How to render a mirror?

So how would you go about rendering curved mirrors in Flamingo (Rhino’s add-on)? I know it’s not the best renderer - I’m about to learn Maxwell - but for now I’ll have to stick with it…
I tried putting a glass volume over a silver surface (with a little spacing in between to avoid little triangles) and played around with the gloss finish, but the result was terrible. :confused:

Rendering a mirror in ANY rendering package is all about the environment not about the rendering package.

Check out this dude’s tutorials for 3DSMax and Brazil. Most of the concepts are transferable to any other software.

Like IP said its all about the environment… with that said there are a ton of emaps on the net that people have done to get the look you are going for. Environmental Maps are high res Jpegs of an environment, I have found that a studio image is perfect for crisp clean reflections, see image…

Thank you for the info, but even with a spherical panorama it’s far from good. :confused:
The panorama is 1914x957 pixels but the reflexion is really pixelated…

Not sure I understand? If you are worried about Image size I would suggest going with and HDR Image…

I have had good luck with Emaps and HDRis, can you show an example of what you are trying to do?

Are you missing some kind of settings for reflection quality or texture filtering? You may just need to set your texture filter to a higher setting if you’re using a high res map but getting low res reflections.

Reflection is set to the max and there’s no texture as it is a mirror.
Flamingo doesn’t work with Emaps or HDRis neither. :confused:
This is the picture I used.
Just to make things clear; the mirrors are curved, not flat…

Hey Dansercoer,

Maybe it´s better to render it white and do the reflections in Photoshop!

I really hate “fighting” with softwares…When I cant get the results I want, I usually can get it done in Photoshop or AfterFX.

If you have the time for it, go on and learn how to fix it…But if the time is short, some post production will do the trick.

Instead of setting your environment to be that reflective map, try building a half sphere behind your camera and applying that environment map to it. Also your mirror should probably be a single surface, not a clear surface over a silver surface.

From how it looks in the screenshot you’ve posted it seems your mirror is reflecting such a small portion of your environment map that there isn’t enough pixel data on the map to cleanly reflect.

Is there a reason you’re using that building for your environment? Creating some stand in geometry for your environment may be a better way to get some higher quality reflections, either that or a much higher res/sharper (that image you posted is high res, but not very high quality) map.

A few more suggestions.

Try Cyberdemon’s half sphere - more control that way.

Make sure that your render mesh settings are set to “Smooth and Slower” or even try custom. This will make a smoother mirror and reduce distortion on the texture map

Try using the polished plain aluminum texture with the mirror setting up to very high - this will be better than glass.

As others have posted - photoshop may be quicker in the long run.

If you are doing a flat mirror, use photoshop. It will give you a much more realistic look.

If you still want to use Rhino, I would imagine you could edit an HDR image into a very large jpg. Then use that as your reflection map. Worth a shot.

If you aren’t doing a flat surface, your results might be bad because of the reflection map you are using. Try to boost the contrast in the image and drop the color out (except for a little blue). I find this gives a colder chrome/mirror look that appears realistic. Also, try to find other images to use.

Hope this helps!

I think this is the right answer.

Your reflection map is plenty hi-rez, and it’s clearly not zooming into a tiny area of it. I think Flamingo just isn’t ray-tracing it with enough fidelity.

Most of the other suggestions in this thread are hacks, and they’ll make your life tougher if you need additional renderings out of this scene.

Mirrors are a nightmare, even in photography. And Flamingo contributes, despite what others say. The quality of the reflection is really bad. I tried slowest antialiasing, smooth & slower meshes, tolerance, no blurry reflections, reflection bounces, …
For those who achieved good results; it would be nice to see some examples.
Thanks anyway!