Rendering inside of meshes

Is there any way to “solidify” a mesh so that the camera renders the inside of it even if the sides of the mesh are outside of the clipping distance of the camera?


There are, really, two unrelated concepts being tossed-about in your post. Let me treat each one of them separately (note that they are actually unrelated…) and see if the result makes any sense. :spin:

  • A “mesh” (that you can see, anyway…) is actually one-sided. Every “face” has a so-called “normal vector” which points “forward,” and that face is (usually…) visible only when that normal vector is pointing “towards” the camera. There does exist a Blender script that can “solidify” an object, but it works by creating two faces, one pointing in opposite directions from the other.

  • “The clipping distance of the camera” is a hard-and-fast attribute of the camera. (Lights, by the way, have the same attribute.) Anything “in front of” the clipping range, like anything “beyond” it, is excluded (“clipped”). So, clipping will exclude things (such as, for example, “faces that are pointing toward the camera” …) that would otherwise be visible. This is a very practical, and often very useful, tool for limiting the amount of work that our hard-working digital computers have to do.

P.S. Yes, the foregoing bullet points do contain “sweeping generalizations,” made in the name of clarity, for which I hope I shall be duly forgiven…

I understand both those things, I mentioned the clipping distance only because extending it to allow me to see other parts of the mesh is not an option.
My setup has a very short clipping distance on purpose so as to allow me to create cross sections of any model by moving the camera through it.
That python script would not really help me as my clipping distance is so short that you can’t see the far side of the mesh anyway.

My problem is that because meshes are effectively hollow, the resulting animation shows only the edges of the mesh.
I was wondering if there was a way to make the camera render the “inside” of the object so as to create a filled in cross section as opposed to an outline.

Hope that clarifies my query

I don’t think camera clipping will do that for you… A boolean operator might, though – have you tried using that to do the slicing? (You could parent the boolean object to the camera, e.g.)