Bryce - Version .1 and Up

Scene Creation: Make a moonlit Panorama

March 2005 by: Pinhead - Paul Pappathan
User Level: Beginner
Part 1

A tutorial for newer Bryce users. Explains in full detail how to create a panoramic scene.
Covers document setup, sky, water, terrain, light use and render.

Not to be confused with a 360 Panorama render! This is the traditional panorama which is defined by an aspect ratio (width and height) of 8 : 3,..Not the full 360 degree wrap that is popular for abstracts.

You are not going to be using the below function to be specific:

A 360 Panorama Render ain't what we're doing.
But here's a simple explanation anyhow for future reference.
360° Panorama produces an image that looks as if your camera had a crystal ball for a lens.
The left and right edges of the image made join seamlessly - similar to a flat world map.
When you render a scene as 360° the image will not look like the wireframe in the work area. Just like a map, there will be major polar and equatorial distortions which are not desired when creating a static landscape.
Geez, wasn't that fun...I almost sound like I know something.

Now it's time to get serious. Really.
This tutorial will walk you through each and every step - and possibly bore you into a zombie like state from which there is no recovery.
You will spend the rest of your existence mindlessly craving human brains fresh outta the can.
But if you are new to Bryce and go through this, from beginning to end, you will learn most basic functions and touch on a few that are only whispered about in dark, dank (and real smelly) corners.
I'll also show how to set a color scheme - although I use blues here please feel free to make yours Jack the Ripper Jello Red.

I'm going to start by showing how to use Document Setup.
Every output file is a 'document' to a computer and it's no different with rendered images. Document Setup allows you to define the width, height (aspect) and size (resolution) of what you see when working in the main Bryce screen area.
Your Bryce default file is set to load by default...amazing eh? hahahahaha.
To keep from overwriting the* ALWAYS go to File > New Document.
This assigns the file name '* and presents you with the Document Setup dialog right away.

Ok, on with the brain drain...this will be confusing to people who can't work backwards ; ) You'll see why.

Getting Started

You made a New Document Right??
If you want to change the ratio of what you're working on at any time just go to File > Document Setup...

Click on Panorama where shown.
If you can't work at the 'suggested' size (which is 1120x420) and would like to see what you are doing simply type in the width you want.
Where you see the words Document Resolution type 640, 800, whatever in first box to make things more manageable.
The checkmark in Constrain Proportions will keep the height in sync.
Click the check at bottom right to Apply and Exit.
Now it's time for me to drive you nutz.
Click the Directors chair icon and change it as shown to the Camera View.
Now everything you move in the scene will be reversed.
Up will be down, left right and so on.
Why am I doing this you ask?
I'm not - you are ; )
Just trust me... I'll bet you use camera view as habit after a short time once you see what it does to skies.

Onto da Scene

I assume you have a Ground Plain - let's put a material on it that works with this scene.

Sample A.
Main View:
Left click and select the ground plain.
Click the [M] and you will be sent to....
The Materials Lab:
But we want to get a different Mat (play along here folks).
Hit that little arrow pointing right up there.
To do this please use a 20oz ball peen hammer.

To Material Presets

Pick from Plains and Terrains.
Lowlands is fine...
The color will be changed and as it's for use only as a 'light stopper' there's no need to be picky.
Plus I like the name Lowlands...reminds me of the swamp I live in.
In Bryce clicking the checkmark always means to Apply changes and Exit.

If you're in Material Presets you will be returned to the Materials Lab so you can adjust the Mat.

Back in the Mat Lab again

Well golly gee willicurs- those mat colors are rotten!
What da hell is with that green???? Call the D.O.E!
I think I've been over exposed to rad gamma!

Sorry - got carried away ...radiation and me don't mix.
To get truly frightened click in the ellipses next to the words Diffuse and Ambient ; ).
The colors can be very simple here and a complex mat isn't needed.

(..Don't touch anything else or you will explode - I swear it..)

Detoxifying the Material

It's the I am the 50 foot glowing woman Material can save this if you want.
It must have some use...hahaahhohohoh - yep.
Picka your Palette
Left click and select a range of dark blue-ish colors.
(if you Alt+Left Click in any color selector you will get a much more comprehensive set of color tools)
Change the Diffuse, Ambient and Volume colors.
Reduce the Diffusion amount by using the slide control or simply typing in the box where you see 75.

Exit the Material Laboratory screaming...

Playing with Water

Create a water plain
It will be the proper height above the ground by design
...I think.

Water is the stuff rich people have to drink.

It comes in fancy bottles!
Click [M] next to the water plain.

See Sample A above if you forgot what to do.
Select Nighttime Lake - apropos qui?

Click the check at bottom right to Apply and Exit.
We can now go trash this mat just like the other ; )

I'm snailing awaaaaaay....

Water Mat - Minor Adjustments

Again, change colors as shown.
Diffuse, Ambient and Volume.
Please note - I've lessened the Transparency from the default of 96.4 to 75.
That's it here...Apply and exit.

Sanity Check 1

You should have something that looks similar to the above at this point.

Don't worry if it appears to be garbargo. The sky and atmosphere will fix it right up.

You can download the sanity check scene file here. 88KB zip

Onto Part 2 - Sky and Atmosphere

Pinhead - March 2005

Some more of my tutorials here. . .