mainly on the clouds in the water and not to the whole scenery.
If you do so, you can see the water (lake) with it's phytoplankton clouds much better as it is seen in this screenshot (which I did before I deactivated all the unnecessary stuff).

[attach=4]
Top View of Lake Tahoe

Afterwards I placed a few Vortex  Warp Shaders (see Node) in and around my lake and they swirls the phytoplankton clouds in the water nicely around.
Yes, it was fun to check out all the different settings by chance and see which results will finally show up!

[attach=5]
Phytoplankton swirled with Vortex Warp Shaders

Then it was time to make a first test. To get some bright clouds in the water, I set the volume density here up to 100 to see them clearly in the preview window.
In the rendering, I decreased it down to 25. To be honest, I was really eager to see the result because nobody here in the forum did such a phytoplakton shot before!

[attach=6]
The first phytoplankton test rendering

[attach=7]
Lakes and Small Mountains (Phytoplankton Cloud)

The next steps are already planned and will be added soon, so stay tuned!

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Rich2 on May 02, 2019, 09:16:50 PM
Phytoplankton...  Interesting touch of detail, Dirk.  The camera angle though gives me a touch of vertigo...
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on May 02, 2019, 09:52:05 PM
VERTIGO !

[attachimg=1]
Vertigo!

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Dune on May 03, 2019, 06:07:47 AM
I like the final result. Great idea about the phytoplankton too.
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on May 03, 2019, 07:33:13 AM
Thank you Dune!
I really appreciate your opinion. You are really an outstanding and excellent artists and I like your renderings very much!

It is hard to find your way through the program in the beginning. But I still learn, read much in the forum and try to really understand Terragen.
So the results become more and more convincing. At the moment I am working on some fake stones and a convincing sandy beach.
A puristic beach is done, now I am trying to set up some fake stone layers here and there...

[attachimg=1]
Just a clean beach zone as basic starter (for more to come)

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on May 05, 2019, 01:32:48 PM
Now
Stones would definitely add something to the scene, with careful distribution. Then check out the texture of the ground in the wooded area in the reference image. There is undergrowth, but also some exposed soil and rocks. I suggest you break up that cover for better realism. But I agree here, it is really nice progress. Cool that you are sticking with it. Keep going!

Hi otakar, as you already recommended, I placed some fake stones in a lagoon. Further I decided to take care about the sandy beach zone (colours and altitude).
A slight change was made also regarding the water colours. Now the water, it's reflection, the transparency and the size of the waves is fine in my eyes. I think I will keep it this way.

[attachimg=1]
Fake Stone Lagoon

Further planned is some more vegetation in the beach area and an indian summer edition.
Also some sail boats or a beautiful glider is still in my mind... We will see...

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Oshyan on May 05, 2019, 05:27:19 PM
Much improved! This is looking very promising.

- Oshyan
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: the first seer on May 07, 2019, 12:30:01 PM
Nice look!
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: bobbystahr on May 07, 2019, 02:48:03 PM
Much improved! This is looking very promising.

- Oshyan

I agree with Oshyan but have a small issue with the size of the stones; I have no point of reference so I'll not be overly critical but the largest ones seem over large to the scene.
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on May 07, 2019, 04:07:04 PM
Yes Bobby, I asked myself the same...
(And this is why I startet to create a Silhouette as true scale reference for the next step of evolution in this scenery.)
These are more boulders, but I keep on tweaking!

You are absolutely right Bobby.
Please be critical (as long as it is constructive) because this helps me to improve the things mentioned!

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Hannes on May 07, 2019, 06:22:27 PM
Indeed, this must be 30 m boulders. To my taste they don't need to be there. Otherwise great improvements!
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: DocCharly65 on May 13, 2019, 10:00:15 AM
The last two are really impressive! Great improvement!
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on May 18, 2019, 09:42:11 AM
Another Perspective
This time I tried to create a good Fake Stone Beach with pebbles and did some minour adjustments on the plants as well.
Now they look bright which gives the image a lively touch. To my astonishment, the shallow water colours turned out more greenish than I thought, but that's ok!

The viewpoint in this image is turned at 180 degrees in comparison to my old look from above and so the sunlight position has been changed too.

[attachimg=1]
Fake Stone Beach

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Dune on May 18, 2019, 11:24:32 AM
Nice work!
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: DocCharly65 on May 18, 2019, 11:34:46 AM
The last one has a special Charme - like!
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: DannyG on May 18, 2019, 12:28:46 PM
Spot on, nice crisp render
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Oshyan on May 18, 2019, 07:25:38 PM
I quite like this overall. The water colors are great, and the small stones on the beach are quite effective for texturing. The overhanging areas nearby are also a really nice touch. The sky continues to be great as well. I think there are a couple more things you could do to really bring up the realism though, if you want.

