Weird Sphere – Tips and Tricks for a quality render

Weird Sphere script – Tips & Tricks for a Quality Render

Open up the Weird Sphere script and run AP-PRX script. Each run will give you something different than what I have generated. So you can just follow my tips or copy the params just below .

<flame name="Weird Sphere_random mesh TR-Pitch_FJRZ-RT run 2" smooth_gradient="0" version="JWildfire V3.50 (28.07.2018)" size="1024 768" center="0.0 -0.1832" scale="301.36999330893974" rotate="0.0" filter="1.35" filter_type="GLOBAL_SHARPENING" filter_kernel="MITCHELL_SMOOTH" filter_indicator="0" filter_sharpness="4.0" filter_low_density="0.025" oversample="2" post_noise_filter="1" post_noise_filter_threshold="0.35" quality="100.0" background_type="GRADIENT_2X2" background_ul="0.40784313725490196 0.10588235294117647 0.08235294117647059" background_ur="0.10980392156862745 0.0784313725490196 0.011764705882352941" background_ll="0.0 0.0 0.8117647058823529" background_lr="0.0 0.0 0.0" bg_transparency="0" brightness="4.0" saturation="1.0" gamma="4.0" gamma_threshold="0.01" vibrancy="1.0" contrast="1.0" white_level="220.0" temporal_samples="1.0" cam_zoom="1.0" cam_pitch="1.239183768915974" cam_yaw="0.0" cam_persp="0.0" cam_xfocus="0.0" cam_yfocus="0.0" cam_zfocus="0.0" cam_pos_x="0.0" cam_pos_y="0.0" cam_pos_z="0.0" cam_zpos="0.0" cam_dof="0.0" cam_dof_area="0.5" cam_dof_exponent="2.0" low_density_brightness="0.24" balancing_red="1.0" balancing_green="1.0" balancing_blue="1.0" cam_dof_shape="BUBBLE" cam_dof_scale="1.0" cam_dof_rotate="0.0" cam_dof_fade="1.0" preserve_z="1" resolution_profile="1024x768" quality_profile="HQ 800" antialias_amount="0.0" antialias_radius="0.0" post_symmetry_type="POINT" post_symmetry_order="3" post_symmetry_centre_x="0.0" post_symmetry_centre_y="0.0" post_symmetry_distance="0.25" post_symmetry_rotation="12.5" frame="1" frame_count="300" fps="30" post_blur_radius="0" post_blur_fade="0.95" post_blur_falloff="2.0" zbuffer_scale="1.0" sld_render_enabled="1" sld_render_ao_enabled="1" sld_render_ao_intensity="0.6" sld_render_ao_search_radius="4.0" sld_render_ao_blur_radius="1.5" sld_render_ao_radius_samples="6" sld_render_ao_azimuth_samples="7" sld_render_ao_falloff="0.5" sld_render_ao_affect_diffuse="0.1" sld_render_shadow_type="OFF" sld_render_shadow_smooth_radius="1.0" sld_render_shadowmap_size="2048" sld_render_shadowmap_bias="0.01" post_bokeh_filter_kernel="SINEPOW15" post_bokeh_intensity="0.005" post_bokeh_brightness="1.0" post_bokeh_size="2.0" post_bokeh_activation="0.2" sld_render_material_count="2" sld_render_material_diffuse0="0.4" sld_render_material_ambient0="0.9896" sld_render_material_phong0="0.4084" sld_render_material_phong_size0="12.0" sld_render_material_phong_red0="1.0" sld_render_material_phong_green0="1.0" sld_render_material_phong_blue0="1.0" sld_render_material_refl_map_intensity0="0.5" sld_render_material_refl_map_filename0="" sld_render_material_refl_mappping0="BLINN_NEWELL" sld_render_material_light_diif_func0="COSA" sld_render_material_diffuse1="0.1" sld_render_material_ambient1="0.8" sld_render_material_phong1="0.6" sld_render_material_phong_size1="15.0" sld_render_material_phong_red1="1.0" sld_render_material_phong_green1="1.0" sld_render_material_phong_blue1="1.0" sld_render_material_refl_map_intensity1="0.5" sld_render_material_refl_map_filename1="" sld_render_material_refl_mappping1="BLINN_NEWELL" sld_render_material_light_diif_func1="COSA" sld_render_ligtht_count="2" sld_render_light_altitude0="-150.4762" sld_render_light_azimuth0="-30.0" sld_render_light_intensity0="0.8" sld_render_light_red0="1.0" sld_render_light_green0="1.0" sld_render_light_blue0="1.0" sld_render_light_shadows0="1" sld_render_light_shadow_intensity0="0.8" sld_render_light_altitude1="55.0" sld_render_light_azimuth1="-15.0" sld_render_light_intensity1="0.5" sld_render_light_red1="1.0" sld_render_light_green1="1.0" sld_render_light_blue1="1.0" sld_render_light_shadows1="0" sld_render_light_shadow_intensity1="0.7" mixer_mode="OFF">
