Pantheon Deorum

May 2007

The Pantheon in ancient Rome was a temple dedicated to all gods. Its concrete dome was meant to represent the dome of heaven and consisted of five rings with 28 sections. I noticed that this coincided with the five visible planets and decided to create a picture with this theme. The model was based on the original Pantheon, which featured niches and columns on the level under the dome rather than a square design with window-like features as it is now. I built a single slice of each level and then radially cloned it to get the full rotunda. Textures were painted with my Wacom Graphire tablet. The starfield and the planets on the dome, volumetric lighting, lens flare and ambient occlusion effects (from the SG_Amb_Occ plugin) were added by rendering separate passes. The starfield texture used was a full sky infrared map from the 2 Micron All Sky Survey (2MASS). It was already in rectangular (or linear) projection, so it was mapped spherically on the dome. It shows the Milky Way as a brighter band of stars running vertically down the middle. Constellations, unfortunately, are not very visible since the normal stars in visible light do not seem to show up as well in the infrared image. I've tried to position the field to reflect the position of the stars in Rome on a summer afternoon but the positioning was done by eyeballing and so it is not accurate at all.

Pantheon Deorum

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Production Info

RendererLightWave 7.5
ComputerVader's Hammer
Render time9 hours, 40 minutes (total for all passes)
Original resolution1600 x 1200

Astronomical Texture Credits

About Peter Yu I am a research and development professional with expertise in the areas of image processing, remote sensing and computer vision. I received BASc and MASc degrees in Systems Design Engineering at the University of Waterloo. My working experience covers industries ranging from district energy to medical imaging to cinematic visual effects. I like to dabble in 3D artwork, I enjoy cycling recreationally and I am interested in sustainable technology. More about me...

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