My Grandfathers' "Clock" (Reactor Design)

This is some kind of a reactor that I came across while fishing through my long gone Grandfathers’ old junk.



I am practicing mixing reality with CG.


That’s awesome, but your shadows appear to be slightly wrong. The light on the machine looks like it’s coming too much from overhead, you can see it especially on those protrusions on the right hand side. When compared to the vase, it seems like the machine should be throwing much longer shadows across the near-side of the table. Ie: The vase is farther back, but even still the top of it does not throw shadow across the table, yet the machine is similar in height, farther away from the window, yet still the glass part is already throwing shadow near its base. Great work though.

Yep, you are right, I originally intended to have the machine effect the environment as well as the environment effect the machine. In post processing I decided to skip the machine effecting the environment because for some reason it just looked right to me, maybe I will pay it another visit. The light you are talking about is actually coming from the center of the machine.

Looks good, but not convincing. its like the light from the window does not affect the machine very much.
Pretty cool though! Keep it up!


Just did it quickly, so appologies for some rough edges. I basically just added more shadow underneath it and lowered the brightness and contrast a hair. Then I went through with a blur tool brush and blurred a lot of the more hard edges. Adding noise to the whole image VERY faintly might tie it all together further. You can see noise in the rest of the image, but none on the device. My paint tool doesn’t have a noise filter, and I am too lazy to re-install the gimp :stuck_out_tongue: I think the harder shadow underneath and blurring the harder edges are most effective, tho.

Nice pic.

EDIT: Render it again for the reflection as well, and make a really faint one on the table. The other stuff is reflected slightly. The device isn’t. You might be able to fake that, tho. Maybe some caustics hitting the table or your face and arm to add a little more detail to it.

This is one of the better small touches I have seen. Thank you very much, I will defiantly attempt the shadowing changes you have done as well as look into the contrasting however, I am having trouble noticing the rough edges you blurred. I will also add some noise to simulate the high ISO that the original picture was shot at. As for the reflections and caustics, I will just go ahead and attempt to composite those in, especially on the table. Excellent, thank you!

As for the unrealistic lighting, I am going more for what looks right and not what looks realistic and for some reason to me it looks right. Thanks for the advice though.

Hey man, nice job! The biggest problem I see with the image at this point is the glare that sits below the CG object. Not exactly the same as reflection, which was an issue that was mentioned.

But basically the light coming from the window is not being obscured by the clock/reactor object, and so that portion of the table is simply lighter than it really should be, because it’s reflecting light from the window. The most obvious example of this is the brightness of the table just below the lower-right corner of the clock

So this is just a matter of doing some correctional work on the background plate in photoshop-- it’s not something you necessarily need to render out a pass to correct.

But a blurred (“glossy”) reflection would definitely help as well. Looking forward to seeing your next version!


Alright, I painted in the shadow that was recommended (very, nice) I made it a lot harder than Squiggly P’s. I made the table reflect the CG object and I tried to make it look as similar to the other reflection as possible. I added a bit of noise to resemble the rest of the picture to the shadows, reflection, and the Reactor itself. Finally, I adjusted the brightness and contrast; it looks good to me, but I have a taste for high contrast pictures and my monitor is not calibrated :stuck_out_tongue:

As for the glare mentioned by Effstops I looked into it, but I think the reflection I added in settles it down and I personally believe it is realistic after looking into it. Thanks for the advice tho.

On another note I have been looking into adding the lighting and caustics from the machine in, but so far I have not been able to accomplish this on what I would consider a believable level. I will keep you posted tho :stuck_out_tongue:

Thanks for the advice, you all have been a big help so far =D

Quick Update:

I did some color balancing and edge smoothing on the reactor itself.

Definitely an improvement, if the object wasn’t so out of place and 50’s sci-fi you would not think it was a composite. Or to put it differently, I’m sure that if you showed it to somebody non cg they could be persuaded it is a real object. Well done!

maybe you could add some noise–the base image is very grainy

you also appear to have some gamma problems or something…but don’t ask me, i don’t know much about that

also it is too bright on the near side, note the under exposed areas on the person’s face
(is that you?)

Looks better in the latest version. More grounded on the table.

With the blurring, I basically just blurred the outer edges and some of the inner edges. The frame that curves around the glass orb, the dials and wires, etc. My thinking behind it was that the photo would end up with a certain amount of blur all over, being a photograph and thus being at least somewhat imprecise, even if it’s perfectly focusing on the reactor. The render, tho, is entirely crisp and accurate, given the fact that it was computer generated and thus pretty much flawless (aside from any atificial flaws that may be in the model itself).

If you look at the edges of the vase, for instance, they look pretty much in focus, but the edges around the reactor are totally sharp and crisp. Your brain tells you that the object is added to the photo due to the fact that it is totally crisp where everything else is not that sharply in focus. A very slight blur in photoshop would probably do a lot to convince your eyes that that reactor belongs there. If you look at the widest points of the orb - from your elbow to the legs of the statue - you can see at the outer edges there a distinct stair-step effect. It’s really all over the place on that render, but noticeable on those outer edges the most. You don’t see that sort of effect anywhere else in that photo, and cameras rarely produce it on their own. That’s what I’m talking about.

Oh people have already persuaded themselves so far. I just neglected to mention it was CG :wink: Then again, with my family it is not so far fetched :stuck_out_tongue:

Aye I already added noise to the object.

No gamma problems, I am just a sucker for high contrast pictures.

It is somewhat true what you are saying however, the person in the photo is close to the wall and is receiving less light from the right. Note the vase to the left has a similar exposure as the actual CG object. And yes, that person is me =D

Thanks for the advice.

Aye, I found some rough edges on the edges of the object and softened them out. I usually try to avoid the blur tool because I think it is to harsh for my tastes and it leaves a distinct trace on the picture. As for some of the inner edges I will probably just leave them as is and next time see if I can use better OSA while rendering. Thx for the help =D

I think the image has been improved to acceptable levels, thanks to all of those whom gave advice, and anything else past here I will just take into mind for the next project.

Nice intergration work, but with images like these even small things can stand out.

Staring at the image I notices some poor anti-aliasing on the CG object, this clearly gives the CG object away.

I’m sorry, did you do this?

If yes… THIS IS SICK!!!

Oh sorry, I have just read. you do only this clock. Phew… Anyway very nice! :slight_smile:

I like it. Good job