Faking Volumetric Clouds in Blender using Subsurface Scattering and Nodes

Hello, this is my first post here. So I hope that this is the correct place :confused:

After experimenting for a while, I have developed a technique to simulate volumetric clouds using particles, subsurface scattering and composite nodes. This technique does not try to be a substitute of real volumetrics, however, it can obtain quite real results.

I include an attachment with the result of the applied technique and a link to a document describing in detail how to implement it.

I hope that this can be useful for you guys.


I just uploaded a pair of test images. Rendering time:

cloud-01: 02:17.89 mins
cloud-02: 01:48.29 mins



I’m bumping this because it took us so long to approve it. Sorry, Nerodny!

Thank you very much PlantPerson for your attention!


This looks really good, im going to go read through the PDF now, thankyou for posting this :slight_smile:

It looks good. Thanks for the PDF. How long does it take to render?

Well, it depends of your machine.

On my Intel Pentium M 1.86 Ghz, 1 GB RAM, it took 04:32.86 minutes.

Nice clouds.
If you dont mind me asking - where is the name (national hero) comes from? You are from Mexico and name is on russian :slight_smile:

hey wicked tell me how you set it up now!


Yes, it’s russian. This nick began as a joke, in certain conversation about my social/political convictions. I liked it and I use it since then.

The stills are impressive, but how would it work with animation? Since the displacement is done in screen space I suspect it would look weird if you had the camera rotate around a static cloud… Good technique nonetheless:)

Yes, indeed. This technique works fine for clouds/smoke in movement. When you render static clouds, it looks with a permanent disturbing.

Very clever.

Thank you very much.

valuable info …

Thanks for posting this, very good information :slight_smile:

Very interesting technique, thanks a lot for sharing :slight_smile:

Thank you guys for try it :yes:

The white cloud ones look a bit better than the first, but something seems iffy about the one that overlays a background compared to the blue sky.

Just avoid a lot of washout like your new image and make some softer edges and slightly more detail and you’re good to go.

This looks awesome, but the link to the pdf is broken, is there anyway to reupload it?



I have tried several times the link, and it works fine. Maybe a problem in the Internet Archive server, I think.