I found this picture on the APOD site. It kinda spooked me. I visit the APOD site almost every day because I find lots of nifty pictures of galaxies and nebulas for my desktop. It usually has great commentaries about the pictures as well. But I digress.
It spooked me because it is almost exactly like a picture I was trying to create with the POVRay raytracer. I was smitten by raytracing when my kids were younger. I would walk around examining objects as potential candidates for my next project. I made a train and a Ferris wheel... Oops, digressing again.
I got frustrated with how hard it was to get something looking beautiful and polished. I often got bogged down in math problems like, how do you make a rope hang between two points without it looking like it is frozen stiff. I came to the conclusion that I wanted to pick a project and create an entire picture from start to finish
I picked an observatory. I made good start on it and came up with a pretty decent structure. Then I wanted a night sky. I played around with various lighting techniques, textures, etc. But I was never satisfied with the sky. I just couldn't get it to look right. Well, the PBGs work in mysterious ways. They seem to take their time about it, but...
The above picture is exactly the sky I wanted. The observatories (only one in my imagined picture) are even on a hill.
And, I just recently got back into doing 3D graphics using the Unreal Tournament engine. I have decided (again) that I want to accomplish something and am currently bogged down on how the textures work, lighting and, you guessed it, math. There is SO much to learn and no more time now than I had before. If anything, my life is MORE full now. I really have to decide what is important.
I love doing the graphics, but is soaks up SO MUCH time.