Category Archives: 3D

3D Photogrammetry

I love how far along 3D software has come in the years since I last worked with it regularly.

Back then, Maya was still produced by Alias, and if you wanted such revolutionary features as particle, hair & cloth simulations that reacted realistically to real world physical principles, you were spending upwards of $5,000 just for the software, let alone the kind of hardware you needed to run it efficiently.

Now, such features are readily available to any and all through free Open Source software, like Blender (which has also come a hell of a long way since I first played with it way back when), and the hardware can be bought off the shelf at your local computer store to run it at a decent enough pace.

One of the aspects of 3D that I was always intrigued by was that of 3D scanning.

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Photographing Grass

So, this was something very different for me.  The last time I was a part of the 3D world, I was still shooting film.  Digital cameras weren’t really that great, and online texture libraries were often prohibitively expensive for personal follies (at least if you wanted imagery of any kind of decent quality).

Yesterday, however, I spent the afternoon in the surprisingly glorious sunshine (It got to 19 degrees yesterday! in England! in October!) photographing blades of grass, leaves and various other bits and bobs in order to start compiling my own texture libraries for Blender and other 3D applications.

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Delving back into 3D

It’s been almost a decade since I last ventured into the world of 3D software like Maya, 3DS Max, etc. but suddenly I seem to have been bitten by the bug again.

It all started a few weeks ago when I was asked to give another talk at Lancaster Photographic Society on lighting portraits.

My plan was to sift through the images I already have in my library, and shoot a few more to explain specific lighting principles, and the differences that can happen when you add or take away a light here, or a reflector there.

Then, I stumbled across a post in the Strobist group on Facebook by Pat David, linking to a fantastic Blender 3D file he put together on his website, created specifically for the purposes of rendering out lighting tests – you can see one of mine in the header photo on this post. Continue reading Delving back into 3D