<xform weight="0.5" color="0.0" symmetry="0.0" mirror_pre_post_translations="0" material="0.0" material_speed="0.0" mod_gamma="0.0" mod_gamma_speed="0.0" mod_contrast="0.0" mod_contrast_speed="0.0" mod_saturation="0.0" mod_saturation_speed="0.0" mod_hue="0.0" mod_hue_speed="0.0" obj_mesh_primitive_wf="1.0" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_fx_priority="0" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_primitive="7" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_scale_x="1.0" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_scale_y="1.0" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_scale_z="1.0" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_offset_x="0.0" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_offset_y="0.0" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_offset_z="0.0" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_subdiv_level="0" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_subdiv_smooth_passes="12" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_subdiv_smooth_lambda="0.42" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_subdiv_smooth_mu="-0.45" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_blend_colormap="1" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_displ_amount="0.1" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_blend_displ_map="1" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_receive_only_shadows="0" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_colormap_filename="" obj_mesh_primitive_wf_displ_map_filename="" coefs="1.0 0.0 0.0 1.0 0.0 0.0" chaos="0.0 1.0 1.0"/>
<xform weight="5.0" color="0.0" symmetry="1.0" mirror_pre_post_translations="1" material="0.0" material_speed="0.0" mod_gamma="0.0" mod_gamma_speed="0.0" mod_contrast="0.0" mod_contrast_speed="0.0" mod_saturation="0.0" mod_saturation_speed="0.0" mod_hue="0.0" mod_hue_speed="0.0" opacity="0.0" blob="1.0" blob_fx_priority="0" blob_low="0.3" blob_high="1.2" blob_waves="6.0" post_rotate_y="-0.792" post_rotate_y_fx_priority="1" post_rotate_x="0.0" post_rotate_x_fx_priority="1" post_mirror_wf="0.0" post_mirror_wf_fx_priority="1" post_mirror_wf_xaxis="0" post_mirror_wf_yaxis="0" post_mirror_wf_zaxis="1" post_mirror_wf_xshift="0.0" post_mirror_wf_yshift="0.0" post_mirror_wf_zshift="0.0" post_mirror_wf_xscale="1.0" post_mirror_wf_yscale="1.0" post_mirror_wf_xcolorshift="0.0" post_mirror_wf_ycolorshift="0.0" post_mirror_wf_zcolorshift="0.0" zscale="0.296" zscale_fx_priority="0" coefs="0.8949705261986953 0.13031515277761963 -0.19918262754740934 0.015508129899209022 -0.0 -0.0" yzCoefs="-0.13682045275093802 0.32581405712191835 0.006261494391608835 0.1826451973758989 -0.0 -0.0" zxPost="0.93969262 -0.34202014 0.34202014 0.93969262 0.0 0.0" chaos="1.0 0.0 1.0"/>
<xform weight="0.5" color="0.0" symmetry="0.0" mirror_pre_post_translations="0" material="0.0" material_speed="0.0" mod_gamma="0.0" mod_gamma_speed="0.0" mod_contrast="0.0" mod_contrast_speed="0.0" mod_saturation="0.0" mod_saturation_speed="0.0" mod_hue="0.0" mod_hue_speed="0.0" opacity="0.0" primitives_wf="0.996" primitives_wf_fx_priority="0" primitives_wf_shape="6" primitives_wf_a="-0.417" primitives_wf_b="1.146" primitives_wf_c="0.521" primitives_wf_filled="0" coefs="1.0 0.0 0.0 1.0 0.0 0.0" chaos="1.0 1.0 1.0"/>
<finalxform weight="0.0" color="0.0" symmetry="1.0" mirror_pre_post_translations="0" material="0.0" material_speed="0.0" mod_gamma="0.0" mod_gamma_speed="0.0" mod_contrast="0.0" mod_contrast_speed="0.0" mod_saturation="0.0" mod_saturation_speed="0.0" mod_hue="0.0" mod_hue_speed="0.0" julia3Dz="1.0" julia3Dz_fx_priority="0" julia3Dz_power="4" coefs="1.0 0.0 0.0 1.0 0.0 0.0" yzCoefs="1.0 0.0 0.0 1.0 -0.9216162582484015 0.017817591271046762" chaos="1.0 1.0 1.0"/>
<palette count="256" format="RGB">
F9C680EEC29FE3BEBED8BADD </palette>


  1. Open Weird Sphere script random AP-PRX
  2. Click Run
  3. Tip – Do a S Shot back up (very useful when doing tutorials) This will save a thumbnail snapshot backup of your settings in the ribbon view on the left. This is actually better than the undue button.