First, the lack of smaller vegetation, grass, bushes, etc. really hurts realism IMO. There are some free bushes in our downloads section you could try, or Xfrog probably has something too. Even just 1 or 2 models of appropriate scale scattered around would help a lot.

The beach and water's edge could also use a few things. A bit of a wet line, where the water is washing up and wetting the sand/stones and making it a bit darker would help. I would also love to see some small debris, sticks, leaves, etc. if possible. And finally some additional larger stones, scattered around sparsely perhaps.

The other thing I'll mention is the sense of scale is a little confusing to me. And I don't know if you're still aiming for a "Tahoe" look, but Lake Tahoe in real life is much, muuuuuch bigger. This is a great scene as it is, so you don't have to emulate the exact real world of course, but if that's your goal you'll want to consider how to better portray really huge scale.

Overall it has been great seeing this evolve though, and it's looking great!

- Oshyan
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: bobbystahr on May 19, 2019, 04:27:23 PM
I completely agree with Oshyan...almost there now.
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: otakar on May 20, 2019, 12:19:25 AM
I have not visited for a while so I am finally seeing all this. First, on the previous page, the beach render would do extremely well for a tropical island beach. You should save that one for another project maybe :)

The rocks on the next render do look way oversize, they are giant boulders in the water. I wonder if it would look more realistic to keep it as is, but at maybe one third or one fourth of the scale. It looks great by itself, but then you look at the trees and realize the dimensions...

Now, the latest render is beautiful. The snow on the mountain tops looks a bit strange here given the vegetation (more of a mid-summer look), but the overall charm of this scene is definitely coming through. Fully agree that the beach is too clean, needs some small elements as mentioned. Vegetation, dead wood, leaves, etc.

Very impressed on how this has progressed. Great stuff.
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Oshyan on May 20, 2019, 06:45:42 PM
There are definitely some huuuge boulders on the shores of Lake Tahoe, but yes those are a bit *too* big. Not by as much as some might think though. :D Here is a satellite view:
https://goo.gl/maps/V63tvaenztLcpoRA9

And from the ground:
https://www.google.com/search?q=lake+tahoe+boulders&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiVmZbG4ariAhUPEXwKHQowCmIQ_AUIDigB&cshid=1558377928266809&biw=1536&bih=722


- Oshyan
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: bobbystahr on May 20, 2019, 07:06:29 PM
here's a good one to establish scale from, or at least one I'd use:

https://static1.squarespace.com/static/572164baf8508222d12dcd6e/t/5b180ced03ce6431b2a6387b/1528302840641/Paddle+Boarding+In+Lake+Tahoe.jpg?format=750w

Although this one seems more inline with what you've done< guess almost anything goes heh heh

http://aboutboulder.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/IMG_8473.jpg
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Oshyan on May 20, 2019, 10:02:33 PM
Yes, their sizes vary quite a lot. In the original image in this thread there were lots of small and a few big ones, which is about realistic for the general distribution. The largest ones were just a bit too large though, I'd agree. But... not *that* far off is my point.

- Oshyan
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on May 21, 2019, 06:10:17 PM
Thank you so much for encouragement!

@ Dune
Thank you!

@Otakar
Thank your for your comment, you can bet, that I keep always my scenes.
The beach is my new starter when I ceate someting with a beach zone.

@ Oshyan
Your Ideas to get a better result is highly appreciated and you're absolutely right!
I found Dunes Grass Patches here in the forum and I plan to implement his grasses into my scene. First tests and I got my  personal "Aha!" effect.
Now I know what you meant by recommending some smaller plants as well. Today I just scanning some pretty leafs here to get some good foliages
to scatter them on the ground later on (maybe?).

Also the water's edge mentioned...
I have to find out how to make it work... Just reading here in the forum, learning and try to understand as usuall.

By the way... When I rendered the first image, I immediately had to think upon "Lake Tahoe" because of the shape of the lake in this early first rendering.
While saving, I decided to take that name for my first ambitoned project. It is not intended to make a copy of the "Lake Tahoe", just trying to catch up with the original.. :-)
I decided to post this starter pictures intenionally because I like to document my first steps to see the step by step development of the whole scene (like the Project 15 Miles on the Erie Canal).

