Any tips on improving ma sushi?

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Old 07 July 2012   #16
Oh cool, the sushi rolls have been the ones that I've been really working on so that's good to hear (I kinda felt like I was getting nowhere :P).

I think the base model for the top rice bits is a bit off, I'll have to get in there and rework it.
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Old 07 July 2012   #17
It's looking better and better each time, but the rice grains are till too big. They still have that tablet/tic-tac appearance simply because of their size. Also try and make each texture for the slices of salmon different, they each have the exact same texture.

I really like how you made the bamboo on the mat uneven in length, it looks great. You also did a great job on the candles, such a difference between the before and after.
Old 07 July 2012   #18
Hah, I was using 3D procedural textures for the Salmon so I just assumed they were all different, I never noticed how much they are the same.

Originally the rice was made by scattering a base model around a rough shape. This time I've tried sculpting the rice in in Mudbox and making a displacement map. I think this method has given better result. I'm fairly sure the scale isn't too far off because I made a rough count of how long the rolls of rice are and compared that to reference images.

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Old 07 July 2012   #19
That is much much much better. I absolutely love it!
Old 07 July 2012   #20
Yeah, that's just about genius right there! I wouldn't have ever thought to sculpt the rice in Mud, good work there. It looks great, much more realistic.

I think now maybe some lighting and filtering (postwork) tweaks and you'll be at photorealism, but even so it's an awesome and vivid image, and most elements look great. I'm not so sure about the wasabi paste but again, the stuff I eat comes from cheap stores and is more uniformly colored but chalky. If you are used to a different or higher grade wasabi, then you would know better than I!

Perhaps give it a Mud level of detail and see if you like it? It's the only element and also area of lighting that stands out to me as "CG". The color is right but the cellular-looking speckles don't seem right to me.

Great progress, very impressive shaders here.
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Old 07 July 2012   #21
Oh cool, I'm glad you guys like the new rice, I spent so long trying to get that right.

I used reference for the chunky wasabi paste but you're right, 90% of the time it's a much smoother looking paste, I might go in and change it. Also, I'm not too happy with the bumps along the edge there.

Just wandering how you think the lighting could be improved? Less saturation maybe? Maybe it needs more fill? I can't quite pick it but maybe I've been looking at it for too long.

Another thing I just noticed is that the wood texture is a bit soft at the front, I think I'll have to try and fix that too.

Thanks again for all the feedback, it's been really helpful.
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Old 01 January 2013   #22
So I've decided to re-visit this project to try and improve it.

I'm looking for any feedback, but specifically in the areas of lighting and composition.

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Old 01 January 2013   #23
I think you need to define the sushi as more of a focal point in your render. By using contrast, composition etc you can make the image a lot more interesting and ultimately make it stand out from the environment.

Also there seems to be a glow radiating from the salmon onto the rice which is providing an unnatural look.

Keep going

Last edited by IconicDrei : 01 January 2013 at 08:02 AM.
Old 01 January 2013   #24
Hey man,

It looks pretty good!

In my experience, it seems this stuff is served on a wooden plate or block, and I dont think those types of wax candles are very Japanese.

The rice looks a little over absorbent as well. It looks like its picking up to much red from the sashimi, and to much black from the rolls.

Old 01 January 2013   #25
Thanks guys, really helpful feedback, just what I was after.

Drei: Yeh, good point about the composition. I think the highlights on the bottle and cup in the top right are particularly distracting. I'm going to have to do something about that, maybe make it darker. I'm probably going to reconsider the whole positioning and lighting.

AJ: Thanks for the tips about the authenticity of the scene, I'm going to look for more reference.
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Old 01 January 2013   #26
It's getting better with each update.

Though, I am not sure for the last update. Your scene seems unaffected by that background picture (I mean unaffected by lighting). However, I am not sure if you need that background picture at all. Also, are you sure about composition? if it is rise you want to focus on, why don't you use other objects to point on the rice.
For example, those sticks, you coud rotate them to point on the rice. Also, that orange things behind. I would distort them, but to point on the rise.
And ofcourse, some different camera angle. Closer to the rise, perhaps lower, and with higher fov.

I would like to see one render just with dark-gray default texture, so we can further comment about lighting.
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Old 01 January 2013   #27
Thanks Boban, some good ideas. The latest camera angle is an attempt to break away from the previous angle and is still pretty rough, I just wanted to get somewhere. I think you're right about the background picture, I probably don't need it.
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Old 01 January 2013   #28
Here's a new render, all grey so that I can focus on the new composition and lighting. I'm going for more of a classic still life look now.

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Last edited by Kev3D : 01 January 2013 at 10:06 PM.
Old 01 January 2013   #29
You might want to check out these links I posted in another thread yesterday.
Old 01 January 2013   #30
Thanks Leigh, I did actually see them when you posted them, it's why I was inspired to head more towards the classic still life look. Those photographs are amazing! 1x never ceases to amaze me. I particularly liked this one:!/photo/53995/album/71643

I gave the lighting another stab, I think I like it better now. I gave the objects some different shades to get a better idea of what it would look like. Looking at it now, maybe the bottle thing and cup could do with a bit more light.

Any thoughts on composition? I don't know if the top left corner is too bare, maybe it will look good with a good texture, maybe it needs something else, I'm not sure, a shelf maybe?

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