Wire World for Logo

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I’m currently working on replacing an old world logo with something created in Blender. Here is what I have so far. I know it’s not too far removed from a reflective sphere, but this is going to be an animated video for a company logo. It’s rendered by blender internal and I just threw in ang map for the world to test the materials.

I’m looking for feedback on all of it, but especially on creation of the continents. Right now I think they are too thin, but I don’t know any other way to create them.


I thought I should add in the old world that this will be replacing. The old one was created years ago in Ulead Cool 3D before I knew about Blender. To think that I paid $75 for that garbage when I could have created something much better for free!


How did you create the continents? Did you use an alpha map? If so- you might be able to use the same map as a bump map and add to the thickness of them. I’m not completely sure how well this will work (it might just offset the continents, not thicken them) but it’s worth a shot.

Alternatively, you could use a more detailed map as the bump and create the illusion of mountain ranges etc. hammered out into the metal.

benstabler: Yes, I just used an alpha map. I’ll give bump mapping a try. I’m thinking of trying some displacement as well, but I’m not sure how that will turn out.

Originally I was trying to do this by tracing an image with curves and then adding depth and a bevel, but I wasn’t sure if there was a way to get it to mold to the sphere.

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I don’t like the internal sphere. It’s not interesting. It needs to be more irregular, either through reflection, bump mapping, colors, ANYTHING to make it more “cool.” Right now it’s just a dull blue sphere.

I don’t think that the inner sphere is too plain, the outer wire and continents make the render interesting.

However if you think that it is overly plain you could try going to http://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Blender_3D:_Noob_to_Pro/Every_Material_Known_to_Man/Misty_Globe

Stedfast, where did you find the AngMap?

The AngMap is from an .hdr probe on http://www.debevec.org/Probes/. The one I used is from the Grace Cathedral in San Francisco. It won’t be the one I use for the final, I was just using it to test materials.

I’ve been working on perfecting the process for making an AngMap or HDRI Probe from Terragen. I’ve got the process down pretty well now, I’m just playing with Terragen trying to get the settings down that I want for the final scene.

I’ve been going back to school lately so haven’t had much time to work on this, but I will be continuing it. Deadline is June 20th. The more I look at it, the more I hate the current materials. I’ve been working on a volumetric halo effect from the center of the globe. I’ll post pictures when I get a render I’m semi-happy with.

I used an alpha map a little while ago on a project, but when I did it the whole plain that the map was on cast a shadow. Does anyone know how I can fix that?

And by the way, the globe looks great :slight_smile:

Been a while, but now I actually have a project this goes with that is due next week so I’ll be tweaking this thing like crazy. Here is the latest version:


This is a little closer to my goal. Critique away!

Wow, maybe the lighting, but that looks much better.

It looks like you’re still having problems with the thickness of the continents… it’s a bit of a hack, but possibly you could duplicate the sphere a few times and scale it up a bit, so you would end up with a few layers of alphamap?

The other comment I have is that it’s a bit hard to see the edge of the sphere- this may or may not be desirable, but you could possibly add an “atmosphere” around the edge; think glow plugin but blue? I’m not sure how well that would work, but it might be worth a try.

Thanks Ben. I’m off to give your idea a try. What would you change on the lighting?

It is going to be rendered with an alpha background so it can be dropped in over the top of a video, so the edges should be more visible. I see what you mean though.

No, I just meant that the lighting has improved a lot since the last version :wink:

Hmm, in that case it would definately be a good idea to have a border- otherwise, at certain times the edge of the logo would be visible but at others (when the background changes) it would become hidden in the video.

Good idea, thanks! I’m going to see what Premiere Pro can do for the edges before I re-render. Otherwise your idea sounds like it would do the trick.

:eek:That’s crazy, I had the same thing. I got Cool 3d free with VideoStudio and I used it for a project. I thought it was pretty good, until I saw blender. I only got blender at first to convert a file to use in Cool 3D but then I realized how amazing blender was. I only wish I knew how to use it back then.

I wonder if you could use a map (your actual world map) onto a dense mesh plane to select vertices? You can actually use a map to control emission of particles too. Perhaps you could mask the mesh (Sphere) as you have here and then design a particle emission that is very short but dense to simulate the extruded surface, further if you use art work with value changes (lighter and darker bits) to repersent mounatins etc. you could vary the speed of the particle and therefore the hieght.

Hmmm or perhaps not, it’s just a thought.

Maybe the particles could be objects, maybe little cubes? these would have actual depth too.

Agreed, this might be worth a try. There is a game I play that uses two layers of alpha mapped texture to give the impression of 3D for some complex objects, and it actually works quite effectively. If it looks as good on this (which I think it could) the extra thickness to the continents would really help finish it I think.


The particle trick may be a little above my paygrade. What do you think it would do to render times?

I’ve been working on the duplicated mesh to give the impression of thickness. I’m still tweaking, but I’ll post a pic when it looks decent.

Thanks for all the input everyone!

I like the first one more as a “picture” but the last one does look more logo-like. The one thing I don’t like is the big dark “hole” right in the middle. I expect the edges to be dark, not the centre.
And you’re right, if there were depth to the continents it would likely look better. What you could do is take the mask and use a raster to vector converter and save it in a blender-friendly format. Import and extrude as much as you want.
Maybe try the one in Inkscape if you don’t have another one.