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General => Image Sharing => NWDA Roadside Contest => Topic started by: Mor on March 10, 2013, 01:54:11 PM

Title: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on March 10, 2013, 01:54:11 PM
Finally I managed to start doing something. I've been so busy at work that I feared I'm not even able to participate.
I really don't have any particular setup in mind and still waiting for real inspiration, but here's at least something I came up quickly at first try. The road itself is mostly just a placeholder as I don't know yet would it be gravel or tarmac road.

Comments, suggestions and critics most welcome.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: cyphyr on March 10, 2013, 02:07:31 PM
Looking good :)
Nothing to crit at this stage.
It reminds me of the Forestry Commission land we used to go and play solders on when I was a cadet.
Cheers
Richard
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Tangled-Universe on March 11, 2013, 10:26:23 AM
Oh how much I love this scene layout!
I suppose the trees, wheat etc. are also placeholders to composite the scene?
These trees are VERY difficult to get rendered realistically.
The only way I managed is to render them at large resolution so that the renderer can 'see' all the needles and shades them correctly.

Personally I think I'd make this a gravel road.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: FrankB on March 17, 2013, 05:30:46 PM
That's a beautiful setup!
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: gregsandor on March 18, 2013, 12:01:21 AM
I really like the composition, and think that if the shaders for the lower half of the tree trunks and the road were fixed it could pass as a photo already.  Nice work.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: TheBadger on March 19, 2013, 06:58:09 AM
Nice set up 8)
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on March 19, 2013, 07:11:13 AM
Thanks a lot for your comments. Finally I managed to continue this and here's the next version.



Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: yossam on March 19, 2013, 07:34:51 AM
I like..................
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: choronr on March 19, 2013, 06:29:23 PM
Very good!
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: inkydigit on March 27, 2013, 08:04:36 PM
I know a place like this too!
great work so far!
:)
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on March 29, 2013, 05:05:18 PM
Thanks for the comments. I made some slow progress again. Made some changes to sun and atmosphere and added some color variation to populations. All comments, suggestions and critiques are welcome.



Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: FrankB on March 29, 2013, 08:39:09 PM
Hmm, no, the colors are off now. Step in the wrong direction... Happens to me all the time, too  :)
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Oshyan on March 29, 2013, 10:24:35 PM
I agree, far too yellow now, but that's easily fixed. I also liked the verge/edge of the road in the foreground a bit better in the last one (though it needed some more detail on some of the small rocks, but again fairly easily fixed). The field also needs to be less bright I think. But I do find good improvement in the mountains in the distance, and I'm liking them as a backdrop more in this latest version.

- Oshyan
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: otakar on March 29, 2013, 10:40:58 PM
Wheat field color - I liked the less saturated color better. Maybe something in between? The other plants are fine, but revisit that deep green grass, it's a bit much imho. I like the mountains now, too. What happened to the rocks/pebbles, they seem to be hidden in the soil now. The road is perhaps too smooth. At this slope, you should have at least some run-off and resulting erosion...
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Dune on March 30, 2013, 07:42:40 AM
Agree with colors and Otakar's observation about the road's smoothness. Some cracks, run-offs, ruts would greatly enhance it. I also think it's too much on an angle and very wide. I can't tell whether the viewer is just very close to the road, like with a wide angle lens, or the road is 10-15m wide. 
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on March 30, 2013, 10:18:40 AM
Thanks for the comments it really helps to see things! :) I agree with the colors too. I think the road became smoother, because I raised the camera. I'm tweaking the road surface now and hopefully get some improvements done. The road actually seems to be very wide now as you mention it Dune, and it really need to be narrowed a little.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Jo Kariboo on March 30, 2013, 02:57:42 PM
I prefer the colors of roadside_v1.jpg but for the road I like textures of roadside_v1_9.jpg.   :)
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on March 30, 2013, 06:05:07 PM
Here's new version. I changed the wheat color to a less saturated. The road is narrower and some cracks and bumbs are added. Also the small stones are tweaked a little.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: cyphyr on March 30, 2013, 06:41:17 PM
Looking much better. Not sure where you locating your scene in the world but most agricultural crops have "tram lines" in them, parallel lines marking out where the tractor drove across the fields when the seeds were first sown and later fertilized.
:)
Richard
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Oshyan on March 30, 2013, 09:14:26 PM
Road looks much better, and less saturated field color also good. The whole thing still has a very yellow tint which I'm a little dubious about, but maybe just personal preference. It would be different if this appeared to be a sunset/sunrise and some justification for that color; as it is, it just looks like there's a fire somewhere. ;)

