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snow on surface

I decided to just post this snow (on surface) material here, even though I know that anyone trying to use it will run into a number of problems.  As stated in the forum, this is just a 'prototype', and it needs to be further developed to become useful for the 'average' Microstation user.  But I guess if you found this post, you are are not just an "average user", and maybe you will get some bright ideas on how to improve the material and make it be more useful:

some issues  (some also mentioned in the forum thread):

  • The material is based on the slope gradient functionality.  It works well, but it is not easy to control 100%
  • The snow material is using displacement to give the snow some thickness.  The material requires high displacement settings if the snow is close to the camera, and will render very slow
  • The scene contains two versions of the material: - one snow+metal combo, and one with snow only.(transparent background).  Both materials allows snow only on surfaces facing upwards. The 'snow only' version might be more useful, but requires that you duplicate the geometry you want to carry snow, and uses another base material to be visible on the geometry that will not be covered in snow.  The snow+metal version is just an example, and could have been a snow+wood or a snow+rock material.
  • for the combo material is hard to find the correct gradients that makes the transition from metal to snow look good.
  • for large distance renderings (buildings/landscep in the background etc), you might get away with using the material with displacement = 0.   I have not tested this.
  • The material uses gradients/textures in multiple channels, it will be to detailed to explain each one - and I guess you will understand how it works anyway.  Just post questions if anything is unclear regarding this, and I'll  help if I can.



this example rendering uses 1 material only. the snow is only "growing" on upwards facing surfaces, a metal surface becomes visible on steep surfaces. Both surface types are defined in the combo material.