Tip 1 – Using spatial over sampling & anti aliasing / Tip 2 – How to set the sub division level in Obj Mesh Primitive

1. Following the diagram image below, locate the Anti – Aliasing / filter tab. Click on this tab to open the tools. (2.)Set the spatial over sampling to 2 (This will slow down your computer, how ever it will give you a better render. Note – You can leave it on 1 if it is locking up your sliders. You can do all your adjustments and quick renders under a setting of 1 and then set it back to 2 when you do a final render. Increase your filter radius until a smooth dome like image shows in the (3.) small image box. (4) We are going to skip anti-aliasing for now (simply because there are no jagged lines.) You will notice that the (5.)Obj Mesh prim seems to be triangulated. We are going to fix this by adjusting the (6.) Obj Mesh prim sub div level variable. So go ahead and change the sub division level to 2. We may have to go to 4 if it doesn’t smooth out. Do a quick render to see if this is the case.




Go ahead and set spatial over sampling to 4, Mesh is now perfectly smooth.

How to add a texture image to the colormap variable in Obj Mesh prim_wf

(1.) Click open the gear with colormap_filename. A dialog box opens and allows you to navigate and locate a image. This can be any image that you own. You can even insert any of your J Wildfire image renders.  Click the image file and the box will close. your image should be projecting into the mesh.


Adjusting The Material Settings

(1.) Click on the 3D Rendering tab   (2.) Adjust the Ambient level up and the Specular down. The ambient will brighten the image and the specular will fade out those bright light spots that are washing out the colormap. You can also change the specular light to a color that matches your color map. (3.) Do a quick render

How to add an additional post enabled colormap_wf variation to a 2d/3d variation

(1.) Select transform3 Primitive shape 6.

(2.) Add Var3 – Colormap_wf. You will notice that the primitive shape 6 will loose its 3d effect. *We will be fixing this in 2 additional steps. Click the  *grey/yellow button to the right make it a post enabled variation.


How to add an additional post enabled colormap_wf variation to a 2d/3d variation – continued

(1.) Scroll down a bit to view all the colormap_wf variables. 

(1.) Change *reset_z from 1 to 0 (2.) Set the scale x & y to 5   (3.) Also check and see that you have a post zscale on Transform2 Var2 (not shown in diagram image) (4.) Click the gear to open a dialog box. Navigate to your image files and choose a texture image map. The box will close after the image is loaded. Image should show up in the primitive shape portion of the render.



Other coloring choices

There are other direct color choices you can use; such as post enabled Dc type variations. However there are only a few painterly dc variations available. (1.) Lets remove Var 3 colormap_wf and replace it with *post enabled dc_gnarly (blur variable = zero). (2.) Change the blur variable from 5 to 0.  (3.) You can play with the freq variables for different twist to the coloring. I left it on its default settings. (4.) do a quick render for quality check (5.) Do a screen shot for back up

Note – Other Dc variations that work well is Dc Linear, Dc hexes, Dc Perlin and Dc Cracklep

Note – *Click the grey/yellow box to the right of dc gnarly title to post enable it. It should have a pressed look to it. that is how you know it is enabled. Dc Gnarly needs to be at 0 and the blur is to be set to zero

Getting Bold – Scaling the Z scale in Colorscale_wf

This is another interesting option if you are interested in trying. I have only just begun to explore this interesting trick. You basically can scale color in the z direction. So we are going to add another post enabled variation and rescale the Primitives variation.

(1.) Add a post enabled Dc Colorscale Var 4 on Transf3 Primitives_wf and set to 0 point 2.   (2.) Change the Primitives main variable to 2 (You should get something close to the image below.) Continued…….



Continued….. (1.) set colorscale to 0.2  (2.) Set scale_z variable to 0.5 t0 0.9 You will notice a bump like texture to the color. 

