View Full Version : CgTalk:FXWars! MOONSHOT Challenge:5

03 March 2005, 10:09 PM
Looking for a team?
Click >>Here<< (

inspired by WhiteRabbit.obj

Moon Shot
Function: noun
: a spacecraft mission to the moon


We will follow this trip from lauch, travel, and moon landing.

The key of the challenge this time is to do realistic lighting in all your shots. This means that in the finished animation you have to have Lighting that looks EXACTLY like the photographic images you would see from NASA TV. ( (

There will be two types of categories :
REALISTIC (Thus more difficult) & FANTASY (Easier) entries.

For a realistic entry you have to do a moon landing based on HARD SCIENCE.
I ask Daniel Maas ( ( to work as a consultant with me on this one.

He was responsible for the NASA animations of the Mars Rover landing.

The idea is to do the kind of work you would see on a HARD Science show.
The idea is to take either:

The Landings in the 60s and 70s
The Proposed Soviet Moon Landings
or if you want to,
check out the more recent proposals for our return to the moon.

The key is to do an animation based on REAL moon programs.

It is very easy to do spaceship flyovers, but it is VERY HARD to do the whole thing getting the science right.


You can do anything you want, as long as the entry looks realistic, and has at least some basic science behind it.

The best animation/short will be selected by an open vote
for these categories:

Best Fantasy Entry
Best Hard Science Entry
Best Modeling
Best Simulation
Best Editing(NEW!)
Best Visual Effects (NEW!)
Best Overall Entry
The winner will get bragging rights and a small banner
designed by me.

DATELINE: Monday May 2nd 12:00 PM

YOU HAVE One month and two weeks to do the challenge.


No work taken DIRECTLY from an existing tutorial. You may use an existing tutorial only for reference.
You may use a pre exiting models and filmed footage, as long as you have the rights to use them.
If you create models for this challenge but you need to post development images on your WIP thread.
You may provide a heavily edited animation with all the trimmings (hell add live action if you want), as long a you provide another PLAIN wireframe animation or image of the VFX shots at work.
Remember the key of the challenge if for you guys to brush up on your LIGHTING skills.

The animation and simulations (if any) must have been done AFTER the topic has been
WIP are encouraged if they are posted in ANOTHER
thread. Please provide a link to them on this thread.
WIP thread should be posted on the FXWARS Forum ( forum and should follow
the following naming convention:
FXWars! MoonShot!: MY NAME (Note: Group entries are allowed)
It is Recommended that Final movies should be rendered at 320 x 240 or 640 x 480 in Quicktime* format (Sorenson Compression), but other resolutions and formats are allowed. * The animation format is open for discussion.
The animation should follow the following naming convention:
MYNAME_FXWARS(RESOLUTION).mov. And please add your name at the beginning and end of the animation, and if you can, also add a small non disruptive watermark during the animation.
If for some reason, you can't host movies, sequential images (Thumbnails size 160 x 120 ) are accepted.
Please add a brief text description about your piece.
The artist also has to post total length of time it took and program used.
Collaborative pieces are accepted and encouraged, but Teams entries must have a identifying banner and a name. Shot lists should be included with the entry.
Individuals participating in a team CAN have their own individual entries.
The topics will be picked at random from the list on
this >>thread << ( (The author will be given credit). So
guys keep them coming.
Post on this thread your link to your WIP thread and your FINAL piece.
You can add multiple entries, as long as they have different WIP threads.
Only participants who follow the rules and submit a final entry will be eligible for the voting process.
Any piece caught breaking the rules will be taken
off the thread.
Movie Reference:

Space Cowboys (
2001: A Space Odyssey (
The Day After Tomorrow (
The Right Stuff (
Future missions ( ( ( ( ( (

More plans ( ( (

Apollo ( ( ( ( ( ( ( ( ( ( (

Russian Manned Program ( ( ( (
2001: A Space Odyssey Models & Blueprints (

Good Luck


03 March 2005, 10:29 PM
I thought FXWars was modelled around dynamics based animations. I guess lighting falls into that category? I don't see how though. Should be interesting to see how people interpret this.

