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andym323
06-04-2008, 09:57 AM
Hello everybody :D

I'm working on a film at the moment for an aerospace manufacturer, they want to see an airliner flying in a blue sky in one scene, and coming in to land on a stormy day in another.

In the first scene, ideally, I need to pan around the aircraft in one continuous move, so, does anyone have any tips or ideas on how to go about setting up a scene that will cover this without the ground looking silly and without the whole sky looking wierd when I move the camera. I've been thinking skytracer, but I'm not sure it will be good enough for my purposes.

In the landing scene, I should be okay with a skytracer dome, some 'distant' hills and a runway, but again, any pointers would be a great help :D

Incidentally, I was thinking of adding some HV wispy clouds to the first scene, anyone got any useful HV settings I might base my clouds on, I'm guessing sprites might be the way to go here?????

Andy

creativecontrol
06-04-2008, 11:36 AM
Hello everybody :D

I'm working on a film at the moment for an aerospace manufacturer, they want to see an airliner flying in a blue sky in one scene, and coming in to land on a stormy day in another.

In the first scene, ideally, I need to pan around the aircraft in one continuous move, so, does anyone have any tips or ideas on how to go about setting up a scene that will cover this without the ground looking silly and without the whole sky looking wierd when I move the camera. I've been thinking skytracer, but I'm not sure it will be good enough for my purposes.

In the landing scene, I should be okay with a skytracer dome, some 'distant' hills and a runway, but again, any pointers would be a great help :D

Incidentally, I was thinking of adding some HV wispy clouds to the first scene, anyone got any useful HV settings I might base my clouds on, I'm guessing sprites might be the way to go here?????

Andy

That's a fair bit of work you've taken on there.

Here's a WIP that uses Hypervoxels with Sprites as the clouds. It is tricky to set up but works well in the end.

http://newtek.com/forums/showthread.php?t=82179&page=2

On the "Dogfights" series I've noticed that they've got some nice results from going out and photographing the area in a 360deg dome and using that as an environment. Something to think about.

AbnRanger
06-04-2008, 12:25 PM
Hello everybody :D

I'm working on a film at the moment for an aerospace manufacturer, they want to see an airliner flying in a blue sky in one scene, and coming in to land on a stormy day in another.

In the first scene, ideally, I need to pan around the aircraft in one continuous move, so, does anyone have any tips or ideas on how to go about setting up a scene that will cover this without the ground looking silly and without the whole sky looking wierd when I move the camera. I've been thinking skytracer, but I'm not sure it will be good enough for my purposes.

In the landing scene, I should be okay with a skytracer dome, some 'distant' hills and a runway, but again, any pointers would be a great help :D

Incidentally, I was thinking of adding some HV wispy clouds to the first scene, anyone got any useful HV settings I might base my clouds on, I'm guessing sprites might be the way to go here?????

AndyI would rough out your environment in layout (don't worry how detailed the HV clouds look, you won't be using them for anything but reflections and GI secondary bounces if the aircraft is anywhere near the clouds), and render out the flight animation. Use the Vue Sync plugin to re-render the scene (this time without the aircraft) in Vue, just for the spectral clouds, sky, and landscape. Then comp the two sequences together in post, with just the aircraft in the first pass, and Vue elements in the second. It's going to be much easier and quicker to get the environment you want (especially for realistic clouds) in Vue.

wp_capozzi
06-04-2008, 02:15 PM
I've been working on clouds recently. What I was doing for close up whispy clouds to fly near was to render hypervoxel surfaces that are close to what I want the clouds to look like, then heavily modify the cloud frames in After Effects to create slightly undulating whispy clouds. I was going for thick heavy clouds with some transparent areas to fly through. Most of it was done in compositing as opposed to trying to render it out that way. I don't have the render power for that much volumetric stuff, especially in Vue. Hypervoxel surfaces were rendering very fast in LW by not raytracing and with minimal AA. I was also working on blending clouds and fog into a Vue rendered landscape by bringing that part with a depth map into After Effects as well. My sky dome was a mixture of the sunsky plugin and some distant cloud photos layered in TextureEnvironment in LW.
The Red Baron movie trailer was an inspiration, I didn't quite get that quality yet.

Kirdian
06-04-2008, 06:07 PM
You can try NatureFX 2. This can take some time, before you will achive proper results, but clouds look very realistic. Some example below, whitout any postprocess. Clouds are volumetric, so you can fly trought them.

andym323
06-06-2008, 04:35 AM
Thanks for all the suggestion folks, VERY helpful indeed, got the vuesync plugin working fine and I'm now test rendering stuff :D

I'll post an .avi ot QT soon so you can all say yay, or nay ;)

AbnRanger
06-06-2008, 02:21 PM
Oh...by the way. You may well have already planned a similar workflow, but just in case, I wanted to mention that it would be very helpful to you to make sure that you render out to either RPF or EXR 32bit float, enabling all the channels of imformation...making sure that you designate your Material ID's and Object ID's before rendering.
You can do this in Lightwave of course, and Vue has RPF (don't think it has EXR yet). This makes for less fussing with your renders (since they don't have to be 100% perfection at render time...just get 80-90% of the way there). And you have many more options in post (like adjusting gamma and gain of just one object, or color correct just the material of an object...post 3D effects like Motion Blur, and DOF,etc).
You can use Passport to render out your lighting, shadows, specularity, and reflection passes in LW to tweak in post (I would still use RPF for this just for the 32bit float format, but these passes you can turn most if not all of the channels off). Vue lets you render out passes as well.

