BlenderGuru competition (Science Fiction): Life On Mars

Finally decided with which concept I would work (had quite some inspiration).
So here is a first render of my entry. It still needs a lot of work, but the image allready starts to give the right feeling.

My idea is display how it would be if in any time in the future we would need to live on mars. Due to the fact that there is no oxygen and different gravity, temperature,… we would live in some artificial and isolated environment.

(Sorry for the low sample amount, but I don’t want to spend to much time rendering test renders. And since blender somehow doesn’t work with AMD graphics cards, the rendering happens almost completely on CPU which makes it offcourse very slow)

I still need to do a lot, but I would appreciate any comments, tips and help.

Very first impression is: YES! You got it. That’s the martian atmosphere.


the martian atmosphere.

i don’t know, have you been there ? i saw this picture last days:

it shows the real colors on mars…compare to the one with filter treatments !

but i like very much the sun in your image…good luck for the challenge

Of course, I haven’t been there yet. Planned it for last year, but I was hindered. :wink:

What I meant was: It matches that what I and perhaps most people think of, when thinking about the martian atmosphere, because we all know the so called “filtered” images. I know that NASA changed that recently. But I don’t think, that this image shall be a scientific one but a credible one for most of its viewers.

Indeed :stuck_out_tongue: It’s an interpretation. Since the theme is sciencefiction, none of it is really scientific, is it? So neither might be the atmosphere, but it just looks nice, and as minoribus said: It’s the general image that everyone knows.
Besides, my title may be a little bit distracting, but it’s not really meant mars, it’s just any other planet than the earth. So there will definitly be one planet out in the universe that looks like this :stuck_out_tongue:

Hy again, I’ve added some stuff, mostley tried some stuff with the materials and textures. I’m not really happy with it yet, so please let me hear all your critiques :stuck_out_tongue:


Actually, uriel, the image on the left is white balanced, so it is false, here’s something that shows the imaging process NASA uses.

Bottom line is, you can make it look any way you want, pcforme. Keep up the good work.

Yet another update. Still a lot of work to do. Materials aren’t looking very well, neither are the textures. And modeling needs way more detail…
Wish me luck :stuck_out_tongue:

Any tips or tricks are appreciated.

I wish you luck :slight_smile:

I always thought that the plateaux-hills on the right are far away, nearly at the horizon. But now that you have placed a building behind them I have some problems with the dimensions of the objects.

Still nice though!

I know, it is supposed to be a large ship for travelling or something, but failed miserably. So I’ve allready removed it :stuck_out_tongue:
Does anyone have any suggestions for the ground? Because I still think that it really sucks.

Good work so far, but the glass domes are messed up. In cycles, if you have a one-layer solid it will treat it as a solid glass object. To fix this, duplicate the domes, scale them down, and flip the normals, or just add a solidify modifier. It will greatly improve the render.

Maybe you need more little rocks (Like show in the pictures). But when I saw your render was obvious Mars. The red dirt and the orange sky is very easy to spot.
One question: why the cities are so high? (This is an… engineering question :P)

Hm, since you asked for comments I took the freedom to write my thoughts on your image. I still like it and nothing I wrote is ironic :slight_smile: These are just the questions coming into my mind when I see your image. Keep it up.

Thanks for all the comments everybody :stuck_out_tongue: First of all, here is another update:

(Note: Don’t mind the background image, I messed it up a little bit, but I fixed that)

In response to all the comments:

I don’t really see what’s the problem with the domes :confused: They are 2-layered and the normals are pointed the right way.

I know the ground isn’t right yet, I’ve added some more rocks in this render, but it still isn’t good. (some told me the rocks look like popcorn :P)
As for the height… I didn’t really think about it. I just wanted to emphasize the isolation between cities (any other suggestions how to do this?). An explenation of the height might be that weather conditions at ground level are terribble or something? (I’d like to add some flying dust or sand at ground level, but I’m not really sure yet how).

Thanks for this :stuck_out_tongue:
-The fireflies are a lack of samples, the more samples I take, the less fireflies :stuck_out_tongue: (this is something for the final render).
-A human would be very small. As you see in my new render, there should fit a city in there.
-Some detail on the shafts and base of the domes is indeed necessary, but I’m lacking a bit of inspiration on there…
-I’m still working on the ground, another texture might be a good idea.
-The lack of shadows are bothering me as well. I think thisis because of a environment texture… I’m not really sure how to fix this.
-And as I said I’ve added some buildings to make it look like a city in there. Off course I still need to do some work on the cities and the buidlings.

Thanks again for all the comments and tips. I will keep on going and I hope I will have something decent at the end :stuck_out_tongue:

Great enhancements!

The lack of shadows are bothering me as well. I think thisis because of a environment texture… I’m not really sure how to fix this.

Just a quick tip: place a light in front of the sun as seen through the camera and try the shadows, this will produce. Perhaps you can try a spot as lamp (with a wide angle), because that will produce some directed light. If you use a mesh light and cycles, you may want to disable camera visibility under the object properties tab.

Maybe you should add some mist to the scene, to make it more a mysterious MARS-like atmosphere to it :wink:

@ minoribus
There is allready a sun light placed… Probably just some tweaking with the values

There is allready some mist. Altough it’s more like a distant fog. Any suggestions how to get the best results? Because I’ve never done fog in cycles before. :stuck_out_tongue: And especially I want it to look more like flowing sand and dust.

as for your fireflies, a method that seems to work quite well is to render the image twice at relitively low samples using different seeds and then overlay them using “darken only” in gimp or photoshop. this way, you can get a similar result from two 500 sample images as, say, one 5000 sample image. Edit: i think the overlay method is called just “darken” in photoshop

Thanks for that tip. If that would work it would be very great, defenitly going to try this out.

I’ve been messing around with the material for the ground. Now I’ve reached a material that seems to look right on the preview window, but when rendering nothing of it is visible…
I’ve used a vronoi and musgrave texturen, but they aren’t visible. It’s just a plane colour…

Anyone an idea how this may come?