Lighting & Rendering
To gain the raw render of the scene I used a Target camera (Lens 27мм, FOV 39 deg.), along with a simple lighting setup: a Sky light, Target Spot light with ray traced shadows switched on, and an Omni light for some additional ambience lightening (Fig17 to 19).
For the final rendering I used Mental Ray (with Final Gather switched on) with a base setup and output size in HDTV format 3200 x 1800 pixels (Fig20).
Post-Production & Compositing
The resulting raw image of the scene was then ready to be used as a base for the final additional painting and compositing work (Fig21).
Initially, I duplicated the layer with the rendered image and painted away all the visible seams and undesired artefacts left by the rendering process. Then I adjusted the colour balance, brightness, contrast and saturation parameters (Fig22).
The next step was to paint some additional details, such as some moss in the gaps between the floor and wall tiles, additional scratches on the columns, some wax leaks on the candles, and so on.
I then used different pieces of photographs on Overlay and Multiply modes (at different transparency levels) to add a more realistic and authentic look to the additional painted elements and to blend them in well with the rest of the scene.
I then spent some time adding some extra light and overshadows in the scene using some soft brushes in combination with Hard/Soft Light layers. I also added some little dust fractions, especially near the window where the light beams have the highest intensity (Fig23).
The final step was to further adjust the brightness, contrast and level properties of the image, and to add some noise and smart sharpen filters (Fig24).
The final result represents my personal vision of a fantasy-like, messy, but still cosy, alchemist vault. I had a lot of fun whilst making this project and I hope it brings you pleasure viewing it.