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From: Thomas de Groot
Subject: Re: Before and After and new website
Date: 3 May 2007 07:58:15
Message: <4639ce57$1@news.povray.org>
"Mike the Elder" <zer### [at] wyanorg> schreef in bericht 
news:web.46388e4662a9bf119cf0aa370@news.povray.org...
>
> This is probably considered "cheating" by simulation purists, but one 
> handy
> technique for bringing out details is to use a "doctored" version of the
> texture for the object in question, in this case the fractal, in which the
> ambient component of the finish is turned down really low and the diffuse
> component is turned up high.  It also usually helps to use only the amount
> of reflection that is necessary and no more.  Additionally, if phong is
> used, avoid low phong_size values, which can contribute to the "white out"
> effect.  I hope this helps.
>

maybe the use of a light_group may help here?

Thomas


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From: Jim Charter
Subject: Re: Before and After - comments
Date: 4 May 2007 20:00:44
Message: <463bc92c$1@news.povray.org>
Thomas de Groot wrote:


> "A type of typewriter" by Shay
> I very much wonder what the meaning is of this wonderful and intriguing
> image? I imagine that the before is the typewriter itself as a metaphore for
> the pre-digital creative process, and sublimated into the after as the
> creative process itself. Very clever! I cannot entirely see how the image
> was obtained and I am curious to hear more about it. Artistically, I would
> say that this image could proudly be exposed in any modern art museum.
> 

Nicely put.  For me this image is nothing short of a brain punch. I feel 
like you've at least offered me a stool to sit on after I pick myself up 
off the mat and try and think about it some more.

In an earlier thread, Shay threw down a challenge to himself:
to produce...
"an image that is on topic yet still relevant
outside of the competition."
and...
one that 'will make people think, "You know, it's not just the
kiddie pool over there, those POV-Ray guys have something interesting or
high quality to offer."'

He has done that.  Another idea he advanced was his refocused desire to 
understand when comes the point of diminishing returns in his 
entry-creating process, and act apon it.  He has answered that desire 
also.

This work challenges us conceptually, as Shay's works always do, but 
this time he has left the door open and allows us to make some easier 
connections between the image and the underlying idea.  That was not 
always so in the past.  But there are still loose ends,... still bits of 
this to ponder. This appears like a photo of a typewriter keyboard, yet 
I cannot think of a typewriter that actually looks like this.

The work also challenges us stylistically.  I had always viewed ascii 
art as a stylization based in reduction of means.  I had missed its 
inherent potential to reveal process.  But as you have pointed out, this 
is exactly what Shay has used it to do.  The result is stylistically 
sophisticated and visually delightful.  And I agree, the interplay 
between stylistic improvisation and conceptual morphing is as tightly 
drawn as in many a high-brow, museum work of art.  I love how as the 
keys file off in linear perspective, they blur into textual "noise." 
Just wonderful.

All the usual tricks are there.  The "self-reference" of a keyboard 
depicted with keystrokes, strokes of "literal" typeface, but rasterized 
into a 3d photo illusion, (the traditional objective of raytracing.) The 
illusion is obtained primarily through color, not tone, (try throwing 
this picture into an image editor and desaturating it.)  The color is 
the result of a mix. Each letter is a "primary" from the rgb palette, 
"literal" in a sense. These primaries are then mixed through overtyping 
via the raytracer. The derived color leads to a photo-like illusion, yet 
the usual way that a raytracer modulates color to produce a 3d illusion 
is bypassed and ignored.

Before and after?  Lots of possibilities here.


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From: Brian A  Price
Subject: Re: Before and After and new website
Date: 4 May 2007 23:15:01
Message: <web.463bf3ad62a9bf114af133620@news.povray.org>
Hello,

I apologize for the late comments; I just haven't had
much time lately.

First I would like to thank ~Steve~ for the work it has
taken to continue the contests.  I never had the chance
to participate in the IRTC, so being able to participate
in this contest really made my day :-)


"But which came first?" by David Lewis
This image is great.  The work on the fence is just amazing.
I can't imagine all the work it must have taken to make the
chicken, but I love the chicken.  The lighting really makes
all of it blend together well.  Nice job!


"Just a splash" by Bill Pragnell
I like the concept.  In my opinion, the bricks and the lighting
really make this image.  The lighting in the "after" image really
brings out the details of the glass.  Beautiful entry!  And when
you finish with your brick weathering macro, do share! ;-)


"The Passing Away" by Malcolm Findlay
The first thing that struck me when saw this image was the
name on the headstone.  It says in your text file that you
were trying to convey "the liveliness, beauty that exist before
death which post-death becomes a mere memory and shadow of
these things", but I can't seem to get past my own thoughts of
what has happened to the IRTC.  The ray-traced image for the
picture by the headstone is fantastic.  The grass, the dirt,
the headstones, the wall in the background, the petals for the
flower, all in all it looks like it took a lot of work but
obviously worth it.  Wonderful concept and nice image!


