Ray Dream Studio
Ray Dream Studio is a 3D design and rendering package by Metacreations. It also contains an animator.
The final version of RDS is 5.5, and the program has been superceded by Carrara.
The beta 2.4 version of my Starfield extension is ready for download.
Click on the links in the titles to see the large versions of the images.
||The Fruitbowl (79K JPEG) |
This was my first attempt to create an
image with Ray Dream. The grapes, cherries, strawberry, pitcher
and table are pre-built objects that come with the program. I
made the apple (regular and mirrored) and the bowl with the
object modeller. Check out the reflection (mirrored apple) and
refraction (the bowl).
||Two Blobs (15K
GIF ) |
These two blobs were initially created as DXF files with the
and then imported into Ray Dream. The near blob consists of three
positive spherical potentials, the far blob has three positive
and one negative spherical potentials (the negative potential
is responsible for the dent in the sphere facing the camera).
I was impressed that Ray Dream's shaders worked automatically
and correctly with these imported objects. Carrara includes a meatball
modeller that performs the same function.
||Mounted 32 pound naval long gun (78K JPEG )|
This is a model of a 32 pound naval long gun from the Napoleonic War era. The gun is made in the Blomefield pattern which, in contrast to the older Armstrong pattern, has a loop above the button. These guns were 9 feet 6 inches (3.1 meters) long and weighed 5500 lbs. (2500 kg). They were the lower deck armament on ships of the line (74 gun and larger ships). RAYflect's Four Elements extension was used to create the surface of the sea and the clouds in the background.
There are more Ray Dream images and links to model files on my
Babylon 5 page.
I also made some images of a space station that my cousin Javier designed.
Ray Dream Extensions
- My extension
- Starfield - The beta version of an extension I wrote that creates a procedural starfield.
- Metastream exporter - A free extension that exports models in the Metastream format, which is designed to send model geometry and texture information over the web. The models can be view using a WWW browser plug-in (also available for free at the Metasteam site). Follow this link and then select 'Just for Developers' to download this and the other 2 plugins on this site.
- OBJ file importer - A free extension that imports models in the Wavefront OBJ format.
- 3DS file importer - A free extension that imports models in 3D Studio format.
- Four Elements - Includes a terrain modeller that creates 3D terrain from a greyscale bitmap (and speeds rendering of the landscape), a shader which automatically creates the bump channel for waves, a background generator that makes skies, and a fire shader.
- Blubble - A meatball modeller.
- Zenstar Software.
- Supermesh -
Takes a greyscale image and converts it to a 3D heightfield object. The heightfield can be flat or wrapped around a cylinder or a sphere.
- CloneIt - Automates placement of multiple copies of objects. Greyscale images can be used to position the clones and there are various options to add randomness to the position and orientation of the cloned objects.
- Quadrix - Extrudes superellipsoids and supertoroids based on greyscale image maps. These objects resemble boxes with rounded corners (superellipsoids) and squarish toroids (supertoroids).
- Autonomous Effects.
- Furrific - Generates animatable hair, fur, grass on models. Models effects of gravity, wind and collision avoidance.
- Bone Bender - Deforms meshes by bending them based on control 'bone' objects. Very useful for animating human and animal movement.
- Face Shifter - Morphs between different objects, allowing for easy facial animation.
- Hot Lips - Synchronizes animations with sound information.
- Poser Importer - Imports Poser models into Raydream while maintaining texture map information.
- TV Tweaker - Adjusts animations before sending them to TV conversion hardware.
- AniMarker - A free extension that allows messages to be added to the animation timeline.
- Hutchinson Avenue Software Corporation
- Tree Druid - A procedural modeller plug-in for the generation and animation of botanical trees.
- ThOslash;r - A procedural modeller plug-in for the generation and animation of
- Eric Winemiller - has written several free extensions (PC only)
- Squares shader - Slightly different values in a square pattern. Use in as a mix operator to get a shader that can look like the ship hulls of Federation starships.
- Bricks shader - Makes great brick walls.
- Caution shader - Creates diagonal lines like those on 'Caution' signs
- Noise shader - Random noise in a 'bumpy' pattern - think of multiple ripples interfering on the surface of a pond.
- Turbulence shader - Random noise in a 'lacy' pattern - think of a grass quad with many trails worn into it from people cutting across the grass.
- Elevation shader - Creates a boundary based on elevation with controllable blur and unevenness. Can be used to shade Grand Canyon-like terrain.
- Slope shader - Creates a boundary based on the slope of the object with controllable blur. Can be used to put snow on mountains or sand on beaches in terrain objects.
- Tile 1.01 - An enhanced version of the built-in Tile shader. Fixes the 'bump offset' problem that some machines have, allows for more than 30 tiles in each direction, plus other enhancements.
- Tube light - Lights that are long tubes like fluorescent lights, also good for science fiction beam weapon effects.
- Panel light - Lights that are rectangular, elliptical or torus-shaped patches.
Borland C++ Builder 4 is a rapid application development (RAD) tool from Borland. Although the Ray Dream SDK was initially designed for the Macintosh, and the supported Win32 compiler is Visual C++, it is possible (thought not exactly easy) to create extensions with C++ Builder.
My extension page contains my tips for successfully creating an extension and has an archive of all the files you'll need (along with the Ray Dream Studio SDK (version 148C) and C++ Builder 4) to create a simple shader.
Other WWW links
Ray Dream Designer Forum.
This site contains tips for using Ray Dream Designer/Studio,
libraries of images and models created by users, and
patches for Ray Dream products.
- Gary Beale has some excellent tutorials on advanced shading and lighting techniques.
- Maps of the Solar System is a NASA/JPL/Caltech site containing texture maps of planets and satellites to wrap around your RDS spheres.
Steve Sloan's Ray Tracing Page. Although it doesn't have much in
the way of Ray Dream Studio-specific material, this page has a extensive list of
links related to raytracing in general (especially with the freeware POVRay
The site for the company that makes Ray Dream Studio.
Alfonso Hermida's Blob Sculptor Article. This article describes a program
that allows you to create DXF files of objects called blobs.
See the example above.
Blobs are useful for modelling of smooth, organic shapes. You can
the 78K zip file containing the program.
Back up to the computer page.
Updated 2/6/2000. Comments to
Copyright © 1998-2000 Evelio Perez-Albuerne. All rights reserved.