Cameras and realworld


Hey All,

I’m working on a project where I have trains running along a track. I’m using Redshift.

I have a weird question: I did some test render stills on my project and they look fine but (And this has happened to me before), I kind of feel like i’m looking at a scale model of the train rather than a real-world train!?

I’ve tried a 36mm focal length on the camera and 50mm (which is supposed to closest to human vision I think).

Anyhow, I can’t lose this feeling i’m looking at a scale model.

Thoughts on why this could be anyone? :wink:


Can you show a rendering, please?
Would be much easier to analyze :slight_smile:


If your image has a Tilt Shift or a Scheimpflug effect like this

Then its because you use a very narrow band of focus area. Use only a front or back focus point or use a vignetting effect to drive the viewers attention to the center of the image but with a wider view.
Other effects like Bokeh and Chromatic Abberation can enhance your problem.


In addition to Demis’ hints:

  • Place the camera low, in the eye-height of a human observer
  • Big objects need to be visibly built from smaller things. (Seams, bolts, you name it…)
  • Reference of scale is important. Place trees, Buildings, something. Those need a ton of detail as well to get across the sense of scale.
  • If you’re going for photo-realism: Atmospheric effects like haze can contribute immensely to the feeling of scale.
  • Last but not least: You need to mimic outdoor lightning really closely (which can be really unfavorable to your model. Just like in real life :D. But work with it, not against it)


Thanks for the great tips guys. Really useful and i’m grateful that you at least understand the issue.
Here’s an example render. It’s not mean’t to be photorealistic at all. It’s a very stylised look.



There’s your problem !
The train is out of scale !
It could easily fit through the door of a nearby house !


Need to bring down the size of those houses! For sure!


Even with a stylised look, you could benefit from some distance haze to add credible depth and scale to your scene


personally i think your biggest issue is the trees and bushes. Some of those smaller bush items in the real world would be a metre or so high at most. You have some of them towering over the train which must be 2.5-3m tall.

Also that car on the bridge. If a train is 2m wide, plus the gap in the tracks; that car is straddling both tracks in the distance, that makes the car 6m long.