- Oshyan
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Dune on March 31, 2013, 07:07:40 AM
Yes, much better now. A few remarks still, in addition; maybe more low grass (and some dead) in central road area, and not the few weeds that now grow solitary in the tracks. I would also warp the edge of the wheatfield (small fractal), or add an edge of broken, dispersed smaller wheat; the edge is very clean. Seed always spills  ::)
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on March 31, 2013, 07:14:07 AM
Looking much better. Not sure where you locating your scene in the world but most agricultural crops have "tram lines" in them, parallel lines marking out where the tractor drove across the fields when the seeds were first sown and later fertilized.
 :)
Richard


Good point, I'll try to add some and see how it looks.


Road looks much better, and less saturated field color also good. The whole thing still has a very yellow tint which I'm a little dubious about, but maybe just personal preference. It would be different if this appeared to be a sunset/sunrise and some justification for that color; as it is, it just looks like there's a fire somewhere. ;)

- Oshyan


I noticed that too and wondered what caused it and after searching found it out. There is second sun and at some point I tested changing its color to green and then yellow and forgot the whole color change :D


Here's again new version. Quite lot of tweaking here and there again.



Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on April 06, 2013, 01:18:45 PM
Little tweaking here and there and some more grass on center of the road and numerous crop renders. What you think, am I getting there?

Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Hannes on April 06, 2013, 01:34:05 PM
Wow, that's an improvement. The latest one is really great. The only thing that looks a bit strange to me is the lighting. May I ask why you use two suns? The lighting is quite flat. I'd love to see your image with only one sun and a little more contrast. You could also try a fill light setup instead of the environment light (in this case don't forget to disable GI).
In my opinion people are too often tempted to use two almost equally bright suns instead of one to brighten up the scene. The fill light setup does of course the same but a lot more subtle.
All in all a fantastic image. It looks like a place about one kilometer from where I live (except the mountains).
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on April 06, 2013, 02:39:22 PM
Thanks Hannes! I have totally forgotten the other sun. I'm rendering test with it disabled as there has been so many changes after I decided to use it. It's strength was only 1. Will post new version later.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: aymenk2003 on April 06, 2013, 02:44:08 PM
the road needs some stones...
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: FrankB on April 06, 2013, 04:21:12 PM
Agree with Hannes, this is a fantastic image.  :)
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: choronr on April 06, 2013, 04:31:10 PM
This is very impressive; you're almost there.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Oshyan on April 06, 2013, 09:50:01 PM
Very nice! Just figure out what is causing the even lines (almost like "stripes") in the vegetation *on* the road in the further distance.

- Oshyan
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Hannes on April 07, 2013, 04:40:04 AM
I guess the stripes are caused by the population's spacing variation values. @Mor: which settings do you have?
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: otakar on April 07, 2013, 05:45:07 AM
Yeah, that's an improvement over previous versions! I guess some larger rocks wouldn't hurt, but I like the work on the vegetation (with the exception of that already mentioned issue on the median in the distance).
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Dune on April 07, 2013, 06:40:59 AM
Fantastic update. The broken field edge works great. I agree with the flat lighting and noticed the stripes immediately. If you can repair that it'll be a stunner.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on April 07, 2013, 10:19:33 AM
Yet another version. Second sun removed and it indeed was a great improvement for the lighting. I also tweaked and changed populations on the road and tried to remove the visible lines. Spacing variation was 0.5 and finally I added PF to break the distribution even more. I also increased exposure a bit, but are the pines in the upper right corner still too dark?

