As part of a school presentation, I thought I would apply some Blender skills to visualize stem cells. Here’s how I used the time:
Modelling: 30 min.
Sculpted sphere and nucleus with a subdiv.
Duplicating: 15 min.
Shading/Lighting: 2 hours (the right diffuse/volume/translucent/glossy blend took some doing)
Mainly I had problems with the nucleus visibility; I ended up using a ramped fresnel as the factor to mix glossy with refraction.
Render: 2 Hours, 1000 Samples (left it overnight).
I rendered into two layers; alpha mapped foreground and background.
Compositing: 15 minutes (early morning composting :D; I had some node groups that made life easier, so probably more like 1 hour)