"A Type of Typewriter" by Shay
This is an image I would like as a poster on my wall -
somewhat abstract yet logical.  I don't quite understand how
this was created as I think it's over my head.  But it's
beautiful none the less.  Nice work!


"Yet Another Reflective Sphere on a Checkered Plane" by Tekno Frannansa
Truly inspiring.  I even like the "before" image! ;-)
Not much else comes to mind except that it's a great concept,
and just an incredible image.  Something to study when I get
the time.  Thank you for sharing your work!


"Aging" by William Tracy
I think this image is great just by - but not limited to -
its simplicity and the concept - expressing age through
objects one would own at different periods of time through
life.  Those glasses look difficult to create, but the cane
is just wonderful - the texture, the highlights.  Nice work!


"1st Cup of the Morning" by Michael Chelmecki
If we had the chance to vote in this contest, I would probably
vote for this image.  Not only can I so thoroughly relate
to what this image expresses, but to so eloquently express
that feeling through an image is incredible.  The kitchen
appliances, the other objects, the lighting, the cup -
really nice work!


"A Time of Change (before and after)" by Thomas de Groot
Both before and after images are really impressive.  The
textures on the walls in the "before" image, the houses,
and all the other objects in both scenes are very nice.
I think what impresses me the most - beside the fantastic
work on the objects and textures in these scenes - is your
ability to bring out the human feeling in the models.
Really nice work!


"This to That" by Steve Paget
This is simply amazing work.  I don't even want to think
of the time it would take me to create some of those objects
in Wings.  Even without considering the time constraints
you must have had, I think you did an amazing job on this
image.  Nice concept as well!


So there you have it.  If I failed to mention anything anyone
created here that they especially liked about their work, please
don't take it personally; I'm new to commenting as I'm new to
entering these contests.  And thanks again for giving me the
opportunity to participate.  I had a lot fun.

~Brian A.


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From: Thomas de Groot
Subject: Re: Before and After - comments
Date: 5 May 2007 04:44:28
Message: <463c43ec@news.povray.org>
"Jim Charter" <jrc### [at] msncom> schreef in bericht 
news:463bc92c$1@news.povray.org...
> Thomas de Groot wrote:
>
>
>> "A type of typewriter" by Shay
>> I very much wonder what the meaning is of this wonderful and intriguing
>> image? I imagine that the before is the typewriter itself as a metaphore 
>> for
>> the pre-digital creative process, and sublimated into the after as the
>> creative process itself. Very clever! I cannot entirely see how the image
>> was obtained and I am curious to hear more about it. Artistically, I 
>> would
>> say that this image could proudly be exposed in any modern art museum.
>>
>
> Nicely put.  For me this image is nothing short of a brain punch. I feel 
> like you've at least offered me a stool to sit on after I pick myself up 
> off the mat and try and think about it some more.
>
You are welcome, Jim! Glad to be of help  :-)
Excellent analysis (as always)

Thomas


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From: Mike the Elder
Subject: Re: Before and After and new website
Date: 5 May 2007 09:20:02
Message: <web.463c83c262a9bf116d4565230@news.povray.org>
"Brian A. Price" <nomail@nomail> wrote:
....
> "1st Cup of the Morning" by Michael Chelmecki
> If we had the chance to vote...

Your comments were so overly generous that I was too embarrassed to repeat
them, but I thank you for them nonetheless.

Regards,
Mike C.


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From: William Tracy
Subject: Re: Before and After and new website
Date: 5 May 2007 20:16:03
Message: <463d1e43$1@news.povray.org>
Mike the Elder wrote:
> "Brian A. Price" <nomail@nomail> wrote:
> ....
>> "1st Cup of the Morning" by Michael Chelmecki
>> If we had the chance to vote...
> 
> Your comments were so overly generous that I was too embarrassed to repeat
> them, but I thank you for them nonetheless.
> 
> Regards,
> Mike C.

I was just thinking about this image. (Oh boy, here we go...)

What it really needs is some sort of double vision effect in the before 
panel. Somehow have two cameras slightly apart (about the distance that 
human eyes are apart) and point both at the mug, then overlay the outputs.

I suppose you could do it in POV with some trickery involving 
semi-transparent mirrors?

