Convert scene to an spherical HDR and reproject texture back in the scene

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Old 01 January 2013   #1
Convert scene to an spherical HDR and reproject texture back in the scene

Hi, need some thinkers to help out.

I have a heavy scene with a lot of textures. I would like to make a 360 image of it from the center of the scene (where the characters stands), and then reproject the texture on a more simplified 'scene mesh'.

This is only for the characters reflection.

Looking for a clean and simple solution to do this. I guess you could align up several cameras around a sphere and hit render. And then use the same cameras to project the rendered images. Is there a "neater" solution?

Best regards,
Tor M
Old 01 January 2013   #2
Content Browser > presets > prime > light setups > bake environment

Shove this in your scene and bake the sphere's texture.
Matthew O'Neill
Old 01 January 2013   #3
Thanks for your answer, not in front of a computer at the moment, but I will test it out.
Would it be possible to project the baked environment back on the mesh, like a spherical projection?

Old 01 January 2013   #4
Originally Posted by Kevron: Thanks for your answer, not in front of a computer at the moment, but I will test it out.
Would it be possible to project the baked environment back on the mesh, like a spherical projection?


Why don't you just put the texture in your object material's environment channel?
Old 01 January 2013   #5
Thanks for your answer Adam.
Putting the texture in the object material´s enviroment channel would work.

Just looking for a solution thats a bit inspired on how ILM did the lighting and reflections in Iron Man. They reprojected their HDR back on the scene geometry. So you would get the accurate lighting and reflections when characters moved in relation to eachother and the scene.

Here is an article from fxguide on the subject:

It´s quite interesting!
Old 01 January 2013   #6
Create a sphere, add a 100% reflective material, bake the sphere material reflection, you have your HDR Map.

Then add it to your environment map or to a sky object with compiting tag or as a spherical mapping on low-rez geo and that's it.
Old 01 January 2013   #7
That reflection baking method works, but has some limitations, I did some 4k projections last year for a dome project and we ended using a slightly more complex, yet reliable setup.

The workflow we used was to work with the wfcam plugin in cylindrical equidistant mode.
Render your scene to perfect 180° view (works with Vue and VRay too)
Then we used a specific kind of sphere that features a special uv unwrapping, which allows you to re-project the scene. Couldn't tell you how it was made, I'll attach it to this thread later on.

Old 01 January 2013   #8
If you want a better option, grab DeGamma. It does everything WFcam does but better and faster.
Matthew O'Neill
Old 01 January 2013   #9
Apparently, it's only for reflections/lighting, so the "chrome sphere" method should be more than enough imho.
Old 01 January 2013   #10
The ILM solution is quite interesting. Baking an environment is no problem, but i have absoloutely no idea how to reproject a spherical HDR onto geometry. I guess it would work via camera mapping with multiple cams only projecting parts of that HDR. But with just one camera?
Old 01 January 2013   #11
Possible solution from a NUKE user: "Project your pano through a cubic env camera rig, first convert your pano from latlong to cubic , this will give you six cameras to project portions of your pano onto geometry."
Old 01 January 2013   #12
Thanks for all posts, I ended up doing it a "manual" way. I did not specify that I use Maxwell on this project, so what I did was following:

Set up three camera in my scene with maxwell textures. Three camera was enough to cover most of the buildings.
Hit render and wait.
Make a new scene with low-res objects of the building. Import the rendered images from Maxwell. Use the three initial cameras to project the rendered images back on the low-res buildings.

Here is a screen grab from the viewport:

This is good enough for getting some decent reflections without having the detailed city in the scene. It resemblance the workflow you would do in Nuke with projections.

If you bake your textures into .hdr files, then you could also use the low-res mesh for lighting.

Last edited by Kevron : 01 January 2013 at 01:33 PM.
Old 01 January 2013   #13
Hey it's actually much simpler. Render a spherical HDR map, use spherical mapping and place the texture axis to where the camera is.
Old 01 January 2013   #14
This is also works quite fine with Vray.
Old 01 January 2013   #15
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