Rendering Chief models in Blender


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I recently downloaded the most recent version of Blender and would like to try rendering some of my Chief files. Does anyone know of a good tutorial that reviews the procedure of setting up the camera, lighting and other settings for creating a great render?

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I found some great tutorials on YouTube (Blender Guru) and I messed around with it just a bit but I haven't had time to really get into it. Instead, I have been concentrating on improving my Ray Trace techniques in Chief.

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4 hours ago, ericepv said:

I found some great tutorials on YouTube (Blender Guru) and I messed around with it just a bit but I haven't had time to really get into it. Instead, I have been concentrating on improving my Ray Trace techniques in Chief.

Isn't this what it's really all about? This is after all a Chief

message board. If someone decides to use a different

software program to do post production work on their Chief

images that's irrelevant to me. I'm working with Chief. And

doesn't it also stand to reason that even if you do intend to

drag your Chief content into another application for said

post production work, it will still be beneficial to start with

the best possible images that Chief is capable of producing?

  

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Some of the most stunning renders I have seen recently have been done in Lumion from Chief although using just Chief can get the job done. It requires care and a willingness to take the extra steps to get a realistic result. Thea render in the knowledgable hands also produces visual results. There are many applications out there but the main factor is the creator and not what that person uses. It is his or her sense of rightness and quality that makes all the difference.

 

DJP

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There is no doubt that these programs have the capacity to produce some stunning results. However, one should not be naïve about the expertise and skill required to obtain such results. These programs are not one-click to a beautiful rendering. They are very complex with endless settings and adjustments for lighting and materials. Free programs such as Blender may appear attractive due to the fact that they are free but the draw back is a real lack of documentation. If you struggle with getting a handle on Ray Trace settings then I doubt if Blender will be a viable solution.

 

Another important consideration is whether or not your business model really requires this level of rendering and can you justify the effort/time. I fully understand the need for those who are involved in producing content to be incorporated into sales and promotional literature, brochures and the likes or if you are involved in high end conceptual design work and presentations. For the likes of myself, dealing directly with individual home owners and some contractors the renderings via Ray Tracing are more than adequate and to date they have always been significantly superior to what my competitors produce. Yes it has taken considerable time and effort to get a reasonable handle on Ray Tracing but having done this I am now able to generate a consistent quality of rendering with little effort and within 10-20 minutes and all within one package.

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I quite agree with what Graham says.

 

Where I do see the value in using a program such as Blender, or Blender in combination with a professional grade rendering engine such as Octane is if your focus is on producing animations. Even then you would need to evaluate whether a program such as Lumion would meet your needs, or if you really are serious enough to invest the time required to develop the needed skills.

 

What I like about using Octane, is that even if I don't use it for animations, I can use it for a single high quality image which takes a matter of seconds with the right equipment.  A good working knowledge of lighting and materials will still be required.  Octane also has a few other features that I really like as well.

 

Blender is a fabulous program, and in the right hands one could do almost anything with it graphics wise, but in reality I mostly use it to convert Chief files into the file format required for use in Octane Render.

 

The good news is that you get to choose.  Why not check a few things out and let us know what you find.

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The other important aspect to consider is if you are looking to create a perfect single picture of something vs having more dynamic way of getting multiple pictures or presentation from a model using a single setup process.

 

Lumion and Unreal allow a composite visual approach to your model with the ability to then "walk" thru a model or extract still images from nearly any angle without going through another "setup" process for each location.

 

Static rendering apps/engines like Thea/Vray/Chief require more setup for each individual image you extract...but you can get the lighting and other aspects for those shots refined.  I think if you are looking for multiple shots per house this method would take the longest... not to mention far more time for the actual "render".

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55 minutes ago, johnny said:

The other important aspect to consider is if you are looking to create a perfect single picture of something vs having more dynamic way of getting multiple pictures or presentation from a model using a single setup process.

 

Lumion and Unreal allow a composite visual approach to your model with the ability to then "walk" thru a model or extract still images from nearly any angle without going through another "setup" process for each location.

 

Static rendering apps/engines like Thea/Vray/Chief require more setup for each individual image you extract...but you can get the lighting and other aspects for those shots refined.  I think if you are looking for multiple shots per house this method would take the longest... not to mention far more time for the actual "render".

Just a friendly FYI, Thea has walk-through and Spherical VR 

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Blender just came out with a real-time renderer called EEVEE.

INSTANT LIGHT is also just coming out, and TOOLBAG always looks superb.

 

TWINMOTION 2018 is coming out shortly with UE4 as its engine. It could be the perfect mix--with the following observations (which I am still trying to understand):

....."there is a difference [between the two], and it's mainly in the way the light behaves. II was really interested in Unreal engine, a while ago, looking at theses videos (vineyard challenge from ronen bekerman), but I discovered, while trying it, that the really good-filming-look came from a complex system of baked lighting. If you want to achieve the photoralistic result shown in the first part of the video, you have to carefully build your model, unwrap many things, check the way your objects are construct, and then wait quite a long time for the baking to be done. Then, you often have to go back and restart if some of the lightmap is not perfect.  So, to my opinion, on the second part of the video, which is realtime inside Twinmotion, they seems let aside this lightmap system, to be fully realtime. My guess is that it's much more simple to use that way (but a quite inferior in term of photoreal look). Actually, the pseudo GI in realtime (I think it's something called lightmass in unreal), give rather good results, with a nice color bleeding."

 

"For the moment we [TwinMotion] have taken all the real time side, so you will not yet have the quality that can be reached with the lightmass, it was far too expensive in ram and especially extremely long to generate. We have for the time being made this compromise, if not for the rest we have all of which lpv to simulate a global illumination in real time."

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