An addition to this blog entry, care of Mark (aka Lakotariver), via Rosemaryr.
A few clarifications on the instructions given within Bryce itself: ———————————— 1. Locate the file “Bryce6 Links” in your Bryce folder*. *(Usually located under the main Bryce6 folder on your computer. Example: “C:\Program Files\DAZ\Bryce6.1\Bryce6 Links.txt” , or wherever you put your own folders and files for Bryce).
2. Open this folder** with a text editor. **[should read “file”, ie. “Bryce6 Links.txt”]
3. Type in a (new) link name as you want to see it in the menu, followed by a comma (,) and two spaces, then on the same line type the URL in quotation marks such as “http://www.daz3d.com”
4. To place a separator between links, type a dash between quotation marks (”-”)
5. Save the file to replace the existing one.
You can replace the links that are there, or add new ones. ————————————
Now, *why* go to all this trouble?
There are a number of tutorial sites or packages which you may likely wish to access while you are using Bryce. This opens such in a new window which can be constantly referred to as you work. The links you create do not necessarily *have* to be to the Internet…you can also access tutorials which you have saved to your own computer. Just use the file location path as the link URL. Simple. For those who do not have high-speed connections, this is a way to view those tutorials that you have saved to your computer. Some of these tutorials come as a package along with full Bryce scenes, for you to work with and explore: DAZ sells the “Bryce Masters’ Series” which includes “Smoke and Mirrors”, “Cloud City”, “the Block” and “Great Hall”. Other tutorials are also available on the web.
Thanks to Mark (aka Lakotariver) for high-lighting this little used function of Bryce 6 in the discussion forums at DAZ.
And here are some informational and tutorial links to try out:
My father had a saying (typical Cockney English saying): "It is all over bar the shoutin’" This applies to the 10th Annual Golden Tori Awards. They are a thing of the past for this year!
Each and every year, the members of the Delphi Bryce Forum have nominated and voted for the year’s best artwork done using Bryce, in a vast amount of categories (27 this year) It is regarded as the "peoples award" for Bryce artists throughout the world and in my opinion is perhaps the most special and prestigious award of its kind.
A lot of water has passed under the bridge in the past decade: The Bryce software has passed through several versions, been sold, bought, sold again and finally bought by DAZ. The Forum is still there, although it too has changed a lot and we have seen faces come and go. We have lost members to death Don Tatro (aka The Creepy Clown), Debbi Bishop (aka BryceTech), Cyn (aka Skywalker) and some folk have just moved on to other things, and we miss them all. That as we all know is the nature of the Internet and this global village that we call home!
The awards party is held each year on or around the 20th of January after the nominations and voting round that are held prior to this for about 2 months. It take the form of a "virtual" party in the Delphi Forum chatroom. Members don all manner of virtual apparel and virtual drinks and refreshments are served (although some I am sure are in reality imbibing their own preferred beverages – alcoholic and non-alcoholic – in front of their computer monitors)
Every 10 minutes or so the Master of Ceremonies announces the award category and by means of a chat room command opens up a pop up window on the attendees monitors to take them to the announcement of the winner of the category, then everyone chats about the winning entry, contributes all manner of congratulatory phrases and a wonderful "party" atmosphere is created.
Of course you have to remember that this event takes place at the same time all over the world. We have people from different hemispheres, and different time zones. This year Australia was represented, myself from South Africa and then virtually all the time zones of the USA/Canada. For some it was late afternoon the following day and for others late on Saturday night, so imagine the fun that was had when wether, time of day and season were exchanged between the attendees! I had to get up at 4am on Sunday morning to attend the party!
From beginning to the end (well the end of the awards part) a full 5 hours passed! For me it felt truly like 2 hours at the most. However when I started hearing the birds start twittering in the garden and saw the world wake up around me (in South Africa) I realized that a long time had passed and I had enjoyed every minute of it…
Here are a few of the events that occurred during this year’s awards:
The "popup" bugs of the Delphi chat room that cause some of our browsers to block the opening of windows and to disconnect us from the chat room every few minutes caused a lot of frustration but some merriment. Martin (GenericHuman) and I (Hamfast) had a contest who could welcome Cyndi (gonedigital) back first when her new Vista computer running Internet Explorer 7 bugged out after every award pop up! It was a frantic game to see who could get the wb Cyndi (Welcome Back Cyndi) first in the chat room once she reappeared.
Then there was (Sandy) SndCastie falling on the floor all the time (she says it was from laughter – ROTFL, but I think she was stealing virtual popcorn dropped on the floor by the exuberant award attendees!)
Then of course there was our resident southerner RebelYell who seems to have suffered from a bad case of alcohol-induced dyslexia and couldn’t type a single word correctly! Some of his spellings – deliberate or genuine mistakes were quite hilarious! Of course he frightened some of the visiting guest with his own "rebel yells" typed in capital letters in the chat room!
RebelYell wasn’t the only person with "fumble fingers". Our hostess and Master of Ceremonies, Rosemary Regan (rosemaryr) had to have several attempts to spell the word "small" before the hobbit assisted her and pointed out the "M" on the bottom row of the keyboard! She said it was that she was tired and stressed. I think she had been sipping virtual cocktails behind the curtains on the stage!