[attachimg=1]
True scale scene for smaller objects like stones and grasses
(Meanwhile in a small village in Germany)

So stay tuned, I will try to take the project further!

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Dune on May 22, 2019, 05:33:00 AM
If you add a surface layer after the beach surface, and set the maximum altitude a few centimeters above the water level (experiment with actual altitude and fuzzy zone, but I'd recommend keeping the fuzzy zone at 0.05 or so, rather than too high), you can easily create a darkened, wet beach area with a color adjust as child (gamma 0.8), and perhaps a non-RT reflective shader.
Beach debris can be made using the same technique, but with very narrow minimum and maximum altitudes, and near zero fuzzy. Just add one or two tiny scaled PF's in white and black, without any displacement (or extremely small), masked by a larger PF for patchy beach debris.
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: otakar on May 22, 2019, 05:03:52 PM
Oshyan, fascinating and you are right. The scale is really not that far off. Perhaps the boulders should extend onto the shore and beyond (not everywhere, as there certainly are sandy beaches) to match the real world.
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on May 22, 2019, 07:12:32 PM
If you add a surface layer after the beach surface, and set the maximum altitude a few centimeters above the water level (experiment with actual altitude and fuzzy zone, but I'd recommend keeping the fuzzy zone at 0.05 or so, rather than too high), you can easily create a darkened, wet beach area with a color adjust as child (gamma 0.8), and perhaps a non-RT reflective shader.

Excellent hint!
Have just tried it and it works fine, thx Dune!
(Should have know this yesterday, I just rendered another perspective which will be ideal for testing such a wet beach zone)

[attachimg=1]
Water Edge Test

[attachimg=2]
Lake Tahoe (Riverbed Stone Lagoon)

Keep on going, implanting some grasses, bushes and a wet beach zone.

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: mhaze on May 23, 2019, 09:06:30 AM
Impressive work.
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on May 23, 2019, 10:36:50 AM
Thx mHaze
I had some excellent Tutors. Guess who was one of them?
It was mHaze, who generously shared some of his work (learned from your sea foam, rock and your marveleous "sky in slightly toxic waterhole" scene).

And also Dune who gave excellent hints how to perform certain things (wet zone for instance, which is so great!) and of course his example scenes as well.

But wait.... there is more to come with this scene, I am not finished yet :-)

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on May 24, 2019, 05:45:27 PM
Now I got a nice reference scene to got at first sight a good comparison in relation to know proportions, which is perfect for scaling objects like grasses, leafs or stones.
To make it easy for the future to scale new models up or down as desired, I will start to build up my stone library in tgo format and scale all models in a 1x1x1 Meter window.
So each model can be scaled easily without difficult calculations via transform to the right size. 1 Meter divided by 100 will give me a pebble with 1 cm in size, how easy!

The first stone is converted from a 3DsMax Mesh into a TGO and perfectly scaled.
But have a look for yourself, here is the first one, ready to go....

[attachimg=1]
Lake Tahoe Boulder (scaled)

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on May 24, 2019, 05:51:22 PM
Lake Tahoe v.14, the next step of evalution in my scenery...

@ Oshyan
I tried to implement your given ideas.
So this picture comes with colour adjusted Dune's free grass patches, 2 canoes and a wet zone (I forgot some small PF breakup at the waters edge...ups...).
Boulders are planned for the next step of evolution and maybe some leafs on the ground or a little debris here and there. But beforehand I have to model some stones, sticks, leafs...

But enough, here we go...

[attachimg=1]
Lake Tahoe v.14

@ Dune
Thank you for your excellent hint! I took your given altitudes roughly as base.
I did it the way you told me. So do you have any recommendations regarding the water's edge?
As colour for the Gamma I took the average stone beach colour with a Gamma of 0.85.
As reflection colours I took the same colour, but slightly darker (high 0.8 and low 0.6).
(See picture below)

[attachimg=2]
Wet Zone Settings (water level is at -150)

I have made a google resarch to look for references of beach wet zones before I setup my parameters but I am still not satisfied with my first wet zone but I have no idea, why it is this way?
Maybe more reflection or a little bit more patchy? A little bit darker or does it just depend on? Or am I just over critical?
How do you set up usually a wet zone?

STORMLORD
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: Stormlord on May 25, 2019, 09:09:29 AM
Ups...
Title: Re: Lake Tahoe
Post by: bobbystahr on May 25, 2019, 12:48:36 PM
lookin good to these eyes, cool canoe/kayaks...keep on tweakin man....I like your wet sand/shore effect myself but I'm colour blind heh heh heh