How do you render complex scenes?

I tried looking at some other threads but they were a real headache to try and understand and kept referencing things that apparently arent in blender anymore so here we are.

How do you render complex scenes? my blender crashes presumably because of memory overload when I try to render my most recent scene, and while I did find a few people talking about how to make scenes less complex to prevent this, this scene is not even close to as complex as I would want to make later on. I’m fine with it taking hours or days to render just as long as it does actually render eventually. rn I have no textures (just materials), maybe a couple dozen objects in view, and want to render a reasonably large image.

Obviously split scene in viewlayers and render one by one, then compose. If it’s not enough, simplify viewlayers.

Alright I have no idea how to do any of that. and, given that I only have one part of what was going to be a much larger scene, does that mean I’ll need dozens to hundreds of view layers for any given scene?

If hardware isn’t sufficient for complex scenes, there is not much options… So, yeah dozens of layers is plausible.

  • Before splitting in viewlayers, you can try rendering on CPU, thus utilizing more memory to fit a scene.
  • Rendering from system console (w/o GUI) - sometimes also helps
  • If it is animation - rendering sequence of stills via script somehow is more stable than default Render Animation button
  • Split screen in regions and render each in lower resolution then stitch them back in image editor

For bigger scenes if it doesn’t affect lighting/shadows hiding some objects may help. Render them out in the second run while now hiding the objects you already have and then stitch all together.
Rendering regions (Ctrl+B) and stitching them together afterwards might also be useful if somewhat cumbersome.