Photorealistic water

Hi all,

I am carring out an experiment with photorealistic water. This is the best I have managed to get so far. I want it to be as close as real as possible, of course.

Suggestions welcome. I am more interested in WHAT should change in the whater than in HOW can I change it using Blender (I am open to use other tools).


By the way, the illumination is meant to be sunlight during sunset.

looks like this is a small lake or something right?
I think its really good, the only thing that caught my eye is the blue “column” usually that is what the sun makes…thus is should be orange/yellow. eg:

Maybe darken the atmosphere a bit? it is darker after all when the sun starts disappearing,550x550,075,f.jpg

Creating photo realistic water is different for each image/animation. What works in a day time shot won’t (necessarily) work in a night shot. I too am playing with the ocean modifier looking at the same thing. The scenes I am trying to create are ocean scenes with horizon in which we will be combining with live action footage. The scenes will change from day to dusk to night and morning.

I have found, using BI, which is not the greatest for photo realism, I use a material that is black with almost 100% reflectivity gives me the best results. I create a pure white texture for the foam. And the foam makes a HUGE difference. For lighting I use shadeless HDR images that I manually place around the scene. To light the foam I use a sun lamp tinted to what ever compliments the HDR lighting.

I would love to use cycles, but due to hardware limitations that is not possible right now.

Thanks, place57, but I am way more interested in WHAT do the water needs to change instead on HOW can I change it using Blender. I am asking to point details into the image that should be changed for it to look more realistic or natural.

Thanks for the tips, anyway.

Very good point DDD. And very illustrative images. Thanks a lot.

The blue column is indeed the “natural” tone of the water, reflecting the blue sky. The darker column to the left is due to some objects (trees, for example) other than the sky, reflecting in the water. Sun is indeed setting in a non-clear horizon. The water is from a river, not a sea or ocean, so the horizon line is not straight, but poblated with some trees here and there, in the distance.

You could try to implement absorbtion with the ray lenght node if you haven’t already.

Edit: so light could “scatter” trough the tips of waves is IMHO a good watershader:

<-- a small test I did

It looks good. The only thing that sticks out for me is the highlights for the sun seem a little too uniform, that and without a scene framing it, it’s hard to tell what should or shouldn’t be there.