New artwork begins plus my first rejection

New artwork begins plus my first rejection


Today’s topics are the man in desert scene that I said that I would commence, and feedback from the Monsters anthology publishers (perhaps my post title is a spoiler).


My plan went like this:

  1. Make a desert landscape in Bryce (because I already own it) and export that to the Unreal Engine.
  2. In the Unreal Engine create some totally awesome materials and paint them on the desert.
  3. Create a picture from this.

Alas the theory pretty much belly-flopped when I tried to apply it. Well, not quite. I successfully created a desert height-map in Bryce and  exported it as an object. I used a brilliant tutorial by David Brinnen.

But when I tried to import it into the Unreal Engine the frustration began. To research this I used lots of video tutorials. The most useful was by Thomas Haskell.

Things were OK while I was making my three layer materials, but once I got to wanting to paint really cool terrain and control lighting I started to have trouble. And…and… I could only get black shadows!!! Yes, I know that this has to do with ambient light… BUT I AM A CONTROL FREAK!!!

Anyway, after spending about 5 hours making only miniscule pockets of progress, I reverted to Bryce and simply imported two of my DAZ Studio figures into that scene. Voila!


Now this is only the beginning. I want to put some moons in the sky behind them, and perhaps insert a crashed spacecraft just beyond the dune. Maybe “dirty-up” the front character so he actually looks like he has been in a crash. I also need to fix up the fact that his collar is poking through his hood.

NOTE: Ironically I only used black shadows in this scene.

The most annoying problem in going down the Bryce route is Bryce’s memory limits. Despite using a little memory tool called LAA (or something) Bryce kept crashing as I produced this scene and it would not save. The issue is that DAZ Studio models and their textures are too big. That and the fact that Bryce is a 32-bit program. Oh well, the next steps will be in Photoshop.


As some of you may recall I wrote a little piece called “Tears of a Blue Priestess” and submitted it to an anthology. Alas I did not get accepted. I did get the traditional “thank you but there lots of applications and only a few made it in” letter. That’s cool. Most great authors got rejected several times and this is only my first time.

So onwards I strive :)

Thanks for reading.




  1. “Congratulations” on your first rejection letter. It means that you’re not just sitting in your corner working but really getting it out there. Hope it’s a rarity in that the next one is an acceptance!


    1. Thankyou :) I expect that there will be a fair few rejections. But these will forge me into a stronger writer :) Thanks :)


  2. Good things come to those who wait… but not passively! =) You’re on the right track, Greg!

    And I remembered something… there is a plugin for DS, and I think it’s been free for quite a while (and even installed with DS by default), it’s called Texture Atlas. It is supposed to automate the process of making scene textures smaller without visible loss of quality. I can’t say I have used it (3Delight has an excellent memory management system), but it may be the thing to help you get DS stuff into Bryce without pushing it too far.


    1. Cool. Thanks. I am looking up Texture Atlas now :) Should make things a lot easier. I just wish Bryce was being worked upon. The more I explore it, the more I am coming to enjoy it


      1. Oh yes, that’s indeed sad Bryce isn’t getting any meaningful attention from the devs. Is there even a real 64bit version now?


        1. No 64 bit version, but always hope :)


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