03 March 2005, 10:48 PM
We had variety on out "contests"
The last one was a comp challenge.

CgTalk:FXWars! Volcano Challenge VOTE!:4 (

03 March 2005, 10:50 PM
Yah same here, when I first saw the pic, I thought it was going to be who could make the best "moon being destroyed" animation or something, but this should be cool to see too.

03 March 2005, 11:41 PM
my god y like this ! ... 1 Q ...can i create a robotic mision to the moon .. or it has to be human tripulation ?

03 March 2005, 01:06 AM
I have no problem with a Robotic mission.
The key is that the animation has to LOOK real.
Go here to see what I am aiming for: (


03 March 2005, 01:09 AM
:) tx roberto .. you speak spanish ¨?

03 March 2005, 01:26 AM
Yep, born and bred in Puerto Rico.


03 March 2005, 02:35 AM
Can the backgrounds be matte paintings? Or does it have to be fully 3d?

03 March 2005, 03:10 AM
I have no problem backgrounds (or even the foreground) elements are matte paintings.

The key is realism.


03 March 2005, 03:15 AM
I would very much like to get in on this, Animation is not required correct?

03 March 2005, 03:21 AM
Well the final output should be a short animation...
Like the previous micro challenges

CgTalk:FXWars! Volcano Challenge VOTE!:4 (
CgTalk:FXWars! FXWars! Roller Coaster Challenge VOTE!:3 (
CgTalk:FXWars! Snow Avalanche Challenge VOTE!:2 (
CgTalk:FXWars! Catapult! (Trebuchet) Challenge VOTE!:1 (


03 March 2005, 04:52 AM
Anybody know where I can get a good cloud texture.
Clouds that would been seen from space to wrap around the Earth.
I believe I have the usual hi res png that beenon the ineternet but I would like something comparable to what the guy who won the 3d CG Challenge has.

03 March 2005, 05:22 AM
Hey Julez. We should work together if you want?

03 March 2005, 08:02 AM should be a good site for everybody! talk about hi res! (texture of clouds specifically under "solar system--earth--cloud maps") Enjoy!

actually...being that i found that site, i MIGHT (if time permits) actually start this time though i prob won't finish if i do another good one (the original i think) another good one for you guys, though i think theres the same stuff on the other sites ...I don't know why i'm helpin you guys if this is a contest...


03 March 2005, 08:27 AM
I can recommend material on the Moon Hoax:

Some people didn't (or still don't) believe in the moonlanding beeing real. They backed this up by pointing out "errors" in the photographs and filmmaterial. It turned out that those "errors" were completely natural effects given the very different environment where the images were taken. Think of featureless landscapes where determining distance or elevation on a photo is practicaly impossible. Also the contrasts in space are much higher then on earth due to the missing athmosphere and the reflections from the moons dust are interestingly different to that of dust on earth. There is much more in there that might give you a hint on how to achive the most realistic evnironment.

Have fun


03 March 2005, 11:54 AM
I've got an idea if anyone's interested in a bit sci-fier version of this.

It'll take a while for me to sketch it out , but in case somebody wants to make
a project with minor sci-fi elements and is out of ideas this might just be worth
checking out so stay tuned.

This would have some character animation so it wouldn't be the easiest to produce,
since the contest aims for reality..

03 March 2005, 01:41 PM
Hey Julez. We should work together if you want?

I pm'ed you and called you at home. I know, I know 4 hrs time difference.
emmm I may be on that side of the country in a month?
Call me today.

Yeah lets knock this one out!

Solitude, Thank You Very Much!

03 March 2005, 04:25 PM
For those looking for inspiration (and artists)

go here:

CgTalk Daily Sketch 283:FXWARS001: "FROM EARTH TO THE MOON" (


03 March 2005, 06:14 PM
Sweet, I'm in... Maybe I can redeem myself from my miserable failure on the Volcano one.. ha but I might only have time to do a photoreal Launch... doubt I'll have time for an orbit shot, or a moon landing...

