Lighting Challenge #10: Flying Spaghetti Monster


This is an old challenge now, this thread is archived. If you scroll down to the Challenge #10 section of the downloads page, you’ll see that the models can still be downloaded for your tests, and also that a gallery has been made of top entries. Feel free to browse this thread to see what others have posted, even though you can no longer post here.

You Will Believe That Pasta Can Fly.

The Flying Spaghetti Monster Lighting Challenge is open! You can download the Flying Spaghetti Monster and his world from this location:

This is an original interpretation of The Flying Spaghetti Monster, as modeled and donated to the challenge by Ted Channing. The monster comes in an original 3D environment featuring a canyon, a river, and a volcano.


Please credit the modeling by Ted Channing if you put renderings of this scene into your webpage or your portfolio. We’re grateful to anyone who donates nice-looking character models for a challenge, please give credit where credit is due!

The main challenge here is one of believability: You need to convince people that pasta can fly. What can you do to make this bizarre looking creature appear enlightened and powerful, instead of merely looking like someone’s dinner? How you light the Flying Spaghetti Monster will be the key to making moving, inspirational images.

Light and render this scene in any 3D software. Use any texturing, shading, lighting, rendering and compositing techniques of your choice. Use any particle, fluid, or volumetric rendering techniques you want in rendering clouds, lava, and smoke from the volcano. You can change the models or repose the character as needed. For the environment, you can render any parts of the set that you want, or composite the character into the environment of any background image you want.


The contest is active right now if you’re just getting started this weekend. Here are some of the entries that have been posted in this thread already:

Posted by bungatron71100 on Page 6

posted by jeremybirn on Page 11

Posted by Fex on Page 11

posted by jsilver on Page 11



This is different, can’t wait to see people express there ideas. Do we need to submit a still or an animation or ether?


whooohoooo…:thumbsup: Now this is what i called a different lighting challenge. Lighting a character like goblins, superman, a woman or other character is basically the same like we’re watching a movie, but lighting a “flying spaghetti”?? That’s going to be a real challenge man!!

Great idea for the lighting challenge and thanks a lot Ted for the model, can’t wait to try it…



The mountain is there, but as a devout Pastafarian myself, I must ask…

[i]where’s the midgit?




I’m really serious about the posting rules this time. This challenge will be a lot of fun, but I actually had to think about whether this was appropriate for a challenge or not. My friends at work said “do it,” and I decided this wasn’t the most offensive cartoon charcter in the world (it won’t cause international riots or get blown up by the Boston Police or anything) but still I’m ready with my forum leader ‘delete’ button if anyone makes a post that isn’t about computer graphics or any off-topic debates start.

Yes, very different. The pasta looks a little like one of the themes you see a lot in the artwork of Meats Meier, but only a little. We haven’t done many characters yet, and certainly nothing surreal. I’m already thinking of things to do with this project myself…

Animation or stills are fine, but please post stills (just as .jpg or .png) when you’re first developing it. And when you post animation, post a still frame above the animation file link, too.

This character looks very difficult to rig, I guess it wouldn’t take long to make the pasta wave in a few lattices though – or maybe it’s more about softbody dynamics??

I expect anyone who sets up effects for the volcano and likes their results would want to get an animation out of the project somehow. I’m not even worrying about the volcano now, I’m doing tests on occlusion on the charcter in the valley…



No jokes? And I planned to put Doc Hudson into my entry. :wink:



MasterZap -

Great first image!

There’s no ban on adding cars or podracers or whatever else to the canyon. :thumbsup:



Podracers! ROFLMAO! :wink:

Yeah, I guess podracers are more readily available as a model (I can’t model worth nutti’n).

But I was going for a bit of Radiator Springs look. I’m shameless like that :wink:

(Btw, do you need more of that Swedish Car candy? I should send you a crate :wink: )



I think this challenge will be a lot of fun , a nice departure from the previous in a more relax kinda way and fun too… thres room for dynamics in here as u say… i was thinking more of parmesan cheese flying aroung j/k :smiley: … ill be fun :scream: … i wonder if we have a couple of weeks more to finish the neon challenge ? i found that challenge kinda hard on me and my pc but i like it :wise:



MasterZap - We already have enough candy over here. (“The Land of Chocolate” may be in Europe, but you can at least call my country “The Land of High Fructose Corn Syrup.”) I’d think the truck from the last lighting challenge could be stuck into this scene like a Pizza Planet truck if you want.

Leotril - I probably won’t be getting the gallery together for the last challenge for another week or so, and even after that it’ll still be an on-going challenge.



Big thanks for Rob-O for the Lightwave conversion of the scene, and jojo1975 for the Max version. They are both on the download page.

I’d be happy to host more formats if someone has some other software they’d like to help support.

This terrain really is a challenge to get going. For today I’m just going to get lazy and post a mash-up:

(I knew my Challenge #8 scene was missing something, now I know what it was!)



Hi Jeremy.

Thanks for the new interesting challenge.

I’ve prepared the scene for Cinema4D 9.6.
How do I provide that file? Do I have to find a file hoster and load it up there?
Or do I send an e-mail, if so… to whom?



Thanks Mesut -

Your Cinema 4D file is on the download page.



Thanks ShadowM8 -

Your XSI file is on the download page.



Here is my first try at this cool scene, still a lot of work to do, anyway, I hope you can get an idea!
Cheers to everyone,
all the best


60WE - Great start! If I were you I’d work on the sky/environment next. The sky is a big part of the image, it probably needs clouds, and the sky will be a big part of the reflections in making nice metalic looking forks. Your terrain on the cliff walls looks terrific! The ground looks very dry now, so right next to the water you might want it to get darker and wetter looking near the water line. The water surface itself is very regularly textured. I’m looking forwards to seeing your next version.



Love the gauntlet of forks idea, 60We !
Here’s a preliminary render to establish the camera angle, sunlight direction etc. I’ve used the Mental Ray Physical Sky environment shader with a single infinite light and final gather. You’re supposed to be able to use Physical Sky with a Physical Sun shader on the light but whatever the settings this seems to come out far too bright, like the poor old spag monster’s drifted into an H-bomb test range. The textures on the ground are a quick fix up to see how it’s looking from bits of images of the Martian surface downloaded from the European Space Agency website. (Many useful textures free for non-commercial use).


Hahaha, that is brilliant! :thumbsup:


The Lightwave file and link available for download is actually a .MAX file and thus rather useless for Lightwave…


My bad - cut/paste error in the HTML - I fixed the download page if you shift-reload you’ll see a working link to