Thanks to everyone for the comments/advices... I've been working on a work-related deadline so I was not able to properly reply.

Now... as for the Christmas scene unfortunately there's still too much noise (while the appearance of the lights greatly improved) and right now I'm pretty much sure it won't be ready for the deadline. I think I'll keep it for Christmas greetings this year (maybe by that time I'll have the standalone full version... or even the suite :P).

The Milano scene is progressing well...
I replaced the plant, made the glass dome thicker (it was 2mm now is 4mm), changed the emitters and the format. So here's the results (SL 20)

Now the major question. I placed three emitters (circular planes) because I wanted to create some shadows (particularly on the plant and on the pigeon) using incident lights on some particular planes (for ex. the pigeon head). I'm still working on the intensity of those but I noticed that (obviously) they started showing up in the dome reflection, which I have to admit I'm still not sure I like it.
I read about invisible emitters, but as far as I understand they don't come in the standalone plugin.
As moving them could highly modify the shadowing, does anyone have some trick to suggest?

Thank you.

@Mihai: I didn't use an indoor HDR environment as I've built up a room with a window (and I've been using an exterior HDR image for the lights and reflections), but I'm planning to add some simple furniture on the back of the POV in order to reflect on the dome.
@Astroman: don't worry I didn't take it as an inavsion of my post. The subject was interesting for me as well, so I didn't mind. :D

(P.S.: I hope this entry will keep up with the other great work I'm starting to see in the other posts.)
Hello Elisa,

This is getting great.

One small thing:

I guess that you've used a real dielectric glass material for the hung photograph. This is ok, but as real dielectric glass generates caustics, this is the reason why you are getting all that dirty noise in the photograph.

Instead, we strongly recommend using AGS (stands for Architectural Glass Solution) for this kind of glasses where caustics and refraction are not needed (like window panes or glass doors).
As AGS calculates transparency and reflection but skips the refraction and caustics calculations, you will get faster and cleaner surfaces, and get rid of that noise.

Instead, the crystal dome is perfect as it is now.

Here you have a deeper description of what AGS are and how to use them:

http://support.nextlimit.com/pages/view ... Id=3932308

I hope this information is useful.

Dario Lanza
Thank you very much Dario for your precious advice.

As for the the lights I pretty much changed the approach now: if they have to show, I will make them more realistic. So I set up the lights as if the room were real and I placed some recessed lights in the ceiling and two lamps in the back of the camera, so even if they show up you won't be asking "what the hell are those circles?".

I was a little held back 'cause of the work-related deadline but I'll hopefully finish the render today and submit it to the competition page.
Duh... I've lost camera parameters from last time... the ones I'm rendering now have still some noise (nothing major, but still annoying) at SL21... unfortunately I can't let it render all night so I hope that by midnight they will be gone (the rendering started at about 11:30 am)... eventually I hope removing 1 or 2 white dots through photoshop will be acceptable for the competion therms... let's cross fingers...
Okay... given that the submission form is still closed even if the competition is still ongoing (in my previous post I got the time-matter a little bit wrong... now in Italy is 10:21, september 22 so in Madrid it should be 11:21 september 22 :D) I'll post my final images here hoping that it will mean something once everything is over.

The render

The wireframe

Far from perfect but, considering where I started off, I feel a little accomplished :P
novena wrote:are you sure you dont work for Next Limit keeping their clocks working??? :lol:

I hope that my posts don't sound too polemic... From what I've seen from the competition forum support I know in the NL's people are very serious and competent and I'm confident they will resolve everything :D

P.S.: chaos isn't necessarily a bad thing sometime :P
While waiting for a turning point in the submission matter (I don't envy NL's people... starting off a working week with problems is the worst thing) I wanted to share a little view of the room for the competition scene
In addition, as previously stated, when I was thinking about the subject for the competition I imagined many other possibilities... so, as a little exercise (I know I need much more) I decided to start working on a Venice-based scene
It's just a quickie that I'll work on in my spare time, I'll move the post in another section of the forum when needed.
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