Translating and Moving in Post TF Mode on the Affine Tab

(1.) Select / hi-light  Obj Mesh Prim  (2.) Enable by clicking the post TF & Mirror Translate buttons  (3.) Use the directional arrows to move the transform away from the center. You can also freely drag the triangle around as well. You will notice that the object mesh has now moved away from the center. This is handy in lining things up the way like it. You can use this technique on each transform one at a time. Mirror translate works with certain variations and is experimental. It has an interesting effect when used with Loonie. I have tried a few different translations with it on and off. I have had different effects with it on and will be doing some side by side images showing the difference in the effects. Both buttons have to be enabled in order to use mirror translation. Continued……..


Continued……. On the non linear tab

(1.) Select Obj Mesh Prim  (2.) Change primitive id to 11 Torus shape. Now switch back to the Affine tab and translate using the directional arrows to move the obj mesh prim so that it wraps around the primitive shape rings. It looks like we lost the tanh2 bs effect because the weight is set to zero. Don’t bother increasing the weight, it looks horrible. Lets try something different.


Lets duplicate transform1 and change to a layered spiral, post enabled zscale. The zscale gives it a ribbon like look.


Swapping out Transform 2

The script was developed to randomize transform2 by selecting a variation with each click. But you may want to switch it to something else. In this case tanh_bs is not doing much to effect anything now. So we are going to change it to knots 3d; Which also has its own built in color map and a sub devide variable. We are just going to let it remain on its defaults for now.  (1.) Set the knots 3d main variable to 6 and the weight to 5.  (2.) Set the preset id to 3  (3.) tranf4 – Set the layered spiral weight to 5  (4.) Click on the post symmetry tab and change the point symmetry to 4. Note – Too many symmetry points just degrades the fractal. So in this case “less symmetry is better”




Weird Sphere_random mesh TR-Pitch_FJRZ-RT Render 1 Example



Weird Sphere_random mesh TR-Pitch_FJRZ-RT Render 2 Example



Weird Sphere_random mesh TR-Pitch_FJRZ-RT Render 3 Example





Perlin Color Crystalize 2 dogwaffle texture_RK    Customized in Dogwaffle

Bryce Mercury Mantle Terrain_RK  Custom mixed in Bryce3d Material Lab

Read moreWeird Sphere – Tips and Tricks for a quality render

Sky and Sea Flame Pack – Michael Bourne

Example sea and sky flames for use with the same named tutorial here.  The flames are to be used to develop your own, please link back to this download and/or tutorial if you decide to use these.  

Exploring Hidden, Weights and Xaos 

Merged Image Sigmoid Linear3d Zscale exercise 1

Let me start off by telling you what this tutorial is about, It is more of a work flow method for looking at the different tools you can use to clean up a fractal or create a different look. It is not about any expert explanation from a math perspective. There are other tutorials for those explanations on the internet.

My Work Flow example –

  1. I either tweak or create a fractal
  2. I sometimes will tweak or create a triangle pattern. I will use a pattern if it is 3 or more Linear3d.
  3. If my Fractal has some anomaly or elements that I don’t like, I will follow a 3 step process to clean it up. In this example flame – I had lines streaking through the fractal and a lot of noise.

I start by looking at additional variations that are added to a transform. I check and see if I have set it to Pre, Normal or Post. Each will produce a different effect. In this case, I did not set my Z scale to post.

  • To fix other anomalies; I start by switching transforms to hidden or normal draw mode. I will start with transform1 and work down to the last one. I just hide and unhide to see which transforms are projecting in what areas. It helps me with narrowing down an area that I want gone or even helps with the Xaos settings. You may ask, why not just remove the transform? Well sometimes its projection may be acting to effect other variations, even though it is hidden. However, I will remove it to see if it affected anything. If in fact nothing changes – then I will go ahead and remove it. I will then look at weights of each transform and set each to zero 1 at a time. I then decide to bring some back up to 0.5. Sometimes you will find 2 or 3 that are producing a lot of grain; in this case I will leave it set to 0. Keep in mind some artist will differ on this method and will add a little blur to a transform to make it fill in better. I prefer to get things crisp first.


  • I then go to Xaos and use the same method on the “from view”. I will go through 1 by 1 turning a transforms projection on and off to eliminate parts that I don’t like. My use of Xaos is a bit different and it was meant for a more mathematical approach. There are other tutorials on the internet that will explain a different use of Xaos. I use it to my advantage to just clean up the flame and make it crisp.

Read moreExploring Hidden, Weights and Xaos