Reflections Notes

These notes shows how to make simple reflections like the one at the right.  You do this by rendering several images of a scene in Anim8or and then combing  them in a paint program.  These notes refer to the readily available Paint Shop Pro 4 shareware program, but most other paint programs can be used as well.

Thanks to Lloyd Schoenbach for writing these notes.

In Anim8or:

  • Create a Sphere with a diameter of 30 (actually Radius).
  • Convert to Mesh.
  • Do a couple of Smooth's.
  • Create a Material:

  • Red 255
    Green 255
    Blue 255
    Specular 1
    Roughness 99
  • Apply to Sphere.
  • Orient Sphere in the Plus Quadrant just touching X Y Z.
  • Switch to Scene mode, Front View.
  • Keep Anim8or's default placement of Camera & Lights.
  • Add Target.  Leave at 0,0,0.
  • Face Camera at Target.
  • Add Sphere.
Note: The Target may be moved any place for composition purposes.  The one restriction is that the coordinate perpendicular to the plane that you wish to reflect onto must be 0.0.


  • Switch View to Camera.
  • Under Settings->Scene, set Frames to 1.
  • Under Settings->Environment, deselect Ground Grid.
  • Set Background to:

  • Red 128
    Green 123
    Blue 182
  • Render to File:

  • Name: Ball
    Format: BMP
    400x300 Antialiased
    All Frames
  • Switch to Front View.
  • Double click on Camera.
  • Insert a Minus in front of the Y (center) Location.
  • Switch View to Camera.
  • Render to File:

  • Name: Ball-Y
Rename the 2 Ball*.bmp files by removing the 0000 that Anim8or adds for sequences.

In Paint Shop Pro 4:

Other graphics programs may be used.  Just translate these methods.
  • Open Ball.bmp and Ball-Y.bmp in PSP.
  • Select Ball-Y image and do Image->Flip.  Do Image->Arithmetic:

  • Source #1: Ball.bmp
    Source #2: Ball-y.bmp
    Function: Add
    Channel: All
    Divisor: 2
    Bias: 0
Duplicate (for safety) the above images with Copy & Paste.
  • Click the Magic Wand tool

  • Match Mode:  Brightness
    Tolerance: 0
    Feather: 0
  • Click on the background of Ball-Y image.
  • Do Select->Invert.
  • Do Copy.
  • Do Paste As New Selection into Fig5 image, aligning carefully with lower ball.
  • Click when aligned.


  • Click the Magic Wand Tool.
  • Click the background of the Ball image.
  • Do Select->Invert.
  • Do Copy.
  • Do Paste As New Selection into Fig5 image, aligning carefully with upper ball.
  • Click when aligned.
You now have a white ball under a lavender ceiling sitting on a mirror.
You can now make the ball appear to be sitting on a reflective lavendar surface.
  • Do Image->Arithmetic:

  • Source #1:  Ball.bmp
    Source #2:  Fig07.bmp

The following two figures used the same Anim8or model:


Our sphere snugged into the corner of an XYZ Corner Mirror.


Our Sphere snugged into the corner of R, G, and B planes.

Have fun,

Lloyd Schoenbach

This page was last updated on April 27, 2000.