03 March 2005, 08:02 PM
This sounds really fun, this is the first time i have seen these FXWars! challenges, soo count me in. soo can I do this alone cause sometimes i can get really busy which kinda destroys my chance to finish stuff and i dont want to bring anyone down with me?


03 March 2005, 08:23 PM
I'm entering, hopefully I've done this correctly (if not let me know)...I'm a FXWar n00b.. :thumbsup:

WIP thread:

03 March 2005, 09:42 PM
ok here's my little story , well , beginnings of it anyways. I've got the whole story done to the
landing , but haven't yet sketched it out.

It takes place in imagined future where space flights are more commonplace. A minor
shipping company is handling an operation where prisoners are sent to moon to serve
life sentence. The company uses extremely cheap materials and recycles everything.
The pod where the prisoners travel in becomes their home in the moon , where it is attached
to a larger prison complex.

I could sketch out the rest if anyone wants to make this.
Otherwise just have a nice read :)

03 March 2005, 01:45 AM
Again, I will give this one a go. Can't do worse than my last aborted Volcano challenge. (I hope)

RobertoOrtiz: Question, would a technically correct version of planned apollo 13 mission (without accident) be considered Hard or Fantasy?

03 March 2005, 05:58 AM
An Apollo 13 mission would be considered a HARD science entry, since it is based in real hardware.


Transform Gizmo
03 March 2005, 06:19 AM
Dammit! I finally decide to get in on a contest, like the topic...and then i'm being deployed out to sea during the contest. :sad: oh well. maybe i can at least do it when i return and post the work even though the contest will be over. Fun fun fun.

03 March 2005, 11:46 AM
i shall give this contest a try..... ime not great but it will be a good learnin experiance....

03 March 2005, 09:14 PM
Does it have to be an Earth Based Launch.....or can it be a Space based Launch...not that Im trying to snake my way out of what prolly is a harder animation....just that Im sure in the near/future as much as can be helped....missions will be assembled and launched from an orbital station to cut back on weight/costs etc.

just wondering.

03 March 2005, 11:48 PM
Does it have to be an Earth Based Launch.....or can it be a Space based Launch...not that Im trying to snake my way out of what prolly is a harder animation....just that Im sure in the near/future as much as can be helped....missions will be assembled and launched from an orbital station to cut back on weight/costs etc.

just wondering.

I have no problem with a space station based launch.


03 March 2005, 10:42 AM
Is there any rule about the length of the animation?

03 March 2005, 01:33 PM
There is no limit on how long or short an animation can be. So do it as long as you can.
But remember that people will be downloading your animation to review it.


03 March 2005, 04:26 AM
I am on this like white on rice. I just did a short animation about the future mars science rover in 2009: (

I am taking a houdini class this quarter, so i might be able to get realistic dust plumes from hypergolic thrusters :D

edit: Lunar lighting is a fun puzzle, here are some thoughts about it

1. no atmospheric dispersion
2. INTENSE light, very high diffuse sharpness (the lambertian model needs to be tweaked a bit to look right). Apertures are kept pretty tight, so that is something to keep in mind.
2A. The moon seems to be a disc from the earth because of this. the diffuse component of it's illumination is very non-directional due to the way that dust particles on it's surface arranged themselves in a vacume.
3. unidirectional, three point lighting is a no-no here

03 March 2005, 05:41 AM
1. no atmospheric dispersion
2. INTENSE light, very high diffuse sharpness (the lambertian model needs to be tweaked a bit to look right). Apertures are kept pretty tight, so that is something to keep in mind.
2A. The moon seems to be a disc from the earth because of this. the diffuse component of it's illumination is very non-directional due to the way that dust particles on it's surface arranged themselves in a vacume.
3. unidirectional, three point lighting is a no-no here

interesting points on space lighting,I would have thought there would be a lot of light bounce from the earth & moon?

