Mediterranean Pool/Cave

So I finally got around to posting this on here,

I am a fairly young 3D content creator, currently studying a bachelor of animation. I’m interested in many, many, many aspects of CGI & art in general, though as I have a 3D environmental modelling course this semester I thought I would try some environmental/archvis work. From the beginning of this project I had decided I wanted to work all linear 32bit images. I have experience with photography, and in particular HDR photography (for IBL & just for viewing). I originally wanted to composite in photoshop, however its handling of 32bit files was a bit problematic to start off, so I took the opportunity to learn some nuke. Couple things caught me off guard (like terminology such as ‘shuffle’)

Long video

Things I learned:

32bit HDR images are great
Nuke is great (seemed a bit slow at first, but you forget that when you see how powerful it is)
How much I had to ‘soften’ my render to make it look somewhat photographic was astounding!
Treat the render as a photo (tonemapping in luminance HDR, don’t be afraid to overexpose,blur,introduce aberrations)


I rendered out 9 passess for the primary foreground; Diffuse colour/direct/indirect, Glossy colour/direct/indirect, Translucent colour/direct/indirect.

Doing this wasn’t completely necessary, however I was able to apply some noise reduction to specific passes (DifDir and DifInd) plus it was a good exercise in node wrangling.

After nuke, I took the .exr into a free program LuminanceHDR for tonemapping

output to 16bit tifs

and finally into photoshop for more touch ups + output to .jpg for web upload.

So, what do you think? Any ideas on improvement?
I think one of the areas could have gotten a bit better at was compositing and maybe a bit more control over colour palette.

Inspiration image

one 4K res image

Very nice looking work. Thanks for detailing some of your process.

It is a very beautiful scene. I think the palette colour is perfect. It could be Greece or Ibiza, the sky and the light are typical mediterranean. The idea of put a swimming pool into a cave is very original. Congrats!

Thank you both of you! I’m glad you liked the colour palette Madrid82, that was one area I forgot to put time and focus into.

I like these pictures a lot! They make me feel like I am really there. I wish that I really could go there!

As a Greek I love you render. Maybe a bit oversaturated in some areas .

If you the reference image you used the saturation is not that much.

I don’t like the night render, the outside is blured and the sky is a weird brown I have never seen before. But the day render is quite good.

I also think that pillows need more sculpting , bigger and smaller ones because they look more like rocks that have been cut because they are too clean in surface. Again take a look at your reference image.

I also prefer the way the water looks in the reference image more, I think your render of the water is very good but too reflective.

I prefer your design of the pool more than the reference image.

I don’t like the outside , the whole scene is very simple and it could use some more complex geometry outside the cave in the case of the buildings. Again i prefer the reference image but you could create something entire different.

Overall this is a 8/10 render , well done.