Water refraction distortion

Hi there! This is my first post in BA. :slight_smile:

I am looking to make water that refracts light and the floor underneath it. I think there’s really two components… the refraction of the light on the floor and the refraction of the floor from the top view

Something like this:


Thanks for your help!

The bottom picture shows caustics pattern. Unfortunately Cycles is at this point completely unable to handle this due to the way calculations are done internally. The free renderer LuxCore can handle caustics much better, and if possible I would try to bake out the caustics pattern onto a texture there to be used in Cycles. Haven’t done it myself so I don’t know what baking options are available, if at all.

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I also suggest Luxcore for rendering caustics. You can take a look at this demo file: pool_tester.zip

Above image and demo blend file taken from this forum post.


Thank you both so much! I’ll definitely be using that in the future.

I consider that in 90% of cases no accuracy is needed but speed, getting a baked caustics texture is a much better choice in that case.

However you will have to check how to use light projectors.

Note that you might even be able to generate a caustics texture in After Effects (or anywhere else you can) and use it as an animated texture in Cycles.

just released today and maybe an alternative for fast rendering…