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Author Topic: Wanna Make Pretty Pictures  (Read 969 times)

Old Codger

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Wanna Make Pretty Pictures
« on: August 30, 2021, 02:32:40 pm »

I would like to do more than quick renderings and screen shots. I know that means I have to get into setting up a "scene". All well and good. I understand there will be a learning curve involved. But I have a couple of quick questions about the over all process of what I want to do. I'll figure out the details I would just like a bit of direction from people here who I know are highly skilled at this.

I want to pose (for want of a better term) spaceship models against a star field backdrop. Now I can find (have found) tutorials on how to generate random star fields in Photoshop Elements so I'm good there. What I am curious about is - in general - how I set up a scene such that I eliminate the ground plane which shows up and how I go about placing my PSE-generated starfield image(s) as a backdrop. I could also use a suggestion on approximate size and resolution of background image to use. I've been looking at some of the postings in the finished and WIP section and if I were there in person I would be bowing on the floor repeating "I'm not worthy! I'm not worthy!" Some of the things I've seen there literally blow me away.

I've posted a couple of images on my DA page with one of my models posed against a starfield background but that was pretty much completely done in PSE. I take a screen shot or quick render, delete the background color and copy it is as a layer over a starfield I generated in PSE. It is actually fairly to do that. The problem is that there is always a tiny bit of the interface between the image of the model and the background (whether from a screen shot or a render) that is sometimes visible. I believe that by setting up a scene using a starfield as backdrop with my model in front I can achieve a better result. I have also seen tutorials where it is possible to generate a "planet" image in PSE. I'm thinking I can generate a planet texture  (to put on either a flat circle or spherical mesh object) to shoot the spaceship model against and thereby make a pretty picture of my model.

So, can (will?) you guys help an old man out? Not asking for detailed instructions, just some general directions for how to achieve my intended result. I would like to avoid as much of the nit-noy, cut-and-try basic stuff up front. I have every expectation that it will still be some time before I am producing decent images.

Thanks in advance. The Anim8or community is the very best!
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AlecJames

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Re: Wanna Make Pretty Pictures
« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2021, 11:19:56 am »

In the scene properties->Environment is a check box, "show ground grid". Uncheck it and the grid will be gone.

In the same place: scene properties->Environment is background image.  Set your starfield here.  Experiment with image, panorama, and panorama settings etc.   Watch out for the camera reaching the edge of the image as you test moving the camera position / angle, etc.

You can also create a box for a "backdrop" and put the star field on that.  Then keep the spacecraft stationary and move the back drop to give an illusion of movement while keeping the spacecraft centre shot.

Good luck :)
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selden

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Re: Wanna Make Pretty Pictures
« Reply #2 on: August 31, 2021, 10:58:39 pm »

There's another technique which can be reasonably effective, but produces somewhat cruder results than are possible with Anim8or and similar 3D modeling programs. Specifically, some people like to pose spacecraft models which were designed in Anim8or using Celestia or Space Engine. The latter two are realtime 3D astronomical display programs. Using 3D hardware rendering does put some limitations on how well they render 3D objects compared to what software rendering can do. Shadowing is not as good, for example. The star positions and the orbits of planets and spacecraft are accurate, though.
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Selden

Old Codger

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Re: Wanna Make Pretty Pictures
« Reply #3 on: September 01, 2021, 03:20:06 pm »

My thanks to both of you. That was PRECISELY the information I needed.
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