Sunday, September 26, 2010

The Solar Powered...


solar cat

And after his batteries are all charged up he then has plenty of energy!
don't bother the cat

Obviously he's conserving battery power till dinner time.

Speaking of dinner, some *cough, cough, TwoYaks cough, cough* may knot believe that koalas actually do move. They do, but only when they are eating.

And even then they don't muchly move.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Australian Flora and Fauna Pictures

Plus a few other pictures. Why? Why not! It's my blog and I can put any pictures of anything on it. So there.

Firstly, how's abouts some closeup pics of roses? Everyone loves roses, right? These were taken right after a rain shower and I tells ya that you just gotta click on them to embiggen. It. Will. Be. Worth. It.

Download, use as wallpaper, tell your friends, no worries. Full size they are 1600 by 1200.

Firstly is a peach colored rose with dew drops.

Seriously, Puh-Leeze click to make it bigger. Pretty please?

Here's a red rose with dew drops. You can magickly make it a full size of 1600 by 1200 picksuls too! Feel free to purr-loin this photo too, no worries.

And just how about this bloke?
gday cockatoo
G'day mates! Didja know I gots bi-knock-you-lar vision?

Now, at this point I do feel the need to add a slight editorial comment/advice for me blog blokes and blokettes way up north. In Alaska, of course.

Didja all know that very soon you will be looking at this and feeling the minus 60 degree Fartenheight temperatures that inspired this photo?

Please click to make it slightly larger. And it's another freebie from Yours Truly --don't swoon ladies, I'm human!

It was made in Bryce with 6 different terrains. The terrains were all made in Terragen Basic and exported as 8-bit .sgi pngs, imported and played with in Bryce to make the mountains. Lots of atmospheric effects too. I'm pleased. It looks DAMNED COLD!

See, she agrees with me.
glaring lorikeet
Don't even THINK of moving me to that climate!

I shall now go take a nap as that seems to be one of the myriad things I'm good at. Plus I like taking naps... Hello little nap, where shall I take you?
koala naptime 1

Perhaps I'll take one over here instead.
koala naptime 2

Nope, changed me mind. This is the bestest nap-taking spot!
koala naptime 3

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Hatchening of Sarah Palin

Didja ever wonder where Sarah Palin came from? Was she hatched from an egg or born live? Or did she spring out of pixels, processors, and programs in a 'puter way back when?

Hmmmmmm. Well, no matter as I happen to have a picture of Sarah Palin hatching from an egg. So now you know: She hatched from an egg. Proof:

Please click to embiggen the picture, you'll be happy!

But how did this start? It first started with me playing around in Bryce 7 Pro. I was learning the terrain sculpting tools and came up with the main "egg" and also the "top" of the "egg" overturned to the side. The material used is actually a sea ice material with some coloration changes to make it look cracky.

After that I went over to DAZ and made a cool looking Ice Dragon whilst applying various add-ons, textures, bump maps, etc to get what I wanted. I also went WAAAAY overboard on the bump mapping of the skin, horns, teeth, etc as I knew the dragon would be used in a long shot in Bryce and that Bryce has a tendency to "soften" the DAZ textures. I had to forgo the glasses as she didn't start wearing them till she was all grown up. Some would argue that she still hasn't grown up.

Here is a close up of the dragon in DAZ. Compare it to the dragon in the finished picture and you'll see why I had the bump mapping in DAZ turned up to "bloody-well high, mate!" as I knew it would soften with distance in Bryce. As always, please click to embiggen.

How's abouts them blueish sparkley things around her body, wings, egg interior and egg top? They were easy. Each one is actually a squashed sphere with a texture applied. No lights were needed and it makes for a very cool effect.

I'm going to show you a screen capture of the Bryce workspace showing the meshes for everything. You'll note that there is a squashed sphere on each wing, one large squashed sphere in the middle of the egg, and a smaller one of the egg top that's been tossed aside. Click to embiggen, of course.

The blobs on the far left and the far right are the other two eggs in the picture. I did those as object instead of terrains. Since they aren't hatched there was no reason to sculpt them, right? You may have also noticed the two yellow lights in the middle. The lower one lights up the egg interior along with the dragon body, and the other lights up the head from below. The light falloff is logarithmic so it's not "fakey" bright and the top one has a very low intensity as I only wanted it on her head. The size of the light mesh has NOTHING to do with the light itself, it just makes it easier to find in the jumble of meshes.

We'll now move to a left side view. You'll see just how far back the unhatched eggs are and you may also make note of the 2 light positions to illuminate the egg interior and the dragon properly. Make the picture larger with a click.

