Alien vs. Elf in space

I’m working a short film that includes a short scene where alien and elf are battling on a platform in space.
I’m trying to get the platform to look more real but I’ve hit a road block. Here is the composite node network.

I would appreciate any advice anyone can give me.

Note: For the short film I am doing everything in blender! The only things I’m not doing with Blender are sound (I’ll be using Audacity) and of course Video capture from my camera was done with other software.


Here are some of the materials settings I’m using. I also played around with some of the lights a bit more.


Here is an update. I think this is quite an improvement but I feel like this could be a lot better.


I’m not a pro either, just my 2 cents.

If the metal plate texture that you use is tileable, you could just increase the X and Y size of the texture in the Map To panel, so the diamonds pattern gets smaller. Right now it makes your characters look really small, the patterns are really big, compared to your characters.

You can make metal look more “metally” if you use some specular. I see that your texture is a rusted one, so you could make a specular map that controls where and how high should be the specular level (where it’s rusty, it should be black or dark grey - low or no specular at all; where it’s NOT corroded, it should be white or light grey - high specular).

You use a bump map to make it look more 3-dimensional, great! But be careful, it seems that there is some shadow information in the color texture, that in some cases may work against your bump map. If you use bump or normal maps, you should make sure, that your color texture only contains self-shadowing or ambient occlusion.

The DOF effect is either too strong, or it just don’t affects the further part of the guy on the ground, which ruins the FX.

Other than this I can’t say much, if you could show more frames, a little test video or something, then probably we could help you more.

I worked on a few things, I reworked the texture from scratch and made the bump map from scratch (drew it myself). GIMP has some really nice filters for this kind of work.

Thanks for your tips, I toned down the DoF and also blurred the live footage just a tad. I’m pretty happy with the way it’s looking.

I’m doing a summer internship in a remote place in Africa so I can’t post too many pictures because the internet here is pretty sparse. Tell me what you think.