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Using Alpha Planes

March 8, 2010
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Polar NightI did this piece a few years ago as a winter holiday image in Bryce. I tried, but couldn’t come up with a satisfactory penguin model. So I drew up a nice penguin in Adobe Illustrator, then took it into Photoshop where I stuck in an alpha channel. Using the Alpha Plane feature in Bryce, the penguin imported very nicely. By angling the flat alpha plane just right in Bryce scene, it pretty much maintains a dimensional look, and as you can see it can accept scene lighting just like any other object. The only Photoshop finishing here consisted of putting a filter on the ice floes to give it a more frosty look.

If you’re stuck on a project and don’t have the proper 3D model, alpha planes can sometimes work as an acceptable substitute. Be sure that you have a clean cut path for your image, and take care with your angle and lighting when placing your alpha channel image into the 3D scene. Everyone will think you’re a modeling genius πŸ˜‰

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One Comment
  1. June 27, 2010 6:59 pm

    You are a very smart person! πŸ™‚

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