This version is rendered with:
Detail 0.7
AA 6
GI 2/2
Rendertime 1:41

Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Hannes on April 07, 2013, 11:33:44 AM
Much better imho! But I think it still looks a bit flat, especially in the lower right corner. My suggestion: as I wrote, try using a fill light setup instead of the environment light and give GI relative detail and GI sample quality a value of 0. Don't forget to delete the new sun that comes with the fill light setup, or you'll have two suns once again ;).
I made the experience that you get more depth and detail especially on plants in areas that are in the shadows than with GI unless you use insane GI quality settings. You can play with the strength value of the fill lights to find out the right balance between them and the sun.
The downside is, sometimes you get nasty shadow edges of the additional lights, but not always. I used a fill light setup in my entry as well.
Once again, fantastic image!
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: mhaze on April 07, 2013, 11:48:20 AM
some specular on the veg might help
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: TheBadger on April 07, 2013, 03:28:59 PM
Getting beter and better!

The stripe of grass in the middle of the path is looking really good!
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: inkydigit on April 07, 2013, 05:06:52 PM
I echo the above...this is looking excellent!
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Simius Strabus on April 07, 2013, 06:14:51 PM
Really like the last one  :)
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Oshyan on April 07, 2013, 09:11:03 PM
Latest one is great, just about the best it can be, to my eye. Little tune-ups from here perhaps, but avoid any temptation to make significant changes, if you ask me. You're very close to "photoreal" in my view.

- Oshyan
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: choronr on April 07, 2013, 09:16:03 PM
Beautiful ...at some point the tweaking stops; and, I believe you're there.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on April 08, 2013, 02:11:31 AM
Thanks a lot! It is true that there is very little to be done anymore. I however pushed the clouds back a little. Here's version with fill light setup. I increased the fill light strength a little. I have stared this image whole weekend so I can't really say is it any better or are the shadows too dark now  :o

Detail 0.8
AA 8
GI 0/0
Rendertime 4:30
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Oshyan on April 08, 2013, 02:13:06 AM
I do like the lighting and contrast better in the latest version, though the shadows are indeed a bit dark. Maybe something you can take care of with post processing? Did you save out an EXR?

- Oshyan
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on April 08, 2013, 02:19:55 AM
Yes, I saved out the EXR version too. I'll try to get something done to it :D
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Hannes on April 08, 2013, 04:32:18 AM
Oh yes, this is it! The plants look way better now with the fill light setup imho. Maybe a last suggestion: you could try the cubic B-Spline pixel filter in the renderer's extra tab to make it look a bit smoother. Otherwise no crits. Great image!
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Dune on April 08, 2013, 07:09:58 AM
Terrific. This now has winning chances, to say the least. I do think the shadows are a bit dark indeed, it's a bit harsher than the previous. And I think the translucency of the high trees is very low, they're very dark and you hardly see any detail in the top 'lumps' of needles/branches, if you know what I mean.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: inkydigit on April 08, 2013, 01:57:45 PM
superb!
out of curiosity, what were the fill light settings?
cheers
Jason
:)
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: choronr on April 08, 2013, 02:45:27 PM
Sometimes, when all else fails, I'll take the pine needles into Photoshop and create a very light version and use them to lighten the tree.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on April 08, 2013, 04:30:01 PM
Thanks again for your kind comments!

Sometimes, when all else fails, I'll take the pine needles into Photoshop and create a very light version and use them to lighten the tree.

Thanks for the tip, I didn't thought of that possibility at all :)

superb!
out of curiosity, what were the fill light settings?
cheers
Jason
:)


I increased strength of all lights to 0.2 and that's it :)

Terrific. This now has winning chances, to say the least. I do think the shadows are a bit dark indeed, it's a bit harsher than the previous. And I think the translucency of the high trees is very low, they're very dark and you hardly see any detail in the top 'lumps' of needles/branches, if you know what I mean.

Yes, the dark trees were my main problem. I upped the translucency to 50 and it seems to be doing the job. We'll see soon :)

Oh yes, this is it! The plants look way better now with the fill light setup imho. Maybe a last suggestion: you could try the cubic B-Spline pixel filter in the renderer's extra tab to make it look a bit smoother. Otherwise no crits. Great image!

