Ok folks, I am becoming more in tune with Blender. It is complex, the interface is terrible… but man can I do things with it :)
Today I will show you how I:
- added foam (simple),
- added a ray of light coming from the lighthouse lamp (annoying)
- made the light rotate (dammit!)
Foam is simply a variable on the ocean modifier that I used on the plane. Yep – that’s it. You can see a little check-box on the modifier panel below. How easy!
Volumetric light from the lighthouse lamp
OK – I’m being a show-off to those of you unfamiliar with techy type term. Volumetric light just means that you can see the rays. You know, like on those really cool days when rays of light drop down like columns between gaps in the clouds.
My dim dark secret is that this took me forever to work out, and heaps of YouTube tutorials later I finally smacked my head and went “Doh!”.
Fact 1 – should you decide to place a light in a cylinder, make sure that the cylinder is actually transparent! Yes, I’m officially a thick-head.
Fact 2 – (less embarrassing), you need to make sure that the atmosphere has some density to make these cones or columns of light appear. So go to the World settings and do the following:
It’s the Volume Scatter at the bottom, with a density of 0.005 that I found worked best for me.
Now here is a little tip. When I first rendered this I got a really grainy output:
This had me stumped. Without the light and the atmospheric density it looked good. Add light and suddenly I got this. Erk!
The answer is on the bottom right hand side of the screen shot. There is a variable group called Samples. See it? The Render defaults to 16. Nope – that’s no good. You need to crank it up. Here it is at 200.
Rotating the lighthouse lamp
It took me two hours to figure out something that took about 30 seconds to actually do!!!
Now obviously this is an animation, so I used the frame-thingy at the bottom (yes, frame-thingy is a technical term… um…).
So if you look at the ruler-thingy (another technical term) at the bottom of the frame-thingy you can see the progression of frames. I have this set to 24 frames per second elsewhere in Blender (standard) and so my animation has 250 frames as you can see here. With my cursor set to Frame one, my lighthouse lamp object selected, I right click on the rotation Z field and select insert Keyframes.
I make sure it is set to 0.
Next I move along the frames on the ruler-thingy to the final frame and set this Z value to 360 (as in a full circle) and add it as a keyframe with a right click. So, if at the beginning of the animation the lamp has a rotating value of 0 degreesÂ and at the end it has a rotating value of 360 degrees (and you have set keyframes at each point) the computer will figure out how far the light should be rotated for each frame in-between.
Yep – that’s it folks.
And the result of all this is:
It’s actually aboutÂ 7 seconds played twice (hence a little bump in the middle).
So I am very excited with myself :)
Hope some of you got something out of this :)