What is 3D ray tracing, also called 3D rendering? If you have ever watched the extras on a DVD, about how the special effects in a movie were done, you probably watched a video of them doing 3D renders. Below is a photograph of me at the time I wrote this book, and the 3D model I created of myself.
I took an existing model and pushed, pulled, and twisted it, until I came close enough for government work. That is to say, I got in the general ball park. BTW, the last one is how I look at the time of the rewrite in 2015. What would stand out from the previously referenced extras on a DVD, is the obligatory “wire frame” model. Below is an example of a wireframe image:
Here is that same image, after a skin is placed over it and with lighting added. Note the reflection of the lighting in the pupils of the eyes. It is actually faked, but it gives you an idea of how much attention to detail this form of artwork is. I did have the option of it actually “raytracing” the lighting. I was just in a hurry, so I faked it.
A little more work would make the image look as realistic as a photograph. I am just trying to the the concept of how this type of image is created, so you can see the more polished examples throughout my book.