Happy penguin loves to waffle and howl

This is issue #146 of the Dogwaffler of the Moment, the sporadic newsletter about Project Dogwaffle.

More Tips for Landscapes


This newsletter can also be found online:

To catch up on earlier issues of our newsletter, start here:  http://www.thebest3d.com/dogwaffle/newsletter
In this edition, we have new sample terrain renderings and animations, as well as a number of tips from Dan, the author of Project Dogwaffle. We wrap it up with a May promotion and a free elevation map. 

Here we go....

New Renderings

Here are a few recent, new animations with terrains, in our Youtube channel.

exploring imaginary mountain scenes in PD Howler's Puppy Ray GPU

april2018 - puppyray renderings


Dan's Tips on Terrains in Puppy Ray GPU

Looking at these new renders mentioned above, one thing that comes to mind: the shadow area may be getting compressed really bad.

In the last few builds of Howler, global illumination was re-implemented, and it's quite a bit darker than it used to be. It's now more physically plausible, but it's darker than it used to be. It's now valid to drive it over 1.0 and still be physically correct. I'd say it could go all the way to 1.2 or so. Feel free, if not obliged, to drive it up to .7 or .8, when appropriate.

Also, when I setup the default light, I was really conservative about giving it a lot of saturation, but a real light source would be much more orange and saturated. It helps when you use a lot more of the available color dynamic range. You could also drive the light value dynamic range up a lot more (balance of really bright and dark) to minimize the compression problems and make things look more like something taken with a camera.

It's also completely valid to do image processing afterward, just like you would with a photograph. I always change the saturation up a little, and do some color correcting, and usually add some sharpness.

It's really nice seeing the new renders. The fix in the motion blur is really making things look much better. The music has been really good. This last one was really grand and filmic, and catchy. Thank you Kevin MacLeod!

What do you think?

Ok, yes, tips.  Here's another one.

I was also very conservative about the preset value for specularity.  Specularity means reflected light.  It's the same as reflectivity (although in old terms, it is usually just a reflection of a light source)

Non-specular shading is the light that bounces around inside the microfacets of a surface and is absorbed.  This results in the appearance of the surfaces color.  Reflection (or specular) results in the surface taking on the color of the surfaces around it.  All surfaces are somewhat specular.  If specular light is tinted by the color of the surface, then the surface looks metalic.  We no longer do this.

In the case of global illumination, our surfaces are both specular and non-specular, based on glansing angle.  Our direct light is still the old dot-product kind.  It does not contribute much to global illumination.  Therefore, increasing specular intensity by 2-3 times has the effect of improving bounce light quite a bit.  Too much specular will make the surface look wet.  Not enough, and it looks very flat.  Increase the hardness by 2-3 times as well.

That's the long way of saying: increase specular somewhat.

Another tip. 

Using Boolean operations in the Plasma Noise filter, like greater than/less than, usually produces more interesting results than other modes.  It creates the effect of crags, plains, and plateaus.  Here is an example with the "greater than" mode, with 2 different sizes of noise, inverted, and a little gamma correction.

And Another.

I use a really deep orange for the light color.  It looks white balanced, because there's a lot of blue bounce light blended with it.  Also remember, white is never a sunset color. 

I do some final hue, automatic adjust, and sharpening as a final step. I always keep the original to compare with, because you can trick your brain into thinking something looks good, but when you go back to the original, you can tell if the changes are better or worse, or you can blend between them.

One more:

I learned this at Foundation Imaging.

Make use of your lights entire dynamic range.  You're probably seeing your picture in a nice dark room with all its subtle beauty, but the average viewer is going to see it in less ideal circumstances.  Push the light as bright as it will go, without too much clipping or blooming.  They do this for film, thus it improves realism considerably.

The light here is very bright, making it look like real daylight.

And yet one more:

White or unsaturated light is associated with overcast sky conditions, such as cloudy or snowstorm conditions. In that case, there would be no hard shadows, or very soft shadows. A hard shadow with white light is very unnatural. If you want to simulate a Martian sandstorm (or Terrestrian for that matter) you can give it a little brownish tint, but still, keep very soft shadows or next to no shadows at all.

Dogwaffler of the Moment -
Francisco Javier

Francisco has started to use Howler recently to create fantasy landscapes, such as scenes imagine on Trappist-1. Check this video in his YouTube channel:

Keglion Reef
Virtual Visualization of planet d of Trappist-1 star in Aquarius. Made in PD Howler 11.2.

Los Muros de Atlantis


Look for more examples and animations in the future to come to his channel.

Dogwaffler of the Moment - Bluffwalker (updated)

You may remember this DOTM entry:

There are a few new renderings in his Flickr Album on Digital Landscapes:

Look for these awesome new pieces:

- Flaming Gorge
- Fire and Ice
- Middle Earth Passage
- Utah Red-tailed Hawks
- Out for a Ride
- Mountain Bikers

Just beautiful work. Some with Howler, some with Photoshop too,.... just beautiful

Our Promotion through May - for Cinco the Mayo

We are offering PD Howler 11 and PD ARtist 11 with 33% discount - no discount coupon needed. The discount is automatic. Both are at version 11.2b at the moment.

Order PD Howler 11.2b:

Order PD Artist 11.2b:

33% off expires June 1st 2018

If you don't have a need for it at the moment, please consider helping another fellow artist by forwarding this or sharing/posting it in your favorite social media, blog or forums. Can you re-tweet? Much appreciated!

Tiffanie Gray's Recorded Webinars - Tutorials for Howler

Tiffanie is a long-time Dogwaffler of the Moment, and she has recently presented a few webinars. Here are two recordings available for purchase at Daz3d:

Learn 20 Powerful Postwork Procedures with PD Howler


Learn to make stunning Landscapes


Learn more about Tiffanie Gray:


Cinco de Mayo? Cinco the M...ars!

Lift off! NASA just launched another probe on its way to Mars, arriving in November: Insight. This one has Project Dogwaffle onboard. Yes, Project Dogwaffle is on its way to boldly go where no paint program has gone before: Space!

Did you get your boarding pass too?

Let's use this as inspiration for new imagined landscapes. Check details here:


And that's a wrap for today. Thanks for howling and waffling!

Team Dogwaffle.
squirreldome.com / thebest3d.com

the goddess of sadness, painted with Project
              Dogwaffle by nBT
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