Anyway, while I'm commenting, that coffee mug is beautiful. :-)

-- 
William Tracy
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You know you've been raytracing too long when other people's Images 
directories contain N00D G1F$ downloaded from the Net. Your Images 
directory contains raytraces that you upload *to* the Net.
Jeff Lee


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From: Tek
Subject: Re: Before and After - comments
Date: 5 May 2007 21:51:32
Message: <463d34a4$1@news.povray.org>
"Thomas de Groot" <t.d### [at] internlDOTnet> wrote in message 
news:4639c954$1@news.povray.org...
> "yarsocp" by Tek
> What can I say? Tek is a master and I am not joking. He hardly needs to
> stress the point by showing a 'make-believe' image of is early attempts!
> Nobody will believe him, because already then he was way ahead of 
> everybody!
> :-)
> So, joking apart (after all), one can only study carefully this scene and
> learn the trade.

Thanks! :-D
And thank you to everyone else who's commented.

Though I do feel obliged to point out it's *just* a sphere on a checkered 
plane. I think I need to challenge myself with a bigger scene, something 
with people. Spheres & checkered planes are evidently not an area that I 
need to work on any more!

-- 
Tek
http://evilsuperbrain.com


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From: Tek
Subject: Re: Before and After and new website
Date: 5 May 2007 23:10:59
Message: <463d4743@news.povray.org>
Ok it's about time I wrote some comments:

But which came first? - David Lewis
I love the expression on the chicken's face! Good modelling on the chicken. 
There's some issues with the textures in the scene, noteably the chicken's 
beak, the low-res wood, and the normal on the feathers which makes them look 
a bit like stone. The lighting is good if it's meant to be night time, the 
black under the fence suggests no light outside, which seems a little odd 
but not "wrong" as such. Anyway it made me laugh which always means I like 
it!

Just a splash - Bill Pragnell
I'm a big fan of surrealism but personally the nudity and background of this 
scene seem completely arbitrary. In my opinion the concept would come across 
better in a more realistic setting. Anyway, regardless of the reason it's 
there, the scene looks nice (well you can't go wrong with a cute naked girl 
really!). I particularly like the isosurface stones. The concept is good, 
though I really didn't get it until I read the title. On the whole it just 
needs a dose of reality such as: clothes, real background (or at least a 
ladder!), spilt drops of wine/stains on the rock, the empty glass & bottle 
being in a slightly different position to the full ones, a blue sky in the 
background on the left (or no yellow one on the second image). Anyway I'm 
probably analysing too much but despite being a very clean & pretty scene, 
it just doesn't quite work for me.

The Passing Away - Malcolm Findlay
Much improved from the WIPs posted on p.b.i. Very nice concept, with 
emotional resonance for anyone who's looking at the 3drtc. Critically I'd 
say the scene looks very flat, which is caused by having mostly flat 
objects, and the light is almost directly behind the camera. Placing the 
light in a more interesting place and having more variety of objects (e.g. 
different shaped grave stones, rounded edges on the stones) would really 
make things look more interesting. Anyway, having seen this image develop 
I'm impressed with the improvement in your pov skills, I look forward to 
your next image!

A Type of Typewriter - Shay
Wierd. Seriously if you do something this strange *please* provide us with 
an explanation of what it is! I *think* what you're doing is a picture of an 
orange & blue typewriter, drawn with ascii-art. Presumably ascii art is the 
"after" and the typewriter is the "before". Though what you've got isn't 
really ascii art in the conventional sense, but I don't mean that as a 
criticism. I think the thing that bugs me about this image is that the 
characters making up the picture seem to be completely random. They're 
letters, but they aren't chosen to best represent the shapes they're 
imitating, or to have some kind of hidden meaning spelt out. Anyway I don't 
find it all that aesthetically pleasing and I'm mostly just confused when I 
look at it. Sorry! :-/

Aging - William Tracy
Ok I slightly spoilt this image for myself by mis-interpretting the glasses 
as being like those worn by Dame Edna Everage, who is hardly a symbol of 
youth! Anyway I get it now. I love the minimalism, I realise that's perhaps 
a stupid thing to love in ray tracing but it really works here. The cane 
looks a bit plastic, but otherwise I have no criticisms of this image! It 
does what it does very nicely.

1st Cup of the Morning - Michael Chelmecki
I know the feeling! Great use of focal blur and I like the unconventional 
composition. The main thing I'd criticise is it has that high ambient-light 
look that a lot of CG images have, which always really annoys me. I think an 
interior scene like this really needs radiosity. On a similar note, the 
light inside the room seems to be so bright we can't see any daylight 
shining through the window blinds. On the positive side, your kitchen has a 
pretty decent quantity of things in it, though it's far cleaner than my 
real-world kitchen. Particularly impressed that you included a half-full 
coffee maker! It's the little details that work. One final thought: try a 
bit of vignetting, particularly on the left image (i.e. make the image 
darker at the corners than in the middle), for the camera-equivalent of 
half-open eyelids.

