I think this rendering is just okay- it could be better. I chose to make the “lenz” aka the central sphere less round and it made the central image look very flat, which is not what I wanted it to look like. However, I do like the way the torus turned out as well as the green halo that surround the torus- call it a Green Halo for the Green Zone!
Last night while adding the new links section “Eye in the Sky” (which are links to satellite imagery outlets), I found what looks like a treasure trove of images from the U.S. Geological Survey. Aside from tons of images that have to be purchased, they have two galleries of composite satellite images which can be downloaded. It is called the “Earth As Art Collection” (Gallery 1, Gallery 2) and the images are all roughly 200 megabytes each, and due to their generous sizes, I’ll be able to make massive renderings using them. Best yet, they are completely free to use. Unlike the images I have used from Space Imaging & Digital Globe, which might be subject copyrights, the USGS images seem to be free to use. I also think its funny that they call the gallery “Earth As Art,” because I am using them for just that, with some slight, but significant variations.
Right now I am rendering a 4-panelled reflection of Guinea-Bissau with the torus texture being the same image but with the colors inverted. It should look very interesting!