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Salt Lake City Quilt with Clouds
|| 12/28/2005 || 7:34 pm || 2 Comments Rendered || ||

: rendered at 12,000 X 8,000 :

After over 28 hours of rendering time, this map finally finished up and I am very happy with the results. The merger of the natural (clouds) with that of the synthetic (tessellation) real (aerial photography) makes this one of my most unique maps to date.

The clouds, while not creating much of a natural shadow on the ground, look very realistic with different thicknesses and densities. To create these clouds I placed two large spheres on the left side of the scene and used the pre-made texture of “cotton balls” (I think?) to give them density and depth. I think I will start making more of this type of rendering in 2006.

However, while beautiful, these clouds take much more processing power to create because all of the shadows must be accounted for and in the 3D world the clouds take up a lot of space that needs to be calculated when ray tracing.

The last time I made something with clouds, after a 3 days of rendering a power failure was what ended the rendering (yet since it was 50% finished, I was able to reflect half of it, and salvaged the rendering– if you look closely, there is a face!).

Point being, this process is very slow and if I am to be making more of these my cycle of near daily renderings will be delayed to maybe one per week. I don’t mind this per se, but I’d rather have more than less maps at the end of 2006.

This progression session is one of constant revision and manipulation and as the Quilt Project has progressed from flattened spheres to infinite planes, I have attempted to better understand what exactly I’ve been creating and with this map I feel I made something that is truly post-modern and I must say that I am very excited about what the next map will be!

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Post Title: Salt Lake City Quilt with Clouds
Post Tags: , , , , , , , ,
Posted in: Capital, Location, Quilt, Renderings, Salt Lake City, Square, Utah
Last edited by Nikolas Schiller on 4/23/2009 at 3:07 pm



  1. Somehow the clouds seem very bright, as if they’re reflecting actual light. Maybe it’s just me, but i felt like i was looking down at a sunny day.

    Comment by nikki — 12/29/2005 @ 1:50 pm

  2. Nikki,

    You are right about both points. The clouds are actually reflecting light and you are looking at a sunny day!

    The source imagery was taken on a cloudless day, so there weren’t any clouds to begin with and the shadows from buildings are such that the aerial photograph was probably taken in the afternoon. If the clouds were real, they would cast a shadow in the same direction as the buildings do.

    As for the lighting, there is one radial light source hovering far out at the center of the scene and this light source gives the scene all of the color. If it didn’t exist, the entire scene would be black due to a lack of light. Thus you actually have 2 different sources of light- the sun from the original, and radial light source I created.

    In the end you get a synthetically sunnier day with clouds :)

    Comment by admin — 12/29/2005 @ 2:55 pm

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Nikolas Schiller is a second-class American citizen living in America's last colony, Washington, DC. This blog is my on-line repository of what I have created or found on-line since May of 2004. If you have any questions or comments, please contact:

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