These last months I’ve learned a very important lesson: efforts towards rendering ultra realistic skin are futile if they are not coupled with HDR, high quality bloom, depth of field, film grain, tone mapping, ultra high quality models, parametrization maps, high quality shadow maps (which are lacking on my demo) and a high quality antialiasing solution. If you fail on any of them, the illusion of looking at a real human will be broken. Specially on close-ups at 1080p, that is where the real skin rendering challenge is.
As some subtleties (like the film grain) are lost on the online version, I encourage to download the original blu-ray quality version below, to better appreciate the details and effects rendered (but be aware that you will need a powerful computer to play it). Please note that everything is rendered in real-time; in fact, you can also download a precompiled version of the demo (see below), which shows the shot sequence of the movie, from its beginning to its ending. The whole demo runs between 80 and 160 FPS, with an average of 112.5 FPS on my GeForce GTX 580. But it can be run in weaker configurations by using more modest settings.
Supplementary material video for our 2011 SIGGRAPH Asia paper
3D objects are rendered using LuxRender (luxrender.net).
Authors: Kevin Karsch, Varsha Hedau, David Forsyth, Derek Hoiem
Abstract: We propose a method to realistically insert synthetic objects into existing photographs without requiring access to the scene or any additional scene measurements. With a single image and a small amount of annotation, our method creates a physical model of the scene that is suitable for realistically rendering synthetic objects with diffuse, specular, and even glowing materials while accounting for lighting interactions between the objects and the scene. We demonstrate in a user study that synthetic images produced by our method are confusable with real scenes, even for people who believe they are good at telling the difference. Further, our study shows that our method is competitive with other insertion methods while requiring less scene information. We also collected new illumination and reflectance datasets; renderings produced by our system compare well to ground truth. Our system has applications in the movie and gaming industry, as well as home decorating and user content creation, among others.
The Blender Foundation has just released a brand new Blender 2.61!
From the announcement:
The Blender Foundation and online developer community is proud to present Blender 2.61. The 2.6x series is being targeted at including all work that happened in branches or patches past years.
Most notable in this release is the new render engine Cycles, the Camera Tracker, Ocean Simulation texture and Dynamic Paint. Check the releaselog for detailed information.
Rendered with Octane. The fur is a bit tricky, I used hair particules and converted them into meshes, but this only produces vertices so I had to extrude them to create planes, that’s it.