Parallel realities: the bus stop

Reflections have something magic. A mirror, a glass plate or the surface of the water, in every reflection there is a reality similar to ours yet different…

This scene is set in a metropolis, at night, while it is raining. In a puddle, a glimpse of a different reality opens up: a clear and sunny sky.

I’ve just completed this personal project that has been buzzing in my head for a long time.
The initial idea was to do the blockout in 3D and then complete it in anime style digital paint, however as the scene took shape I started to play with the materials, the lights, the colors and this came out in the end. The final result is entirely made within Blender, no postprocessing with other software.
Most of the models from Sketchfab and Quixel.

Free assets used from Sketchfab:
“Galaxia anime girl” ( by Tatenashi
“Yellow Umbrella” ( by CGV
“Bus stop” ( by Víctor Hernández
“Trashcan” ( by holsoft


Nice work! If you used free Sketchfab assets, make sure you add the required attribution to your post. I’m not sure what the Quixel license says about that…

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Thanks Bart, I’ve added details about free assets from sketchfab used in the scene!

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Awesome, thanks!

This is really awesome. What is the trick in creating that puddle reflection? Some divide or colour burn in the node tree somewhere?

Hello and thanks! For the reflection in the puddle I had to try several solutions before finding what I was looking for …
In the end the procedure was this:

  1. I made the night scene, which is almost the final scene:

  1. I made the daytime scene paying attention only and exclusively to the reflection in the puddle without paying attention to the rest of the scene:

  1. I went back to the night scene and as the asphalt and puddles are entirely procedural, I used the puddle texture to create a mask

  2. I added a new UV map to the asphalt and used “project from view” from the camera for UV mapping, then in the asphalt shader I loaded the sunny rendered image and used the puddle map to mix it with the night scene . To obtain a toon effect, I also changed the saturation of the reflection:

Initially the idea was to overlay the reflection in compositing via alpha over but I was unable to obtain the desired effect, furthermore by doing it in the shader I was able to better adjust the edge of the puddle, i.e. the transition between day and night via a comfortable color ramp.

Great explanation, I understand now thank you. Again great job, I love the lighting around the umbrella and character too.

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Congratulations, this work has been nominated for the ‘Best of Blender Artists 2022’ award in the #vfx category! You can vote for it here.

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