Ok. it’s done. After some delays because of maintenance work on my pcs started with a broken gpu fan ,but lead me to do a lot of work to keep my hardware alive (most of it is now 3 years old)
Meanwhile i also sent back some damaged ram (lifetime warranty !) and now i have 8gb so i can render this scene without problems (before i had to close blender )
The scene was ready last week , but it really needed one last fix : the white plaster on the big building was off . It was looking too “crunchy” .. like when you exagerate with hdr detail enhance, and surfaces details get small black halos , looking like crunchy cereal bars or similar.. (i tweaked the material , the node effect worked well on other materials)
“Like Hdr”, altough i did not use qtpfsgui on this one ( no advanced tonemap like fattal or mantiuk ) only that setup for unsharp/retinex nodes (seen in previous posts) that took care of detail enhance , while exposure correction was taken care with Vray’s Reinhart tmo and blender nodes. That’s nice, because qtpfsgui is very powerful but also very “invasive” and hard to control : so i try to get those results with simpler effects.
About lightrays : a separate pass with vray volume was composited in nodes .. but not very visible : i still have troubles getting strong light rays (sun shafts) while keeping distance fog minimal (i’d like to handle that separately..)
About textures paint : see previous post , i’m happy with the blending of simple painted base + tiled photo textures + vray dirt .
In the future i must also use handpainted blendmaps (i.e. for bricks showing through cracked plaster , etc..)
Also , good news , blender now has realtime bump painting in trunk , that’s another nice ingredient for future tex painting.
Lastly , i think i’ll start another similar personal project next , but smaller, an interior or similar , this panorama was kind of big .. it could use 20% more detail .. but i’ve tested what i needed (vray, materials , painting) so i’ll move on.
EDIT : here’s a wire render :
Looks cleaner (as in less detailed) then i thought : except for foreground there is little mesh details added for damage and imperfections.. leaving that to textures.
I guess there’s a limit to the use of bump normal and displace textures for detailing and weathering , but textures are sure easier to manage than meshes which ,in these matters, quickly become a topology horror .
Actually , i remember a speech at View conf. here in Torino by Pixar artists, and i was surprised how simple the meshes were for “Up” house . But then they had an incredible system for texturing and rendertime displace /subdivision to make all the subtle details (even paint accumulating in corners affecting the shape of wood stairsteps..)