I've opted for using a single raytrace omni,makes rendering nice & quick too

03 March 2005, 12:28 PM
So good! I love it!

03 March 2005, 12:53 AM
Hey Roberto, if I were to create a novel space craft, one that is not IDENTICAL to any existing design, but looks realistic (i.e. solid fuel boosters like the space shuttle or multiple break-away rocket segments like the saturn rockets) and shares design elements with realistic spacecraft designs, would this qualify for the "hard science" challenge? I like the idea of creating a realistic-looking contemporary or historic spacecraft, but I'd kind of like to play around with the design and build my own. Call it the do-it-yourself spirit if you like, but if I'm gonna blast myself into space on top of what is essentially a large bomb with a hole poked in one end, I wanna design that bomb myself, dammit :-D

03 March 2005, 02:08 AM
Here ( is my entry.

Hehe, JK. Maybe I'll just animate it and use that. :D

This does sound like a cool contest. Can't wait to see some of the entries. I should enter just because I really need to work on my lighting. But I don't think I will have time.

But good luck to all participents. Hope to see some great entries.


03 March 2005, 01:31 PM
Ben maybe you should enter you entry as a fantasy entry.

It will give you A LOT of flexibility.


03 March 2005, 11:48 PM

I now am part of this challenge, see my wip thread here

it is a hard science entry about "luna 9".

04 April 2005, 03:53 AM
hello guys,

i need to confirm one thing. i have entered this challange with fantasy entry!! but i forget to written "Fantasy" in subject. am i have break any rule? or my entry is okei in challange?

04 April 2005, 01:26 PM
i m also a part of this challange and participated in already.anyway here is the link to my WIP thread.

04 April 2005, 06:06 AM
plz i need help i did complete the movie for fxwars moonshot challange!! but after compositing 17 shot, my file size is gone upto 563 mb in quicktime format with sorenson codec.
how do i reduce file size without losing quality? if i will post divx format for downloading purpose it will be okei or not?

05 May 2005, 03:33 AM
I'm joining this challenge, if time lets me...
My thread for the Final and possibly a few late WIP's is called

FXWARS! MoonShot!: dubbilan (Fantasy: Surreal) (

Link has been added, so no excuses now :)

Quicktime ( mb) slow server..
DivX ( (9.5 mb) fast server

In short, an attempt to create a feeling of jumping to the moon in a dreamlike fashion, there experiencing equally dreamlike things.
Remember Sound!

05 May 2005, 12:17 PM
when is the deadline for the moonshot project?!

05 May 2005, 03:53 PM

MEMBERS: Scott Trosclair, Chris Jolly, Angel Camacho, Jason Key

We tried to re-create one of the Saturn V launches.

1 Countdown
2 Liftoff (incomlete)
3 Ground view of rocket in flight
4 Main separation
5 Lander in orbit around moon
6 Landing
7 Moon surface with flag
8 Credits

Software: Maya, Shake, Premiere, Photoshop

Competion time: 1 month


05 May 2005, 03:30 AM
I have already posted final movie before deadline in my thread(on page 3) but i want to post it here to for confirmation.
First of all i sinciarly thanks to all you guys who supported me on this thread.without ur support i can't able to finish.but i finally have finished.

Details here:
Name:jignesh jariwala;
Fxwars moonshot entry(Fantasy);
Mine entry is based on ansari x prize winner "spaceship one".i used spaceship one as a fantasy ship in my short.As in near futute it will be the option of space shuttle!!!

here is the link to quicktime(sorenson codec) and windows media(divx codec) movie.

Quicktime(sorenson codec):
Link : (318.73mb)

Divx(windows media player file):
Link : (13.97 Mb)

Thank you,

05 May 2005, 03:36 AM
Link to the page on which i submitted final submission on 30th April 2005.

05 May 2005, 10:49 PM
Okay......while he's not looking I secretly uploaded a slightly better version of the movie. :)

Hope you like and thanks to our team for their hard work! Could've done more but work is hectic hehe.


Harold Fraga
05 May 2005, 12:21 AM
Greetings from Omation, Ca...LOL

Hey guys the clip looks great. Congrats!! You guys are going to win, you deserve it!!

I got the "goosepimples"




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