Notice the top red line that is just below the dragon? That's a layer of thin clouds. Go look at the very first picture and you'll notice some thin clouds just above the fog. Now you know what the red line is. It's a flat plane with a thin cloudscape applied to it. Oh, the low fog is an atmospheric effect so there's no mesh to see for it.

The top view is interesting as you'll see two things. The unhatched eggs aren't in the shot cus they are soooooooo far back. I made them huge and placed them waaaay back for two reasons. One is that the haze atmospherics will be more visible and the other is so the "eggy" textures look right. Small sized ones placed just behind the main egg DO NOT give the illusion of depth. Trust me, I tried.

The other thing to notice is that the terrain texture appears flat from above since you are viewing the terrain as a mesh. Valuable little tidbit to keep in mind, that is. Don't forget to click the pic.

I'm going to give you a cool shot of the back of the Ice Dragon rendered in DAZ. Why? Because I think the tiger strips look sooooooo cool! I think it looks neat at full size. Do I need to tell you how to bring the pitcher up to full size? No, didn't think so.

The last bit of nuts n blots for you: I made the scene on my old, decrepit P4 with 2 gigs of ram and a crappy video card. It was rendered on a modern quad core with 4 gigs built in ram, 4 gigs external ram, and a 1 gig video card. It still took 7 hours to render! Why? The sea ice texture used for the eggs is very complex (so's the blue sparkley stuff) and we cranked the rendering options sky high. However, if I had it set for total, top-of-the-line rendering it would have taken DAYS on the quad core. Just another example of software ALWAYS being light-years ahead of hardware. Well, at least affordable hardware.

Bye for now, time to go make some planets.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Don-nah worry! Bee Happy.

Springtime in South Oz. The pacifica blue in the backyard is blooming and you know what that means! Besides lots of sneezing, of course.

be happy

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Fire Dragon Fight

So, like, you know, here's the thingy I've been working on.

3d thingy. Get your minds out of the gutter you perverts! 'Sides, you're blocking my view from the sewer.

The 3 critters were all done in DAZ and everything else done in Bryce 7 Pro.

Whatcha think?
Fire Dragon Fight

Oh wait, here's a larger version, 1680 by 1050.

Fire Dragon Fight

Getting Bristol to wrap around momma's tail took a while. There are over 65 individual segments to bend, twist, and wrap.

I think this captures the spirit of Lake Lucille quite well. Momma Sarah showing young Bristol just how to properly bully someone. What do you think?

Oh, here's another one you can click on to embiggen too.

Not including the time it took to learn Bryce and to figure out how lights work in Daz, the whole thing took a total of about 30 hours spread over a few days. 12 of that was rendering time!


Looks like spring may have actually arrived in South Oz! My peas now have 3 pods, many many more on the way, and I need to put more wiring up for the snow peas to climb. Just planted seeds for tomatillas and red capsicums (red bell peppers). Just about time to hit the garden centre at Bunnings and get tomato seedlings. My chillis are doing fine as they are perennial if you have the right variety, climate, and gardening skillz.

Strawberries, cucumbers, and basil are all on the list for planting this year. No need for rosemary as there is a monster rosemary bush in the yard. Also wild onions, chives, oregano, and plenty of sow thistle and dandelion leaves.

And a pool. Did I mention the pool? Maybe this will remind you:

No, The Cat did not kick the bucket!

Rumors of the death of His Royal Highness, Protector of the Faithful, Guardian of The Rift, Defender of The Innocent, Wielder of The Sacred Claw of Anor, Lord and Master of All He Surveys, Prince Bagheera are just that. Rumors.

I didn't even realize the wording of the previous post might cause some of you to think that The Fanged Terror had met an untimely demise. I was referencing a rock song from waaaaaaay back. Back when rock n roll meant the guitarist knew 3 chords instead of only one like nowadays.

Here's proof!

basement cat is tired

He's a little more animated in this picture
basement cat burning in the sun

Yes I know. It just looks like I took a cat carcass and tossed it around. But really, he DOES move. Just knot when I have a camera handy.

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Video of wild koala climbing tree

Shall we just cut to the chase and show you the vid? Of course. This bloke was around 70 to 80 feet up, handheld camera on full zoom.

Hey look! Mean ole Sarah Palin is poking her beady little head around Todd's butt to glare at the neighbors!
sarah palin glaring

Just so you don't think I'm neglecting my new toys (ooooh baby!), I figure I'd better give you a picture of a work in progress in Bryce 7 Pro. I'm sure that all of smart readers will instantly be able to figure out what it is.
in progress021

Now if you'll excuse me, I need to figure out what I'm going to make for dinner tonight...
funny pictures of cats with captions
see more Lolcats and funny pictures