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Building an example scene for Depth of Field controls

The section covering Depth of Field control will use a scene to illustrate the use of the tools and parameters. While not necessary to build this scene, it may prove useful for exploring in detail on your own.

The scene contains nine cylindrical primitives, a backdrop included in the default content, and a distant light. The default camera will be moved from its default location to take in all the objects.

One method to create this image would be to create the 9 cylinders, then from the Scene tab, select each one and manually input the individual coordinates in the Parameter pane. To create a primitive, go to the menu bar, click on Create, then New Primitive. Select cylinder and input the parameters as indicated.

Coloring the cylinders, while not necessary, provides differentiation between the cylinders. The color is set under the Materials tab. Set the diffuse setting of each and pick a color or type in the specific RGB codes. An example of the colors used are red (128, 0, 0) green (0, 128, 0) and blue (0, 0, 128). But any colors (or textures) can be used.

Cylinder settings:

  • Height = 0.5 m
  • Diameter = 0.25 m
  • Segments = 1(default)
  • Sides = 12(default)

Cylinder Positions:

Item X coord Y coord Z coord Color
Cylinder -100 0 0 Red
Cylinder 2 0 0 0 Green
Cylinder 3 +100 0 0 Blue
Cylinder 4 -100 0 +300 Green
Cylinder 5 0 0 +300 Blue
Cylinder 6 +100 0 +300 Red
Cylinder 7 -100 0 -600 Blue
Cylinder 8 0 0 -600 Red
Cylinder 9 +100 0 -600 Green

Set the parameters of the Default camera at the following X,Y,Z setting: 0, 105, 900. (Note the default position of the Default camera is 0, 105, 360. You are only moving the camera back along the Z-axis.) Once placed, you will not be moving that camera. You may want to consider locking the nodes for the Default camera. Again, not necessary, but it might prevent you from accidentally moving the camera.

When you have placed the cylinders, your view from the Default camera and top view will look like these screenshots (without the numbers, these were added those in post work for this illustration).


Using the top view camera you will see this view (you may need to zoom out on the Top View).


So that the cylinders illustrate our principles and don’t “float” in space, add a background. The multiplane beach cyclorama included with the default content in D|S 3 works fine. When you load the beach scene backdrop, go to the Scene tab and click on the plus sign to the left of the beach scene. In the expanded view showing the three planes, click on each of the 3 eye icons to hide the sand dunes (otherwise, a couple of the cylinders become buried a bit in the sand).

Finally, add a distant light. The exact position is not critical. Place it off to the viewer’s right, pointed down. Set the shadow parameter to “Deep Shadow” for this light. This light will help see the effects of your camera adjustments.

Your scene should look like this more or less. Note the white arrows which indicate the distant light.


When you render the scene, it will look like this subject to differences in colors selected and exact placement of the distant light.