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The Book Club at Sunflower Cave

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I haven't posted any images lately mainly because I was busy learning some new tools. One of them was UnrealEngine. This image is my first finished project in UnrealEngine, or any game engine for that matter. I used UE5 for this one.

You can see a companion video (extremely simple) here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=gihK5I…
My intention with the video was just to give some life to the image. I had never done it before with any of my images but UE5 makes it so easy and fast to create videos that I had to try. The video was prepared in 5 minutes and its render took less than 1 minute.

After many years of using only e-on's Vue for my images, I had to try Unreal Engine after seeing Epic's demo project featuring Lumen, a few months ago. I knew then I had to try Lumen in a cave environment. I saw a bunch of tutorials online and after some failed attempts, this is my half-decent image. Lumen didn't disappoint. This image and the video are produced using exclusively Lumen, no ray tracing is involved here, or postwork.

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© 2021 - 2022 ArthurBlue
Comments21
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I don't know exactly why, or perhaps I do, but when I first saw this image my mind went back to a song 'Rejoice in the Sun' , sung by Joan Baez in the film "Silent Running". I don't know if your familure with it. For some reason the child sitting and reading in the sunlight, and the lone Sunflower tilting up to follow the life-giving light just moved me. In your descripotion you mention a vedio of this piece. I look forward to watching it. Great work. Cheers.

ArthurBlue's avatar

Thank you! I'm not familiar with that song but I'm really glad my image resonated with you.

The video is just a very short 20 second clip, of the camera sweeping across the scene, to better give the impression of the place he's in. I think it helps to give the image several possible interpretations. The link is in the description.

Thanks again!

arthurus444's avatar

really nicely done. I like the background with the different plants, the rock wall and the sand as well as the pile of books. he or she, unfortunately not exactly recognizable, is deepened in the book and has the 'calm away'. beautiful figure with the sky blue shirt. thank you for this adorable scene:heart:

Art-By-Mel-DA's avatar

Beautiful render!! I'm hoping to dip my hand in UE if I get a new computer this upcoming year.

Ikke46's avatar

Beautifull and serene scene! :nod:

tsahel's avatar
hairyskeleton's avatar

Been a while since I made a comment. Glad to see you use UE as a new tool for art, it came out well. I have watched quite a few tutorials in UE, but I have to admit I'm lost. It seems like the keys for basic navigation in UE are so contrary to Blender, yikes. They should have made the keystrokes universal, instead of diffy. I haven't decided whether to animate my characters in UE or Blender, so I went ahead and made my lavascape scenes in Blender that I'm working on. As to whether I'll ever be able to import the scenes from Blender into UE remains to be seen especially if I can figure it out, since I'm very picky about how the landscape looks. I thought your scene was exceptional for a first try, you understand UE way better than I do.

ArthurBlue's avatar

Thanks for your comment. I still have a lot to learn and admitedly it wasn't easy to get this minimal grasp of the software. I was also getting lost and I thought I had to do something about it. So, I reverted to my school days and I started taking notes in a Word file of the most important details to remember. I wrote them in my own words, which was good to get it into my head, and it also acts now as a quick reference guide.


Yes, I agree that different navigation methods and shortcuts are a nuisance. The major software manufacturers should get together and define some kind of industry standards. I use regularly around 12 applications, each with its own standards. Even applications within the same niche can't agree on the most basic things (I use WorldMachine, WorldCreator and Gaea, all used to create terrains but each one has its own completely different standards). Maybe that's intentional - after all, a good navigation method can be a selling point. For example, I was hesitant between WorldMachine and WorldCreator, but now that I use UE, I tend to prefer WorldCreator, one of the reasons being it has a fairly similar navigation to UE (although not equal).

Polyrender's avatar

Nice. Looks very much like your Vue images.

ArthurBlue's avatar

Thanks! That's interesting...

GilB57's avatar

The power of imagination (great work!) :)


As a Vue user, I also tried LUMEN some time ago... the most fascinating feature being to create a scene as an .exe file, in order to walk and watch inside the scene I created in real time!

ArthurBlue's avatar

Thanks. :-)

Maybe you're mistaking Lumen for Lumion?... Lumen is a lighting technology embedded in UnrealEngine5, that was released in May 2021, just a few months ago. Lumion, on the other hand, was released in 2010.

GilB57's avatar

No, I was talking about Lumen RT that was originally developped with VUE. This software allowed VUE 3D scenes to be explored in Real Time... I tested a demo version a few years ago.

As you are a great VUE artist, I thought you were talking of this one :)

ArthurBlue's avatar

Ah, I see. Well, thanks for the compliment. :-) No, I wasn't talking about that, I never actually tried it. I was talking about Lumen as in the lighting technology inside UnrealEngine 5. This image wasn't made with Vue, it was made with UnrealEngine 5.

Leanndra51's avatar

This is a wonderful creation. I love the entire scene you created! I read in the description that this is the first image you created using UE5? That is awesome! :nod::faint:

ArthurBlue's avatar

Thank you! Yes, it's the first one (of course I did before 3 or 4 basic test scenes to study how the software works, just some random stuff).

Leanndra51's avatar

It is my pleasure! It is a magical scene.

AlecRoberts's avatar

Congratulations, a great success I'd say. If you set out to show an overall blissful innocence, then that is positively achieved. However do the deep shadows on the left hide something not so innocent? Does the threatening sunflower possess homicidal tendencies? Is the child held in that place against her will?

Just me I guess.

ArthurBlue's avatar

Thank you for your comment. Very insightful. Those questions you had reflect some of the ambiguity I tried to achieve with the image. If you notice carefully, you may see that the flower itself is part in the light and part in the shadow. That too is part of the "story", of the ambiguity I hoped would spring on some viewers upon a deeper analysis. Thank you again.

AlecRoberts's avatar

I was going to use the phrase 'drenched in disquiet' to describe the piece, but withdrew it thinking it may sound too critical. After your kind response, I now feel it was probably appropriate after all.

ArthurBlue's avatar

That is a very interesting description. My immediate thought upon reading it was that It would sound excellent as a title (aliterations often do) but then, on second thought, it would remove the ambiguity and narrow the viewer's interpretation. My hope (as with many of my other images) was that different people will see a completely different "image", depending on one's own background and life story. And others hesitate, like you initially did. The title is often an important part of it. Thank you for this very interesting exchange.

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