At times Martin (GenericHuman) reminding us in grandfatherly tones to …….sip……. the drinks slowly, but then frightening everyone with his "slam" and he slammed the glass down after downing it! Poor Cyndi (GoneDigital) had to have the loud "….sip….slam!" explained to her.
Plenty of *duck* tape was handed out to help attendees with the Delphi popup bug, and all the time Hamfast was like a little Jack Russel terrier, in and out, with silly jokes and jibes dished out to all including some inane joke about ducks flying upside down that drew a few polite "LOLs" and giggles from the crowd! It was early morning for me and I had way too much coffee and was definitely on a caffeine buzz!
We had some special guests with us. The winners of each category had been secretly contacted and invited to attend with promises that "it would be a special evening". Some had responded with enthusiastic "I will most certainly attend" others had prior commitments and had to decline the invitation. GoneDigital and Meski (Cyndi and Bob) were both visiting the forum for the first time, and received a hearty welcome and congratulations on their awards.There was a lot of e-mails going back and forth in the background to help them set up their browsers and to assit in logging in to the chat room.
Rosemary, who doffed two hats for the whole 5 hours, running the award ceremony and acting as MC, and then as a ordinary guest won a well-deserved Tori award for the "Most Helpful Person" even though she hinted that the voting was rigged, I can assure all that she won hands down and was by far the "popular choice". I think few people actually appreciate the amount of work that goes into organizing and running such an event!
Darlisa Riggs (Dar) paid us a visit from Utah. She works for DAZ and hinted at the upcoming Hexagon and improved Bryce documentation (which is the best I have seen since AuntiAlias’s Real World Bryce 4)
This year there were some closely-contested categories with, in some case, only a single vote separating the winner from the runner-up. In other categories there were some clear winners. This year’s WOW image was won by Ron Harrison for his "Violets & Brook Trout" image which drew gasps of astonishment and "wows" from all quarters. It is amazing to see what some artists can do with Bryce! His image was no exception. The Best New Brycer and Most Improved Artist awards drew equal reaction, keeping in mind that these are new artists who haven’t been working with Bryce for a long time!
"When did you start with Bryce?", I have been asked a few time – often by people who are curious about my images. When I actually come to think about it, I can't remember many of the details, but here are a few.
My best friend, and ex-business partner (we are still best friends but no longer business partners) brought a CD home one day with a whole collection of programs on it. It was from some or other computer magazine and had an evaluation version of Bryce3d on that had just been released that year. (1997 – I think) I recall having seen Bryce on the Apple Macintosh and marvelled at the images that were created.
I borrowed the CD and took it home and installed it on my computer. The evaluation version was fully functional and wouldn't expire but it put a nice watermark all over the rendered images. I played with it for a few weeks and loved every moment as I recall.
Of course I was a total klutz with the program. There was no manual to speak of and the help file was – dare I say? – not very helpful. I didn't know all the shortcuts and "hidden" features of the program. You see, Bryce was, and still is, a quirky program whose creators seemed to like the idea of hiding vital functions in rather obscure ways, often using the Ctrl key or buried under tiny little arrows.
Nevertheless I became attached to it and soon realised that I had found a program that suited me and that I could easily get to do what I wanted it to do without a manual or a degree in computer science. So I went to my employer and asked for a budget to be able to purchase this program, I certainly couldn't afford it. He of course asked me what I needed it for – and I lied (well didn't tell him the complete truth) and said that it was a 3d graphics program that could render things in 3D. He seemed happy with the explanation and asked if it did human figures as it would be useful for the medical environment. (where I was currently working)
I had seen some images where human figures had featured so in ignorance I said "yes", and my boss approved the purchase.
When the package was ordered I realised that it could not do human figures, but I had to show something to my boss. A visit to the Bryce website (owned by Metacreations) revealed that Metacreations had just acquired a new program called Poser that did…guess what… human figures… so I added Poser to the order and got the programs delivered after about 3 weeks.
Now I had a manual, and a program that didn't watermark everything and another program that could do human figures…
A good start to my life with Bryce.
Now you know as well why the human figure features so much in my Bryce artwork too!
Bryce 6 has the ability to use Real-World Lighting via HDRI (High Dynamic Range Images) for renders via the new IBL menu inside the Sky Lab. However Bryce 6 comes with only a few HDRI files that you can open in the Sky Lab. (10 when I last counted) so searching for HDR files on the web to get a few more options is a natural tendency of any Bryce-geek like myself!
I soon found out that some .HDR files didn't work and Bryce told me that they had to be in "probe" format. This page confirmed my findings, and I proceeded to get HDRShop and start the process… The image on the left is a Latitude/Longitude Format HDR and will not work in Bryce 6. The 2nd image is the Spherical/Probe/Mirror Ball Format HDR and is the only format that Bryce 6 accepts.
[Note: The link to the HDRShop v1.0 page at the USC Institute for Creative Technologies is no longer working, but I did find that the direct link to the executable to still work. The following link also works but you have to fill in your details before the download will start.]
The tutorial at the USC Institute for Creative Technologies is pretty simple to follow and can be used to convert those HDR. files to a Bryce 6-compatible format.
One of the biggest problem I found was getting a program to view the HDR files. Photoshop apparently can do it, but I don't own Adobe Photoshop, but I did find a freeware viewer called HDRView that does the trick. It is pretty old and primitive but it works!.
At least I can convert existing HDR files into something that Bryce 6.0 can understand…