Also, one little trick to help get a nicer look with your clouds...it might even allow you to do the whole thing in LW...so you can test render one frame and see how it looks. If you can isolate your clouds with a render pass (atmosphere)...in post you can make a copy of it...place the copy above the original. Offset it from the original just a bit. Blur the heck out of it. Then set the blending mode to either Screen, Add, Overlay, or Soft Light (experiment with each of them to see what looks best in your scene). Then you slowly adjust your opacity downward to see where it blends in best.
No matter how nice you get your initial clouds to look, this little trick helps to take it up to another level of realism, because it is so difficult to get both detail in the clouds and the soft wispy look you often see. This helps you nail just the detail without having to worry about trying to make it look wispy too(which can take all day to do). Vue 6's spectral clouds are pretty close, and I would still use this technique with them too. But test a HV cloud with this trick in post and see if it suits your needs.
Also, with all of this atmospheric work involved, you're either going to need plenty of time to render the sequences out, or a decent render farm. Again...glean what you will. I just thought I'd mention a few things that might be of some help...just in case.

nigebabe
06-07-2008, 06:09 AM
Andy,

I do a similar thing for my aircraft manufacturing company as part of our Computer Based Training for student pilots and another method you can try is to get hold of hi-resolution sky/cloud images and then map them onto a sphere that surrounds your scene. It is less render intensive than Skytracer and can look more 'real'. I also use Vue to generate hi-res atmospheres and then map them onto a sphere in LW. Using a sphere also means you can change the background image settings e.g. heading, to suit the camera view of the shot you want just by manipulating the projected atmosphere in the surface editor.

Nigel

andym323
06-16-2008, 02:27 AM
Thanks guys, I'll be trying some of your latest tips in the next few days, I've been off rebuilding some awful CAD so it renders ok ;)

I don't know about any of you guys, and this is going slightly off topic, but re-creating CAD in Modeller is such a pain :S Have any of you used Modo yet? I was working on the new Honda Accord late last year, rebuilding the whole car in minute detail from the CAD. One of the guys on the project, used the softwares ability to custom design tools by combining several of them to make a tool that enabled you to stick the CAD in a back ground layer and create a high quality flowing mesh over the top by snapping the new points to the background layer. A joy to use I can tell you ;)

JBT27
06-16-2008, 03:11 AM
Thanks guys, I'll be trying some of your latest tips in the next few days, I've been off rebuilding some awful CAD so it renders ok ;)

I don't know about any of you guys, and this is going slightly off topic, but re-creating CAD in Modeller is such a pain :S Have any of you used Modo yet? I was working on the new Honda Accord late last year, rebuilding the whole car in minute detail from the CAD. One of the guys on the project, used the softwares ability to custom design tools by combining several of them to make a tool that enabled you to stick the CAD in a back ground layer and create a high quality flowing mesh over the top by snapping the new points to the background layer. A joy to use I can tell you ;)

That workflow you describe is part of what Modo offers - worth having a look at the demo version and especially the tutorials from Andy Brown on the Lux site.

Just to reinforce what veryone has said on the sky setup, we did a multi-shot dogfight sequence recently, and although we had it easier by only needing a fine day effect, we used a large dome and a circular ground plane with image maps for sky and terrain. The dome and ground had a radius of something like 4km.....we also added some fog, matching its colour to the horizon sky colour. We just 'flew' the camera and planes around in that environment - simple - looked pretty good.

Julian.

andym323
06-16-2008, 04:26 AM
That workflow you describe is part of what Modo offers - worth having a look at the demo version and especially the tutorials from Andy Brown on the Lux site.

Just to reinforce what veryone has said on the sky setup, we did a multi-shot dogfight sequence recently, and although we had it easier by only needing a fine day effect, we used a large dome and a circular ground plane with image maps for sky and terrain. The dome and ground had a radius of something like 4km.....we also added some fog, matching its colour to the horizon sky colour. We just 'flew' the camera and planes around in that environment - simple - looked pretty good.

Julian.


Sounds good Julian, I did some experiments with this idea and fog, but I couldn't get a decent result from the fog, which type of fog did you go for???

andy

AbnRanger
06-16-2008, 04:33 AM
Sounds good Julian, I did some experiments with this idea and fog, but I couldn't get a decent result from the fog, which type of fog did you go for???

andy3D fog in post works pretty well, and easier to setup/tweak.