Cheap and free ways to get started in CGI Astronomical Art

There’s no doubt that it is possible to spend vast amounts on graphics software – many of the industry standard packages run to thousands of pounds, and even image editors like the full Photoshop are very expensive, (and come with monthly fees too).

But provided you already have a computer, it is possible to get going for little or even nothing. This blog post will explore some of your options.

Be aware though, that this stuff is NOT easy, and whatever package you go for, it will take considerable time and effort to master.

Blender 3d.

Blender Website Screenshot
Blender Website Screenshot

This is a seriously powerful 3d package, with some highly advanced features such as fluid simulation, and hair systems. It is completely free, and open source.

You can find out more, and download it here:

BLENDER

Continue reading “Cheap and free ways to get started in CGI Astronomical Art”

“It is sometimes an appropriate response to reality to go insane.”

I don’t use Daz Studio much these days, but thought people might be interested in one specific image I was very happy with, from a few years ago.

I don’t like the Daz renderer at all, as I find it ridiculously difficult to control the arrangement of things, and position them accurately. So I generally export them as OBJ, and then rework the textures. This last bit is not too painful, once you get used to what stuff typically needs fixing. However, there’s a ton of very reasonably priced content available for Daz Studio, and this draws me in.

I’m particularly impressed with the products of “Stonemason” (Stefan Morell), who consistently produces superb settings, often of a science fiction nature. Urban future streets, and SF interiors in particular. Continue reading ““It is sometimes an appropriate response to reality to go insane.””

Be careful what you wish for…

…you might get it!

Baphomet in the library
Be careful what you wish for…

This uses Daz Studio assets, though as usual I have exported them to lightwave.  For the pile of bones, I used Bullet Physics to drop a skeleton onto the floor, then cleaned up the arrangement.

 

As Philip K Dick said…

An older image, which I thought I would revive for this blog.

headcase-again

“It is sometimes an appropriate response to reality to go insane.”

Philip K Dick

The setting and two bots are by StoneMason, and exported from Daz software. The head is by Ten-Twenty Four studios. Head case by me, as was the scene, lighting, and so forth, which was done in Lightwave 3d.

I often struggle with characters even in a basic way, and even more when I try and get some sense of story into an image. This is one of very few with a human figure I am happy with.

Finding a relevant quotation from PKD really was the icing on the cake, as I am a huge admirer of his work.

Nick

Zorn Overlord

This was a bit of a quickie – exported from Daz Studio for rendering in lightwave 3d. A Zorn overlord.

I like the cheap content and posing capabilities of Daz Studio, but I really can’t get on with the renderer or lighting. All the user friendly qualities of a cornered rat,

 

Unused alien concept from “2001 A Space Odyssey”

Her’s my take on an unused concept for the Aliens in “2001”, as found in the excellent book by Piers Bizony.concept-p2

Continue reading “Unused alien concept from “2001 A Space Odyssey””