I’ve been a long time Blender user (1.x days), but this recent project has kept me busy for over a year! Hundreds of revisions and several Blender versions have brought it to what it is today. The 30sec video takes 5.5 days to render on my 2ghz P4!
Here are a couple pics and a video (7.1mb divx):
Notice the footprints in the walk way:
You really have to watch the vid to appreciate the snow:
Very nice and moody. The snow looks great in animation. I really don’t have any ideas how to make it any better… maybe you want to put someone sitting on that bench?
When rendering 5 days and not being very certain about the result, I suggest to render the video in raw avi, and do the compression and possible colour corrections etc in Virtualdub (a great freeware videotool) or use some other program like that.
This looks really great. Very good atmosphere. And I am speaking only about the stills. Still downloading the animation.
Only thing to crit whould be the snow. Snow reflects a lot of the light, so you might consider to put a little emit on the snow. And maybe some lights from below to lighten up the bank and the tree from below. (Faked radiosity :). This might make this animation even more real (very curious about the animation. But it’s d/l very slow).
Just saw the animation. Very beautyful. In the end I am missing a little the camera-movement. Or at least some shots from different angels. One thing which bothers me is a dark ray from the lamp in the upper half of the last sequence. Looks somehow strange.
I absolutely love this scene because one of my favorite things to do is walk outside in the snow at night. In fact, there’s a lamppost at the end of one of the roads I live on that I stand under and, although it doesn’t resemble that one, its close enough for me to like it based on experience. I’ve wanted to do a similar scene for a long time but when I started working on it I got caught up in researching volumetric halos to try and make them more accurate.
One thing you need to fix: I think the light coming out of the post is way too white. In real life very few street lights have white lights. Most are yellow, orange, or even purplish.
Also, the lamp looks odd the way it sticks out of the snow…it needs some type of base.
I thought to add a butt print in the bench snow, or maybe where someone had wiped away to sit down. Just a thought though…
That’s exactly what I did =), nice 700mb avi. The falling snow does not compress well in mp4 or divx, indeo is only OK. My best results come from just compressing it with avi jpeg straight from Blender, but 30mb for 30 sec is still too large.
Great idea, I was looking for more light on the tree, as that is how it appears when I observe it outside. Over the past year, I have been out in almost every snow storm and fog, looking at light posts to get the subtleties of volumetric lighting and snow movement. I am very happy with the results, but the tree was a late addition and needs more work
My biggest struggle, and the reason this has taken so long, accurate light and snow. The original scene was a deep amber color, the snow was coming down fast, and the lense flare looked really goofy, but hey, it was a start.
I moved to the white light to allow the snow particles to pick up on the light and look more realistic as they pass through the volumetric light. Amber made the snow look like crap. Also, I have a perfect light post outside with very white/slightly blue light, which this is modelled after. I may have to experiment with the lighting some more, but the whiter light gives a better contrast to the scene than anything else.
Thats how they look around here…but if it makes you feel better, just image that the base is covered in the snow =)
I didn’t see the link to the animation before when I posted and I watched it a little while ago. I’m amazed at how lifelike your snow looks… Its random yet it falls with amazing regularity the way accumulating snow manages to do. The flakes are a bit big but sometimes thats what they look like if the air is the right temperature and humidity. Did you ever think about perhaps have a car drive by so you can see the snow in the headlights? Or perhaps putting some footprints in the snow? Great stuff…the mood is just awesome.