I'm now rendering a version with cubic B-spline to see the difference.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on April 09, 2013, 02:22:25 AM
Here's something I would consider a final version (though there's still some days time to tweak :D). Didn't change much. Pixel filter is cubic B-Spline and I think little softer output is better than the previous version. Also the details in large pines in right side increased a lot. The clouds are also moved a bit. The shadows are still quite dark and I will try to postwork them a bit lighter.

Detail 0.9
AA 6
Rendertime ~3h

Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: choronr on April 09, 2013, 05:08:28 AM
Looking even better ...keep on.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Dune on April 09, 2013, 05:39:07 AM
Super image. The shadows indeed still need some light. Especially under the few 'leaved' low plants (don't know what they are) near the road the shadows are really dark. Perhaps a 0.2 sun straight above no shadows will give these dark areas enough light? I don't know if higher translucency of the leaves will also let through more sunlight to the ground or that it only effects the object. Have to try that some day, now that I mention it.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Hannes on April 09, 2013, 01:00:09 PM
Maybe it's a matter of taste or a matter of monitor calibrating ;D. To me the shadows are perfect. After I just looked at your picture I had the impression that after your latest great improvements your landscape looks so good that the clouds may be a bit premature. At least to me. Maybe a tad more definition and contrast? I hope you don't mind my nitpicking ;)
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on April 09, 2013, 01:28:40 PM
Looking even better ...keep on.

Thank you. I will :)

Super image. The shadows indeed still need some light. Especially under the few 'leaved' low plants (don't know what they are) near the road the shadows are really dark. Perhaps a 0.2 sun straight above no shadows will give these dark areas enough light? I don't know if higher translucency of the leaves will also let through more sunlight to the ground or that it only effects the object. Have to try that some day, now that I mention it.

Those plants are coltsfoots from Walli's weed pack and actually their leaves are very thick and that's why they are so dark underside.

Maybe it's a matter of taste or a matter of monitor calibrating ;D. To me the shadows are perfect. After I just looked at your picture I had the impression that after your latest great improvements your landscape looks so good that the clouds may be a bit premature. At least to me. Maybe a tad more definition and contrast? I hope you don't mind my nitpicking ;)


Haha you are reading my thoughts. My main plan was to leave clouds very neutral and not to attract viewers attention. But now as there are still some days left, I might try to tweak them too :D


Obviously I can't stop making test renders. Here's the same version as previous, but rendered with soft shadows on.


Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Hannes on April 09, 2013, 01:40:44 PM
Soft shadows look great!
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Oshyan on April 09, 2013, 08:17:55 PM
Soft Shadows is a big improvement. I miss the sharpness of previous versions, but I have never been a fan of Cubic B-Spline interpolation for the AA filter. It does not look so much less noisy or more natural as genuinely "soft" to me, like a poorly focused photograph. That being said, applying some minor sharpening to it might create an ideal result.

- Oshyan
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Jo Kariboo on April 11, 2013, 03:38:57 AM
Better and better ! A very good evolution !  :)
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on April 13, 2013, 05:35:17 PM
I hadn't time to start tweaking the clouds, so the latest version is pretty much what I submitted. This has been great and fun journey on this road and I have learned so many things about Terragen 2 and pushed myself beyond my limits again and again. So, big thanks to everyone who commented and suggested directions to evolve this image, I wouldn't have done it without you! 
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Paul on April 13, 2013, 06:51:35 PM
If i didn't know better I would swear that is a photo. Is the field crop a population? How long did it take to populate? I'm waiting 2 hours now just to populate a  few grasses.  Great job.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Mor on April 14, 2013, 05:34:12 AM
If i didn't know better I would swear that is a photo. Is the field crop a population? How long did it take to populate? I'm waiting 2 hours now just to populate a  few grasses.  Great job.

Thanks :) Yes, the field is a population. It took few minutes populate and there is a little over 4 million instances.
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: mhaze on April 14, 2013, 09:11:44 AM
Great!
Title: Re: Mor's Roadside WIP
Post by: Simius Strabus on May 21, 2013, 05:57:15 PM
Absolutely stunning work here! Love it!