Reganomics - Brian A. Price
First of all I have to admit I don't really understand the politics or 
economics or whatever that this image represents. So to my mind those 2 
images are backwards from how I normally think of the development of the 
world. Anyway, short of spending time reading up on Reaganomics, I'm just 
gonna assume your concept is better informed than me and comment on the 
technical/artistic side of things! I like the symmetric composition, right 
down to the cars and the height of the distant building. There's really good 
attention to detail, like the way each house has a different paint job, the 
fact there's a stop sign at the factory, the shadow of a tree on the yellow 
building. Though I think it could do with a little more work on the 
materials (e.g. reflective windows, gloss paint, road markings!) and the 
lighting (e.g. lower ambient light should make everything look much less 
cartoony).

A Time Of Change - Thomas de Groot
Wow! I was impressed when I opened the first image, studying it for the many 
signs of time passing, I spent maybe 5 minutes looking at it before 
realising it was the first of 2 images! Individually either one of these 
would be a great illustration of concept, but together they show a really 
well thought out and thoroughly explored idea. By way of constructive 
criticism I'd say this suffers that high-ambient light look of several other 
images in this contest. The shadowed areas are a very flat and grey looking, 
in a scene with a blue sky I'd expect blueish shadows and yellowish light. 
The flatness is very noticeable on the ivy at the top of the wall, where the 
sun hits it it looks really realistic, but in shadow it looks like a flat 
green shape. Anyway enough nit-picking, the shear amount of thought and 
variety of objects in these images makes the rest of us look lazy! Awesome 
work!

This to That - Steve Paget
Interesting interpretation of the topic, very well suited to being a still 
life. The background image really clashes badly with the colours and layout 
of the foreground, which really emphasizes the fact that this image isn't 
real. If that background wasn't visbile in direct comparison to the CG 
objects the scene would look a lot better. Anyway aside from looking too 
clean this scene's pretty realistic IMO. All the objects need to be bumpy 
and less shiny, apart from the metal tools which need to be more shiny. But 
the octahedron pieces of rock, the diamonds, and the pieces of gold look 
very good. For some reason the chunks of gold are a more gold colour than 
the finished cross. Anyway there's a lot of detail in the scene, I hope you 
keep working on it to remove the excessive "perfection" because I think it 
has the potential to be really realistic.

-- 
Tek
http://evilsuperbrain.com


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From: Thomas de Groot
Subject: Re: Before and After and new website
Date: 6 May 2007 05:24:53
Message: <463d9ee5$1@news.povray.org>
"Tek" <tek### [at] evilsuperbraincom> schreef in bericht 
news:463d4743@news.povray.org...
> A Time Of Change - Thomas de Groot
> Wow! I was impressed when I opened the first image, studying it for the 
> many signs of time passing, I spent maybe 5 minutes looking at it before 
> realising it was the first of 2 images! Individually either one of these 
> would be a great illustration of concept, but together they show a really 
> well thought out and thoroughly explored idea. By way of constructive 
> criticism I'd say this suffers that high-ambient light look of several 
> other images in this contest. The shadowed areas are a very flat and grey 
> looking, in a scene with a blue sky I'd expect blueish shadows and 
> yellowish light. The flatness is very noticeable on the ivy at the top of 
> the wall, where the sun hits it it looks really realistic, but in shadow 
> it looks like a flat green shape. Anyway enough nit-picking, the shear 
> amount of thought and variety of objects in these images makes the rest of 
> us look lazy! Awesome work!
>

Thank you indeed, Tek!
I think that most of your comments about the light will be answered when the 
radiosity version of the Before image will become available. That is going 
to take some time.

Thomas


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From: milco2006
Subject: Re: Before and After and new website
Date: 6 May 2007 14:05:01
Message: <web.463e17c262a9bf113f87bbc50@news.povray.org>
"Tek" <tek### [at] evilsuperbraincom> wrote:

> The Passing Away - Malcolm Findlay
> Much improved from the WIPs posted on p.b.i. Very nice concept, with
> emotional resonance for anyone who's looking at the 3drtc. Critically I'd
> say the scene looks very flat, which is caused by having mostly flat
> objects, and the light is almost directly behind the camera. Placing the
> light in a more interesting place and having more variety of objects (e.g.
> different shaped grave stones, rounded edges on the stones) would really
> make things look more interesting. Anyway, having seen this image develop
> I'm impressed with the improvement in your pov skills, I look forward to
> your next image!


Thanks Tek. Also thanks to you for the advice that led to quite a bit of he
improvement from the WIPs to the finished product. I admit that quite a lot
of the image was about the concept and not the technical detail. To be
honest I have never been to a proper war graveyard so was really working
entirely from photos off google images. And despite being useful when
looking to do technical stuff I like to know more about the subject.
However after having the idea and realising the possibilities I didnt want
to turn back. Hmmm, about that next image ... Black robe is challenging me
as I havent really worked with clothing before so it is all very
experimental for me.

Thanks againfor the comments and help,

Malcolm


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