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Sets and materials…

Getting close to materials and settings that I like for render. Still some work to do on sets. Click for full size.



And one more…

Moving ahead, I’ve added the snow to the first shot and begun to experiment with ways of doing the tree line. This method isn’t horrible, but it needs some tweaking. As a proof of concept though, I consider it a success as it gives the correct overall effect. Note that the kids in the background are currently dupe models of the boy, but will be replaced by other kids later.


Falling Snow Effect

I’ve gotten this almost to where I think I completely like it. Blender particle system, using a very light-weight snowflake mesh (24 faces) as a dupli-object. I got the motion going pretty well, but the material on the snowflake makes it, I think. Of course this morning, I looked out the window after I fired up the results of last night’s render to see… snow falling, first time this year. (Recommended to go fullscreen and HD!)

Falling Snow Effect from Roland Hess on Vimeo.

New, Faster Computer

Last weekend, I built myself a new computer. I’ve been using my Athlon X2 box running Windows XP (and occasionally Ubuntu 8.04) for several years. It wasn’t like it was getting horrible, but I felt that it was time for an upgrade nonetheless. So, I built a Phenom X6 machine with 8GB of RAM, and slapped Ubuntu 11.04 on it. For my current project, render times have dropped by almost an order of magnitude, a combination of the higher RAM ceiling, 4 more processor cores, three years better overall architecture and the move to a 64-bit OS.

Last night, as I was working on some sculpting on one screen and keeping tabs on myself in Glitch (http://www.glitch.com — I’m “harkyman” there, duh) on another, I decided to pull down the Blender sources and start building my own on the new box. I compile using scons, because it’s what I’m familiar with, and once I got all of the right packages in place, I started the build with the “-j” flag to tell it to multi-thread, assigning four of my six cores to it.

So, I went back to work (er, MMORPGs are work right?) and Blender built just ridiculously quickly, without even slowing me down in the web browser or hitting my performace sculpting.

Overall, between the render speed increase and the en fuego build time, I’m extremely happy with my upgrade. I know that it’s not news that newer, faster computers are… faster, but it’s fun to see it in practice.


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